Motherhood Pregnancy


October 19, 2016

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Last week was a difficult week for me and the pregnancy. Up until last Tuesday things had been going smoothly with no major hiccups along the road. Then we were hit with some bad news and then some more bad news and all of sudden everything shifted and stress levels skyrocketed.

This pregnancy was always considered high risk due to a couple of big factors — my age and our multiple miscarriages. I was fully aware that I would have to undergo many tests and be monitored very closely through the course of the 9+ months. I passed all tests with flying colors including additional blood tests I took to help determine the causes of my past losses (in case you were wondering, all those came back normal so we still don’t have an explanation).

I had one last test to take at 28 weeks which was the 1 hour glucose test. For those who don’t know what this is, you drink this liquid that tastes like really sweet flat soda and an hour later they draw your blood to determine whether you have gestational diabetes. If you fail this test, you take and even more comprehensive one that lasts 3 hours.

I failed my 1 hour glucose test.

I returned to my OB office a couple of days later to do the 3 hours glucose test and failed that one, as well.

I have gestational diabetes.

(By the way, I hate that they say you “failed” the test. Way to kick someone while they’re down.)

To say I was crushed would be an understatement. I was pretty devastated. Of course I immediately did what any person would do.

I Googled the shit out of gestational diabetes (GD).

And then things got darker. The words inducement, c-section, type 2 diabetes, macrosomia, birth defects were staring back at me until I could no longer see them through my tears.

(Another by the way, just stay away from Google. It is not your friend in times of need.)

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Dr. K finally called me the next day. He seemed just as surprised as I was that I had GD. During our last appointment he even advised me to try and gain more weight. He explained what GD was and also explained that it wasn’t my fault and GD can affect anyone no matter how healthy they are. I would need to start coming in more often for fetal NST and to monitor the baby’s growth. And then he saved the best (worst) news for last.

“We’re going to have to induce you at 39 weeks and if there are other complications you may need a c-section.”

My heart sank and suddenly I felt like I was drowning in a pool of disappointment.

(Note: Two common reasons for early induction due to GD is the baby being large and placental calcification.)

I saw my natural birth plan fly out the window. Baby Boy’s estimated due date went from New Year’s Day to Christmas Day. Suddenly this became a whole new pregnancy. Not only did I have to do a complete overhaul of my diet (no more french fries!) and prick my fingers 4 times day to measure my blood sugar level, but I now had to wrap my head around an induction, perhaps a c-section, and Baby Boy arriving a week early.

Oy vey.

I blamed myself for this. For all of it. I should have monitored my diet more closely. I shouldn’t have eaten so much carbs and starch. I didn’t need all those french fries (oh but I did). I was so angry at myself and I couldn’t even blame pregnancy hormones on this one. Self pity was my bff last week.

But I couldn’t wallow in it for too long. The most important thing is the health of Baby Boy and now for the next 9.5 weeks I have to make sure he’s doing well. I immediately changed my diet and pretty much my lifestyle. I am now required to eat 3 small meals, 2 snacks, and a high protein snack right before bed. I have to cut down on my carb intake drastically (only 15g per meal allowed). I also discovered that I have dangerously low blood sugar levels in the morning when I skipped my bed time snack once. Besides that one scare, my levels have actually been really good. I also have to walk at least 20 minutes after each meal which isn’t anything new I have to incorporate since I walk Miles 3 times a day. But I am working out more often in the mornings by doing prenatal yoga. I’ll find out this Friday whether I’ll need insulin shots or pills but I’m hoping since my levels have been great, I’ll be fine with just diet and exercise.

You know what, though? It’s only been a week and I already feel really good. I’ve been mindful of what I consume instead of giving in to every craving. I’ve been less tired, less swollen and bloated, and feeling less heavier. Overall I do feel much better and as crazy as it sounds, I’m thankful for this wake up call to get back into a healthier lifestyle and be better for the baby.

As for my birth plan, if things go well I’m hoping Dr. K will let Baby Boy decide when he wants to come out instead of being induced. However, since there’s a high chance things won’t go as I like them to, I’m beginning to accept this and make peace with it. As I’ve said before, in the end all I care about is that our baby enters this world in a safe and healthy manner regardless of how that happens.

And one good thing about being induced at 39 weeks? We’ll get to meet Baby Boy a week early. If this is our consolation prize, I’ll happily take it.

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  • Reply laura October 19, 2016 at 1:05 PM

    Hi Nina – Just wanted to leave you with a positive note! My co-worker (she is in her mid 30’s) had both of her boys with GD. They both arrived happy and healthy and are now 3 and 1. Best of luck :)

    • Reply Nina October 19, 2016 at 1:28 PM

      Thanks so much, Laura!! :) XOXO

  • Reply Miranda October 19, 2016 at 1:18 PM

    The same exact thoughts ran through my mind when I found out that I had gd at my 3rd trimester check-up. The hardest part for me was not being able to eat fruit- the only food I wanted to eat during my pregnancy. I ended up having to take medication, too, because my fasting level was high. I broke down in tears a few times at work because my sugar levels would be high sometimes even though I followed the menu exactly (and as a rule follower, this upset me very much!).

    On the bright side (is there a bright side when you can’t eat carbs and watermelon during the summer??)- I felt much healthier at the end of my pregnancy and I have continued to follow the low carb diet afterwards, which I believe has helped me in my recovery.

    I also feared having to go through with a c-section and not deliver naturally, but as everyone told me- you can plan all you want, but be ready to flow with any changes that can happen last minute.

    • Reply Nina October 19, 2016 at 1:27 PM

      Thank you for sharing, Miranda! Yes, the bright side is definitely feeling healthier which has been great so far. This really was an eye opener for me and I suspect I’ll be adhering to this diet post pregnancy, as well.

  • Reply Jannet October 19, 2016 at 2:12 PM

    I had GD n I got induced but no c-section. Baby came out healthy and once the placenta came out the GD was gone. Interesting your Dr. wants to induce at 39 weeks… mine induced me the day before actual due date and she came on her due date.

    I’ll give you a tip, just cut out all carbs. When I tried to follow the meal/diet plan I was still going over so I just cut out all carbs. Shabu shabu was one of the main things I ate. My mom found me some tofu noodles at the Korean market and she made me a lot of bi bim gook su. Also I substituted rice with lightly fried tofu in olive oil on frying pan. Another upside of GD is that with the strict diet I actually started losing weight instead of gaining weight towards the end. Baby was still healthy and I didn’t have much pregnancy weight to lose after.

    I know this sucks, but it’s not the worst… Also it goes away literally as soon as the placenta comes out. This is a blessing in disguise and take it as a warning and it’s not too late or permanent.

    Everything will be perfect in the end! ❤️❤️❤️

  • Reply virginia October 19, 2016 at 2:32 PM

    Congratulations on being pregnant. Your love for baby is so clearly present in all that you do. Sorry about your GD. I’ve had many friends with it and their kids all came out as great as ever.

    I’ve been following your journey every since Music Mondays were a thing. I appreciate your honesty and creativity. Best of luck in all that life brings you.

  • Reply Jamie October 19, 2016 at 3:18 PM

    Thank you for all your honest posts. I’m 14.5 weeks pregnant with my rainbow baby and so much of what you’ve said has been helpful and comforting.

    My best friend had GD, was induced because she went past her due date but delivered a beautiful healthy baby boy!

    Best of luck to you for a happy/healthy remainder of your pregnancy and delivery!

  • Reply Christina October 19, 2016 at 6:03 PM

    Hi Nina,

    I had posted about how similiar our stories are and this just adds to it. I too had diabetes. I ate healthy, was fit, and still ended up with GD. I failed my first glucose and decided to skip the 3 hour because I barely made it through the first one. I don’t think I consume that much in a week, let alone an hour!

    Anyhow, I ended up being early at 38weeks. Perfectly healthy baby boy.

    Hang in there! I know it’s tough, but please know this- our bodies do very weird things during pregnancy. You did nothing wrong. There are pregnant woman then that eat total garbage and don’t get GD.

    The bright side is that once that little boy is in your arms- this will all seem like some weird dream!

  • Reply Tiffani October 20, 2016 at 6:50 PM

    Great job, Nina!

    It sounds like you’ve worked through a lot and have a very positive attitude. I’m so glad to hear your story. :)

  • Reply Ashley Fultz October 23, 2016 at 3:36 PM

    Wow Nina! I had no idea you had a high-risk pregnancy. So glad you are sharing you story because I am sure you are going to help a lot of mamas-to-be out there. Can’t wait to see you soon and chat more. xo

  • Reply little luxury list November 2, 2016 at 5:20 PM

    Hugs to you dear. I also had GD and was crushed. My primary doctor wasn’t concerned though so she put me at ease. I sought another doctor when it looked like she would be out of town and that one literally said I was putting my baby at risk and she would induce me. Way to calm a pregnant lady right? Luckily I ended up delivering early naturally so my primary doctor helped us through it.
    You can definitely get through a pregnancy with GD. It’s basically a low carb diet, but think about all you can indulge in come 2017!

    • Reply Nina November 7, 2016 at 7:36 PM

      Yes, can’t wait to have this baby and INDULGE! haha Thank you for the support from one GD mama to another! xoxo

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