Toothbrush – check.
Pillow – check.
Birthday gift – check.
Diabetes bag, cell phone, gluten-free cupcake – check, check, and check.
A long time ago, someone told me that my kids were going to grow up one day. (Pffft. I KNOW! I didn’t believe it either.) I guess it started she was ready to bust out of the womb at 36 weeks gestation, but I wasn’t. Then I was ready for her to nap, but she wasn’t. Then she was ready to walk, but I wasn’t. Asserting her independence was pretty much all downhill for me from there. The back and forth between what she was ready for and what I was ready for tipped the scales in her favor once those little legs were on the move.
Time passed. She was ready...I wasn’t. She did it anyway...I caught up. Quite frankly, I wasn’t ready for any of it, and I certainly wasn’t ready when she excitedly waved a sleepover invitation at me while chattering a mile a minute one random day after school.
“Can I go, Mom? Huh? Can I? Can I?”
Up until that moment, sleepovers hadn’t been an issue, because I’d just go with her. Don’t laugh! I’m being serious. They were mostly hosted by neighbor friends, and it was no big deal if I hung around. The party mom appreciated an extra set of hands; I appreciated the opportunity for adult conversation; and my daughter appreciated that I seemed to blend in with the wallpaper while discreetly bolusing her using the Ping remote. Win-Win-Win!
But this one would be different, because I had to work and couldn’t tag along. Plus it was in an entirely different neighborhood, and I hadn’t ever met the mom before. This would be the REAL DEAL, and I was NOT ready.
I looked into my 9 year olds daughter’s big brown eyes as the words tumbled out.
“Um. Yes. Yes, of course.”
And she did.
And I’m here to tell you that it was a Disaster. (Yes, that’s “disaster” with a capitol D.) There were missed boluses, ignored texts, sassy attitudes, and a middle of the night sight change. I’ll spare you the gory details here, but you’re welcome to check out the entire painful play-by-play if you feel like making yourself nauseous.
I’m also here to tell you that she’s done it again. More than once, actually.
Yup. You heard me right. My 9-year-old completely screwed up her first opportunity to prove to her parents that she was ready to manage her diabetes independently at a sleepover...and we let her do it again.
Now, don’t get me wrong. We had to set some ground rules:
1.She will wear Dexcom.
2.She will call or text if she has any questions or concerns about carb counts (or anything else, for that matter).
3.She will not eat or drink carbs after 10pm (unless she calls to check in first).
4.She will set an alarm on her cell phone to check her BG at midnight.
5.She will call or text her BG when she wakes up.
Let’s face it. That’s about all there is to it.
It’s been almost two years since that first sleepover disaster. In the time since, diabetes hasn’t been too much of a party crasher. Like anything else in this life, it’s taken some practice to figure out how to fit diabetes into the grand scheme of sleepover success.
But we’re doing it.
Ready or not.