Tuesday, March 23, 2010

2 Years

2 years ago today, it was Easter Sunday. 3 of my 4 children were running around our little Texas apartment filling their Easter baskets with candy while Jada lay motionless on the couch. That scene is forever burned in my mind. I KNEW something was very wrong when she wouldn't even attempt to sit up and join in on some of the excitement. Her breathing was labored...she had the flu, so I thought we were looking at complications from the virus that had afflicted our household over the previous 10 days. I loaded up the kids, took Jeff to work, which was just a mile or so from the hospital, and took her first to an urgent care, where they wouldn't even look at her. They instructed me to take her straight to the ER. I called Jeff on the way to the ER and told him that I would keep him updated. At the ER, they immediately gave her oxygen and the next thing I know, Jeff was there. He had ran all the way from work to the hospital. The nurse gave us the initial diagnosis. She could smell the ketones and told us that she thought we would have a diagnosis of diabetes. They took her blood sugar and it was 430....with very large ketones. She was in DKA. I remember them trying to explain to me what it was and trying to understand what it all meant. I thought they would admit her there, but then they said they weren't able to take care of her there and that she would have to be transported by ambulance to Texas Childrens Hospital in downtown Houston. I had NO idea just how sick she was. So, they started an insulin drip and we waited for the Kangaroo Crew to come and get her. The Kangaroo Crew is the EMT team from Texas Children's. When they finally arrived, I knew that Jada was in good hands. They had seen little ones in DKA before and they knew what she needed and what I needed as well. At this point, Jada was in and out of conciousness.....I tried to tell myself that she was sleeping but I knew deep down that we were on the veerge of losing her. The ride to Texas Children's from Katy in the ambulance was the longest ride of my life. They wouldn't let me sit next to her....I had to ride up front and when we arrived, they took her to the PICU without me. I remember wondering if she was going to be alive the next time I saw her. When I was able to get to the 3rd floor, and they took me back to her, I was so overwhelmed. I was by myself. Jeff had taken the other kids home. We had no family....just a few new friends because we had just moved to Texas a few months before. I called Jeff to tell him that she was in the PICU and he was shocked. He had no idea how sick she was. I remember calling my mom to keep her updated and then she offered to fly down. I fell apart on the phone, because I knew that we needed help and we had no one. I shouldn't say we had no one, because the previous week, I had connected with a college friend on Facebook who I discovered lived 15 minutes from us. She ended up taking Mary Beth for the evening so that Jeff could bring the boys down to the hospital. They told us she would be in the PICU for a couple of days, but Jada stabilized quickly and 24 hours later, we had moved to the 11th floor and our intensive training in Type 1 Diabetes began.


That's our diagnosis story in a nutshell. 2 years ago, my world came to a crashing halt. I had no idea what the future held. I didn't know if I could keep her alive, but did know that I would do everything in my power to educate myself and learn how to make her feel like a normal kid. Now, she's almost 5. They told me that around 5, she would begin to really have some awareness and begin to take part in her care. Her birthday is in a month and this last week, she took on taking her own blood sugar! Can you believe that we've only wasted one test strip? It's been amazing to watch. She's also describing her lows to me....that she's shaky, dizzy, hungry....all of those things. Jada even asked me yesterday if she did something to cause her diabetes. (yeah...that was a gut wrencher!) It's like I'm seeing a whole new side of her coming out with this new awareness. 2 years ago, I didn't see this day coming. I couldn't see through to the next few hours hardly. But here we are and it's just the way our life is. Sleepless nights, lows, highs, ketones, sore fingers, shots, a pump coming (geesh..I'm tired of waiting for that approval!), and most of all, watching Jada grow into a much stronger person because of it and meeting some amazing people along the way.

I wonder where we'll be 2 years from now??

19 comments:

Reyna said...

WOW...amazing how far we travel from diagnosis to each anniversary...through each milestone. Tearing up thinking about our story too...never thought I'd see the day that we just do it...and it is the norm.

Kudos to Miss Jada BTW! AWESOME on the blood sugar checks.

Nicole said...

What a scary dx story and happy 2 years!! and way to go Jada checking your own BG that is wonderful :)

Kristen Zayon said...

How scary that must have been. I was tearing up reading this post. You guys have come so far. You and Jada are blessed to have each other. God knew she needed you for a Mommy!!!

Shannon said...

Sniff.....I don't think I have ever heard her story...wonder how I missed that. SO SAD!!

Amy I think you are amazing! You were one of my first D mom friends, and I have always been so grateful for you and your example!

Way to go Jada, and Happy D-Anniversary! Love you!

Rach said...

BREAKS my heart. Tomorrow is my diagnosis anniversary---4 years, and I'm super emotional about it. Jada is just a little hero in my book, and so is her AWESOME and dedicated mommy who would do anything for her. God bless you!

Heidi / Jack's Pack said...

I can't imagine that ambulance ride! It's amazing what a difference two years makes, huh?! Here's to two more years of good health and good numbers and two more after that and two more after that... :)

Lora said...

I think I have a love/hate relationship with dx stories.

I love to hear about them because they make me feel less "different" and I love learning about all of my friends that live in bloggy world.
But I hate that I am saddened more and more with each story I read(not that I would ever stop reading them). I mean, each of these stories breaks my heart. Maybe because I feel the pain of our own story all over again. Maybe its because I wish EVERYONE was lucky enough to catch it early like we did(we caught it early just by chance). I wish NO parent ever had to watch their child suffer. I wish NONE of us ever had to stand by wondering if our child would be alive when we see them again.
I wish...

Thanks for sharing with us... happy "d"aversary:)

Misty said...

Wow! You made me cry! It made me sad remembering our dx day, but mostly thinking about what a horrifying day you had.

So proud of Jada!

Tesa said...

Thanks for sharing your story, Amy. I'm so thankful that you have the Lord's GRACE and strength through all of this! You're a great mom!

Meri said...

Thank you for sharing your story. First, I love that your husband ran to the hospital...that is love! And second, how lucky were you to have a nurse that knew what was going on right away! It took HOURS, too many hours to diagnose our first. My heart hurt reading your story, but rejoices in your victory!

AjsMommy82 said...

Wow, it's still so hard for me to read these dx stories, the memories of our own dx just flood my head! Our little princess's stories are just so similar even down to the ambulance ride where they wouldn't let me sit with her
:(
Happy Anniversary Princess Jada!

Wendy said...

Beautifully written and documented in time. Congrats on 2 healthy years.

Here's to 100 more!

phonelady said...

Oh yes I think no matter how long we live we will always remember those dx days and how bad we felt and what in the world are we going to do feeling . I saw this little creature in that hospital bed and thinking exactly that . You made me cry now .

Melissa's Thoughts said...

You know I think our babies grow up so much faster because of D. Look how far you have come in 2 years. I don't think it will be double this far in 2 more, I think it's like mulitples. At 7 Christopher started his shots himself. He could draw them up and do them. You guys are doing great and I applaud you.

Wendy said...

Ive never heard her story.. Breaks my heart thinking of her laying on the couch :( Im so proud of Jada and your whole family!! Happy 2 years of being strong and brave Jada!!!

Donna said...

Awwwwww - poor little sweetie!! What a story! And I can only imagine how it was for you to see her so sick. We were lucky - Jacob was high when he was dx'd but not scary sick like that.
Thank you so much for sharing your story! =)
Here's to many more years of health for Jada!!!

Rachel said...

Wow. Thanks so much for sharing. I can't imagine how scary that diagnosis day/night was.

It must be so hard to watch your child go through the difficulties with diabetes. But at the same time I bet it is amazing to watch her grow and change and become a stronger person because of it. It will be neat to see how the Lord uses her in the future because of what she goes through now as a child.

Michelle S said...

Wow, that was an amazing blog post. I can't imagine how scared you must have felt (it reminds me a bit how we felt in MI when Emily was born very ill). The Lord always provides people to help when we need them & their support most. Praising the Lord for the growth in Jada & your family over the past 2 years! Will continue praying for Jada as she takes a more active roll in her diabetes too! Praying for you friend!

Joanne said...

These stories never fail to make me tear up, and be very grateful that our own story was so "easy" compared to some of the ones I've read. It always makes me wonder if I would have held it together if Elise had gone through something so scary?

Congrats on the 2 years, here's to many, many more!