Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Q is for... Quicker

As in, we were a lot quicker in noticing Kayleigh's diabetes symptoms than we were with Mackenzie. lol As you'll recall, Kayleigh was put on a diabetes watch, back in the beginning of November, when we had randomly tested her and found some awful blood sugar levels. You also might recall that Mackenzie had been experiencing symptoms for at least a year before we caught on.

We are quite pleased that we caught Kayleigh much more quickly. This is the rest of Kayleigh's story.

Per the doctors orders we were to watch her for symptoms. Things like hugely increased appetite, non-stop thirst, frequent potty breaks, extreme tiredness, sudden weight loss. We were to weigh her every week at the same time and told NOT to check her blood sugar unless we felt something was off. And we were to alert him immediately if she lost more than 5 pounds in one month or more than 1 in a single week.

So we followed his rules. Except for the no checking the blood sugar one. We did that quite a bit. But not as often as we wanted. :o)  Since I know that you are wondering, I'll just say that they were always high during the day after she ate and always normal first thing in the morning before breakfast. Ack!

About 3 weeks after her failed ER visit, she had lost 2 pounds in one week. So I called Dr. Jensen. And he quickly pulled some strings to get her into the lab for some more testing. He wanted her in now.

 I quickly gave her a snack and packed some in my purse to make sure that her blood sugar didn't drop in the event of another endless wait. (They aren't getting me like that the second time.)

Dr. Jensen had said that he wouldn't get to read the A1C results until the next day. But in any event his plan was to start her on Lantus, which is a long acting insulin that lasts (in theory) 24 hours. He was not going to put her on Novolog (quick acting insulin that you would use to cover the food you eat) just yet, since her pancreas was still spitting out some insulin. (As evidenced by her normal numbers in the mornings.)  She was to bum supplies off of her sister until after the holiday. (This was the Tuesday before Thanksgiving.) And off we went to the hospital.

Thankfully the lab is quicker than the ER so we, much to Kayleigh's dismay, didn't have to wait long. They quickly got her into a chair to draw blood for a glucose test and an A1C. (That's the average blood sugar over 3 months.) She was not happy at all and we had to bribe her with a trip to Build-a-Bear to get her to sit without screaming.

But we were out in under ten minutes and back on our way home. We were figuring on Kayleigh enjoying her last holiday meal without having to count carbs or administer shots.

So imagine our surprise when my phone rang and I saw that it was a military number. I answered it and it was Dr. Jensen. We weren't even home yet. I believe that when he announced who was calling that I might have said, "You already?" Boy was he quick on the result reading that day.

He told us that he had read the blood sugar results already and that hers was 700. (Normal is between 70-150). He was declaring her type 1 now, without waiting for the A1C results. Now this news wasn't a surprise to us. We knew in our gut that she was T1D when we saw the 331 on the meter weeks ago. But even so, it hit us like a ton of bricks. Knowing it in your heart and hearing it out loud by a medical professional are vastly different. Even having another sweet one already didn't soften the blow

The next thing you know he's spouting off numbers to us. Her insulin to carb ratio, her target number, her correction factor. Whoa!!! Back up the truck mister. What happened to just Lantus? What happened was a 700 blood glucose reading. His was putting her on the Novolog and the works.

It still surprises us with how stunned we were by that conversation. It still blows our minds that 100% of our offspring have type 1 diabetes. What are the odds? (3%-5%)

This is slightly off topic, but I just have to take a moment to brag about our endocrinologist because he is quite amazing. He is the best. He is generally the one who answers the emergency pager when you call it. I think he just likes to talk diabetes so he always volunteers. But he was actually giving it up for the Thanksgiving holiday because he was going out of town to run a 10k. Who does that when you could be gorging on pie? I'm just saying...

Anyhow, he was giving up the pager but he wanted me to have his personal cell phone number so I could call him since he already knows us and Mackenzie and he's familiar with Kayleigh's case. So the man told me to call him for any reason anytime we wanted and don't worry about what I was interrupting.  If he doesn't answer and it's an emergency we were to call the emergency pager. If not, he'd call us back as soon as he could. I told you he was awesome!!

I vowed not to call him even though I was tempted to call during the race just to see if he'd answer. I've had many conversations with him while he was doing his nightly runs. He just runs and talks like it's nothing. But we didn't have any emergencies or questions so I never did.

So we went home and broke the news, which were all expecting. And yet we were still all stunned. Mackenzie was crushed. Our good friends, who also have a T1D, were stunned.

So after we calmed the masses down, we regrouped. The girls were all going to Build-a-Bear. The boys were going to a paint ball store. We'd meet for dinner at Chick Fil A.

Now here's the part of the story that shows just how NOT quick we can be. What kind of idiots take their newly diagnosed, 4 year old diabetic to Chick Fil A on the very day they are diagnosed? We do.

Why is that dumb? Because we had to give her her very first shot of insulin in the middle of the mall. She did not like it. She was loud. We were holding her down waving needles like maniacs. We are King and Queen Ding Bat.

It must of have been a sight to see. Besides screaming Kayleigh, the masses also got to watch us shoot up Mackenzie and Connor after their dinner. What must have people have thought when they watched 3 out of 4 kids get shots?  Sigh... we were quite the spectacle.

Ah well, live and learn. :o)



Joesette said...

Oh my goodness! You know, I love your wit in these situations, I truly do!

....and so, have you out of paranoia checked your levels? enquiring minds want to know!

Cassie Thompson said...

It's a wild ride, huh? I'm glad you went to Chick Fil A that first night. It showed your girls nothing should stop them!

Kelly Burgess said...

OMGosh, Stef! You cracked me up with visions of the mall scene! LOL.

You guys have all taken it like troopers. I have to admit that at Holden's party, I had to leave the room to shed some tears when Kayleigh asked for a cake pop and couldn't have it right away when everyone else was having one. Broke my heart. Love that girl whole bunches!

Kym Thorpe said...

I love how you can see the humor and the ridiculous in situations like this!

And I especially love that you were Quick to recognize Kayleigh's symptoms and that your wonderful doctor was Quick to help you out. 8-)


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