Archive for February 2013

Yet another visit to MFM

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Yesterday's visit to the doctor was not what I expected.  I thought that I was getting another growth ultrasound, when in fact I was not.  I just had a regular ultrasound where they checked the welfare of the baby (including the heartbeat and the fluid level).  The baby checked out great.  We got to take another look at his cute (but large) head.  He had his hands up in his face which he likes to do when they try to disturb him with the ultrasound wand.  I am wondering if he is a thumb-sucker.  I was!

I asked the radiologist if she could check on my cervix while she had the wand out.  I explained to her my cramping ordeals.  She said she would try, but that at this stage in the game, it is hard to get a good look at the cervix, not to mention super uncomfortable.  She tried, but with no real luck.  She mentioned that the doctor would do an internal check which would give me a better idea of what I was working with.  Oh joy, my first internal!

On the way to the doctor appointment, I was having more cramping.  As my husband drove over the many craters and bumps on the way from my work to the hospital, all I could think about was how uncomfortable it was now with mild cramping and how incredibly miserable it would be while in full out labor.  Something to look forward to in the coming weeks.

The doctor appointment went well.  I gained 1 lb in a week (gulp).  Hopefully it was me gaining the weight and not the baby (maybe the cookies I made and have been enjoying every night :).  My blood pressure was good.  The doctor came in and we first discussed how the insulin was going and how my numbers were looking.  He was quite impressed with my 1 hour post-meal readings. Looking at most of them, would suggest that I am not even borderline GD.  This is due to the strict diet, though.  My fastings on the other hand are a whole different beast.  Still very difficult to control, even with the insulin.  Yesterday's reading was 93.

We discussed the times that I was sleeping and I explained to him my wacky schedule.  When I go into the office, I go to sleep around 9:30 PM and get up at 4:30 AM.  When I work from home, I go to sleep at 10:30 PM and get up at 6:30 AM.  On the weekends, I go to sleep around 11 PM and get up at 7 AM.  He asked if there was any way that I could go to sleep around 10 PM every night, taking the insulin at that time, and get up at 6 AM.  I told him, yeah sure if you write me a note so that I can work from home for the remainder of my pregnancy!  He said he would do that, but he first wanted to try me taking the insulin earlier, at like 8-8:30 PM if I am getting up at 4:30 AM.  I agreed to try this first.  I was hoping for the early WFH pass.  If I am still having trouble with things then I may take him up on the offer.  Today my reading was 88, with taking the insulin at 8 PM.

Next we talked about the cramping and contractions.  He asked some of the same questions the nurse asked and said he thought it sounded normal, but that he wanted to do an internal check to be sure and put my mind at ease.  I was expecting a ton of pain with this, but it didn't hurt more than a pap smear.  Turns out I am not dilated, AT ALL.  My cervix is tightly closed and still very long.  His head is way down low, though, which may be adding to my discomfort.  I am not sure how I feel about this.  I figured I would maybe be a centimeter (knowing that you can be a centimeter for weeks), so now I am back to thinking induction again.  Crap.  I am actually surprised that after 2 D&Cs and being forcefully dilated both times, that things are still so...umm... tight in there.  I guess my surgeons both knew what they were doing.

Knowing the state of the baby, my blood sugar, and my cervix, I don't have another appointment until 3/11.  I will be getting yet another ultrasound at this appointment and I assume that they will check the growth this time.  I think I am going to dial back my work-out routine until he is born.  I am not sure what keeping the 5 miles of walking a day is a good thing at this point.  I am going to cut it down to 3ish and see what happens.  I still need to get moving or I feel anxious!

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Braxton Hicks and cramping

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

The past few days I have been having more and more Braxton Hick's contractions.  I notice them mostly in the middle of the night when I get up one of 5 times to go to the bathroom.  Three nights ago I woke up with a rock hard belly.  Then the same thing the next night.  No pain, just tightening.

Yesterday I woke up with what felt like minor menstrual cramping.  I tried to sleep it off, but it didn't go away.  I got up and ate breakfast and it was still there.  I called my husband and asked him what he thought I should do.  He said call the doctor.  I call the doctor every day (or it feels like that anyways) so I didn't want to do that.  I drank about a liter of water and then put my feet up while I worked. I was working from home, luckily.  Along with the cramping I was getting the contractions randomly.

I felt better after drinking the water and resting and so I went on with the rest of my work day.  I felt fine until about 3 PM when I started getting the cramping again.  This time I decided to take a break from working,drink some more water (seriously, I think I drank 2 gallons yesterday), and then lie on my left side.  I ended up falling asleep for an hour.  When I woke up, the cramping was still there so I decided to suck it up and call the doctor, again.

The nurse on the other end was the one I have talked to every day for the past 3 days.  I explained to her my symptoms and what I had done to try to alleviate them.  I also told her that I had an appointment the next day.  She asked if the baby was moving and I told her yes, he is moving around like a crazy acrobat.  She didn't think, based on my description, that it was anything to worry about at this point.  She told me to take some acetaminophen and put my feet up for now.  She mentioned that if I started to have any regularly timed contractions or if I started leaking any fluid or bleeding to go to L&D immediately.  She didn't think that this was preterm labor, but she said she obviously couldn't rule it out.

I got off the phone with her and did what she said.  The acetaminophen helped and I didn't have any menstrual-like pain for the rest of the night.

This morning I woke up and felt fine.  I had to commute to work in the lovely rain and wind and so, rather than walk from the train, I took the subway.  Just walking from the subway to work was uncomfortable.  I felt the cramping coming back and some definite pressure.  The stairs definitely did not help with the discomfort.  I am glad I am going in this morning because I'd like to see what is going on.  I may be looking at more days working from home in my future.  I wouldn't be too upset about that.  I get a lot done when I work from home and I don't have the commute time or the distractions from other co-workers.

I am anxious for this appointment/ultrasound this morning.  Please pray that the baby hasn't grown too much.  I feel huge today!  See for yourself.

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Adventures with insulin

Monday, February 25, 2013

Thanks for the all of the comments, emails, and phone calls regarding my whole insulin debacle.  The second night that I tried injecting, I had success and every time since then I have been able to do it with no issue.  I think that it must have been first time jitters or something.

I have found that my thigh is definitely better than anywhere else to inject and that my left thigh is easier for me to jab than my right.  It is hard to reach around my huge belly.  Now, I would love to tell you that it has been working like a charm, but in fact, it hasn't helped at all and it has even made my numbers marginally worse.  How the heck is this possible?

The first night that I actually got the subcutaneous full dose, I figured I was golden.  I ate exactly the same bedtime snack that I usually have (protein shake w/ almond milk, string cheese, 2 biscotti).  I shot up (sounds like I am a drug addict) around 10:45 PM.  I had my usual 3 full hours of sleep, followed by a pee break, then several 90 minute sleep/pee sessions until I had to get up at 5:30 AM for the funeral.

Upon waking, I tested myself...freaking 98.  WTF?!  This was my 3rd highest fasting reading EVER.  I was so pissed.  I rushed around and got ready and wolfed down my breakfast (2 pieces of low-carb whole grain toast w/ chunky PB, 1 oz low-fat cheese, 2 pieces organic chx sausage, water).  This same breakfast the day before had yielded me a blood sugar reading of 112 an hour after breakfast.  I have been alternating between the egg white omelet and this breakfast for the past few weeks, but on this morning, I didn't have time to make the omelet.

In the car, I tested my blood sugar one hour after breakfast and it was 147.  WTF?!  I thought insulin was supposed to help your readings and not harm them.  I was now even more pissed and frustrated.  As my husband and I were driving we discussed me calling the OB on-call.  I have never done that before, but decided that should be one of the benefits of me going there so I called and left a message.

About an hour later the OB on-call gave me a ring and we chatted about my numbers.  She agreed that the insulin didn't appear to be helping, but said she would like to see readings for a few more days before making the call on upping my dose.  Up my dose??  My numbers were better without the freaking insulin.  How sad. :(

I went the rest of the day with ok readings.  I packed a cooler with snacks and dinner.  We ended up having lunch at my sister's boyfriend's house who lived near the funeral home/church.  They were very accommodating to me by making grilled chicken and salad.  They also got some cheese pizza which looked and smelled amazing, so I had half of a slice without the end crust.  My readings after the hour were great.  I feel like this is a game.  Sort of like, "Press Your Luck".  "Big money, big money, no whammies".

The funeral itself was so sad.  It was so hard to see my relatives so upset.  There is still no cause of death, so there was no burial because they are still examining him.  The casket was made of wood that my cousin was going to use to make his own snowboard.  Everyone signed it.  The service was really awesome though and the church was so packed that there was standing room only and they were simulcasting in the reception hall.  Luckily my Aunt had saved a seat for me so I could sit.  I think I would have been really uncomfortable standing the whole service, especially since I had to pee the whole time.

We drove back home in bad weather.  I was white knuckle gripping my "oh shit" bar most of the time.  We saw several bad accidents and narrowly averted one.  I was so happy to be home after all of that.  A terribly exhausting day.

Since Saturday, my fasting numbers have not gotten better.  They are still in the mid to low 90s.  Today was 89.  I skipped the protein shake last night.  I called the nurse this morning and she told me to up my dose from 7 units to 10 units.  Sigh.  I have another appointment on Wednesday so if things are still not better, you can be sure they are going to hear about it.

On a more up-beat side note, I was really craving cookies last night so I G.oogled until I found a good recipe for low-carb peanut butter cookies that were not made with artificial sweetener.  I was overjoyed when I saw the "diabetic friendly" label!  I changed the recipe a bit in that I added less sugar, some vanilla extract, and butter.  I think mine probably had less carbs this way, but I still posted the nutrition info so you can get the idea.  My batch made 22 cookies.  I had two of them last night for my snack with some extra peanut butter on them.  YUM!!

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies Recipe

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Prep/Total Time: 20 min.
Yield: 24 Servings

•1/2 cup chunky peanut butter
•1/4 cup brown sugar (I did not pack it)
•1 egg
•1-1/4 cups oatmeal (I did not use the quick-cooking kind)
•1/2 teaspoon baking soda
•1 tablespoon melted butter
•1/2 teaspoon vanilla

•In a small bowl, cream peanut butter and brown sugar until fluffy. Beat in egg.  Add butter and vanilla. Add oats and baking soda to creamed mixture; mix well.
•Drop by tablespoonfuls 2 in. apart onto greased baking sheets; flatten slightly. Bake at 350° for 6-8 minutes. Remove to wire racks to cool. Store in an airtight container. Yield: 2 dozen.

Nutritional Facts
1 cookie equals 67 calories, 3 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 9 mg cholesterol, 57 mg sodium, 8 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 2 g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 1/2 starch, 1/2 fat.

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My first night with insulin...

Friday, February 22, 2013

...ended up being a small disaster.  Basically I screwed up the administration so I don't know if I ended up actually getting any into my body.  I don't think that I did.  The instructions said that if you messed it up to contact your health care provider.  Ummm yeah at 10:30 PM at night?

Before I left my appointment on Tuesday the nurse showed me how and where to inject the insulin.  It looked easy enough, although the whole priming thing had me a little worried.  Last night before I tried injecting myself, I watched a Y.ou T.ube video and read several how-to slide shows.  I thought that I had it down.

My husband wanted to help, so I had him read the booklet that came with the insulin pen and then hold it for me so I could refer to it as a reference while I was attempting the procedure.  I was supposed to pinch an inch of skin in my thigh or side of my stomach for the injection.  Honestly, I don't have a lot of extra skin to pinch.  I have been walking a lot so my thighs are still pretty muscular and my stomach is literally stretched almost as far as it will go.  I decided to squeeze the life out of the top of my thigh to see if that would work because I was not sure where else to inject.

I prepped the pen as described, dialing it to 2 units, expelling, and making sure there were no bubbles.  I did it twice to be sure.  I then followed the instructions and dialed the pen to 7 units, which is my prescribed dose, and wiped my thigh with the alcohol pad.  I was nervous that it was going to hurt so I was kind of hesitant.

With my thigh pinched I stuck in the needle to find that I didn't feel anything at all.  I pressed the top of the pen and let go of the pinch.  The needle came out and the insulin sprayed on my thigh.  I freaked out and asked my husband to read the "I screwed up" part of the instructions.  Like I said before, they told me to call my doctor and not to re-inject.  I was so annoyed that I flipped out at him for no reason and then stormed upstairs.

I went to bed pissed.  I wasted a dose and don't know if I even got any insulin into my system.  This morning my fasting blood sugar was 91, so I am assuming that nothing made it in there or my dose is way too small.  I guess I'll just have to try it again tonight and hope for a better result.  This whole thing is so frustrating I want to scream!!

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Mentally exhausted

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

So there is no new news regarding my cousin.  They still have no idea why he died.  The only thing that I do know is that we'll be attending a funeral this weekend instead of getting maternity photos taken.  A weekend that was shaping up to be a happy one will now be a very sad one.

To add some more mental exhaustion to the list, I had a regular MFM appointment today.  First I met with the nutritionist.  I was slightly concerned that I was not having enough carbs due to the fact that when I have them, my numbers are bad.  She looked at what I was eating and agreed that I am almost eating no carbs.  She thought I could add a few back in here and there, but not to stress about it because I have a good quality diet.  She seemed a little concerned about my fasting numbers and told me to talk to the doctor about that.

Next, I had a growth ultrasound.  The good news is that the baby looks very healthy.  I have a normal amount of fluid.  The bad news is that the baby is huge.  He is measuring about 35 weeks, or 5lbs 3oz.  He is now in the 83 percentile.  I was seriously crushed when they told me this.  I went from 63 percentile a month and a half ago to the 83 percentile.

Finally, I met with the doctor.  He took a look at my blood sugar readings and decided that, in combination with the size of the baby, he is going to put me on a low dose of nightly insulin.  FAIL.  He said that my readings aren't crazy high, but that they should be in the 70s/80s and mine are normally in the 80s/90s (with a 100 spike every few weeks).  We talked about the size of the baby and he mentioned that I wouldn't go past 40 weeks for sure.  He also mentioned the possibility of 38/39 weeks if the baby continues growing like this. He said that he doesn't like to induce, though because it increases the chance of a c-section and he would like to avoid that.  I am at least grateful that we are on the same page about that.  I really do not want to be induced early and I really, really, really, don't want a c-section.

After the doctor talked to me, I met with the nurse who showed me how to inject insulin.  She also wrote me a prescription for a breast pump and we discussed the pertussis vaccine, again.  I did not realize that it was coupled with the tetanus vaccine that I  had over the summer when I stepped on the rusty nail in the backyard.  The tetanus vaccine makes me quite sick, so I'd like to avoid it if I can.  I have to call the hospital where I had it to confirm that it included whooping cough.

I have to go back in a week for another growth ultrasound to see how fast this guy is really growing.  I am so upset though.  I have been doing EVERYTHING right and still he is getting too big.  I have not deviated once from the diet in almost 2 months except for 1/2 piece of cake at my shower last Saturday and I paid for that by feeling like total crap all night.  I exercise almost every day (yesterday I walked 5 freaking miles).  I only sleep 7 hours so that my fasting blood sugars aren't too high.  I have only gained 22lbs total, 1 lb in the past 2 weeks.  I don't know why he is so big.  The only thing that I can think of is genetics.  My mom had big babies ranging from 7lb 9oz (me) to 10lb 4oz (the youngest) and my husband was over 9 lbs when he was born.  I know that my mom and MIL did not eat this healthy or exercise like I am though.  I also know that they both gained way more weight than I have.

This sounds strange, but I feel like people judge me about the baby being big, like it was something I could control.  Clearly that was not the case here.  I am so tired of the "wow your belly is huge" or "you still have 7 weeks left?" or "big baby in there" comments.  I want to just hibernate for the next few weeks.

After a few weeks of feeling physically and mentally good, I now feel tired, depressed, and angry.

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A life cut short

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

This past weekend was my third baby shower and my family came from my hometown to help with is and visit.  I am not really feeling much like writing about it now, even though it was a lovely time.  I got some unexpected bad news on Sunday evening that has pretty much left me in shock and clouded the whole weekend.

My 20 year old cousin passed away unexpectedly on Sunday.  He was a healthy and athletic college student and they have no idea what might have caused his death.  I can't even begin to imagine how his immediate family is feeling right now.  I am no stranger to loss, but to lose someone full of promise at such a young age is unimaginable.  Hearing that they had to drive to his college to pick up his belongings just doesn't seem possible.  My heart breaks for them.  

I feel like this hasn't really sunk in yet.  I haven't even cried, which is so weird for me since I always cry when people die and I am "hormonally unstable" at the moment.  I am not looking forward to the funeral because I feel like then everything will be real.  Right now, I can go along with my day, since I am not near my family.  Later on this week, I won't be able to be in denial anymore.

Prayer of Saint Francis of Assisi
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where this is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light
And where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled
as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

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Update to my last post

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Ahhh I am so annoyed at myself that I am still thinking or caring about this situation, but I wanted to give a quick update.

This afternoon I was in talking to my boss, door open, when secretly-pregnant co-worker shows up in front of her office.  Her office has a window so I looked over and I could see that she was standing facing my office.  I finished my convo with my boss and then headed back to my office.  I looked over but secretly-pregnant co-worker avoided eye contact and went into her office and shut the door.  Two seconds later I hear my boss say "Congratulations!  Do you know what you are having?".  I could feel my face get hot and my blood beginning to boil.  Then I started to feel sad and upset, but I refused any tears in this situation, which is a first for me lately.

I thought maybe she might come over afterwards and tell me so I tried not to get too worked up.  They were in there chatting for no more than 5 minutes when the door opened and secretly-pregnant co-worker walked out without so much as a hello to me.

Wow, I was completely stunned.  I have no idea what is going on.  I sat at my desk for a minute and then went in to my bosses office and shut the door.  I have worked for her now for almost 10 years, so we have a pretty casual relationship which (I know might be borderline unprofessional), but usually includes some office gossip.

As soon as I went in and shut the door, she knew why I was there.  She smiled at me and I said to her, "I know".  She laughed and said she was surprised because she was over 16 weeks.  She said, "Did you know it is a girl?"  I said, no.  I then told her all about what had been happening and she was surprised that she still had not told me.  Apparently secretly-pregnant co-worker told my boss that she wasn't telling anyone else at work.  She said she would rather people ask her (?!?).  My boss commented that she looked terrible, though.  That kind of made me laugh because normally this girl is in the bathroom quite a bit, touching up her makeup and lately she has looked like she just rolled out of bed.

Ok I get not telling every entire person in the office that you are pregnant, but what about your friend(s)?  I didn't tell most people in the office, but I told my close co-workers and friends at work.  I am at a complete loss here.

I think that I am just going to have to step away from the situation.  I am not going to bring it up to her, in fact, I am going to completely ignore the fact that she looks pregnant.  I am NOT going to ask her, even though she looks incredibly pregnant.  I am not going to indulge her.  Call me bitchy, but I'm done with her.  If and when she does tell me, I am going to let her know that this has made me feel awful, though.  

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I can't help but feel a little hurt

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

A few weeks back I wrote about a girl at work that I found out was pregnant.  She had posted a cryptic "I'm so happy :)" message on FB that I was easily able to decipher since several of my close girl friends had also done the same thing when they found out that they were pregnant.  I knew that she was going to start trying because we had talked about it a lot in the fall.  I also knew that she was still on the fence about having kids at all because she liked having "her life" the way that it was and being able to go out whenever and jet-set off to the Bahamas for a weekend if she and her husband felt like it.

She was really supportive of me following my 3rd miscarriage, even though she really had no idea how I was actually feeling.  She had a close friend who had 4 (mostly unexplained) miscarriages in a row and then went on to have 3 kids.  Hearing about her friend always gave me hope that I might be like her some day.  When I got pregnant with this baby, I ended up telling her around 9 weeks because we saw each other a lot then and it was getting hard to keep the secret.  She was really great and listened to all of my worries and concerns and gave positive feedback.  It helped to have such a positive spin put on everything.  I really needed that.

I had not seen her much around the holidays because I was so busy with work and other stressful situations around the house.  We had talked and gone for a coffee here and there after Christmas, but not like we had in the fall.  After seeing the FB message, I assumed that she would be telling me very soon about her pregnancy.  I ended up being wrong about that.

A co-worker of mine, who sits right near here and works more closely with her in the office than I, spilled the beans to me when I commented to him that I thought she was pregnant.  Almost a month ago he told me that she was indeed over 12 weeks pregnant and was staying home a lot to cope with her morning sickness.

Of course my first reaction was jealousy.  Of course it was easy for her.  I did know that this was coming though and so I expected it.  It was not a shock, but it still took a minute to get used to.  After the initial pangs of jealousy wore off I actually felt excited to have another pregnant person in the office to relate to.  I could actually be the one giving the advice this time!

As the weeks rolled on, I still had not heard a peep from her about the pregnancy.  We have gone to lunch and coffee several times and she has not mentioned it to me.  She has asked me tons of questions about the beginning of my pregnancy though and how I felt and coped etc.  All of her conversations have been centered around the "if we get pregnant" or "when we get pregnant", I'll need to know this info, kind of thing. I must have played dumb pretty well because I don't think she had any idea that I knew.

Last week, I was sure she was going to tell me when she invited me out to lunch.  Not to be mean, but she looked totally awful, compared to what she usually looks like.  She normally wears a ton of makeup, does her hair, wears fitting (but still classy) clothing to work.  That particular day she had no makeup, hair messy, and baggy clothes on.  She was pale and definitely had put on a few pounds.  We sat at lunch (while she pounded 2 trays of cooked sushi, a bean and pasta salad, and fruit salad in the time it took me to eat one salad with chicken) and talked for a full hour and she NEVER brought up the pregnancy.  I asked leading questions about what she had been up to and the like, but got nothing.  She is going on vacation to the Caribbean next week and she only barely talked about that. She pretty much only wanted to talk about my pregnancy.  How boring.

I had another conversation with the guy co-worker at the end of last week and I mentioned to him that she still had not told me the news.  He was slightly shocked, but told me that she was dealing with some potential bad news that she was having a tough time dealing with.  Apparently the baby had a couple of down syndrome markers on the NT scan.  She had an amnio done and was waiting on the results.  I was more than shocked at this news and at the fact that she had not told me out of all of the people at work.  She told this guy who she is constantly bitching about and hates!  Seriously every one of our conversations includes her talking about how much he sucks.

I also heard from another one of my friends that she was crying in the kitchen about it and 2 other girls who she is not friends with were consoling her.  Hearing this made me upset because I feel like I understand everything that she is going through.  I have been there.  Why hasn't she told me?

I talked to the co-worker today and he told me that her test came back normal, so no down syndrome.  She is now over 16 weeks pregnant and she still hasn't mentioned it to me.  In a last ditch effort to see if she would tell me, I asked her to coffee this afternoon.  She emailed me that she is home sick and that it wouldn't be good for me to be around her while I am pregnant anyways.  WTF?  She is going on vacation next week so obviously she won't be telling me then.

I know I am just being irrational here, but I needed to get this out because it has been weighing on me for the past few weeks.  I don't know why this is bothering me so much.  We obviously aren't the closest of friends, but I figured that after I had shared a lot with her that she would so the same with me.  She is the closest in age to me at my work and we hang out outside the office occasionally.  I dunno, I guess I am just sad that she doesn't feel like she can trust me or that I will understand.

Ok that's all.  Just had to get that out.  Not even sure if what I wrote makes sense to anyone.

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Breastfeeding 101

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Last night was my first baby related class, "Breastfeeding 101".  I went by myself because my husband didn't think he would really be needed (or benefit) and wanted to go to, where else, but C.rossfit.  I didn't complain because he has been really helpful with the house this past weekend and in general.  He has been in full-on nesting mode, which I think is so awesome.  Fixing small things here and there.  He even lined up someone to come and take a look at our unfinished house projects.  Yay!

The breastfeeding class was held at a local hospital (not my hospital) and had 2 couples and then 3 other ladies attending solo (including me).  Before we started the class we all gave our names, due dates, and the sex of the baby (if known).  There were 2 girls that were farther along than me and 2 girls that were about a month behind me.  One girl was expecting twin boys!

The class instructor was a delivery room nurse at the hospital who was also a lactation consultant.  She had two babies of her own and had breastfed them both.  She was really nice and had good speaking skills so it made the class pretty interesting.

I learned quite a bit, although I am sure that it will just take practice to figure everything out.  I had no idea that there were "different types" of milk.  I figured it was all the same, but I learned that it is quite the opposite.  We learned different types of holds and how to get a proper latch.  We practiced the different holds with some dolls.  I think I have them down pretty well.  :)

During one of our breaks, I started chatting with the girl next to me who I found out was delivering at the same hospital that I will be delivering at.  As we continued talking, we found that we had a lot more in common.  She also had 3 miscarriages in a row before getting pregnant with her baby.  She also had GD and was struggling with  the same things that I was, even though she had been on bed rest for bleeding and then developed clots in her legs (poor thing!).  She also goes to the same MFM practice that I do and we both have appointments next Wednesday!  I figured that everyone in the room had a charmed pregnancy, but it was so nice talking to this girl who totally understood where I was coming from.

Overall, I am scared to death of breastfeeding.  The WHO recommends 2 years.  The APA recommends 1 year.  I have to go back to work after 12 weeks so I am hoping that pumping goes ok, but what if it doesn't?    Will I be able to pump at work every 3 or so hours for even 1 year?  What if I have meetings?  What if I don't produce enough?  I actually have nightmares about this all the time (my baby is crying and hungry and there is just nothing coming out).  I know that now is the time for breasts to be leaking, but mine have not leaked for many, many weeks.  Does this mean I am doomed?  Maybe I am over-thinking it all.  I have friends who breastfed with no issues and others that struggled.  I guess only time will tell if I have issues.  My mom didn't have any.  Hopefully that works in my favor.

In other news, this past Sunday was my proxy-shower in my hometown.  My Mom, little Sister, and Grandmother planned and held it for me at my Mom's house.  I was able to S.kype with everyone that was there (and there were over 30 people!).  I answered lots of questions and showed people my basketball bump.  It was so nice that people showed up even though I wasn't there.

This weekend is my 3rd baby shower (I feel very spoiled).  Two of my sisters are throwing it for me near my house.  My Mom, little Sister, little Brother, and Grandmother are all driving up, too.  They are bringing all of the presents from the other shower.  This 3rd shower will be my local friends and and some family.  I am so excited to see everyone this weekend!

I can't believe that I am 31 1/2 weeks.  I'll try to post a pic over on my other page this weekend.  The first few months seemed to drag on so slow, but lately it seems like time is flying.  I hope that I can get everything done before he gets here.  :)

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Another GD find to help lower fasting #'s

Sunday, February 10, 2013

A few weeks back I bought some chocolate protein powder at W.hole F.oods.  When I got it home I realized that it said to consult with a doctor if you are pregnant or nursing.  I then put it in my pantry and forgot about it.

A few nights ago I started getting frustrated with my fasting numbers again because they were in the low to mid-90s.  I had asked my doctor about it at my last visit and he said it was safe to use.  I mixed one scoop of the powder with 6 ounces of unsweetened vanilla almond milk and pounded it.

The reason I pounded it was because it wasn't the most pleasant tasting beverage.  It doesn't mix very well and doesn't really taste much like chocolate.  To my surprise, I woke up 2 days in a row with my fasting blood sugars in the 80s.  I think I might be on to something here.

Here are the specifics for anyone who is interested:

It is organic, gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan.  It has no artificial sweeteners, 17 grams of protein, 7 grams of carbs, 6 grams of fiber, and only 90 calories.  Adding the almond milk adds a few more carbs, some fat and more calories, but not much.  I am thinking of buying the vanilla flavored next time so that I can mix it with some blueberries or bananas or something to make it taste better.  

Oh and our neighbors just brought over some freshly baked brownies since we helped them shovel snow...sigh.  My husband is going to bring them into work.  I can't wait to eat some chocolate cake, B.en & J.erry's, and C.adbury E.ggs in the delivery room once this little guys gets here!  :)

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Some things I have learned about controlling my blood sugar

Thursday, February 7, 2013

I know that I have spent many hours in the past few weeks, G.oogling for information regarding GD.  I have come across a few new blogs that I have started to silently follow.  Most of my "knowledge", however, has come from trial and error.  I have a much better handle on what I can and cannot eat and I wanted to shed some light on the things that I have changed that have made a big difference in hopes that they might help someone else out that is in my place (or someone who just wants to eat healthy and control pregnancy weight gain).

1.  When I first started this "diet", I was way more obsessive about tracking every single thing that I put into my mouth.  For example, I would document everything on "M.y F.itness" and measure it down to the nth degree.  Once I got a better handle on serving sizes, I decided that this was something that I could relax on.  It was causing me more stress to document every last thing that I ate and I think that may have been driving my numbers up.  I am still fairly strict with portion sizes, but I am no longer documenting cumulative calories, carb counts, or fat/protein contents.  It was just too much for me.

2.  I have learned to always pair carbs with a protein.  If I have carbs, I eat it with some cheese, nuts, or meat.

3.  Walking for short periods after eating helps my blood sugars go lower, but walking for extended periods of time (at a decent pace) seems to do the opposite.

4.  Low-carb, whole wheat, natural breads are ok for breakfast once in a while, but not every day.  I started out eating 2 pieces of low-carb toast with peanut butter and 2 links of organic turkey sausage.  I recently did something I thought I would NEVER do and started eating egg white omelets instead.  I really don't like the taste or consistency of egg whites (the yolks absolutely repulse me), but my blood sugars are awesome after eating that compared to the toast.  I have been eating the omelets with some cheddar cheese and salsa on top (and when I have time with onion and green pepper in the middle).  Not amazing since I am not a fan of the eggs, but the salsa and cheese makes it tolerable.

5.  Fish is my new best friend.  I have always been a fan of fish, but never realized how good it really was for you.  I have been eating lots of cod, salmon and haddock (all wild, no farmed for me).  It helps tremendously with keeping blood sugars low.

6.  Green veggies are awesome!  I have always loved vegetables, so this one isn't really new to me.  I know that the best things for me seem to be: asparagus, broccoli, kale, spinach, salad greens, green peppers, and cucumbers.  I try to eat organic if I can, but it can be tough in the winter.  I eat huge salads several times a week (usually paired with come frilled chilled or an organic turkey burger).  My husband makes kale taste amazing!  He sautes some onions in a small amount of olive oil and then adds the kale.  He adds some organic french onion soup and sautes until the kale is wilted.  I usually pair this with some garbanzo beans.  YUM!

7.  My fasting numbers are best when I sleep 7 hours.  If I sleep 8 or 9 then I usually creep into the mid-90s.  Sleeping from 11 PM-6 AM is best, but I can't usually operate on that schedule when I work.

8.  I can go out to dinner, I just need to plan ahead by looking at the menu.  Most places seem to be nice enough to accommodate me.  I can get an extra veggie substituted for a starch with no issues.  If it is dinner, I can even have a small piece of bread if the rest of my meal is low-carb!

9.  I can't really have much fruit.  :(  The only fruits that I seem to be able to tolerate well are berries.  Blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries are ok if eaten at a time other than breakfast and when paired with some protein, like plain Greek yogurt.

10.  I have some tasty favorite snack options I'd like to share!  For my mid-morning snack, I have been having the following (cup of yogurt, 1/3 cup berries, 1/2 cup cereal, generous sprinkle of cinnamon):

For an afternoon snack, I have the following (Dark Chocolate, Nuts, & Sea Salt K.ind, string cheese, sometimes a 1/2 green pepper):
For before dinner snack, if I need it (some nuts, usually almonds or pistachios):

For bedtime snack (some I.rene's C.ranberry B.iscotti, only 5g carbs per cookie & some low-fat cheddar): 

11.  I have to eat every 3 hours during the day to maintain good blood sugar levels.  This can be tough, but most of my snack options are pretty mobile.

Hopefully this has been helpful to someone.  :)  It actually isn't so bad and now and I look forward to my snacks. If you can get your hands on some of those K.ind B.ars and biscotti, I would highly recommend them as they are great treats when you are low-carb!  Enjoy!!

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No news is good news?

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Yesterday I had my regularly scheduled visit to MFM @ 30 weeks, 4 days.  No regular ultrasound, just got to see this little guy with the mini.  My blood pressure was better than usual at that place, 126/68 with the stupid automatic blood pressure taker that is always much higher than the manual one.  I can literally feel my blood pressure rising when I step into that building.  I tried a little meditation in the waiting room, but they had H.ouse H.unters on so it was tough for me to concentrate.  I am surprised it was so good.    

I had lost about half a pound since my last visit a month ago, right now I am still up about 20 lbs. total.  The doctor wasn't worried.  He said that it was the GD diet causing me to lose weight.  He said the baby is still gaining what he needs as long as I am eating healthy.  I am totally fine with that.  Less weight to lose after the baby gets here.  Thinking back, I was really afraid of gaining too much weight and now I am not worried about that at all.

The we took a peak at the baby with the hand-held ultrasound.  His head is still down (yay!).  His butt is lodged right against the front of my stomach.  Now I know why it is extra hard in that spot.  His heart was beating nicely and he had a good amount of amniotic fluid.  He doesn't like the ultrasound so he promptly kicked as soon as the wand went down.  He hates the Doppler, too.  I heard that if it gets close to their ear it sounds like a passing train.  Poor little guy, I don't blame him for kicking it out of the way.

After checking on the baby, the doctor asked to look at my blood sugar sheets that I have been filling out.  He wasn't concerned.  He said to keep tracking and that if I notice any recurring spikes to give them a call because I would most likely need insulin.  He also said that if I notice my levels going lower and lower to give them a call because that could mean impending labor and placental degradation.  Yikes, so much to worry about.  I guess I just hope to stay right where I am.  Here is a peak at my blood sugar levels over the past few days for those that are interested (I know I am always interested to see them from others now).  Keep in mind that I am having almost no carbs, so this is why they look so good.  If I so much as sniff a carb, I go above the limits.  Besides the fasting, the other numbers are 1 hour after meals.

Before I left, the doctor and I discussed a few things, including me getting the pertussis booster vaccination.  I am usually not really keen on vaccinations, but I have read a few things that might make me change my mind.  I may end up getting this at my next visit.  Vaccines during pregnancy still scare me.  The doctor also suggested that my husband get the flu vaccine.  Yeah right.  I don't think there is a chance in hell that he will do that since he is just anti-vaccine, in general.  

I scheduled my next appointment and growth ultrasound for 2 weeks out.  I'll be almost 33 weeks at that craziness.  

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A tale of two uteruses

Monday, February 4, 2013

Last week, my husband and I went on our "babymoon".  No where tropical.  Actually quite the opposite.  It was incredibly freezing and we didn't spend a ton of time outside.  We did get to see our favorite band perform, though, and they were awesome!  Besides seeing the concert, some of the highlights of the trip included: visiting some great coffee shops, doing some shopping for the baby, finding some awesome spots for low-carb and healthy food, working out every day, and taking mid-day naps because we could.  It was great to recharge.

I had been worried that my blood sugar would be hard to control while on the road, but actually it was great the whole time.  Most of my fastings were in the 80s.  I think the lower stress helped me out more than I thought it would.  Oh and I ate a lot of salad and fish.  :)

Another highlight of our trip was getting to see an old friend from college who lived in the area.  We met up with them for dinner on our last night there.  His wife is pregnant and due in the beginning of May, so I figured that we would have a ton of stuff to talk about.  Pretty much their situation was exactly opposite of our's though.  It was difficult to relate so I asked a bunch of questions, but didn't really offer a ton of info.

You might not want to read this because of the incredible differences between "us" and "them".  It is crazy when I think about how two uteruses could be so different.  They got pregnant while on vacation on the first try with their first baby.  She commented that it was so much easier to get pregnant than she thought (it was hard not to cringe as she said this).  She was seeing a midwife (has not seen an OB) and has not had ANY ultrasounds or blood tests.  They also did not plan on getting ANY ultrasounds or blood tests.  They are planning a drug-free home birth.  She is flying for several hours after her 30th week.  The only thing that she had that didn't sound like a dream-come-true was hyperemesis gravidarum for several weeks.

Listening to the two of them talk about how easy everything was and how they really weren't prepared for the baby because everything was going so fast, was difficult to hear.  My husband and I kept exchanging glances back and forth.  They didn't really ask us a ton of questions and I was actually happy about that.  Other than telling them about my GD, because of my dietary restrictions, I didn't go into any of the issues.  I mean what does one say to someone else when they keep talking about how easy pregnancy was to achieve and sustain?  So much for having a lot in common to discuss.

On the way back to the hotel, my husband and I discussed our dinner conversations.  Neither of us could imagine going a whole pregnancy without any ultrasounds.  We also couldn't fathom how someone who had not had any ultrasounds or blood work done (an were having their first child) could be brave enough (or as my husband put it, "stupid enough") to have a home birth.  Part of me was really jealous, though.  I wish I had that sort of innocence and ignorance about pregnancy.  I'll never have that carefree joy.  I have come to accept this, but it always comes back up when I interact with people who have never had any issues.

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