Type 1 Diabetes

To Fin, on your 14th birthday


Here we are again, another year gone in what seems like the blink of an eye and just 4 years away from adulthood!

I really wish time would slow down a little bit because whilst you might not be growing upwards, you are maturing before my very eyes, and that little boy with the mop of curls who wouldn’t go anywhere without me, becomes more of a distant memory with every passing year.

As usual, your 14th year has been a busy one and we’ve managed to fit plenty in, despite it not starting well, with you breaking your wrist just before you turned 13. This took you out of sport for almost 3 months, something that you really struggled with and at one point it felt as though you were never going to get back to normal, but, of course, you did.

On your 13th Birthday we were away at Meadow House. You woke up to a few presents there, but at your request, you wanted to wait until you got home to open the rest, easier than it sounds with one hand.

We then spent Mayday in North Devon. You were unable to go fishing with Daddy and Cian because of your arm so what else was there to do but sit in the hot tub and eat? It was one of the best places we’ve ever been for gluten free and we will definitely be back!

Mid May saw us finally celebrate Stacy’s wedding at Miskin Manor. You were THE entertainer, amusing the kids by day and dancing with all the women ALL night. The amount of videos of you circling on Facebook were hilarious. Cian, meanwhile, sat down all day and night and didn’t take his jacket off!

Whitsun 2022 saw us travel to Scotland for a fishing break in a luxury lodge. Your arm was still out of action so we took your PS5, lazed around, ate delicious food and just enjoyed family time, all 4 of us.

During the Summer, we’d both gained a little holiday weight so we joined Ystrad gym together and started getting up at 6am to go. That didn’t last long mind you!

July brought more celebrations for Cian and Hannah

And then on the 31st July, we jetted off to Benalmadena for a week, just the four of us for the first time in 11 years. It was amazing to have the sun on our faces and to chill by the pool all day, and of course, you kept us entertained daily! Unfortunately, you did burn badly on the 2nd day which meant you had to wear a T shirt for the rest of the holiday. You were in so much pain but as usual you never moaned and just carried on regardless.

8 days after getting home, it was time to board another plane. This time to Portugal to celebrate Nanna’s 70th birthday. You had an absolute blast and were on the dancefloor every night showing everyone how’s done. Thankfully, there were no burns this holiday and you just enjoyed yourself from beginning to end.

As Summer turned to Autumn, we celebrated Nanna’s 70th..

And then as an extended celebration, in October Half Term, we headed to Llandissilio, all nine of us. We trekked around the pumpkin patch in Heatherton, you forced yourself into tiny cars to keep Erica and Ivy happy, you got soaked on the water rides and you even braved the Halloween Maze despite being terrified.

We went to see the Script in the Motorpoint Arena

We enjoyed a few rugby internationals…

and you had a few football trips with the boys!

We watched Cian in his rugby final at the Cardiff Arms Park (his last ever game at Under 16s)

And in December, we were invited to the Senedd in remembrance of Peter Baldwin, who tragically died from undiagnosed Type 1 Diabetes. You gave his mum Beth a hug (she was very honoured) and also met your namesake and Peter’s baby brother Finley. For such a joker, I am always SO proud of how you conduct yourself on these occasions.

Shortly afterwards, Christmas was upon us….

….and we said Goodbye to 2022 and welcomed in 2023 with our first NYE party for 3 years! World Cup Style!

You went up to Old Trafford in March with Liam

We went out for Mothers Day and I was honoured to have a photograph with you, even though you looked like you were in pain (like you do in every photograph!!)

And then later that month, you and the boys won your semi final of the Blues Cup Bowl Competition and bagged yourselves a place in the final at Cardiff Arms Park. You shouldn’t really have played after taking an elbow to the face in football the day before, but, as always, you powered through and played almost the full game looking like Mr Bump!

We celebrated Grancha’s 70th birthday in April

And then we ended your 14th year off as we started it, away in a lodge for Easter. This time there was no broken arm but you weren’t very well so we spent the weekend chilling and watching sport in the clubhouse!

Luckily by the end of the weekend you were feeling better so we finished with a day of fishing and a meal in the night.

You’ve played rugby and football, wherever you could, in between injuries and have had a few cracking games with some great action shots from Matthew, our in house photographer. Luckily he hasn’t got any of you mouthing the referee EVERY SINGLE GAME!

And as well as your clubs, you’ve also represented the school in both rugby and football this year.

You’re doing well in school, in the top sets for most subjects and getting excellent results in your tests. Whilst you struggle most with Welsh as in your words “There’s no way on God’s Green Earth I should be in Fast Track” you still try your very best and have recently been chosen to represent the “Criw Cymraeg”. I secretly love the fact that despite Daddy picking you up every day and you travelling home with him, you head straight for my office when you walk through the door to tell me about anything you’ve achieved in school, often with him in the background shouting up the stairs “You haven’t said a bloody word to me about that!

I’m not going to pretend I haven’t seen a hint of moodiness in your first year as a teenager. You can be grumpy on occasions and if I have the audacity to try and have a conversation with you whilst you have your air pods in, you could swear I’d punched you in the face! You are also extremely demanding and will nag me incessantly for something until I give in.

That said, they are very small, infrequent occasions and the majority of the time, you are still a ray of sunshine. You can still make me buckle up laughing with your one liners and you still spend the majority of the time singing and laughing. You are also one of the most caring and sensitive kids I’ve ever known despite your tough exterior. That’s a side that not many people get to see but I love how much you care about other people and how much you hate for anyone else to be sad.

These blogs are getting a bit repetitive as I sign off now but whilst the words are true, I’ll continue to repeat them. You are an extremely special person and your zest for life and resilience never cease to amaze me. They absolutely broke the mould when they made you, please never change.

Here’s to your 15th year – will this be the year you grow I wonder?

Happy 14th Birthday my boy!

I love you so much more than you know.

Mammy xxxx

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