Oakley Terrill Story of Type 1 diagnosis and survival
Oakley, age 9 at the time was a very active kid, He raced go-karts, he played soccer, baseball but his passion is go-kart racing. He was always playing outside and helping his family with chores, cutting wood, and yard work. One day we were out working in the yard and it was a very warm day, Oak just could not get enough water. That was the first time I had noticed his excessive thirst, so later that evening I mentioned it to my wife, Christin. She told me that earlier in the week he was having some issues with bed-wetting that were out of the ordinary. Christin is very familiar with diabetes and their symptoms because her two brothers have T1D and her dad had T2D, so she made Oak's first Doctor’s appointment, which would be April 4, 2017.
April 4, 2017, was the day that changed our lives.
We noticed signs of diabetes but didn't want to think it was true the thirst, urinating wetting the bed we noticed the symptoms about a few before making the appointment with the family Doctor, we arrived for our appointment and the family Doctor pricked Oakley's finger to check his Blood Glucose and his number was 443. The Doctor was very concerned of our child as he was on the verge of being in Diabetic Ketoacidosis, 443 for anyone it's alarming especially since Oakley 9 at the time was not diagnosed as a Diabetic. The Doctor sent us to the local hospital to do blood work to double check his number it was the same and his a1c was 10.2 then we went back to the family Doctor's office and he told us to pack our bags and go straight to Erie, Hospital as there is a bed waiting for Oakley and he needs urgent care now "TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE". When we arrived we went straight up to the room where a nurse came in and give Oakley a shot of insulin and they kept watch on his numbers every 2 hours until they got his numbers under control. Oakley was on the verge of diabetic ketoacidosis but Mom and Dad did the right thing and got him tested. Good Job MOM and DAD...
We spent 4 days in the hospital learning about diabetes and administering shots so we would know how to do it by day 4 Oakley's numbers where under control and he was pricking his fingers and giving himself his shots on his own and has been doing it himself ever since, he has learned how to count carbs and gives himself enough insulin to cover the food he eats. We had to have help learning how to transition this 9-year old from being able to eat whatever he wants, to learning how to count and calculate everything he eats, as well as how to give himself shots. This had to be one of the scariest times in our lives.
One of the first things Oak asked when we finally were getting this under control was “Can I still race?” We told him you could do whatever you want! This disease is not going to stop you.
Over the last 2 years now, Oakley has shared a lot about his diabetes with his friends, they have all watched him check his blood sugar, and give himself shots. We think it is important to share and educate people because you would not believe the number of people we have talked to that have no clue what diabetes is and how it affects a child and their family.
Oakley now 11 Junior 2 driver and is a track champ with many trophies, this kid is a true wheelman. Oakley is dealing with something no kid should have to deal with. Some kids understand diabetes better then others and some kids will struggle. Oakley was awarded by his School "The Good Citizenship Award" Oakley has proven that even with diabetes you can do anything you want to do and become an ambassador for Diabetes Awareness. Never give up the fight!
We would like personally thank the Kuehl family and the Drive for Diabetes Awareness program for the opportunity to share Oakley’s story and help raise awareness.
She wasn’t feeling well for weeks, but we couldn’t figure out what was wrong. After several trips to the doctor we ruled out the flu, strep, UTI, mono, ear infection, bronchitis and pretty much everything else. No one checked her Blood for diabetes no test done for AC1. An A1C test is a blood test that reflects your average blood glucose levels over the past 3 months. The A1C test is sometimes called the hemoglobin A1C, HbA1c, glycated hemoglobin, or glycohemoglobin test. ... The higher the percentage, the higher your blood glucose levels have been.
Brooklyn’s story starts like so many others. She wasn’t feeling well for weeks, but we couldn’t figure out what was wrong. After several trips to the doctor we ruled out the flu, strep, UTI, mono, ear infection, bronchitis and pretty much everything else. She had been complaining about things being blurry so we even went to the eye doctor and they prescribed her glasses. On September 19, 2017 she sent me a text from school saying she couldn’t stay awake. I was frustrated that she still felt bad even though we were told she was fine. I picked her up and took her straight to urgent care. Once again they tested for the flu, strep and mono. All negative. One big change from the last visit – she lost 15lbs in two weeks. I remember the day like it was yesterday. Dr. Wilson at the urgent care center told us even though they don’t usually do it, she wanted to run one more test just out of curiosity. She pricked her finger and left the room. I had no idea what she was even testing for and to be honest I figured it would be another negative result. When she walked back into our exam room she said “I don’t want to alarm you, but we’ve called 911.” Brooklyn’s blood glucose reading was 600. Dr. Wilson suspected that it was higher, but 600 was the highest their meter read. While we waited for the ambulance to get there she explained that her body was fighting itself and the weight loss was from her body breaking down her muscle because it had nothing else left to use for energy. She wanted us to go directly to the hospital, but was worried that there wasn’t enough time for us to drive her there and wait in the waiting room. Calling 911 was her quickest and safest bet. I called her dad in a panic and he met us at urgent care so he could ride in the ambulance with her. I had Maddox with me and wasn’t allowed to bring him in the ambulance and we didn’t want her going alone. The paramedics were unable to get an IV in her because she was so extremely dehydrated. I met the ambulance at Manatee Memorial where they got her hooked up to fluids and started an insulin drip. After a full bag of fluids and insulin her blood glucose was reading 789. This was the highest she would go. Once they got that 789 reading they immediately called for a transport to All Children’s.
I rode to All Children’s with her while Scott took Maddox home. The admitting ER doctor at All Children’s came in and pulled a chair up and propped his feet on her bed. His words were “I just have to sit here and look at her. She shouldn’t be conscience. She shouldn’t be talking to us. I don’t know how she is functioning right now.” That was the first time I cried. Hard. I had no real knowledge of Type 1 diabetes and I was scared to death. The only thing we knew for certain at that moment was that she was very sick and her body was shutting down. Once she was moved up to a room our lives went into a tailspin. While they worked to get her numbers down, her vision got worse. She couldn’t focus on anything. We learned that it was caused by the ridiculous amount of sugar in her body. It had actually built up and was in the fluid around her eyes. Sugar molecules were distorting her eye lens and she was left not being able to read anything or see clearly. We spent 4 days getting pumped full of new knowledge on how to keep her alive. We were trained to do her readings and give insulin shots. She was trained on the same. We were trained on how to administer Glucagon in the event she drops so low that she loses consciousness. Her new endocrinologist told us that if we would have waited to come in she would not have lived through the night. That was the second time I lost it. We left All Children’s with what felt like a million pamphlets, training documents, prescriptions and a whole new team of doctors.
Transitioning into her new life was more than a little overwhelming. She was on 2 different types of insulin. We had to track all of her blood glucose readings and report them to her Endocrin team. All foods and drinks had to be measured, weighed, calculated and converted using the sliding scale they recommended for her. She fell right into a routine like it was second nature. Her vision was gone for 2 weeks following her hospital stay. That was terrifying. I was afraid there would be permanent damage to her eyes even though her doctors assured me that her vision would be just fine once the buildup of sugar was flushed from her system. She didn’t complain. She never felt sorry for herself. And she still doesn’t. As a mom, I had a terrible time dealing. I was upset and cried constantly. Why my baby girl? What did she do to deserve this? It was and still is terribly heartbreaking.
I thank God every day for Dr. Wilson. Had she not followed her gut and pricked her finger Brooklyn would not be here today. She so easily could have told us everything was negative and sent her home to rest. She literally saved my daughter’s life. A million “thank you’s” will never be enough.
Knowing what we know now and looking back – all the signs were there. The problem is the symptoms of Type 1 are so easily written off as something else. Brooklyn was drinking a ton of water, but cheerleading was in full force and it was August in Florida. Of course she was drinking a lot. And the constant peeing. Obviously that was from all the water. She was exhausted all the time. Well, school had just started, she was staying up way too late and she was cheering. What 16 year old doesn’t complain about being tired? I did notice the weight loss, but chalked that up to the cheer conditioning. All things easily contributed to something else. And the major sign we missed was from one of our pups. At the time we had 2 dogs who both slept in bed with us. Brooklyn always slept with her door closed because she didn’t like dogs on her bed. A few weeks before her diagnosis our chihuahua-corgi mix, Rocco, started scratching at her door any time it was closed and refused to go to bed unless he was in her room. He would stand at her door crying until we let him in. We just thought he was being a spoiled pup and wanted in her room. Looking back we also realized he would lay across her lap and fuss when she wasn’t feeling well. Now we know it was most likely because she was having a high or a low. Rocco is not a trained dog, but he seems to have a sixth sense when it comes to Brooklyn. To this day if he is being super clingy with her we know she’s about to ne high or low.
Life with a Type 1 child is exhausting, no matter their age. The worry is always there and never goes away. I still check on her during the night to make sure she is breathing. The horror stories of Type 1 kiddos going to bed and not waking up is enough to drive a parent insane. While modern technology does help, it doesn’t make the worry go away. Brooklyn is now 15 months into this dreaded disease and is still handling it like a trooper. She wears a CGM (continuous glucose monitor) that reads her blood sugar automatically every 5 minutes. The readings go straight to an app on her phone and our phones. It’s a small device with a super thin needle that gets inserted under the skin. She has to remove and reinsert a new one every 10 days. She recently started using an insulin pump as well. She has to insert a site with a small canula into the skin on her stomach. That site it attached to the actual pump that gives her a regular small amount of insulin. (much like the body would naturally produce) She also has to calculate all of her carbs and enter them into the pump so it can dose for them. She has to remove the pump site and reinsert on a different spot on her stomach every 3 days. I am amazed daily at her courage and strength. To say that I am proud of her would be a huge understatement. She has been faced with a life of uncertainty and a life dependent on insulin. However she doesn’t let it slow her down. She has faced it head on and without pity. She has expressed her desire to spread awareness and help other kiddos with T1D. She wants to eventually work with newly diagnosed children to help them transition into their new way of life. I can’t imagine anything will stop her from doing what she puts her mind to!
Wrote by: MOM Stacie E
Star High School Cheerleader nothing can stop this young lady, NOT EVEN (DKA) Diabetic Ketoacidosis
School kids rally around classmate who nearly died from diabetic ketoacidosis. It just may not be the flu.
"Check Don't Guess"
"They saved my life"
Next time you take your child to the Pediatrician or your child is feeling ill. Make sure they are not a victim of DKA. "Check Don't Guess"
It can and will happen to someone you love or know as it's just a matter of time. Will you listen or ignore Lauren?
February 8, 2015. This was the day we almost lost Lauren.
She got sick a few days earlier but we thought it was just a stomach bug. She stayed home from school the next day; a Friday, and by Sunday she would be rushed to the ER. I’ll never forget when they said she had Type 1 Diabetes. Like many people who don’t have a kiddo with T1D, I didn’t understand the difference between Type 1 and Type 2 and my first thought was, “She doesn’t even like sugar!”
Lauren didn’t have the usual symptoms of T1D onset like excessive thirst, hunger and weight loss. Though, looking back there were some small signs like the fact that she never wanted to eat candy and turned down cake at birthday parties. We just thought she was making healthy choices. And of course there was her infamous “2nd dinner” but we chalked it up to a quirky, comical, growing child.
Imagine one day your vibrant 7-year-old is running around the kitchen, recording a selfie video singing about the 50 states and two days later she’s unresponsive, breathing so hard you would think she was running a marathon but she’s lying on a hospital bed with a 10% chance of survival. Her temperature was 90 degrees and her pH was too low to register. She was in extreme Diabetic Ketoacidosis, or DKA, and her little body was shutting down. She went from bad to worse, developing Acute Respiratory Disease after aspirating during intubation. Getting a T1D diagnosis is traumatic enough, the prognosis was almost unbearable. This is not normal. But then, neither is Lauren. She’s exceptional. She not only lived, she endures. She has to poke her finger 8-10 times a day, count everything she consumes, and take all these numbers to figure out how much insulin she needs to live. She was calculating fractional serving sizes before she even learned fractions in school.
March 8th, 2015. The 5th Sunday after being admitted, Lauren walked out of the hospital without any complications other than T1D.
And here we are, three years later. We’ve endured. We’ve learned. We manage. I still tear up when someone asks how Lauren is doing because we came so close to having a different story to tell. But these are happy tears, a way to release all the emotions wrapped up in getting to keep and love this beautiful child and all the amazing adventures she has yet to explore. We hope for a cure. We advocate. We focus on spreading awareness of T1D, the importance of knowing the warning signs and testing for blood sugar levels at well visits to prevent DKA and help more T1Ds survive and thrive.
Check out www.CampStix.org Summer camp for Diabetics.
Scroll down to read about Addison and how she has saved 40 lives after her death from Sudden onset Diabetic Ketoacidosis. Addie's family has allowed us to share and educate others. Lacy will be racing in Addie's memory. Parker family we thank you for allowing us to share your story.
08/12/11), Addie's parents took their sick daughter to the ER. Her 5th birthday was less than six weeks away. After arriving at the ER, an IV was started and blood is drawn. The doctor noticed something: her breath smelled very sweet. She ordered a blood sugar check. Micki (mom) remembers: "I said, 'What the heck??? You are wasting time.'" The night before, Addie had wet the bed and thrown up. When her head began hurting and she became dizzy with vision problems, her dad Darrell called Micki home from work. Addie--who wasn't normally a complainer--kept saying how badly her tummy hurt. They thought Addie might be dehydrated from the stomach flu. . . or have an obstruction . . . or appendicitis. Micki worked on a surgical unit at a hospital; of course, her mind automatically went there. And the thought of diabetes seemed unbelievable. Blood sugar 543. Type 1 diabetes. And DKA (diabetic ketoacidosis). Addie would be transferred to a children's hospital via ambulance. To be sure T1D was the only issue: An x-ray of her tummy was clear. An ultrasound was clear, too. Transportation plans changed when Addie became unresponsive during a CT scan. She was intubated and never woke up. The scan showed a stroke. She was flown to Cardon Children's Medical Center. Her eyes were fixed and dilated, upon landing. An ICP device (a big metal bolt) was placed in her head to drain fluid and relieve pressure. After 6 days in the self-induced coma, her medical team gently told her family that nothing else could be done. Addie's brain had hemorrhaged through her spinal cord. She was gone. The next day on August 19, 2011, four-year-old Addie became a donor, leaving behind her mom, dad, and 9yo brother, Alec--while gifting 40 people with life-saving organs and tissues. Before this happened, Addie was happy and healthy. After learning more about Type 1 diabetes, her parents realized they had overlooked symptoms. Addie had been very thirsty and urinating more since the end of July. They had attributed her increased thirst and urination to her activity level and the Arizona heat--the temperature was soaring over 100 each day. Why would it be unusual for an active little girl like Addie to ask for sippy cups of water? And if someone drinks more, they naturally pee more, right? The Parkers continue to share their painful story to educate everyone they can to reach others about the symptoms of Type 1 diabetes. Addie continues to save lives.
"I know she lives on in others who received her gifts, and for that I am grateful." --Micki Parker
On 6.10.18 at Ambassador Speedway Wimauma, FL 10am-7pm Lacy Kuehl in the #4 Drive for Diabetes Awareness race cart will be racing in memory of Addison Parker. Lacy picked this story on her own. She approached us with, I know we race for DKA survivors but I want to race in her memory and share this story to help others by warning them of the deadly symptoms of Diabetes. These children do not need to die this is preventable. www.CheckDontGuess.org
Philip's Story of DKA
2:57am. Headed to the hospital thinking Philip is completely dehydrated. This is not an attention thing. This is to notify all that I may not be in in the morning at work. I’ll keep you guys and everyone else in the know when we know. Again, I think dehydration is what we are looking at but can’t help him if he can’t keep anything down.
Mom: So quickly! We caught him early in diagnosis, and he was never in DKA before... He was fine yesterday morning, started going downhill at lunch, we thought it was just a tummy bug (which may have brought on the DKA)... Chris noticed his breathing was weird, and he was cold, so we came in. Good Dad
Dad: So, an update.. we have been moved from ER to PICU. When we got here his numbers both sugar and protein were bad. His temperature was 93.something and honestly, without telling us at first they were pretty worried about the little guy. Going forward from here it’s more IV and things to help remove the proteins from his body. We are going to have a meeting with the doctor and nurses. All and all it’s looking ok but until all of his numbers are back down in the normal range. Too much fluid in the brain and many other things to watch for the next several hours.
Ok, an update to the update. We will be here for at least the next 24 hours. If everything goes well we can leave tomorrow morning.
Dad: You can see he is breathing very hard and that’s actually a good thing. It’s his body fighting out the built-up gases from his organs. Sugar update is we finally have him around 380. He spiked around 720 so we are getting there. We are looking for that magic race of between 80 and 120 but have to take it very slowly or increase the risk of a cerebral edema.
Chris, Thank you for allowing Drive for Diabetes Awareness, INC Non-Profit Charity to share your personal dealings with this terrible disease. We will continue to support all diabetics.
Phillip we got your back www.CheckDontGuess.org
Diabetic Ketoacidosis is no joke please be aware of the symptoms.
People may experience:
Your Race Winner for the #PhiipStrong150 is AJ Rogers a first-time winner on Racing for a cause. Drive for Diabetes Awareness will be sending AJ a DFDA hat. Way to go AJ you just won the #PhilipStrong150 We all raised $403.75 that money will be used to promote awareness of symptoms of diabetes that go ignored.
The DFDA #4 Brent Kuehl took 4th and was looking for 3rd but ran out of laps. The car came in the garage with a few dings and scratches but no major damage .23 secs of repair. Lots of great looking wraps out there with DIabetes Awarness on the track thank you. What a Great Monday Night for Diabetes Awareness.
The event was a success as thousands learned information on how to prevent certain death if diabetes is ignored and to Check Don't Guess" it just may not be the FLU. Philip and Lacy had a brief chat and talked about DKA Diabetic Ketoacidosis and how it has effected there lives. Lacy and Philip are very inspiring kids that have a no give up attitude and want to help others. Lacy will continue to race throughout Florida for Diabetic Ketoacidosis survivors Certain death from DKA that can be prevented with awareness and "Check Don't Don't Guess" it might just not be the FLU.
Watch the replay of the race on MaxSpeed TV and subscribe athttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ctKV_ONpeNI
Thanks to MaxSpeed TV for an AWESOME broadcast KR Sulfus you ROCK. Thanks to Racing for a cause for putting on this event run by Rick Hammond Jr and Chris Lague. Thanks to behind the scenes Adam Hammel doing graphics and poster work for promotion on getting this race done with and working with KR and MaxSpeed TV to make sure everything was right. Nascar Driver Ray Black Jr and pit crew member, Francois Pelletier Thanks for showing your support you put a huge smile on Lacy's face. Thank you to all the drivers as they donated to race.
Drivers: CJ Gates, Brent Kuehl, Kenneth Osbon, Wesley Whitfield, Bryan Hacker, Aaron Tolhurst, Ricky Hardin, Cody Jenkins, Douglas Johnson, Scotty Zirk, Conner Parise, Rick Hammond Jr, Lara Johnson, Christopher Lague, Ray Radford, Chandler Collier, Troy Radford, John Johnson, AJ Hamel, Douglas Wysocki, Shwan Cool, Jeffery Clifton, Andreas Lambert, Brian Rogers Jr, Francois Pelletier, Ray Black Jr and Rick Greenway.
Thanks to the none drivers that donated, Geoff Appelgren, Terry Rennert, KR Stolfus, Tom Quattlebaum, Brian Rogers jr, kris Parie, Charlie Smith, James Edwards, and Tim Giles. Without your support, none of this would be possible.
To see what Drive for Diabetes Awareness is up to.
Please visit our Website at www.CheckDontGuess.org
Follow us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/CHECKDONTGUESS
and subscribe to our YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCKM6BZzyDlA02SrIhHT4mTQ
By supporting Drive for Diabetes Awareness, you play a pivotal role in helping diabetes awareness that helps, prevents, supports and ultimately educates others about diabetes and its complications. There are many ways you can help! Drive for Diabetes Awareness, INC is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit. All donations are tax-deductible to the full extent of the law. Copyright © 2016 Drive for Diabetes Awareness, INC - All Rights Reserved.
Take Note: Internet issues with the Scuba #07 car Ray Black Jr. That ended his night as soon as it began.
Ray has driven in Xfinity and Cup in Nascar. Thank you for your support Ray. You put a smile on many kids faces and your tire man Frenchy thank you as well. :)
By supporting Drive for Diabetes Awareness, you play a pivotal role in helping diabetes awareness that helps, prevents, support, and ultimately educates others about diabetes and its complications. There are many ways you can help! Drive for Diabetes Awareness, INC is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit. All donations are TAX-DEDUCTIBLE to the full extent of the law. Copyright ©2014-2022 Drive for Diabetes Awareness, INC - All Rights Reserved. EIN# 47-2243582