When I ask you to sit down with me and set up some rules and borderlines for living on your own next year, comprised the eye rollers and harassed sighs and put yourself in my shoes for one minute. As a mom, I worry. I worry more in one day than you do in one year. I have laid down by my bunked staring at the ceiling dreading this day for years and yet it’s here and I’m still not sure how to handle it.
You have a chronic disease, like Type 1 Diabetes, epilepsy, or Crohn’s. It’s a big deal and as mothers, we try to keep it in the darkness and live a “normal” life. The dangers creep in at night. The tiny accidents like missed insulin , not enough food, the complications that you sustain when you catch even the most basic cold and flu flaws. I don’t like saying it out loud, but you could die.
You could die from any of these things because you can’t take a day off. Heck, you can’t take an hour off, and that scares me because at home I “ve always known” “when youve” dismis your diabetes and not addressing the high-flowns and lows of your blood sugar. I could pester you to check your blood sugar and you are able to comply. I could force you to get up and find your test kit and you would.
But who is going to do that is currently? I’ll say it again, you could die. You could die all alone in your dormitory room and I won’t be there to save you with a sugary soda or a glucagon shot. I can’t live with that horror. I simply can’t.
So hear me out: Principles and limitations could save your life and if you don’t want to believe that, then know that they might save my life. I can’t let you go without knowing we have a deal. I can’t let you go without you agreeing to keep yourself alive every day. I hate it, but it’s true. I can’t let you go until we have a deal.
I wish we didn’t have to have these speeches. I wish you could move to the dorms, get mononucleosis, hop-skip grades, be dehydrated, and deprive yourself of sleep like a lot of freshmen will, but you can’t. We have maintained your cancer in the shadows, but we can’t pretend you are the same as the rest of your peers anymore.
You’re not the same and until there is a cure for what ails you, you never will be. So, I’m sorry, but the rules for you are different. Hate me if you need to, I can take it. Just don’t ignore me. Simply don’t cut me off. I’m actually your biggest fan and your greatest advocate, but I need to keep you alive.
There are no terms for how much I hate your disease. There isn’t a measurement for how hard and how long I’m willing to fight for you. We need to face this together. We need to work together. So, please, take one minute and put yourself in my shoes. Let me order your prescriptions and make sure you have them in your dormitory room. Let me schedule your doctor’s visits over the breaks when you will be home. Hear me out on my plan to check in and monitor and make sure you are okay.
I want to help. I want to let you take care of yourself and keep your independent spirit alive, but I need a little hand comprising before I completely let go and you might actually need some hand holding too.
You have always been my ferociou boxer. I never tried to break your feeling and construct you comply to criteria. I encouraged your independent nature and your contemptuous sense of humor, so I’m not a total kill-joy.
School will be challenging. The curriculum in college is rigorous and you are about to experience a major academic slap in the face. Your homework is going to multiply, you need to make friends, you need to get your own meals, you will be walking a ton to get to and from classes. Your whole life is about to change; let me take some of additional burdens that your malady brings.
I can’t give myself kills, that won’t work. But I can order insulin and prevent you providing access to syringes all year long. Nausea medication, yes, I can order that too. Outsource these tasks to me. It’s not reclining on me. It’s not you two are weak. It’s us working together. It’s us winning.
Let’s pull your disease out from the shadows and drop it on the table in front of us and dissect it into small-minded fragments. Let’s divide up any projects or loads that we have been able to. Next year will be amazing if we are on the same page. Instead of being annoyed with me, let me in, you can kick me out later…maybe not, but let’s go with that for now.
I’m all in, are you?
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