Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Diabetes, part 3

The last time I blogged about this topic, I was not pregnant, but this whole story started when I was pregnant the first time around.

The short of it is that I didn't have any indication or family history of diabetes and was shocked when I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes with my first child.  I passed the postpartum check, but my A1C values (average blood sugar over 3 months) were creeping up each year, so I decided to act because my chances of Type 2 diabetes is forever elevated.

I had a lot of success, since in July after I got pregnant, my A1C dropped .3 units, which takes me out of pre-diabetic range.  Still, I've spent most of this pregnancy worrying that it was only a matter of time, since again, my early tests last time did not register any issues, either.  I was hard on myself because I was nauseated for about 18 weeks into the pregnancy, and I admit there were nights when I'd puke everything I ate and then walk to 7-11 to have some candy and Slurpee since they were the only things I could even consider eating.

I randomly tested some meals with my old glucometer.  I had been testing randomly prior to pregnancy, so I was on a pack of strips that were still fairly new.  Most meals were fine, though one day, I had dim sum and spiked.  Concerned, I told my OB, who suggested I take the three-hour glucose test at my next appointment at 24 weeks.  I never did the three-hour test the first time, since my spike was THAT bad last time, but I was actually glad since I would have a definitive answer.

Shortly after the 24 week mark (because life got in the way), I came in and did the test.  It was pretty awful.  The one-hour has you drinking 50g of glucose, and the 2 hour postpartum one I did was 75g. Never had an issue drinking those. This one was 100g, and for that first hour, I had to keep myself from throwing up, and for a while, I was a bit shaky.  Having to have four blood draws in one morning was also not nice, but heck, I'm going to be giving birth again soon, so I should be prepared for all that.

Anyway, my results rolled in that evening, and the next morning, the OB confirmed all of the values (fasting, 1 hr, 2 hr, and 3 hr) were well within the normal ranges, so she deemed me free from gestational diabetes.  I could not believe it, since I was pretty much prepared for the worst and have been asking her questions related to this for the longest time.  She had told me not to assume I'd have it again, though of course I did.

I blamed myself a lot for having it the first go-around.  Did I eat right?  Exercise?  I feel that while my overall eating was probably better due to habit and nausea, I had many moments of poor judgment and definitely have not been keeping up with my exercise as much as I'd like (working on that!).  But now, the whole "every pregnancy is different" thing has come to fruition, and I have finally, finally let go of some of the blame that I put on myself in spite of being told it wasn't my fault.

This leaves me with about another 15 weeks or so with no finger pricking, tracking, or worrying about extra tests at the hospital for me or the baby, which is a huge burden off.  Of course I've been used to eating more balanced these days, so that will continue, and I know rice is still worse than sugar for me, so that will probably need to stay off my indulgence list.  I'll take it, though!

Wednesday, November 1, 2017


The weather has finally stabilized after months and months of heat waves, and I couldn't be more excited to feel comfortable going about my life.

It helps that this time of year is great in general, due to Halloween, Thanksgiving, and the other holidays.  It is so awesome to see Baby Tuesday enjoy all of these things this year with a new awareness of what's going on.  He trick-or-treated like a pro!

Also, November is "The Ukrainian" and my anniversary (5 years!) and Tuesday's birthday.  We're going to have an active few months indeed!

Speaking of active, in the above picture, you can see I failed to be subtle about my 23-week baby bump in spite of my best intentions.  I know I said this before, but I feel bigger than last time and will probably be a full-blown pumpkin soon enough.

With all these holidays and such, "soon enough" is going to be pretty soon, I think.  It is a bit surreal that this little one will be here not long after this end-of-year wave.  We've made pretty good progress in our preparations, though there are a few more biggies, which I'll go over in another post.

In my last post (too long ago... sorry), I alluded to a reveal, and now that family has become aware... I can finally say that according to the ultrasound tech, it's a girl.  I have another scan when I get further along due to low-lying placenta (the one of several complications I've had with this pregnancy), so I can get another opinion at that time.

Since I didn't find out last time, I'm somewhat suspicious that this could be a wrong guess, but I'm fine with that, too, except for having to tell everyone again.  Maybe this is why I mostly still call "it" and "it," and no, I don't feel bad about that at all.  Did that with my son, and we have had no problem with bonding at all.  However, finding out early made me feel like I opened a holiday gift too early, but I have been enjoying the different experience of knowing, especially with the opposite sex.  In a way, it makes me feel less prepared in spite of this being the second go-around.

More people are finding out about this baby just by looking at me, since we did not do any announcement anywhere beyond this blog.  It's funny how long it has taken and how people are hesitant to mention it as much as I have been.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Pretty Much Half

What's in this box? (Hint: Not a carseat!)
Right around now (19 and a half-ish weeks), I am at the halfway point of this pregnancy, based on my experience last time and the general medical plan right now.  Of course, I was "given" a few weeks in the beginning due to the way these things are calculated, so this half will probably feel long...

...Or maybe not.  The first half was spent being very tired, very aversive to many things, and was nausea-ville.  Not to mention, most of it was spent in triple-digit, mosquito crazy weather.  So although I'm already feeling big, kind of tired, ache-y, and still not completely back on the food wagon yet, I think better weather and the upcoming holidays will help distract me as things progress.  Cooler weather will also allow me to cover up more!!

I know I haven't been very good about documenting this pregnancy, though I don't think I documented much the first time, either.  I have some pictures, but I haven't done any direct comparisons with last time in terms of my size or anything.  I DO feel like I got bigger more quickly, and I am fairly certain I will be much bigger at the end than I was last time, as if that wasn't already big enough!

I finally was able to put on the weight expected for this point in the pregnancy after holding steady for pretty much the first 17 or 18 weeks.  I blame that on the food aversions, but the baby is measuring a few days ahead just like my last and had the same estimated weight at the anatomy scan that my older one was (and he was close to 8 lb at birth).  This just tells me that babies will suck up whatever they need, regardless of what I do or don't do.  I was slow to gain last time, too, but I caught up... and then some!

Workouts have been a challenge.  Being a working parent is challenging, and now that I am trying to sleep a bit more (in preparation!) and am drained by the evening, my windows of exercise have shrunk.  I don't have any more restrictions from a medical standpoint, but most forms of activity are off the table now because my chiropractor told me some of the things I was doing was going to undo the stuff they are trying to help me treat.  Besides general hip alignment, I am having issues that I had my last pregnancy and trying to get on top of that before it limits my mobility even more than now.  Also, I started going in hopes that it would set me up for a better birth experience.  Yes, I know it didn't guarantee that last time, but every moment is another chance, right?

For now, some prenatal workouts, walking, raising an almost three-year-old, and cleaning/errands are probably my primary forms of exercise.  I'm okay with this, mostly because all I can focus on are how busy and tired I am.  I figure that when I finally hop back onto exercise, anything will feel like a challenge, and my body will benefit from things that I thought were "nothing" before in my fitter days.  And since I'm nearly certain this is going to be my last pregnancy, I'll just enjoy it and then focus on my best self after it's all said and done.

The baby's getting a workout, too -- I've felt distinct movement since Week 17, and sometimes they are STRONG.  I don't think I got a head start feeling movement this time as I've heard can happen in a second pregnancy, so I did spend a week or two worrying.  Now that I can feel the baby daily, I am a lot more relaxed.
This was 18 weeks. Yes, shameful work bathroom
selfie, but the main reason I took this picture
was because this mirror was just put in out
of seemingly nowhere.
I glazed over the fact that I've had the anatomy scan done already.  We opted to find out the sex of the baby this time because with my anxieties about having two kids, I just wanted one less unknown.  Of course, I was already relieved/elated that things were looking good with the baby so far.  So finding out the sex was just icing on the cake, and if for some reason the baby did not cooperate, I would take it as a sign to wait to know like last time.

I went to the scan alone since we didn't have child care arrangements for Baby Tuesday and kids aren't allowed in there for some reason.  The technician was really great and printed way more pictures than I got last time, probably because she felt sorry for me.  When she asked if I wanted to know, I said, "YES," and told me that she peeked a few times during the actual medical part of the scan.  She zoomed to the area of interest and told me matter-of-factly what she was pretty sure it is and showed me as well.  Given that I didn't have this experience last time, I am a touch paranoid about a wrong guess, but I guess would be a pretty interesting story to tell at some point!

Since I was the only one who knew besides the technician at that point, I decided to do a little reveal for "The Ukrainian" and Tuesday when I got home.  That is the picture you see at the top of this post, screen-shotted from a video I took of the moment.  This is where I annoyingly have to stop, since we have kept the news to ourselves as a family unit for a couple of weeks now and will slowly be telling family over the next couple of weeks, pretty much on an "if they ask us" basis.  I will definitely update once they know and talk about some of the preparations that are (and aren't) in the works for going from three to four.

Any guesses before I post? ;)

**Edited to add: I had to go back and edit this post a few times because "pregnancy brain" is real!