Wednesday, October 14, 2009

A blessing within a curse...

Today started poorly with *my* plans being thwarted by various things. Luckily Chet was home (had a dentist appt) and with his help i was able to get my walk in and us out the door on time. Aden had a Dr. appt at 11:10 with our regular pediatrician. I normally don't take well-kids to the doctor, especially in the height of swine/seasonal flu outbreak hype.
So why were we going? Well, to rule out him having diabetes. He had been peeing a LOT - seemed like every time he would drink, he would need to pee and urgently! He had been getting up at least twice a night (occasional accidents) to pee and get drinks. One of the first nights, Chet said "I wonder if he has diabetes." I said, "Or a UTI" and dismissed his thought because, well that's what i do... His family has history of type 2 so when he sees something that could possibly be a sign or a risk, he mentions it...and i dismiss him (nice, huh?).
So i asked the normal UTI questions...nope not that. So i thought, maybe just something he is going through. But it continued and i noticed he was drinking more. So i looked up the symptoms and found the typical peeing and drinking, and learned about weight loss (or not gaining) as well as headaches, leg pain, stomach aches which he had been sporadically complaining of. I had to talk myself into calling the Dr. and was glad i got the voicemail because i wasn't really ready to talk to anyone just yet.
Maggie (med student shadowing Dr. Hanes this month) called me and we talked for a while, her asking various things and me answering - always with a "I know its probably nothing but i want to rule it out." We scheduled an appt for today. We arrived early, were ushered quickly through the sickly waiting room and down the "well" hall. Of course weight and height and temp then to our room to wait. Soon Maggie appeared and went over a few things. Asked Aden to pee in a cup...Sir Pees Alot didn't need to go!!!!!!!!!! For an hour i coaxed him to drink water and finally he needed to go. Somewhere in that hour Dr. Hanes came in and talked with me. Left us for a bit to let Aden drink more and hopefully pee.
Once the results were in she and Maggie came back in. "Well, Mom, your suspicions were correct. There are sugar and ketones in his urine which is a sign of diabetes. ...I am going to call Dr. Domek and see how he wants to proceed and we'll be right back." I wanted to cry. WTF just happened? My sweet baby boy might have diabetes for real? This is NOT what i expected at all! "Mom, it's nothing, go home." is what i expected. My mind was reeling and i am not sure how i was able to keep any form of 'cool'. She returned saying they wanted me to come right now but she had reminded them its lunch time and asked if we could get lunch first. So i managed to text Chet to meet me at home to watch Emma so i could go alone with Aden. We stopped for lunch and came home.
On the way home i talked with Aden a bit about it and told him they might 'take labs' and told him what it meant. He started crying, "I don't want them to take my blood. It will hurt." It was all i could do to not break down and sob. All i could think about is, if it really is diabetes, you will have to get used to finger pricks (at least) and my little boy having food restrictions. He didn't want to go and to make things worse, Dinosaur Train came on right before we were about to leave. I *had* to let him watch the first 15 min! We took a video with us (in hopes of distracting him) and various times he said, "I don't want to go. I don't want them to take my blood. It will hurt." We finally arrived and it took me a bit to find parking (at Baptist Hosp. OKC).
We walked in, i filled out paperwork and we were escorted back by the dr's wife and immediately started getting bombarded with finger pokes (him - blood sugar of 474 - then Aden did me - blood sugar of 85 ...kinda a game) and information. We had entered *their* flow. I got a 45 min lesson from the Dr. on what diabetes is, how he got it and why insulin is important, where insulin is made but the when will always be a mystery...speculation is insulin started decreasing about 6mo-1yr ago but we can never be sure or ever know what triggered it. But we know he has Type 1 Diabetes.
So back to the finger pokes - he was told "it doesn't hurt." Well, you know what - it does hurt, just not real bad but when you aren't used to getting poked, it fucking hurts. So here we are with a 4 year old who's finger hurts and is wondering WTH he is doing here. They ask him if he wants to watch a movie (Night at the Museum)...in another room. I wasn't really okay with it at first but the longer my biology lesson (described out of sequence above) went, the more grateful for the movie i got. So that lesson over, his wife comes in. I had to pee (ironic, huh?) and since Aden didn't need to go, i went alone. I almost let myself sob but i pulled it together...this is not the place to loose it...i have to be strong for Aden...pep talk, pep talk, pep talk. Back to the room, composed.
I start getting a lesson on insulin injecting. Aden kept coming to check on me...so cute! And finally i was schooled enough to talk to him and walk him through a shot. The boy has NEVER had a shot in his life, has heard from others that they hurt and has this whole thing built up in his head (who wouldn't, right?). I try to explain things in ways he would understand but who am i fooling - i don't even get it. I am really barely functioning at this point let alone explaining something so crazy to a 4 year old. He hears the word shot and freaks. Screaming, crying until he gags, make you want to curl up and cry with him type of cry. but i cant. Dr.s wife made a point to tell me "They pick up on us being nervous and scared. be strong for him." and i have got to follow the authority, right? So, i kept it together as much as i could. He kept asking why we have to do this. at one point i asked, “Do you want to life a long life and have fun?" (he nodded) I said, "Mommy wants you to live a long life and have fun too. If we don’t do these shots, you will die.” When I said that (and even now) I just wanted to fall on the floor, roll up in a ball and cry. We finally had to do it so she gave him his shot and i held him. He didn't even feel it!!!!!! All that and he didn't feel it.
We left, stopped to rent some movies, got home and when dinner was ready, had to finger poke again - almost 30 min later we did the poke and got to eat. Then after dinner - another 15-30 min of trying to get him to let me do insulin. After dinner, i had to go out to the van to cry and yell. And man did i cry... Through all that crying i kept remembering to rephrase things to say what i want. I also kept getting these 'messages' of "things will be fine." and "he is a healthy boy, just needs help with insulin and things will be great for him" and "cherish him and Seth and Emma" and "why do you have to "be strong" for Aden?" and "why cant he see you cry and be mad about this?" So right then i gave myself permission to cry with him, to be mad with him, to just be with him. I came in feeling better.
Then "bedtime" 30 min of trying to do finger stick, another 30 of trying to do insulin - this time we had to hold him down because we were an hour later than we 'should' have been. He was MAAAAAAD. He started hitting his fists together saying, "I didn't want to do that. I don't want to do this. I hate this." I scooped him up into my lap and said, "you can be mad, you can be sad, you can cry and feel however you need to feel." I said, "I am mad at this too, i hate this too, and i just want it all to go away. but it wont and we are just going to have to deal with it...as much as it sucks." I started to cry with him. I said, "i really am so sad this is happening and i really wish i could make it all better where you don't have to do any more finger pricks or shots. We will all get used to this pretty soon but until then, its okay for any of us to get upset over it."
While i was re-reading this before sending, i realized. Aden has been getting some "special treatment" today but why do we wait until something crazy like this happens before we give that special treatment? I mean there are things like financial constraints (that i blew out the window today somewhat) but seriously - why do we give into their every whim when they are sick or are hurt pretty bad or have lost a puppy or ____ but every other day is 'nothing special'? Shouldn't we make every day special? Not just for our kids, but for us too.
See sometimes i have these thoughts and plan to do something about it but then i fall into old habits of 'nothing special' but now i have at leat 4 times a day "for the forseeable future" to remind me that everyday is special.
A blessing within a curse...