|First Halloween with T1- even broken pancreases can't stop the Halloween fun of carving pumpkins with Grandpa!|
"Halloween is my FAVORITE holiday," her sleepy voice tells me as I tuck her in tonight. "I just can't wait...I love Halloween!" I smile with complete joy. Just a little under three years ago I was filled with dread while also trying to deal with all the emotions that surround a new Type 1 diagnosis. There is no good month to be diagnosed with Type 1, but especially for a small child October seemed particularly cruel. Jess had already picked out her costume. She was dreaming of candy, and ready for Halloween.
And, then her pancreas went on strike. And, I was left wondering...how do I deal with a holiday whose main focus is candy? Maybe if we had started Jess's diabetes healthcare with the team we have now I would have felt more supported. Her current healthcare provider would have insisted she eat the candy like the other kids, rather than instead giving us information on a program at a local department store where you can turn in all your candy for a small gift card. I am by no means disregarding this program, but what small child wants to take her bag of candy and surrender it for a gift card that doesn't even buy one real toy? I remember thinking "how am I going to pull this off?"
Panic breads creativity.
And, the Halloween Fairy appeared. Both Jessica and Courtney saved five pieces of candy and then decorated a bag to leave the rest of the candy for the Halloween Fairy. In the middle of the night while they slept soundly, the Halloween Fairy appeared leaving her magical pathway of glitter as she traveled across their bedroom. Taking the bags of candy, she left behind presents decorated in black and orange paper and lots of Halloween stickers.
I woke to the kids screaming with glee. "Mom---you were right---there is a Halloween Fairy!" They loved the glitter all over their floor and were thrilled by the presents.
Of course there were questions. Where had this fairy been before? Well, the Halloween Fairy only visits Type 1 children and their siblings, I explained.
Suddenly, having Type 1 diabetes was a pretty special thing.