Friday, October 16, 2015
With baby #1, I was diagnosed in September 2003 at 28 weeks with gestational diabetes. I gained about 40 pounds with that pregnancy. With baby, #2, the doctor tested me early on in the pregnancy, at 12 weeks. I was diagnosed in June 2007 with gestational diabetes again. That pregnancy seemed long, having to manage my blood sugars for 28 weeks. I gained 46 pounds with baby #2.
With my current pregnancy, I was optimistic. I have drastically changed my lifestyle over the past decade. I started moving. I started running. And I generally eat a pretty well-balanced diet. As a runner, I love my carbs. But, I also eat a tons of fruits and vegetables. I've run ten marathons since Little Dude was born and have close to fifty half marathons under my belt.
Due to my history, I was tested early on again, around 12 weeks. My doctor was enthusiastic to report that my blood sugars were very, very good. At every appointment during the second trimester, she told me to keep running and doing what I'm doing. During this pregnancy I ran a full marathon as I entered my second trimester and also completed a few half marathons along the way. I am still running smaller distances and plan to run/walk a 15K this weekend.
Last week, was the milestone 28 week mark, where every pregnant woman tends to complete their glucose tolerance test. I was excited to get this done and over with and move on to the third trimester. I downed the sugary, orange drink and showed up at my clinic's lab one hour later to have my blood drawn. I waited overnight for the results and last Wednesday morning I received an early morning phone call from my doctor's office with the results. I have gestational diabetes. Again.
So .... I was deflated. I cried an ugly cry. I sobbed. I had a little pity-party for myself for all of five minutes. It didn't help that my grandfather was passing that week and I spent many emotional hours surrounded by family at the hospital. Later that night, I would visit him one last time, head downstairs to a breastfeeding class, and then find him later forever sleeping in his hospital bed when I returned. It was an emotional week. I have a feeling that I would have cried tears of sadness or tears of joy either way - regardless of the outcome of the glucose tolerance test. But, I felt like I had lost all control over my body. I had been in control up until that point. I moved my body and kept up my physical fitness as best I could. I listened to the doctor. I've ate pretty well and gained a manageable 22 pounds thus far. However, the doctor said that there is just something "in" me. Something in my genetics. Something that I couldn't "out run".
So here I am. With gestational diabetes for a third time.
Within the hour, I headed to the grocery store and loaded up my cart with several of my low-carb or no-carb favorites and vegetables, lean turkey meats, eggs, some cheese. I had always been able to manage gestational diabetes through a balanced low-carb diet. So, I was taking the bull by the horns and taking control. Now.
My doctor's office got me in with a dietitian that afternoon and we reviewed a new food plan for me, which includes three meals and three snacks throughout the day. Honestly, I have been eating so much more protein than I normally do, that I have been skipping my snacks - especially in the evening. I feel full and satisfied.
I also received a new monitor and was instructed to take my blood sugars four times daily. Again. I've been able to manage my numbers within the suggested range. It's not painful or difficult. It's just annoying to be on a schedule with yet another thing in my life.
However ... I know that this little girl will be worth it. It's only 2 1/2 months - give or take. It should go away again once I give birth. Things could be worse. My baby girl is healthy, growing daily inside of my expanding tummy. She's healthy. And I am healthy. Just because I have gestational diabetes, doesn't mean that I'm not healthy.