Two weeks ago I found out I’d failed the 1 hour glucose test (168 and cut off is 135), but still felt hopeful it could be explained by the cold I had and having just had Tim Horton’s right before it. But then last week I failed the 3 hour test too and so they told me I had gestational diabetes.
I was completely shocked. I’ve never so much as been borderline in the 1 hour test before, and I have no risk factors for it. It was never even on my radar. I cried a lot. It was scary when I read about the complications and I felt like it was my fault because for weeks I’d been knowing I should eat more protein. Heck, I thought I had been eating more protein because I had like 2 greek yogurts a day. But I eat pretty healthily most of the time. I was really confused. Over the weekend I was very afraid to eat basically anything because I felt like I could be hurting my baby. I cried a lot and ate a lot of cheese and eggs and I don’t even eat eggs.
Earlier this week, on Monday, I had the 2 hour class with the diabetes educator and dietitian, and it made me feel SO much better about this! Most importantly, I learned that you won’t have complications if you manage it from here on out, that it isn’t anything I have done; GD is caused by a hormone produced by your placenta that sometimes decides it wants to prevent your insulin from doing its job. I also learned that the diet isn’t very restrictive at all; rather, it’s all about balancing carb intake with non-carbs. And I learned that basically everything is a carb. I always thought carbs were stuff like bread, pasta, crackers, etc. but turns out fruit, milk, yogurt, sugar, beans, starchy vegetables, and basically anything that’s not cheese, meat, eggs, or non-starchy vegetable (or coffee!) is a carb. Wat.
I got the glucose meter where you have to poke yourself four times a day, which I was a bit nervous about because I HATE the finger pokes at the doctor, I have literal anxiety about it. I mean, I’ve given myself dozens of subcutaneous injections, had a few intramuscular ones too, and I’d much rather do those than finger pokes. But the lancet depth can be customized, so it’s not bad at all! Phew.
I’ve been tracking my glucose since Monday evening and following the diet and so far this is easy! My levels, fasting and otherwise, have been significantly below the “goal” level. I even just ate McDonald’s for lunch and it was only at 92. I’m really interested to talk to the GD people at my follow up appointment in another 1 1/2 weeks. I almost purport that I don’t have GD at all and just got those high readings during the tolerance tests because you have to drink that super pop, which is so not like my usual diet that my body freaked out about it.
Anyway, so far I think the hardest part about managing GD is having to eat on a schedule. Not because it’s hard to do, but because I have to be mindful of it and it makes the days drag on sooooo sloooowly. As if the last 10 week stretch here wouldn’t go slow enough. It’s also been a challenge to get the exact diet they “prescribed” me. How does one consistently manage to eat 60g of carbs for lunch and dinner, while also eating not carbs to balance?! Like I went and ate a salad with chicken the other day, and then later when my glucose was like 70 realized the only carb in that salad were the apples. Should’ve gotten some bread on the side?!
Tl; dr: GD is not nearly so scary or difficult as first imagined, and this has been another example of God telling me to chill because he’s got this and Baby A will be totally fine.