Less than 24 hours after I posted What doesn't kill you our sweet Evelyn was diagnosed as a Type 1 diabetic. Ironic, isn't it! After I post I need a break blah, blah, blah and here I am with another T1D in the house! What a slap in the face!!
So here is what happened:
Just after our Nora was dx'd in 2005 we enrolled in the TrialNet study. (This study tests for auto anitbodies to determine your likelihood of developing T1D. Is NOT definitive but we just wanted a head's up). So my hubby, myself and Evelyn all had our blood drawn. My hubby and I came back negative but Evelyn came back with 3 out of 4 auto antibodies. I didn't let the news devastate me as I used this info as knowledge. At the time she was 12 and not spending as much with us and I figured the diabetes signs would easily go unnoticed. We made it all the way to phase 3 of the study which was giving her oral insulin. About this time we found out we were preggers with Jackson (shocker) and really didn't want to give Evelyn oral insulin. I didn't have enough time to really dive into all the ramifications of putting her on this so we backed out of the study for a while. We still had her check her blood sugars when she complained of not feeling well. Years went by and nothing really happened.
Fast forward to October of 2011. We were at a JDRF Halloween Boo-Fest with lots of activities, vendors and research updates going on. Evelyn says to me, "Mom, I think I need to test for diabetes again". Fine, it doesn't cost anything...let's do it. She was 17 and college was on the horizon, not sure where she would end up so yeah, let's do it again. Results come back she's positive for 2 out of 3. (Don't ask me the difference in the 3 vs. 4 auto antibodies in the test. I questioned back then and it's all medical terminology and whatever!) So she did the oral glucose test. The Endo termed Evelyn as Glucose Impaired aka. PRE diabetes. (Yes, it exists..and yes, in relation to Type1). The Endo decided to set her up on her own meter with test strips, as we were sharing Nora's supply and running out before months end. We could have started her on an insulin regimen of Lantus, a small dose. But I was afraid of lows and since she drives and hadn't really experienced lows, mostly highs, we declined. I knew the signs and promised to check in with any weird numbers.
Which brings us to 5/31/12 at 11pm. "Mom, I'm not feeling good at all." Brings me her meter which reads 579!!! I look at her, instruct her to wash her hands again and retest. She does and brings back 565!! S#@*!! I have her test for ketones...negative! Wait 30 minutes...praying it was a fluke number and have her retest. 525!! Call the Endo on call. Now, I don't know about your hospital but our ER is not very well equipped for diabetes. If you have broken bones, etc. great, go to the ER. But I was dreading taking her to the ER for a diabetes diagnosis. I begged to have her go to clinic first thing in the morning but it was a no go. We head on down to the ER. Sugar in her urine. No ketones. IV saline drip.
What's weird is no one ever said YOU HAVE TYPE 1 DIABETES. It was a lot of apologizing, you've seen what your sister goes through, etc. The medical staff had access to her records, knew she was glucose impaired and knew we dealt with Type 1 already but no one uttered those words. Talk about surreal...Evy's in tears, I'm comforting her and thinking of what I need to do to ease her into this transition. Even as I sit here writing this I feel like I'm telling you a story about someone else. It hasn't sunk in yet. I've not cried about it. I've not gotten mad at it. I'm just NUMB!! oh, and I've bitten my nails to nubs...attractive...NOT!
By 5am, 6/1/12, she was admitted and given her first dose of Lantus, 11 units, and first correction with Novolog. She had dropped to a blood sugar of 440. Then you all know the rest...team of Dr's, nurses, dietitians and social workers. What was nice was everyone talked to HER. She is days away from her 18th birthday and they talked to her about her diabetes. Of course hubby and I will help her but ultimately she is learning and taking on her own care.
She was discharged yesterday and was glad to be home. Her birthday is this Wednesday and she had lunch plans with her girlfriends already in place. She wanted to cancel them. I told her absolutely NOT!! You must live your life like you do everyday, except you live it with diabetes. She hasn't cancelled plans and she has even worked her 5 hour shift at Hallmark, taken her blood sugar AND given herself injections.
She's going to be fine.
I have contemplated the "why us". Out of everyone in the world we have THREE kids with chronic illnesses. Are you kidding me?!?! Yes...I know...it builds character...God only gives you what you can handle...it'll make you stronger...we were chosen for a reason... Right now, I don't want to hear ANY of it. I feel like I could spew obscenities for hours if someone tells me this!! I just need to be...let it sink in...and KICK D IN THE ASS!!
I know...this is a long one...I'll wrap it up. But not before I thank each and everyone of you for being wonderful members of the DOC. Y'all get it. Hell, many of you already have multiple children and family members with Type 1. You are my rock outside of home. You allow me to vent, celebrate and curse this horrid disease and give encouragement without saying the stupid things mentioned above. Most of all, thank you Tony, Diane and Thomas for being there in the wee hours with your love and support. You all mean the world to me!