Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Shift

We went to see the specialist yesterday and I left feeling encouraged, although I can't really say why. My situation is the same. Last night The Sugars were the highest yet (borderline alarming) and a hospital stay is imminent. And there's also the shots I will inevitably have to give myself several times a day. Shots. With a needle. Given to me by me. I'm now on the highest dosage of medication possible taking eight pills a day. I still have daily spells where I feel so lightheaded and weak that I'm afraid of falling out of my office chair or forgetting who I am.

So what's with all the encouragement? I don't know, maybe I've just accepted it. Maybe I'm over the initial " WHAT DID YOU SAY" I've had at each doctor visit. After you hear something so many times you get used to it. "You may have to be hospitalized" - yeah I know. "You're baby is going to be large, maybe dangerously so" - yeah I know. "This ordeal means you are at a high risk to develop diabetes F-O-R-E-V-E-R" - yeah, I heard that. "High risk! Bad news! Terrible outcomes on the horizon!" - Yup.

I'm calm. Happier, even.

You would think that with my newfound no-stress bliss The Sugars would have eased up a bit. But, no. There seems to be no rhyme or reason other than every part of my reproductiveness is angry. But we all knew that. Bottom line, I only have a few weeks left of this nonsense. And so far Harry is reacting well at each monitoring and ultrasound (of which we've had FOUR*) and that's really all I care about. If he's fine, I'm fine. Sure, I feel lousy and am overwhelmed with doctor's visits and medication and finger pricking and diet and so on but also, fine. I'm fine and he's fine and Ryan is fine. Even Minnie is fine.

And that's enough.

*By the way, did you know that ultrasounds are about $1200 a pop? And I've had four? And I have a $300+ doctor's "consultation" once a week plus monitoring at my OB plus OB visits plus all the medication and medical equipment. This is not a speech about whether or not we should have universal healthcare (because Ryan and I have debated FAR TOO MUCH on the subject) but good gravy, what do people do without insurance?? You can say no to your own health (although no one should) but who could say "that's ok, I'll just wait and see how the baby turns out". I guess some people are forced to? For that I say - THANK YOU SONY MUSIC FOR MY KICK BUTT HEALTH INSURANCE.

Monday, April 20, 2009

33 Weeks Tomorrow

You’ve heard it said that when it rains it pours, usually said in a negative tone as if pouring rain is always a tragedy of some sort. I don’t know about that, but I do feel drenched in this whole Gestational Diabetes* business. It’s all consuming, a pouring rain so to speak. The fun part is, everyone says “Don’t stress about it! It will just make things worse!” Right or wrong, this translates to an 8 month pregnant woman as, “Quit stressing! You are hurting your baby! This is all your fault!”

*I started to write “GD business” as the medical community is apt to do but thought better of it.

And yes, I know it’s not technically my fault. Lots of doctors and websites and friends and family have drilled this into my brain. But here’s the thing, this baby is living inside of me. And at the moment, my body (MY body) is warring against him. With that war comes guilt, no matter the source. Every time I jam a friendly needle into one of my sore fingers and the number comes back too high, I feel as if I’ve let Harry down. Let Ryan down. Let everyone down.

I’m not saying all of this to generate some sort of pity party, just to say this is tough. I’m trying to deal. We went to see the specialist on Friday to have an ultrasound and a consultation about The Sugars. (I think when all of this is over I may just stay mad at sugar indefinitely.) Right now Harry’s head and torso are measuring three weeks ahead. I’m not sure what that means but I know it’s not considered a blessing. Then we met with the doctor who said “if The Sugars don’t come down, we may need to admit you to the hospital.”



So you see, it’s difficult to remain carefree about anything at the moment. The hospital threat makes me think:
-Oh dear, I have to get everything wrapped up at work!
-Oh dear, do we have everything we need if he comes early?
-Oh dear, we need to meet with a pediatrician!
-Oh dear, we need to get the car seat in the car!

This weekend Ryan played the sound of a crying baby for Minnie to get used to the sound. The louder the cries got the flatter her ears got and she looked at us as if to say – are you kidding me with that?

If you could see me right now, my ears are SO flat.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Return of the Glam

I'm coming out of hiding to declare the evils of Target Pharmacy!

That's not entirely true.

I'm coming out of hiding, yes, but it's more of a will to overcome. I didn't intend to abandon the blog and had plans to write about every pregnancy detail. I waited so long to become pregnant that I just knew I would want to commemorate every moment. Turns out I would rather forget most of the moments. Pregnancy, she has not been kind. So much so that I've had zero words for this blog, or more accurately, zero words that weren't AWFUL or TORTURE or HELL ON EARTH.

But ya'll, it's time to stop being polite. And start getting real.

Out of 32 weeks I've had maybe five days free of drama slash pain slash general horror. Of course there was the obligatory nausea and fatigue. Mood swings. Anxiety. Then at 23 weeks I had the standard glucose test given to all pregnant women. One quick swig of some orange soda substitute and a blood draw. A few days later my doctor called to say that my levels were "a bit high" and I would need to go to the hospital for a longer test. I said ok and dutifully arrived at Williamson Medical before the rooster crowed. The morning included Regis and Kelly, three blood draws and a violent reaction that had me puking into a trash can while the plebotomist rubbed a cold washcloth through my hair. The good news? I had to go back a week later and do it alllllll again. Second time was a charm in that I didn't puke but was a real kick in the pants in that yes, I have Gestational Diabetes.

This is where the pregnancy delights went to E-LEV-EN.

Basically, my placenta is a drama queen and overreacts with the hormones causing my insulin to go nuts. This is not good for baby. I was promptly sent to see a specialist, since I'm now considered High Risk, who told me all kinds of terrible things that could happen to the baby. He literally said to me "well now your risk of stillbirth is up 40%". WELL OK. Why don't you tell me how to fix this instead of telling me things that make me cry, hmmmm??? Then I was sent to a Dietician who informed me that food would become my enemy and I would now have to jam a needle in my finger four times a day.

Since the diagnosis I've been put on medication, had my dosage upped four times, been threatened that I may have to give myself insulin shots three times a day, made weekly visits to the specialist as well as weekly monitoring PLUS my regular OB visits, the challenge of figuring out the right combination for every meal and assigned snack all of which I must write down and fax to the Dietician once a week AND I didn't even get to eat dessert at my baby shower! Or any of the candy in my Easter basket!

But ok, so far Harry is doing great. And his safety and health is my #1 focus and the reason I'm doing all of this. Without him I would definitely fall off the diet wagon. Forget a pill or two. Not care. But because of him I'm Tyra Banks FIERCE about my diet and medication and doctor's visits and the whole lot.

And maybe that's why I've decided to write down the gory details. Because even though pregnancy has been difficult (understatement) and not what I had hoped for, this little guy who's currently kicking my bladder into oblivion is worth every case of scorching heartburn. Worth the finger pricks and "no thank you I can't eat that". Worth the drama and backaches and irritation.

And I cannot wait to meet him.