Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Surviving School

I have dreaded this day for the past couple of years. Lovebug's first day of school. I remember thinking when she was diagnosed that we would probably have her on a pump by then and off of shots. Realizing how much better control we could get with pumping, it happened just a little over 5 months after Lovebug was diagnosed.

School was only a finite idea in my mind at that point.  Mostly because Lovebug's older sister, Peanut had just started Kindergarten.  As time went by and I learned more about my T1 kiddo going to school, I started to dread it, not look forward to it as I did with Peanut.

I got a little taste of what it would be like to have a d-kid in school last year.  We had to train the preschool teachers on a few things, but not everything because Lovebug was only at school for a couple hours.  When I started working on our 504 plan for this year a few weeks ago and I got a little overwhelmed.

How much do you tell them?  Everything? Do you scare the staff so they don't want to make a mistake?  I decided to tell them what they needed to know and nothing more.  Just enough to make them overwhelmed but not enough to "scare" them.  I want them to be comfortable around Lovebug, not handle her with kids gloves.

I worked for hours and piecing together a 504 plan that worked for us.  I found a lot of them on my fellow D Mamas blogs.  It was a great resource.  It helped give me a starting point.  Without that starting point I am sure I would have been LOST.  I felt lost anyway, even with all the help.

Then came all the instructions sheets on how to operate the pump, how to check blood sugar, how to operate Dexie and what to do in case of a high or low blood sugar.  Then I had to come up with a schedule of when I wanted her blood sugar checked during the day.  And with every day being a little different we basically have a different schedule everyday.  I also had to decided at what blood sugar levels  I wanted the school staff to notify me.  It seriously makes my head spin just thinking about it all again.

Then all of this got me thinking back to when Peanut (our oldest and only non D-kid) started school.  I sent her off with out a care.  Yes, it was a little bittersweet because she was growing up but I really enjoyed watching her blossom and grow.  I think watching her learn to read was one of my favorite things.  While I am very grateful that Peanut does not have diabetes I am reminded how much I miss the other two NOT having Type 1.  It reminds me of what life could have been like for Lovebug and Princess.  That part weighs heavy on my heart strings.

Needless to say, I was a wreck sending Lovebug to school this morning.  Would the staff actually follow everything in the 504?  Would they do the right thing if she went low? I tried to keep shoving the what if's out of my head and just be happy for her.  She was so excited!!

I went in and double checked with Mrs. L to make sure she was comfortable and ready. I  went over her blood sugar check schedule and gave her the instructions for Dexie. (which I had forgotten about the week before! oops.)  Lovebug was in her seat and waving good bye.  She was ready to get on with her day and I was ready to cry.  I have mention that I also LOVE the fact that Mrs L had laminated all of the instructions I had given her and they were hanging on a ring right by the door where Lovebug puts her diabetes bag.  Mrs L is great!

I waited all morning for a phone call.  I assumed I would get one around snack time. Nope, no phone call.  Then I knew I would get one at lunch and sure enough, Mrs. R (our secretary) called so I could walk her through dosing her with the pump.  I was almost shocked when she told me Lovebug's blood sugar was 190. I fully expected it to be higher!  I was very relieved it wasn't though.  Mrs. R only covered part of the carbs in Lovebug's lunch (since recess is right after lunch)  and away Lovebug went to lunch.

Mrs. L called me later in the afternoon to let me know that Lovebug had gone low. (I thought to myself, great...the first day and we are already dealing with lows)  Needless to say we figured out she hadn't eaten all of her lunch!  She has a lunch pail with two sections in it and I put her cucumbers and peaches in the bottom  section.  I didn't have the peaches covered for lunch because they were supposed to be her "exercise snack" for recess. That backfired since it was apparent Lovebug forgot they were in there! I think we might have to get a lunch pail with only one pocket.

Mrs L. told me she gave her two Starburst and then a granola bar, just like I had instructed her to do.  It was perfect.  She said Dexie said 74 and arrow up.  I reminded her Dexie can lag behind and that the arrow up was the most important thing at this point.  I was so impressed they followed my instructions to the tee!  It was wonderful!!

Lovebug's first day of school went off with out much of a hitch.  I was disappointed she missed Music because of the low bg but that wasn't her fault.  Stupid diabetes.  At least now I won't be so nervous when she goes back to school on Friday!


Heidi / D-Tales said...

Before you know it, everyone at school will have their routines down, they'll have memorized your instructions, and they'll have gotten to know Lovebug. And you'll start to feel a little more comfortable and little less worried, while Lovebug enjoys every moment in class! :)

Anonymous said...

Reads like you have a sensible plan put in place and the staff at school is paying attention and following instructions to the letter. That's great and you can feel a little better leaving her at school. I know it's hard. Hope they both have a great year.

Reyna said...

BIG HUGS to you. I loved talking with you the other day Heather. Like Heidi said, before you know it...this will all be routine for the school AND you. xo


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