When Kathryn Powers* was just 16 months old her mother noticed that she was drinking more and having more wet diapers. One day it was as if Kathryn couldn’t get enough to drink and needed her diaper changed every hour. So she loaded Kathryn and her 2-year-old sister into the car and took them to the pediatrician’s office. Her fears were confirmed when the pediatrician told her she thought Kathryn had diabetes and needed to go to the hospital as soon as possible.
Kathryn was admitted to Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta where testing confirmed that she had Type 1 diabetes. Her mother was overcome with fear and anxiety. She wondered how she would give a 16 month old four to six shots a day, or how she would prick her finger, or how she would be able to monitor every single thing she put in her mouth. But Children’s doctors, nurses and diabetes educators were there to help the Powers family.
Kathryn stayed at Children’s for one week. During that time her doctors ran tests and made adjustments to get her insulin doses correct while her parents learned how to care for her. Though she was nervous leaving the hospital knowing the challenges that Kathryn faced, her mother knew she’d learned everything she needed to know to make sure Kathryn stayed healthy and strong.
But when she was 7, Kathryn was admitted to Children’s because she’d gotten a stomach virus that made her diabetes particularly hard to manage.