Four years ago, right around this time, I was preparing for my First Move. This was the first time I was moving out of my childhood home and away from my parents. I wasn’t moving that far in my mind. The University of Oregon was only about an hour and a half away, so there was some comfort in knowing that if anything happened, it wouldn’t be too hard for my parents to come down to Eugene – just in case (which is a stark contrast from the six hour flight they must now endure to get to NJ).
Everyone has always commented on how mature I was growing up. My dad says I was eight going on eighteen. My transition to taking care of my diabetes was pretty natural. I always understood that taking care of my diabetes was important, and being a part of the diabetes community was an added push to be responsible. Can’t very well have people writing about you with an A1C of 9.
Of course, the actual transition to college was a lot harder than I imagined. It’s one thing to take care of your diabetes with the buffer that comes from having parents around to check with. When you’re in college, suddenly it becomes a bit more awkward and there is more pressure to handle things independently. This flawed expectation landed me at an A1C of 9.1 at the end of my first semester.
Since then, my mission has been to work with other teens and college students like myself, to help make the transition from living at home to living at college a little easier. But my work hasn’t just been with teens. I’ve also spent a lot of talking to parents of teens with diabetes, giving them a perspective that their own teen may not be able to communicate.
Next Monday, I’ll be a guest in Diabetes Talkfest’s chatroom to talk about transitioning your teen to independence. It’s open to both teens and parents, and hopefully it will be a time where we can discuss the issues that both sides face.
The chat: Transitioning to Independence: Driving, Drinking and Dorms
The time: Monday, July 14 at 9pm EST/6pm PST
The location: www.diabetestalkfest.com
More information on that chat is here.
Hope you can make it!