As stated in earlier articles, I am high risk- due to recurrent loss as well as prediabetes. I took the glucose test at 12 weeks and failed. According to the nurse at MFM (Maternal Fetal Medicine), I failed “spectacularly.” I had a good laugh at this. Some might’ve cried. I knew it was coming. So, it was funny to hear her tell me that I “spectacularly” failed the glucose test, so badly that I didn’t have to do the three-hour.
With my rainbow I was treated as a Gestational Diabetes (GD) patient the entire pregnancy.
From CD1 through induction I was doing four blood sugars a day, varying medicines and eventually a regimen of insulin. So, when my Hemoglobin A1C was in the normal range at the beginning of this pregnancy and MFM said I could wait until the 12-week glucose test, I was shocked. According to Mayoclinic.org, “The A1C test result reflects your average blood sugar level for the past two to three months. Specifically, the A1C test measures what percentage of your hemoglobin — a protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen — is coated with sugar (glycated). The higher your A1C level, the poorer your blood sugar control and the higher your risk of diabetes complications.” Normal range varies but according to Mayoclinic.org anything below 5.7 is considered normal, 5.8 thru 6.5 is going to be prediabeic. Over 6.6 is Type 2 diabetic.
When I failed and spoke to the nurse, who was lovely and nice, she explained that with second gestational diabetes pregnancies they sometimes have a harder time controlling numbers with meds and diet and I might need to start insulin sooner. I had already discussed with her that there is a certain medication they used last time and I was miserable and would hit a low every time taking it, which would in turn spike when I took a glucose tablet. She agreed that they would not pursue that coarse with me. *Cue the sigh of relief*
Since my last pregnancy (which I talked about here), I started taking antidepressants for my depression and anxiety.
This, in turn with diet and some exercise (let’s be honest, the toddler is a lot of exercise without needing gym time), I start this pregnancy 30 pounds lighter than before. I already know the eating tricks for what I can and cannot eat to manage my numbers. In the last 3-4 years, there’s been an increase in high-protein items on store shelves. So, finding food isn’t as difficult for me, which is exciting.
I am still working with a Registered Dietitian on diet ideas, but I know what I am doing. I know last week I should not have eaten that pizza, but, dang, it was tasty. I feel a little more in control of what is going on. With my rainbow I struggled with numbers. I would eat pure protein for breakfast and still be above 150 for my readings. For gestational diabetes they want all one-hour post meal readings to be 150 or below, and fasting meaning first thing in the morning to be 95 or below. For my husband who eats candy everyday, he can eat a full carb heavy meal and still be below 120. A friend who is also pregnant after a loss, she did her one-hour glucose test and was 107 an hour later. I was in the mid 200’s for reference. My body doesn’t produce insulin the way it is supposed to. In between miscarriages, I spoke with a perinatologist who explained that since my grandma and mom have elevated A1Cs, I will battle this until the end of time. I could eat perfectly, and exercise obsessively and will still struggle to keep the number lower. I have made amends with this.
Ask my husband, with my rainbow I was furious anytime they changed my dosage, and when they told me I needed to be on insulin, I cried. I was ashamed, embarrassed, and worried. Yes, there are risks with gestational diabetes and effects to the baby. I will not dive into that now. With my little pot of gold, I am at peace and serene about it. I am much more all in for handling this and making sure I am doing what is best for my kiddo. I still feel slight shame based on my own biases about type 2 diabetes. However, I am losing weight, I am lowering my A1C when I am not pregnant. That is huge for a person struggling with diabetes, prediabetes, etc. A friend with type 1 told me that she has never been below a 6.1 with her A1C, and her diabetes is well controlled. When she found out about my GD she said she was sorry then asked if I wanted to be Insulin buddies with her.
All of this to point out that once again, every pregnancy is different. Every person is different.
I am taking this pregnancy and trying to control what I can. I cannot control a lot, but I can control how I react to things. If the nurse calls me tomorrow to tell me I need to start insulin, so be it. I will do what I can for this baby while he is still mine.