I wanted this blog to be about my family's experience with my son's Type 1 Diabetes. My family is more than just diabetes, but I want this blog to be focused on how it affects our family. I hope other T1D parents find it helpful, and that my family and friends find it informative.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Lowering the Bar

Every day has a hard moment, but so did every day before T1D (Type 1 Diabetes).  Every day has a hard moment for all parents.  The only difference is perspective and what I consider a hard moment... the bar is a little lower now is all.  There are days I let a tantrum slide, I let a little flash of anger slide, when I would have put him in time out instead I hold him and tell him I understand that he was frustrated.  I used to worry about behavior in public more, now I let a lot of outbursts go. 

Like every parent will tell you, you have to pick your battles.  Right now I care less about manners and tantrums then about cooperating for finger pricks and insulin shots.  I can tell frustration from being mean, and I let frustration slide.  We are back in pull ups full time and I don't even care (this used to be a huge deal to me).  TV is on his shows often these days.  Its partly because it distracts him from hunger and asking for food, and partly because it give me a break to clean up, write here, look up information, record readings, make grocery list, and just otherwise organise myself in ways I never worried about before. 

Maybe I am wrong but lowing the bar in my opinion is good for Johnny too.  After all it isn't just me that is adjusting.  He is in a big way.  I don't think cutting him some slack for a while is going to do any major harm, or turn him into a brat.  I think a little extra time to relax with a movie on gives him some mental/emotional relief too.  I think letting a frustration outburst go unpunished for a little while but still acknowledging that they happen is okay for a bit.  After all, I want him to express feelings and not feel that he has to keep them in... and right now feelings of frustration are pretty common and justified.

But lowering the bar for things to be grateful for and celebrate is equally important.  I stop a lot more often than I used to and just be with him, play with him, listen to him.  I might get the broom out to sweep and when he takes it from me to help, I let him now.  I used to just try to distract him so I could get it done fast... but not this week.  I am happy he is feeling well enough to try to help.  Seeing Johnny "read" a book (you know, repeat a story from memory while he turns pages), is so rewarding but I think it was something I took for granted before.  I sit with him at the table for every meal and snack, something I should have always done... but didn't.  I just want to be with him, and I want him to really KNOW that I want to be there with him. 

Take time (just today even) to lower your bar for your kids, one day wont hurt.  Let something go with out a time out, instead discuss the feelings behind it.  Lower the bar for what your kid has to do to impress you, make an extra effort to show them in ways they understand how much you love them.  You can do the sweeping tomorrow.

1 comment:

  1. Mom has a framed cross stitch in the library that says "Cleaning and dusting can wait til tomorrow, for children grow up, I've learned to my sorrow. So quiet down cobwebs, and dust go to sleep. I'm rocking my baby, and babies don't keep."

    Enjoy those moments!

    Love you, Elisa