September 19, 2006
This is the day...that life as I knew it....changed. Prior to 2:30pm this very day...I had two healthy children. Bridget (our daughter) had just started kindergarten and Joe (our son) had just started attending pre-school 3 mornings a week. Prior to this we had always had one or both children at home. Dave (my husband) and I had been working on opposite schedules in order to care for the kids .... Dave had worked days Monday through Friday and I was working weekend nights (12 hour shifts in the Surgical and Pediatric ICU as a Registered Nurse).
I had a cold and I was "enjoying" my first "sick day" without children...when it is too quiet, I start to think...on this day I was thinking about something my husband had mentioned to me a couple of weeks prior..."Joe seems to be thirsty all the time...have you noticed?" I had noticed, but didn't want to be an over-reactive ICU nurse mom...and so blew it off. Although, I had started to notice, in addition to increased thirst... our son's diapers were extremely heavy...he was gulping down bath water (I know gross) every night...and then drinking two more cups full of water prior to bedtime.
So, the nurse in me added up the water I could account for in his daily consumption and it ended up being over 48 ounces. I called the Pediatricians office and ran this by the triage nurse...she stated "that is a lot for a 3 year old...we will want to see him today." We scheduled an appointment for 4:30pm and then she called me back stating they wanted to see him earlier (this scared me...I still thought I may be over-reacting and it was just my imagination). So I went to pick-up Joe from school and his teacher reported that they had found Joe in the bathroom splashing water from the faucet into his mouth...I vividly remember the hair standing-up on the back of my neck...I realized something was terribly wrong (this was not just my imagination)....
When we arrived to the pediatrician's office...they dipped his urine. The doctor was in the exam room with us...still asking basic questions....I then asked, he is alright? Right? The urine checked out OK? The doctor responded, "I am sorry, Reyna...his urine has sugar and ketones...I have a call into the endocrinologist at the hospital." We were then told that we needed to have Joe admitted to the hospital...young children need close monitoring when they are newly diagnosed with type 1 and have ketones.