I never thought I’d be able to send Courtney off to college. She was diagnosed at the end of her sophomore year of high school and my husband and I were a huge part of her diabetes management. It was new, it was overwhelming, it was scary. “Just let her go to college and deal with her diabetes…it’s her disease, she can handle it!” is what I heard a parent say at one of our first diabetes-related events we went to. I remember feeling shocked, frustrated, angry, scared and so many other feelings that I actually thought “NO WAY am I sending her off to college!”. Once I calmed down, my husband and I chatted and decided that we wanted Courtney to have the same college experience as everyone else, no matter what it took, so off to college she went.
We were fortunate that Courtney’s top pick was only forty-five minutes away from home. So we started all the shopping for her dorm, ordering diabetes supplies, meeting with Courtney’s endocrinologist and nurse, making a binder with all of her diabetes info in it, and meeting with health services on campus. I thought I was in good shape but the whole week before she was ready to move out, I found myself crying every time I walked by our front room with all of her stuff packed. I was crying because she was our baby, crying because we had become so close due to her diabetes diagnosis, and crying because I was so scared about all of the “what ifs.”