Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A New Glimpse at Our Baby Girl

We had a 3d ultrasound this week, it was pretty amazing! Dan laughed when I asked the ultrasound tech, "She didn't develop any boy parts did she?" :-) I was just thinking that the nursery is pretty pink! Here's a picture of our precious girl! Dan and I think she has Dan's nose and my forehead (although some close friends are claiming it's my nose). She also has squishy cheeks...which I absolutely adore!

This is our little angel at 30 weeks...
We can't wait to meet you and hold you in just a couple of months!!!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Gestational Diabetes Update

I saw the gestational diabetes specialist this week and learned a ton! She is the kind of doctor who gives you the absolute worst case scenario before she says anything else. As she was sitting there telling me these things, I was thinking she was saying this is what WOULD happen, not what COULD happen, so I was totally freaking out! Then she ended with, "but we can completely control this with your diet, so those things shouldn't happen with you.". She ran a test called an A1C that apparently tells her what my blood sugar has been doing over the past 90 days. She said that my number for that test was average/normal, so that whatever is happening has just started (good news). She also said that my gestational diabetes is placental in nature (there are two types of gestational diabetes, placental and maternal). This means a few things: (1) once I deliver, this is will away, (2) my risk for developing Type II diabetes later in life is less than if it were maternal, (3) my risk for developing gestational diabetes in a future pregnancy is significantly lower than the maternal.

Her treatment for me is to control this with diet. As I met with the dietician, I realized that the diet I put myself on in the two weeks while I was waiting to see the speialist was way too restrictive. The biggest changes have been being conscious about the carbs I am eating and eating more regular, smaller meals throughout the day. It has taken some getting used to, but I know it is good for the baby! The benefit of having an easier time losing baby weight will be good, too! The other part of my treatment is to monitor my blood glucose levels four times a day...which is REALLY not my favorite. I hate it. But knowing it's keeping our little girl healthy makes it worth it. I remember when my nephew was diagnosed with a milk allergy while my sister was still nursing. She had to completely cut milk out of her diet, and I couldn't imagine how she did it. I guess I understand now...even before I've held this child in my arms, I would do anything for her...even stick myself four times a day!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Perfect Pregnant Patient to Gestational Diabetes

It's been a little bit of an emotional week this week. I had my 28 week appointment last Wednesday which went well. My OB called me her perfect pregnant patient because I am right on track with my weight gain and the baby is measuring just like she should. Hooray! This appointment also brought along the fun of the glucose challenge test. For the moms out there, you remember the fun of drinking (aka, chugging) the nasty orange (lemon-lime, cola, fruit punch...) nastiness that they call "glucola". For the non-moms, it's pretty much the equivalent of drinking a glass of orange kool-aid with about 8 cups of sugar in it. My sister said when she did it, the lady told her should could drink the glucola OR two 2 liters of orange pop OR 4 cans of the concentrated juice you get with pears. Now I have a sweet tooth, but this stuff was disgusting! I survived and found out a couple of days later that I had failed the test, which meant I had to to in for the 3-hour glucose tolerance test. In this one, you get to drink twice as much of the nasty glucola then sit around for 3 hours to test if your body handles the glucose overload. Well, I failed two of the four markers, which means I have gestational diabetes. If you talked to me on Tuesday (the day I found out), I was a wreck. I was so sure that I didn't have it because in my limited understanding of GD (gestational diabetes), I knew that it meant your baby was likely to be big, and was tied with excessive weight gain in pregnancy. I've since learned that there's a lot more to it than weight. Apparently in some pregnant women, gestational diabetes can be mostly hormonal. Which, technically all diabetes is hormonal...but in the case of pregnancy - all of the pregnancy hormones that are rushing through your body are fighting the hormones trying to deal with the break down of carbohydrates and sugars in your body, which is (as one book I read put it) a train wreck waiting to happen!

I'm still not entirely sure what all of this means for me. My OB has referred me to another OB who specializes in gestational diabetic care. I go to see this doctor on the 24th. When I asked what I needed to do in the meantime, the nurse practitioner told me nothing. She also mentioned that the fact they are willing to wait 2 weeks to see me tells her that I am a borderline case, which is potential good news. I will know more when I see the specialist, of course. From speaking with people who have gone through this or who treat patients with GD, it sounds like this will be treated with diet and exercise. I will find out how strict that diet will be in a couple of weeks. For now, I am trying to make the best choices in food that I can (not really knowing what is completely off-limits and what needs to be limited because every book/website you read tells you something different), and exercise more regularly. I had been swimming about twice a week and walking or doing yoga/prenatal exercise DVDs about twice a week - but I'm working to get in activity at least 6 days a week. Of course that will be good for the baby and eventually for delivery, so I'm starting to see ways that this can be a blessing. One of my good friends also pointed out that the stricter diet I am on now, the less weight I gain, the less I have to lose - and that's a win-win situation! :-)

I certainly appreciate any prayers to help me remember that God's truth still remains, even though this circumstance seems crappy. It certainly seems trivial to worry about something like this, that I essentially can control, in the midst of today's news of the earthquake in Japan and ensuing tsunami danger across the Pacific. I just want to do the best I can for our baby girl and make sure she is as healthy as can be (even if I am going to have to test my blood glucose levels daily and desperately HATE needles!). I'll update as I figure more of this out when I see the specialist!