Special thanks to Misty's MeMe post, Cindy's candidness, and Renata's gracious post for giving me the courage to post on my husband and our relationship with "d" in the mix.
Nyquil, Ibuprofen, Afrin, Advair, and Xopenex are my best friends. Well, I take that back, my husband is my best friend. He manned the house, kids, dinner and movie night while I was medicated and sedated for the previous 13 hours. My drug-induced medicinally-crafted sense of wellbeing has me upright and ready to post this morning. I have decided to share with you, today, about my other half. Not necessarily my better half, come on, you guys knew I wouldn't give him that much credit. I am your vain Portuguese Princess after all. I think with Dave and I, the sum of our halves equals a pretty spectacular, synergistic whole.
Our complements are by far too numerous to list here, but off the top of my Nyquil infused, fogged brain here we go: I am flamboyant, he is reserved. I am a laborious work-horse, he knows when to "take it easy". I am emotional, he is even-keeled. I am a social butterfly, he tends to keep his social circle tight. I hate to shop, he is my grocery store and Costco monkey boy. I like things tidy, he is somewhat of a slob. I am carefree with the children, he is a little uptight. He keeps tabs on the family finances, I could not be bothered with such mundane details. I am the full-time pancreas, he will step in when needed. He sits with the children to teach them "important" life lessons, I am more the "day-to-day" manager of the crew. He is 110% about anything he feels passionate about, I am more like 85% about everything. I would do anything for our family, he would do anything for our family...
and he does...
This man works 50+ hours a week to provide for his family. He leaves the house with a smile on his face, a positive attitude, always looking to make it a good day. He picks-up the night time blood glucose checks on the weekend to give me a break and will often take over during the week if my work schedule fills-up. He loves to laugh, he loves computer games, he loves beer, pizza, and hockey. He rarely complains...only if it is hot... I won't go into his hyperhydrosis issue. He recognizes when he needs to change, to improve upon something and he does. He is open to criticism. He actually welcomes it and he utilizes it to improve upon himself. After my Food Rage with the Shrimp Guy in the Buffet line post (a good one, by the way), Dave stepped it up, and has learned to take Joe out to eat without me! He makes me feel loved, accepted, and adored. He loves me unconditionally even when the "Bitch Switch" is ON. He has been loving me for over half of my life now. We met in 1990 as freshmen in college and have been together since (sans one tiny break-up). I would not be who I am today without the love and support of this man.
When we were discharged from the hospital after Joe's diagnosis, a nurse gave me a book. This book had nothing to do with the pathophysiology of Type 1, it had nothing to do with the rigorous management that this newly diagnosed condition required, it had nothing to do with the latest and greatest research. It was a book about how parenting a child with type 1 can affect your marriage.
Funny, at the time that baffled me.
I was somewhat prepared to lance, poke, expel blood, read meters, measure and weigh food, and inject my son with insulin, but I was not prepared for strain on my marriage. The thought had not even crossed my over-loaded, fact-burdened mind. There it was. In black and white, the day-in and out strain on a couple managing type 1 in their child causes rifts, strain, separation, resentment, the list could run on and on I am sure.
While I read this book, 2 days after diagnosis, I would think "not us", "heck no", "Dave and I are a team to the end", "this book is talking about other people", "we are as solid as they come". And we are, we were, we will be... "solid", "durable", "dependable". Have we stumbled? Sure. Have there been times where I felt resentful? Hell, yes. Have there been times where I have kicked him out of his peaceful slumber to do the night check because I cannot lift my weary head? Absolutely.
For the first couple of years after diagnosis the previous question and answer session would not have occurred. BUT, like water seeps and wears and carves the rock of this earth, diabetes seeps into everything, marrs relationships, ebbs into our interpersonal connections, especially marriage. I like to think this is normal; that Dave and I are like many of you. We carry on, we balance busy lives in addition to the daily rigors of "d", and that perhaps we will emerge a more loving, caring, cohesive team through it all.
"D" minutely seeping, carving, transforming everything, everyday, during my day-in-the-life parenting a child with type 1 diabetes.