It was a Tuesday.
He hadn't slept well and complained of being so tired. His father and I decided to let him stay home from school that day to let him get some much needed rest. The aching legs were waking him up several times a night lately. Two weeks earlier, he had a bout of thirst like we had never seen before. He couldn't get enough water. He was keeping a collection on his desk of the water bottles he was going through. And when he wasn't guzzling water, he was making trips to the bathroom. The predictor of our future, my husband, said, "Riley, we're going to keep an eye on this, these are classic symptoms of diabetes." This immediately sent him into hysterics. He didn't know much about diabetes, but he knew he did not want to stick his fingers multiple times a day. The ruckus prompted me to come upstairs to see what was going on. I immediately tried to calm Riley down by saying, "Of course you don't have diabetes, Dad just means we need to keep an eye on you and see how you feel tomorrow. Don't worry!" I mean, I'm the one who jumps to conclusions, not my stable and thoughtful husband. What in the world?
The day before, Riley had weighed himself. Coincidentally, he was trying to get in shape and losing weight was important to him. He called out after leaving our bathroom where the scale was that he was down to 119. We congratulated him. As soon as he left the room, I got my calendar out to see when his last yearly well-check had been....August 4th. It was September 19th. He had lost 16 pounds in six weeks.
Riley was excited to get a day off from school, we never let him stay home unless he was pretty sick. And he was almost never sick. I ran to the basement (so he wouldn't hear me) and called the pediatrician. I explained to the nurse that I was bringing my son in because I thought he had caught a bug. I described the difficult sleep and maybe I could hear a cough coming on. Then I said, "While he is there, I want the doctor to check him for diabetes." I described all the symptoms we had noted in the last two weeks: weight loss, the bout with excessive thirst/urinating, and leg cramps that wake him up at night. I went on further to share that it was important not to freak him out-he excites easily-I should know...this apple didn't fall far from the tree.
The doctor was fantastic. He had me believing that cutting desserts and laps during soccer practice for the past month were probably the culprits behind the weight loss and leg cramps. All he needed was some magnesium or something like that...Then, right before we were all done. He said it was a good idea to get a urine sample... just in case.