I figure a might as well tell the story of my type 1 diagnosis as it's up the extreme end of the scale, actually i suppose it pretty much was the extreme end of the scale.
For what i suppose was at least 6 months i had been having all the usual signs of diabetes, but as no one in the family had ever had it before, we didn't know how to recognise them; Thirst, frequent urination, hunger, weight loss ect. Then in the first week of the mid year school holidays I started to get sick. My parents thought i had the flu, all i knew is that it was the sickest i have ever been in my life.
On the Tuesday night of the second week of the holidays my breathing was increasing in pace to the point where i was practically hyperventilating (i know now that this was my body trying to clear itself of keytones) and i was too weak to even walk. Going to sleep that night, or at least passing out from exhaustion (i'm not sure which) was the last thing i can remember until fri afternoon that week, when i woke up in the ICU at the RCH.
What i know about what happened in between i only know what i have been told by my family and the nurses and doctors.
On the Wednesday morning i woke up incoherent and hallucinating. My family took me to the ER at our local hospital and one of the doc's there (who saved my life by doing so i might add) said he thought it was a diabetic emergency. I was too far gone however, for them to help me there, so i was put into a medically induced coma and air lifted to the Royal Children's Hospital where i spent 3 1/2 days in the ICC and another 3 after that as an inpatient.
When i say i was at the extreme end of the scale i really mean it too, DKA causes your blood to become acidic, a normal blood PH is about 7.4, below 7 is considered fatal, mine was 6.9. I was so dehydrated that it took 9 litres of fluids to stabilise me, which were delivered through 2 IV's in each of my arms and a catheter running into my femoral artery. I had a machine breathing for me and my brain became swollen from the extreme dehydration (which in itself took 6-12months to recover from).
And then when i'm still trying to wrap my head around where the hell i am, let alone why i was there, i was told i had type 1 diabetes. YAY!
It's all good though, we can't choose what happens to us in life, only how we deal with it. Type 1 is part of who i am and part of what has made me, me.