This summer marks the first when my daughter is sometimes hanging out at the town pool without me. She and her friends gather there in the afternoon after their assorted camps and volunteer activities. They bring snacks or money for the snack bar. They play volleyball, swim, and walk in circles around the pool grounds to see and be seen.
For me, it's an exercise in trust. First, I have to trust that our general routine and a healthy helping of good luck will keep her safe from any diabetes emergencies. Second, I have to trust her that she will keep an eye on herself and be aware of impending lows so that she can treat them. Thirdly, I have to trust that she will choose and bolus for her snacks wisely. And fourth I have to trust that she will 'remember' to reconnect her pump within a reasonable amount of time after swimming.
I still like to go to the pool too. On a hot day, some time in the lap lanes is my favorite form of exercise. When I can arrange to meet some other moms there in the late afternoon, it's fun to catch up. When I go, my daughter still sits with her friends and does her own thing. Which is interesting to watch.
One day as I watched, she ate a cookie, and bolused for it. She reconnected her pump after swimming, clipping it onto her bathing suit. She checked her dexcom after getting out of the water the second time and grabbed a handful of goldfish crackers, later telling me she was 80 and felt like she was going down.
Another day I watched as her friends waited patiently for her to reconnect her pump and gather her little bag before they headed for the snack bar after a swim. She bought sour patch kids and bolused for them, as evidenced by the blood sugar of 77 when we got home for dinner.
Would I rather she bring a container of grapes or pre-portioned packages of whole grain crackers to snack on? Of course. Do I worry about whether she's going to forget to reconnect her pump and end up super high? Yes. Do I wonder if she's relying too much on the dexcom and not actually checking with a meter while she's there. Sometimes.
But here's the thing: She's coming home with nice looking dexcom graphs and excellent pre-dinner blood sugars. She's obviously responsibly reconnecting her pump and bolusing for the junk food. She's noticing when she's trending low and grabbing a handful of something to stop the slide.
Really, this is a great opportunity to practice dealing with all kinds of diabetes issues on her own. She'll make mistakes this summer, I'm sure. I've made my fair share of them over the past 12 years when I've been in charge. Nobody's perfect.
But so far so good.