Posted by on Friday, 11 February 2011

At the risk of sounding like Grandma Walton

I haven't added to this blog since June and wow, what a year we have had. We have all changed. Tomorrow is the anniversary of the birth of the idea of this blog. I can't believe it's only a year, so much has happened.

Ellen has become a teenager, Beth has grabbed the challenge of secondary school between the teeth and is giving it a good shake, stand back the rest of year seven, Mike has learned so much he could write a PHD, and me, well I, apparently, am allowed to be me.

The children grow up and begin to take responsibility for themselves, and at the risk of sounding like Grandma Walton, I am very proud of the people they are growing in to. I don't always find it easy to stand back and let them get on with life without my valuable input; but I try very hard, and hope it will get easier the more I practice (and get told off). I have had a whole lot more time free to work and build up a career since we said goodbye to primary school and all the extra responsibilities that went with it. It will take a while to get back the confident cockiness I had before kids, about the same length of time it takes to earn an income I expect, and I am frustrated at having to be patient (not my strong point) and wait for both. It will happen.

Mike, however, is the icing on my cake. I cannot emphasise enough what an important process Mike has gone through this year, and if you are in Mike's position, if you are around forty years old, have a partner, possibly a family, if you haven't already taken responsibility for your control, then do it now. Mike thought he had. He would have denied it a year ago if I had suggested otherwise, and maybe he would have been right to do so, because his control was pretty good, and certainly no one had suggested that he was doing it all wrong, or even made any particularly useful suggestions as to how he could improve; all I know is that a year ago I was a wife and a carer, and now I am just a wife.

I haven't had to fight Mike to bring him round from a hypo since, maybe last April. This was something I was used to doing at least once a month and sometimes several times a week, for the fifteen years of our marriage; it never felt like I was fighting Mike, I was fighting the diabetes, but it was my fight, Mike wasn't really there, it was a responsibility I had no choice but to take on as part of our marriage. I don't like fighting.

If you are about forty... however much you think it doesn't matter and that you won't go through a mid life crisis, I think you do. I will be a happy pensioner, I'm looking forward to slightly furry cheeks; but at forty, I did take a close look at my life, and what it could look like in another twenty years, and although most of what went through my head made me smile, the fighting made me feel exhausted. I know Mike has to cope with his diabetes all day everyday, and I am happy to take on some of that responsibility for him if I can, but I needed a rest, and the work Mike has done towards understanding and controlling his diabetes, has enabled him to take full responsibility for it for nearly a year now and I know that he feels better for it too.

I think Mike is beginning to tame his diabetes, we all live with it, but we're not scared of it - and most of the time it's pretty well behaved.


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