Living with Diabetes
through the use of Community Advocacy, Social Media, & BLUE Flamingos!
On Monday the 14th of September we noticed that Nate was pretty thirsty all day. He cried a little bit more than usual and would stand at the fridge and point until I would get him a drink. I have to tell you, I thought he was pretty darn smart! I mean really – he’s only 14-months old and he knows what he wants and where to get it!
That night he cried on and off during the night which was very unusual for him. He seemed thirsty again so my husband, Jim gave him a sippy cup of water. Nate stopped crying, drank the water and went back to sleep. When he woke up again he was soaked! I mean diaper soaked, jammies soaked, sheets soaked – everything soaked but still he was thirsty. More water and more soaking, more water, more soaking . . . you get the idea.
By Wednesday I was searching the internet for “excessive thirst in toddlers” – only 1 thing came up. Nope, that can’t be it. I put it in the back of my head and continued to monitor the situation.
On Thursday Nate went to his once a week children’s day out program. When I arrived to pick him up at 2:00 I noticed that they had changed his clothes and when I asked why they told me he seemed excessively thirsty and had soaked through his diaper. It hit me like a ton of bricks at that moment and yet somehow I just could not believe that it could be.
I called our pediatrician and made an appointment for that afternoon. I rushed him over and listed off his symptoms to the nurse and insisted that they check him for diabetes. The nurse tested his blood glucose level, turned around, & walked out without a word. When the doctor came back in I remember I wanted to run away – I could see the look in her eyes – I wanted to grab Nate and run away from the reality that was about to come. I should have run! She told me that Nate did indeed have type 1 diabetes and they needed to send us straight to Children’s Medical Center of Dallas to be admitted into the Endocrinology unit.
We arrived at CMC and checked into the ER where they ran a lot of tests, inserted an IV and started to stabilize his blood glucose level. Nate was screaming and crying so terribly that I had to leave the room. It took Jim and both nurses to hold him down to get the IV in his little arm.
From there we were sent up to the endocrinology floor where we would spend the next 4 days. The days in the hospital were just a blur – so many doctors, nurses, educators, & dieticians giving us so much information. Somehow we survived the hospital stay and learned how to care of our son before they would allow us to leave. That is the day we began our new normal living with Type 1. It is also where we learned that while this disease is cruel, it is not prejudiced. . . Nate is not the only tiny tot to join in the fight for a cure . . . it strikes children younger than 14 months and it strikes young adults and all ages in between. It strikes all classes and all races and the numbers are increasing every day.
Our cause is Type 1 Diabetes. Nate’s cause is Type 1 Diabetes . . . we will fight the disease and will hope for a cure in his lifetime. As we have repeatedly said, we will not let diabetes define him. Diabetes will be life altering but not life defining for him. Nate is a normal, beautiful little boy who has diabetes. . .