Justin's Story

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Good day

Justin had a good day today, took the math part of the diagnostic FCAT & said he thinks he did really well.  We shall see in a few weeks :)  I'm sure he did just fine.  He had fun at Chuck E Cheese tonight, we went because his school was having a fundraiser.  He enjoyed seeing classmates outside of school :)

His numbers were pretty good all day, still a little high in the morning and tonight, but I'm sure his insulin will get adjusted a little tomorrow when he see's the endocrinologist. 

It is so crazy how your sugar affects you, no more million trips to the potty, going through a bottle or more of juice a day..........he is completely back to his old self.  He's so active again, and just being my silly, loving little boy.  I'm still nervous about him having a low, its scary when that happens. 

I know they'll be good days and off days, but I am happy we know what was wrong and now he's getting the medicine he needs.  I'm not sure if the sadness will ever go completely away, I'll always feel bad that he has to deal with this for his whole life.  But it is getting a little better each day, Justin is doing so well dealing with the multiple finger sticks and shots everyday, he's so brave.  He's learning what he can eat and when.....he'll ask me "does this have carbs?" LOL  He really is just an awesome little boy.

It was another busy day at work which was good, School calls me and lets me know what his lunch time number is everyday.  Tomorrow no work, taking Justin to his first endocrinology appt since the hospital.  Then hopefully getting our Christmas Tree! Justin is so excited to put lights up and everything.......Chris better get to work on the outside soon LOL

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

First day back at school "alone"

Today was a good day! I went back to work, and was happy it was busy, kept my mind from wandering too much and worrying.  Justin said he had a good day at school, he got to swim in PE today, and they took a diagnostic FCAT, that he says he did good on.  He was hungry so for tomorrow I packed extra ham rolls.  I'm so proud of him, have I mentioned that he is AMAZING? :)  

He had fun at scouts tonight even though he was tired since he decided to wake himself up at 5am this morning LOL......crazy boy!  Needless to say there was no arguing at bedtime tonight :)

I bought him a reusable "juice box" to send with him in his lunch box, he liked that!  His drink of choice now is fruit punch crystal light.  I have 3 pitchers in the fridge with different flavors :)  

Each day that passes this all seems a little more "normal"  I'm still sad about it, and I'm sure that feeling with never go away.  But Justin is doing great! The weight he lost is quickly coming back on, he's up 8lbs already, he's got energy again, he looks so much better, and he's back to silly Justin again!  That is such an encouragement for us, it makes this easier, because all we want is for him to be happy and healthy, and that now means taking insulin on a daily basis, but thats ok, as long as he is happy and healthy, that's what matters!

First day at school without me.....

I just dropped Justin off, got his supplies where they needed to be, and I feel like crying. Kids adjust to change so much better than adults. He's amazing! It's still so strange when I tell someone my son is a diabetic, sounds like I'm dreaming or something. Looking forward to being back at work though I wish I could be with Justin all day. I miss my friends and will be good to talk face to face rather than by text. Hoping I don't break down today, can't wait for scouts tonight and doing something normal......

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

1 week after diagnosis

Monday November 26 is 1 week that we have been dealing with diabetes.  We are learning more everyday, and Justin is such a trooper!   I am constantly on the internet reading everything I can.  In just a week Justin has already put on about 7-8lbs, he looks so much better!!  
1 week after diagnosis

Justin had caught me crying up in my room one night, and he says "whats wrong mom?"  I told him I was sad that he had diabetes, his response was "don't be sad, it's not your fault, and you don't have to do everything they did in the hospital" (like being "hooked up" or checking vitals constantly) as he was wiping away my tears.  I told him that he was the most amazing, brave, awesome kid ever!  He is just going with everything like no big deal, he is the best!!  Him taking it so well is helping me, I just look at him so happy and carefree and feeling better than he has in months, and I know everything will be fine.  I won't say I still don't want to cry at the littlest thing, but it's getting easier because my son is amazing! I keep reminding him if he needs to talk to anyone about his feelings that were here for him.  So far nothing, but I like him to know were here and he's not going through this alone.  

Justin went back to school Tuesday November 27, I went with him all day, he liked that.  It gave me a chance to speak with the girls at the office and take care of what I needed to there.  All of his friends were excited to have him back, they all had a bunch of questions for him.  

I've got everything labeled for school, all the supplies he now needs.......I never thought I'd be labeling those kinds of supplies for school.  His snacks are labeled, "classroom", "aftercare" so he knows when to have what.  (one is ham and cheese, the other a cheese stick and goldfish crackers)  I am super nervous for him to be there without us close.  But I know he'll be fine, and we won't always be able to be right there, but I'll do my damn best! Field trips I'm there, camp not so sure of right now, I'll have to see how I feel about that when the time comes.

Successful first day back, Justin is back to his normal silly self again, oh how I've missed that kid! 


Justin left the hospital on Wednesday November 21, he was super excited to be going home, he was already feeling so much better!

When we got home he was ready to play, he had some more visitors, Marsha, Michael & Mason,  then played with his buddy Jayden for a while.  Me and Chris were both nervous about doing everything right, and on time. Justin was happy to not be "hooked up" to the IV anymore.  

Thanksgiving is tomorrow, and honestly I really didn't feel like cooking at all, Auntie offered to treat us to Cracker Barrel, but I figured I should cook since I had already went out and bought everything.    

The afternoon went fast and it feels like all were doing is getting Justin a snack, checking sugar or giving insulin.  I know this will all become more routine eventually, but for now it's very time consuming.  

Thanksgiving was nice, cooking actually was a nice "break" even though I kept asking Justin how he felt, he's feeling and acting so much better!  And the weight is coming right back onto him!  Justin ate some macaroni & cheese and LOTS of turkey :) 
Feeling better, playing on the "trash pack" website

 Friday-Sunday:  We didn't do a whole lot, me and Justin made a trip to Target for a few things, and then Saturday was a "pajama day" Justin loves when we stay in our pj's all day.  Sunday we cleaned up the house and put up Christmas decorations, Justin could hardly wait, me on the other hand was struggling to find some Christmas spirit.  After that we went to Walmart, and everything was fine until checkout, and Justin wanted a ring pop, well normally I would get him a candy, but it's not good for him anymore, and he was so upset when we told him no.  I know he's still learning and its hard to accept that you can't have, what just a few days ago he would have been allowed.  On the way out to the car & thankfully it was dark, I was crying and just angry at the world again, how is this fair that my kid can't have a damn lollipop?!?!?!  This is beyond frustrating, and heartbreaking.  

Monday, November 26, 2012


The first night was a long one, between the vital checks, sugar checks, and just not being comfortable, we barely slept.  There were also a lot of tears, mostly on my part.  It is so hard knowing that this is something he will have to deal with for the rest of his life.  I am sure hoping there is a cure in his lifetime.  Justin's positive attitude about all of this is such an encouragement, I can only imagine if he wasn't so brave and positive how much harder this would be.  
Justin relaxing with pumpkin and hot dog :)
 I left the hospital for a little while and went home to shower, when I got back the Dr. was there, along with all the nurses and Chris was getting ready to draw up and mix the insulin and give Justin his injection.  He did great & so did Justin!  While the doctor was explaining everything she says "He's still your little boy, he's still gonna be able to do anything he wants" I just about lost it again.....This is so hard!!  

After that Justin ate breakfast and played on the PlayStation some more.  Chris left to pick up my Dad from the airport, Justin was so excited to see his Grandpa!!  He told him they were like brothers because they both had Type 1 Diabetes. It was great having Dad here, as he knows how I'm feeling, and what this is all like. 

Meanwhile all day, different people would come talk to us, nutritionists, nurses, educators.  I was learning fast about everything from blood glucose monitoring, drawing up and giving injections, glucagon, carb counting, symptoms of high/low blood glucose....and so on.   

Tuesday was eventful for Justin, his buddy Jayden came to visit him and brought awesome legos for him, I mean Chris to put together LOL.  Justin was feeling a lot better today, was being more like his old self! Tuesday night, Auntie came to visit after work, she brought Justin a new stuffed doggie, that Justin named "hot dog" LOL  He also got a visit from the therapy dog, he loved that! We tried to get some rest again, but was same as first night, tears & lots of checking up on him all night.  
Feeling a lot better, coloring and playing legos

Justin and the therapy dog
   Wednesday morning was my turn to mix the insulin and give the injection, I hate shots, getting them or giving them, I didn't want a job where I had to do that at all.  Surprisingly I wasn't that nervous to give Justin his insulin, I guess its because its now a necessity for him to live.  Me and Chris took turns doing the insulin and glucose checks, and felt comfortable enough with everything that we were ready to head home.  
Putting the lego sets together

When the doctor came in Wednesday morning & checked him out one more time to make sure he wasn't having any issues and asked if we thought we were ready to go home, of course we said YES!  Justin was so excited that he was getting to go home.  We got everything packed and waited for the discharge papers.  I was excited to be leaving the hospital but scared to go home and begin our new normal.  
lots of love for Justin


This morning just after 9am I called his pediatrician.  I left a message explaining his symptoms, and within 30 minutes they returned my call and asked that I bring him in at 12:15.  I left work early and went to pick him up early at school, he was surprised I was there.  I just knew already what was wrong, my stomach was so upset and I was so nervous.  

We got to the doctors office at 11:45, and of course as soon as we got there Justin needed the restroom, so he did his thing, then they weighed him. They put us right into a room.  The nurse came in a did a finger stick to check his blood sugar, and they checked the urine.  The doctor was taking a long time to come in, which was just making me more nervous. When he came in he had a sad look on his face, and just said his sugar is high, couldn't give an exact number as his machine just read "high" which meant over 400.  He had tears in his eyes as he was telling me what we were going to do and trying to make me feel better, I learned his son is also a type 1 diabetic.  Everything in the room was spinning, and I was listening to him, and then I just lost it, I couldn't keep the tears in anymore.  My gut feeling was right, and it sucked!  

He and his staff got Justin entertained and got the paperwork for me to take to the hospital, while I made some tough phone calls.  He told me to go right to the hospital, the pediatric ER at Palms West Hospital.  

I have never walked into an ER, and been taken right away.  The nurse read the note from the Doctor, and immediately brought him back for vitals, and then right into a treatment room.  They checked his sugar again it was 560!  They quickly started an IV with fluids to start diluting his blood.  He was such a trooper with all the needle sticks, such a brave kid!   

Brave Kid!

He rested in the bed all afternoon getting fluids and watching TV, the occasional sugar check again.  We were told he was going to be admitted to the PICU, I was so upset seeing my baby like this.  He was complaining he was hungry all afternoon, but he was not allowed anything to eat until all the blood work came back and the doctor said it was ok.  Within 30 minutes I was told the endocrinologist said shes ok with him going to the regular pediatric floor, roller coaster afternoon!  Justin was so upset that he had to stay at the hospital, I just kept reassuring him we weren't going to leave him there alone.  
Relaxing and getting fluids
 We got up to the floor around 7:00pm, they got him all situated, and started "training" us.  My brain at this point was so foggy and I was drained from everything.  I had a few different nurses come in and tell us about diabetes, and everything were going to have to do.  Then around 8:00pm Justin got his first dose of insulin and was allowed to eat!  He was happy to see that it was chicken fingers and fries.  I was happy it was something he liked after not eating since 10:00am "lunch" at school.  

After he ate he wanted to play video games, so the wonderful nurse brought in a cart with a playstation 3 on it, he loved that!!
PlayStation Time!

   After a super crazy day, we all tried to get some rest, it was a very long night, with the constant vital checks, and sugar checks.........along with all my tears.


I am going to start in August 2012, just 3 months ago.  That is when I believe this all started.  

Justin is a happy go lucky 7 year old, getting ready to start 2nd grade, and the soccer season.  

This is Justin at the beginning of the soccer season, weighing about 60lbs.
Looking back now that we know the diagnosis, the symptoms were present for about 3 months.  But it started with drinking all the time, then the running to the bathroom a bunch!  But he seemed to be drinking more the nights he had practice or a game, so we didn't think much of it.  Slowly over the soccer season, it was getting worse, couldn't last a whole practice or game (both about 1 hour) without going several times. He was also tired a lot and didn't want to run around as much as the other kids, I thought he was just being lazy and didn't want to play........I feel bad about that now, cause he did want to play he was just truly tired. 

Slowly over the next few months the weight was dropping off of him, but of course wasn't immediately noticeable.  My husband mentioned one night after his shower that you could see his bones, he's always been tall and thin, so we figured he grew and made sure he was eating more.  Suddenly about 3 weeks ago, he was starving!  Went from a waffle or 2 in the morning, to wanting 5 and a yogurt or 2!!!  It was crazy, but I thought his body was trying to make up the lost pounds.     
Soccer season ended the first weekend in November, and the next 2 weeks the symptoms just got worse, and now we had nothing to blame it on.  The teacher mentioned to me that he asked to use the bathroom a lot, and if that was normal for at home too.  I said yes, cause that was the "norm" lately.  Still took note more and more at home, and thought I was really just over-evaluating the symptoms.  

The weekend of November 17th & 18th, is what really just hit me that something was wrong, and I had a gut feeling that it was Diabetes.  The 17th, we went to a birthday party & Justin was not himself at all!  Just grouchy & miserable all day.  The 18th we went to a Nascar race in Homestead, Justin loves race cars.  He was miserable again, just very tired all day and soooo thirsty!  Drank 2 lemonades in about an hour, and they were huge!  He was trying to nap while the cars were racing, it was loud, but he didn't care.  We ended up leaving earlier than we had planned, he was just not feeling well.  The 2 hour car ride home, we had to stop I think 5 times for him to use the bathroom!  I was a nervous wreck & decided I was calling his doctor in the morning.  

     This is Justin at the race on Sunday November 18th, 1 day before diagnosis.  Its so obvious now when I look at pictures.  But the symptoms didn't all appear at once, so individually we had another reason why they were happening.  He was down to about 45lbs here.  This picture just breaks my heart, my poor little guy. 
My poor little Justin, he was trying so hard to be happy that day, but he was not feeling good at all :(