Sometimes you joke about significant dates in History and how you will always remember where you were like 9/11 when hubby and I were stuck in Vegas for 3 extra days. I could tell you all about the tiny hotel room and how I flipped on the tv to see replays on the first Tower being taken down. I can tell you in great detail all about the fun we had driving around in a rented convertible after we had to turn our regular rental in,etc. But I will save those details for another post someday.
Today I want to talk about an event that just happened. An event that all of my children will remember for the rest of their lives and why 12/13/14 will be a day we never forget. Eldest had been battling what we thought was the flu. Monday he felt pretty good. Tuesday we went to our homeschool Christmas roller skating party and he skated and had fun with some friends. Wednesday he kinda didn’t feel super good. Thursday he was too tired to do chores. Friday he stayed in bed after throwing up twice in the morning.
By Friday afternoon and evening he was able to eat and keep some food down. Saturday things got very unusual and that’s where our story gets very crazy. My husband stayed up checking on Eldest Friday night and into Saturday morning. When I woke up I found out Eldest had three sessions of puking very close together and that he was pretty miserable and weak. He did not have a fever. He did not have diarrhea. He did not complain of a headache or limb pain or anything super alarming to make us think anything other than a weird strain of flu. We kept him comfortable with super cold water and ice chips. He was a little shaky at one point when he was laying in the bathtub on a comforter. Still seemed like the typical shakes from being weak and cool from a flu.
Things dramatically changed as the day progressed. His breathing became short and quick. He mentioned his chest hurting which we attributed to throwing up and dry heaving earlier that day. We kept asking him if he’d wanted to go to the doctors or if his arms or legs hurt. He got weaker and weaker until he wasn’t able to respond to our questions about water or ice. We helped him to the bathroom and he was barely able to get there. He was helped up and faltered to the couch just outside the bathroom and just flopped over. That is when we knew this was beyond home care. My husband was very upset and tears were running down his face as I dialed 911. I explained that our son was conscious but non responsive and would like the EMT’s to check him out. I called the grandma’s while we waited for the response team to get here. I grabbed Lil’ Red and we went outside to meet the squad.
They came in and quickly accessed the situation and took his pulse. They said heading to the ER would be their recommendation but could not administer any meds since he wasn’t actively vomiting. We signed the waiver to refuse Ambulance transportation and the Firefighters offered to help load him into our van so we could transport him ourselves. I quickly turned off the lights around the house and made sure there were extra diapers in the diaper bag and out the door we went. The Firefighters helped hold the door and load him into the van. They left and off we headed about 7 miles to the hospital.
Hubby pulled up to the ER doors and grabbed a wheelchair. I got out and held the wheelchair while hubby lowered Eldest into it. I got in the van and parked. I got out of the van, grabbed the stroller, Lil’ Red, and diaper bag and went up to the ER. By the time that happened hubby and Eldest were already whisked back. THAT IS NEVER A GOOD SIGN!
The nurse at the desk acknowledged me and said she would take me back as soon as she finished the vitals of the person she had right in front of her. I told her that was fine. Just another couple of minutes and we were taken back to room 21. A large team had swarmed around him and they were taking his vitals and calling labs and getting warming blankets on him. We were asked how long he had Diabetes and we said we didn’t know he had Diabetes?!? His breathing presented as Ketatonic breathing which was from DKA and him developing diabetes. WHAT!?! We were completely dazed.
Our story is just getting started because there is so much more to tell this will be a 4 part post. Please come back tomorrow to read about how much more scary things got before they got a whole lot better.
Did you miss the other posts in this series? Check them out below:
12/13/14 The ER, DKA, and Diabetes Diagnosis (Part 2)
12/13/14 The ER, DKA, and Diabetes Diagnosis (Part 3)
12/13/14 The ER, DKA, and Diabetes Diagnosis (Part 4)
Other Type 1 Diabetes Posts:
How a Juice Box Saved my Type 1 Diabetic Son’s Life
6 to 1 Insulin Ratio, Puberty and Type 1 Diabetes
Type 1 Diabetes Rescue Boxes for Back to School
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What a scary time. Such a shocking way to get a diagnosis.
Michele Hutcherson says
I did not know that diabetes could present itself this way. I can’t imagine how scared you were. I always have trouble deciding when a visit to a doctor is warranted. I am anxious to read the rest of the story, and so glad to know that he is ok now.
Blame and guilt is the first hurdle to deal with. We are his parents and not knowing what diabetes looked like was heart wrenching. Working on a post to share more specific “early symptoms” so more parents know when to make a dr visit and hopefully skip the ER!
Yes, quite the shock. He was drinking more and going to the bathroom at bedtime which we now know are signs of diabetes.
maryanne @ mama smiles says
How scary! It is terrifying when kids get really sick.
Yes, it was and so glad that part is over! Now it’s just the day to day management of the diabetes.
As a pediatric nurse I see children with DKA frequently. This is often how diabetes is first diagnosed in a child. Diabetes is a huge learning curve, and I am sad that this happened so close to Christmas. I wish you all the luck in the world with learning everything there is to know about diabetes. I can only imagine how scary this was for you! Thank you for sharing!
We keep hearing that is on the rise! I do not like that one bit. Thanks for the encouragement.
Helen @ Peakle Pie says
Thank you for sharing on #weloveweekends x
Glenda Cates says
WOW, I am so sorry that you all had to go through that I am sure it was so scary. And just seeing the pictures made my heart stop. I Pray you do not have to ever see him like that again.
It was very crazy to know within a few days of all of it how life-threatening the situation was. It’s still is a whirlwind although it’s now routine to get up and check his BG’s…
He has not been hospitalized since diagnosis which is a small miracle in itself as DKA can pop back up but we monitor ketones almost daily:(
Celina Orona says
Your story brought me to tears. My oldest daughter who is 8, was diagnosed this past week. We caught it early they say, she had moderate ketones but on the high side. The told us it could have been a lot worse if I had waiting. I though she had a uti and was rushed to the hospital from are primary doctors office. Is been a long week. I’ve learned so much. Thank you for sharing your story. It is comforting knowing we are not alone.
Oh, Dear! Let me know if you need any help, tips, advice or just another mom who knows the ups and downs with T1D! It is one crazy disease!
Vicki Miller says
OMGoodness reading this is just what we are going threw with my son right now. Hate to say it, this is making me feel like ok it wasn’t just us. We have no family history of Type 1 or Auto Immune Disease and all you said on the first day is so similar to us. Our date is 7/13/20.
Thank you for sharing.