As I sit here at 4 am in a hospital room with Bethany and ronny asleep, I enjoy the peace that I have after the whirlwind of a day I had yesterday. It all started on Thursday when Bethany was complaining of her ear hurting. She actually had the school nurse call me about it. I said told the nurse to send her back to class and I’d arrange for her to see her pediatrician. Friday morning she woke up complaining of her left ear hurting. I took her to see the doctor at 10 that morning. We confirmed what I anticipated, a double ear infection. This is where our world changes. He starts asking about her losing weight. I explained to him that I had been concerned about that for several months. He goes on asking questions. Does she drink a lot? Does she go to the bathroom a lot? Does she say she’s hungry all the time? Yes. Yes. Yes. He said “She might be diabetic.” He checked her urine and sure enough it was full of glucose and ketones. He decided I needed to bring her children’s hospital in Dallas to have her seen and treated.
What happened to the ear infections?
We got to the children’s ER how?
My mind is going in a million different directions and still at the same time my only concern was, is my child ok? My child that was out on the softball field tearing it up the night before. My child that was complaining that her batting coach yelled at her the night before. My child that was JUST complaining about her ears.
We (Bethany, Ronny, and I) headed towards Dallas. Beth slept most of the way here. Ronny drove and squared home life away. I sat there still not knowing exactly what kind of state my child really was in. I’m a nurse. I know how bad she could be. She looked ok to me, but heck I never suspected her to have diabetes in the first place. All the signs pointed that direction though. Why did I not put 2 and 2 together to get 4 myself? Why did it take someone else to open my eyes and make me realize it equals 4?
We arrived at Children’s ER about 5 o’clock. We were shuffled from one waiting room to the next until we finally were taken to room 1 of the ER. Her blood sugar was in the 300s. Praise the Lord; her blood showed its PH was normal, so she wasn’t in diabetic ketoacidosis. They drew blood for every kind of lab that could possibly be done. Everyone explained everything so well. (I never told my little secret; I’m a nurse.) She received some IV fluids. Her sugar started coming down. Her ketones started coming down. She received some insulin, but still no word from a doctor that she was or wasn’t diabetic. The nurse came in and told us that she had a room for us. I took that as an undiagnosed diagnosis of Type 1 diabetes.
Bethany is complaining that she’s bored; she’s hungry; she wants to go home. She thinks she’s fine and we can take care of this “diabetes” stuff at home. She has ball to play, which is another of her frustrations; she doesn’t get to play with her team this weekend. She doesn’t grasp how we got here either.
We got into a room on the endocrinology floor about 8 o’clock. Two doctors came in shortly after that. They were very impressed with our pediatrician catching this. They said normally they don’t get newly diagnosed diabetic patients until they’ve reached that diabetic ketoacidosis state, and they’re in an emergency. The diagnosis of diabetes still doesn’t seem real even after they walk out. They still have not said “Bethany is a diabetic.” I guess in my mind that is the diagnosis. The explaining what type 1 diabetes is, the fact that we’re admitted to the hospital, or that we’re fixing to go through tons of training on diabetes is a sufficient diagnosis for me. At this point, I need to hear it. I need the doctors to say, Bethany has developed type 1 diabetes.” Otherwise, it’s not real.
Fast forward 8 hours to where I am now. She’s been poked every 2 hours to check her sugar, and then to receive insulin along with it. Her sugar and ketones are coming down still. Praise the Lord!
She’s been asking a few questions about diabetes, but she doesn’t realize the change that’s occurring. And I think, maybe that’s a good thing. I think it takes away some of the fear because she doesn’t know what to expect. She’s been a trooper. She’s endured all the pokes without a tear shed. She’s so happy go lucky. She makes me so proud. I wish I could be like her. I wish I wasn’t scared. I wish I could be poked every time instead of her. I wish I was strong like her. And then I think; where do you think she gets it from? Where did she learn to be brace like this? To endure adversity like this? Me. She learned it from me. She’s seen me suffering and has learned to keep going on, to keep fighting. Thank you Lord for this reminder!