Back to Kids' Voices Justin

Photo My name is Justin and I am 19 months old. I live in Illinois with my mom, dad, my dog Bailey, and my goldfish Gilligan. I was diagnosed on Thursday October 21, 2004 with Type 1 Diabetes. For my parents, they thought it was a death sentence. They were very sad. But as we were in the hospital, they realized that this was a treatable disease, and that I could live a happy/normal life like other children my age.

I became very sick about 2-3 days prior to my diagnosis. I was drinking excessively, and peeing through all of my diapers. I was extremely lethargic and tired. I just wasn't myself. I wouldn't play with my toys, and I was very clingy to my parents. So, they took me to the doctor. That is when my mommy and daddy were told that I had Type I Juvenile Diabetes. I was only eighteen months old when we found out. The doctor knew right away what was wrong, and indicated that we would need to go to a hospital in St. Louis Missouri (about 2 hours away). We came home, packed up some toys, DVD's, and clothes for our trip. We ended up at Cardinal Glennan Hospital in St. Louis. The hospital staff was extremely accommodating, and took good care of me. More importantly, they took care of my mommy and daddy. They made sure that my parents had a good understanding of my condition, and inundated them with a ton of information on Diabetes. They showed my daddy how to draw up my insulin and how to give shots. Mommy already knew how, she is a nurse. I stayed there for three days while they regulated my blood sugars with insulin. When I got there, my blood sugar was over 500, and then they started the insulin. Once they got the insulin on board, it was only a matter of a few hours before my blood sugars dropped. It went to 175, and then 107. At 107, they seemed to get a little nervous, took me off the insulin drip, and fed me my first dose of food since lunch (applesauce and apple juice). My blood sugar sky rocketed to 762. It seemed as though the rest of my hospital stay focused on recovering from that extremely high blood sugar. My range is only 100-200.

We finally got to come home after mommy and daddy passed a test. They received a lot of information from the Doctor, the nursing staff, and the nutritionist. I am on a Carbohydrate diet. It's not that bad I guess. I get 30-45 Carbs for each meal, and 15-30 for each snack. I eat six times a day now, as opposed to three. That can't be a bad thing.

I'm more used to the finger sticks and shots than I was when I first started. Daddy has gotten pretty good at it, but mommy is the best. I sure am glad that they paid attention while I was in the hospital. Luckily for me, my babysitter was a paramedic in the military, and had also worked on a transplant floor in a hospital. It sure is a blessing to have people know how to take care of me. I am much better off today than I was about a month ago. Thank you for listening to my story.

PS I really want to thank my Diabetes Team at Cardinal Glennan Hospital. Dr. Meyers, Sylvia (nutritionist), Bonnie (nurse practitioner), Laura (nurse), and Debbie (nurse). They made me feel much better, and my family is truly grateful.

You can e-mail my mom at momnowto AT or my dad at bootcampjr AT

Published November 14, 2004

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