During our trip home, Connor was thoroughly confused and saddened as to why he was singled out and wasn't allowed to have a treat, so I explained it to him, over and over and over again. We arrived at the McDonald's drive-thru 30 minutes later, "1 small M&M McFlurry please!" I looked in my rear-view mirror and finally saw a small smile emerge on my boy's face.
That afternoon was the afternoon that Connor grieved his diagnosis & differences, and somewhere in that little 4-year-old mind came greater acceptance of his disease; he may not be able to have a popsicle with his peers, but he'll eventually get an M&M McFlurry and life WILL be okay.
We recently visited my cousin, Pat, at her home in Maryland for a family get together. Pat has 3 sons, 2 of which were diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at a very young age. Pat's sons are grown now and I never realized what an instrumental role they'd play in Connor's life. During our visit, Pat encouraged both of her sons to show Connor how they check their blood sugar and require insulin just like him. Ohhhhh booooy, I saw Connor's eyes light up like a Christmas tree as he watched intently as both of Pat's sons checked their blood and administered shots. Connor has not stopped talking and asking about Pat's sons for 2 weeks now.....he loved that the "big boys" (as he refers to them), were not only playful and fun, but they had diabetes too. It was the first time since his diagnosis that he was exposed to someone JUST LIKE HIM, psychologically he feels like he's not so different anymore, there are others with the same diagnosis, he is no longer the odd man out. Since seeing them, he has taken more ownership of his diabetes, he now checks his own blood sugar and has been much more compliant about shots. Yay!
We met 3 boys roughly Connor's age at a local park today that are all Type 1 diabetics. Between the intense heat and me being exhausted from chasing my young daughter around, we didn't get to stay for long. My intentions are to get these boys together for future play-dates, I want Connor to develop friendships with children that understand him and can serve as a reminder that he is not alone in this world.
This song is for my Connor......