Thursday, January 19, 2017

Gestational Diabetes & Pregnancy Update | 27 weeks


Oh, ladies (and any gentlemen reading!), I am wiped out.

My mom seemed surprised that I have been so tired throughout this pregnancy, but when I think about it, I did "perk up" a bit during most of the 2nd trimester. Now I'm feeling more tired, though nowhere near as tired as I did at the beginning of my 1st trimester! For the first time in YEARS (maybe since becoming a mom), I've easily been able to sleep til 10 am. Before I was pregnant with this baby, I could barely sleep past 8 am...but now I could sleep the day away, it feels like! I know that I shouldn't get used to it because once Baby is born, they will have me up super early, but I'm going to take the rest where I can get it for now.

My friend Aimee, who also has 5 beautiful children, assured me that her 5th pregnancy also consisted of a lot more tiredness than her previous pregnancies. Though, this is technically my 6th pregnancy (I lost a baby to a miscarriage in 2014), I'm sure that what I am feeling is totally normal.

Well, after a little over a week of testing my glucose levels every morning as soon as I woke up and after every meal, I was given the "all clear" from my midwife: It looks like I DO NOT have gestational diabetes!!! Can I get a hallelujah?!! She did say that I will probably test myself again around 34/35 weeks, just to make sure, though.

According to those pregnancy websites, since I am 27 weeks along (technically 28 on Saturday...today is Thursday), the baby is about as tall as a head of Romaine lettuce and weighs around 2 lbs!

I am feeling baby constantly moving all day long!

The tiny little "pops" that you could see in my tummy when Baby kicks/punches have morphed into more dramatic movements. Some of the kids have actually felt a tiny arm rub against their hand when put their hands on my stomach to feel Baby move.

My asthma is getting bad again. Totally normal for me during pregnancy. I am just having to up my Advair dosage from using it just at bedtime to also doing it in the morning, too. I'm hoping that is able to help. My torso is just so small...I can feel the baby way down low in my pelvic region AND up in my lungs! Boy, Baby must sure be feeling quite cramped!


My appetite has picked up a bit more than it was...I am leaning towards thinking that the whole diabetes scare really did a number on my brain. Like, when I could eat whatever I wanted, I didn't want to eat anything. Then, suddenly, my midwife tells me that my diet will have to be restricted and suddenly EVERYTHING sounds delicious! hahaha

But mainly healthy foods are where it's at. It's weird. Most of the time what I reallllly want and am able to eat are fresh and plentiful salads and fruit smoothies (just fruit, water, some greens powder that I bought that has non-dairy probiotics and a bit of stevia). Plus I am drinking lots of water. More so now that the weather is warming up a bit down here in Atlanta.

My mood swings are...well, not anyone's idea of a great time. I find myself less and less able to overlook things if I give them much thought. So I try to ignore a lot of things, just so that I don't lose my temper or say something that will hurt someone's feelings.

I've been having a lot of leg cramps and muscle aches in my legs at night, no matter how I sleep or prop up my legs. I sleep with a pillow or two (including my beloved pregnancy pillow) between my knees and that only works for a little bit. I'm looking into buying some magnesium oil to rub onto them and see if that helps.

I've been having a lot of nerve (possible sciatica) issues mainly going down my left leg. When I had Christian (who is now 13), the epidural messed up something and I've always had issues with that left leg. But it gets worse when I'm pregnant. We took the kids to the Mall of Georgia last weekend to walk around and it was slow going for me. I feel like a turtle. And often times, you'll find me leaned over, propping myself up on a shelf or by holding onto a clothes rack, while I try to ease the nerve and/or stop the Braxton Hicks that are hurting me at the moment.

Thankfully, Antonio is used to this part and knows that wherever we, no matter how far we drive to get there, it will probably be a short trip because I'll just get wore out after an hour or so.

We've recently put a crib and 2 matching dressers (one for Baby and one for Antonio and I...since Baby will be sleeping in our room for awhile) in Layaway and have been slowing buying things for the Nursery Nook in our room. I'm going with a Boho-theme, which is SO up my alley!


I have also been obsessing over things that need to get done around the house.

Early nesting phase? Perhaps.

Antonio just started laughing the other night...I was sitting on the toilet. (because that's all I do all day and night: pee) And suddenly, out of nowhere, I started talking about how we needed to put up shelving for towels.

We've also been discussing hiring a cleaning person to come out and do some of the things that I can't really do but need to be done before the baby gets here. As I told him, I'll be laboring at home this time, God willing. The midwife, assistant/doula...they're gonna be up in the nooks and crannies of our house. I want the tile and grout scrubbed in the shower. A couple of months ago, we had a problem with our shower (in my and Antonio's bathroom) getting stopped up and the water pooling at the bottom of the shower. It caused some of the grout to get discolored and mildewy, especially in the corners. Well, there's a fair chance that the midwife/doula will be helping me in the bathroom/shower and I don't want yucky grout!

And, don't laugh, but I also want to Shop-Vac out our kitchen cabinets. Again.

I did it a few months ago when we first moved into the house but I want to do it again.

Just in case.

I also want to go out and organize the barn...but I think that might be a bit overwhelming.

** And that's about sums up how things are going so far in the pregnancy!! **

Are you following me on Facebook? If you are, you might have noticed that I have discovered how much I love making FB Live videos!! I've only done two but they were really a lot of fun to do and I'm hoping to make lots more...maybe on a more regular basis!

What have you guys been up to lately??

Friday, January 13, 2017

Maybe It's NOT Gestational Diabetes? | Day 4



As each day goes by with several more glucose readings notched in my belt, I am beginning to suspect that I don't really have gestational diabetes. If you notice from my FB posts, I've been incorporating a lot of fruit smoothies into my daily routine.


Because that is what I'm craving and...in regards to my glucose readings:

My numbers are well below the "limit" Christine (my midwife) gave me.

For the most part.

See, my after-meal (postprandial) readings have to be under 120.

The highest any of my postprandial readings have been was 101.

(in the time since I originally wrote this, my numbers have occasionally elevated slightly above that on occasion. But NEVER close to 120)

Now my morning/fasting readings have been above the limit she gave me.

She doesn't want those levels above 95 but mine have been consistently a few points above. Typically still under 100, though. (one day was a bit higher...104)

Doing some research, I discovered that my asthma medicine (Advair) and possibly my ventolin inhaler also, are known to raise glucose levels!

Since I do a treatment of Advair at bedtime (and sometimes once in the morning), that could explain why my morning/fasting numbers are a bit higher than recommended.

I actually emailed my food diary and glucose log from last week to Christine this morning (today, as I write this, is Monday). I texted her to let her know that it was in her inbox.

She ended up texting me back and said she'd check over everything later but that she remembers from her days of working in the hospital (she is also an RN) that some asthma inhalers/medications definitely raise glucose levels. She suspects that may be the case for me.

She has asked if I would mind continuing to test my glucose levels until this Sunday just because I was borderline diabetic when pregnant with Austin. I said No Problem!

So we shall see!

I am just so floored that this is the first pregnancy in which someone let me know beforehand about an article that explains how the 1-Hr Glucose Test can be wrong/very inaccurate, depending on your diet (the way you eat in your everyday life). And then, lo and behold, it may have actually happened to me?

LADIES!! PLEASE!! If you are pregnant (or one day will be pregnant), please remember that you should have the choice between doing the 1-hr glucose test OR finger pricks for 5 days. The finger pricks are always more accurate! Let your pregnant mama friends know about this option, too! It could save you a LOT of tears and frustration.

I'll keep ya'll posted!

xoxo

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

My Thoughts of my Diabetes Diagnosis: Day 2

It has been less than 48 hrs since I got the phone call from my midwife.

Today is Saturday but you won't be reading this for a few days.

Blogging and documenting life events has to done in some sort of order, you know.

We can't just post things willy nilly, can we?

hahaha

Can you tell that avoidance is my forte? I'm good at avoiding things that I don't want to confront.

Unfortunately, some things cannot be put off and I am pretty good at tackling the important issues.

I ordered my glucose meter within a few minutes of talking to Christine (my amazing midwife). I needed the glucose meter to begin testing my blood glucose levels 4 times a day, once in the morning as soon as I wake up and then after every meal.

Yesterday I began testing.

And my numbers were low.

Well, all except my fasting number...which is what I test for as soon as I wake up. Christine wants me under 95. Mine was 97.

But the rest of the day, my postprandial (after meal) readings were excellent. Low to mid 90s...well below the range she wanted (she told me that I needed to be under 120).

And I didn't really alter my eating at all! In fact, I got angry about everything not too long before dinner and I ate a handful of Doritos and a small piece of chocolate cake with lots of frosting and sprinkles. Then I ate a normal dinner. My after meal glucose reading was 94!



I went to bed last night knowing without a doubt that I did not have gestational diabetes.

No way, no how.

A mom in my local "crunchy" parenting group had directed me to a research paper (or something akin to a research paper) on how your lifestyle diet can determine how your body handles that glucola drink. If you don't eat a lot of bad carbs, for example, your body just cannot truly process the overload of glucose that the glucola gives you. Thereby resulting in abnormal test results, not really indicative of gestational diabetes.

My midwife said that, yes, the daily finger pricks that she had offered would have been much more indicative to whether there was a problem or not.

But stubborn me still went with that damned glucola 1 hour glucose test.

So...last night I knew that was what was wrong. I did NOT have diabetes, it was just that my body couldn't handle that much sugar at once, since I don't eat sugary stuff that often.

I laid in bed and imagined how I was going to make the awkward follow-up YouTube video and corresponding blog post, apologizing to the masses (all 6 of you) for the mistake and that I, in fact, was not diabetic.

First thing this morning, I trotted into the dining room to set up my little testing station.

Had my pen all ready to record my low low numbers. After all, when I took my reading before bed it was only 94. Would the glucose meter even be able to register how low my number would be this morning?

I assembled the lancet needle into the doodad.

Locked and loaded.

Put my test strip into the meter. It powered to life, ready to show my non-diabetic numbers.

I mentally prepared myself for the tiny prick.

Pop!

Massaged my finger to get the blood to come out of the tiny puncture.

Let the blood seep into the test strip...the countdown began....5....4...3....2....1

My number flashed across the screen:

107

WHAT THE *UCK?!!!!

Oh, no...no....NO.

Reset the lancet, popped a new test into the meter, poked a new hole in a new finger.

Results: 104

Frustrated....reset the lancet again...inserted yet another test strip into the meter. Poked a finger on the opposite hand. Magical numbers appeared:

108


WHAT IN THE ACTUAL HELL IS GOING ON?!!

There has to be a mistake!! HOW is my fasting number HIGHER than the number I went to bed with?!!!

I angrily made my coffee. Carefully rationing out my creamer, using a measuring spoon.

Antonio cooked me eggs and warmed up some chicken from the chicken tacos I made the night before.

I set my timer for 2 hours. I have to test again in 2 hours. Two hours after every meal. Stupid finger pricks.

I sat on the couch and sulked.

Eventually, my timer went off.

I trudged to the dining room. Set up my supplies.

Glucose level reading: 96

::sigh::

I guess this isn't going to be as black and white as I thought.

My question is....I'm about to get all serious and nerdy on ya'll....and I am not sure if any of you can answer it...WHY are the set glucose levels ("you have to be under this number XX otherwise that means you have diabetes) for pregnant women LOWER than non-pregnant people?

Especially considering that the hormones released by the placenta in a pregnant woman automatically raise glucose levels???

Shouldn't that be taken into consideration? Shouldn't that raise the accepted level a bit?

What are your thoughts on this?? Do you think that the guidelines/satisfactory levels should be lower for pregnant women?

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Gestational Diabetes?! | The Diagnosis

Wow.



So much can change yet still stay the same all at once.

Last Thursday, Antonio and I took our kids to the mall to eat dinner and let the little boys play at the mall for a bit.

My midwife, Christine, had just visited us the day before for a routine prenatal visit (25 weeks along, yo!) and to test me early for gestational diabetes.

Because I have been having so much trouble with my appetite and gaining weight this pregnancy, I really didn't see why she was worried about diabetes. I mean, sure, the red flag warning signs (well, technically "risk factors") were there.

But I am definitely eating better food this go 'round.

I was all about those milkshakes and other sweets when I was pregnant with my other 4 children (I've actually been pregnant 6 times...but lost one baby to a miscarriage. I never got the chance to proceed very far into that pregnancy, so I never had cravings or any of that with that little soul).

But...wait...if I'm going to be totally honest, my diet isn't the best. I mean, yeah, it's better than my previous pregnancies BUT that doesn't really excuse all of the fast food I've been eating lately. Even if I can't eat a full meal...I am still eating small-moderate amounts of JUNK. Simply knowing what I should be eating isn't enough. I need to actually EAT it.

Duh.

I mean, yes, I do eat veggies and healthy foods...but I still no plenty better than to eat fast food as often as I do.

Alright...now that's enough of that! I was just giving a bit of my mental processing. ::wink::

BACK TO THE MALL!!

I was quite proud of myself because I had eaten a big salad and a bowl of fruit for dinner while everyone else ate either Taco Bell or Chinese food. The little boys were having a ball running around the indoor playground, making new friends. The rest of us were loving just watching them have fun.

But the mall was closing soon, so we had to go....

As I was climbing into our brand new-to-us Suburban (more to come on that in a future post/video), I noticed that I had a missing call and a text on my phone.

It was from Christine, my midwife.

She asked me to call her as soon as I could.

Given the hour (8:30 pm), I was more than slightly nervous to call her...it couldn't possibly be good news if it couldn't wait until tomorrow....

Yeah...well, that just about brings you up to speed...and gives you a bit more background on the following video, which will explain the rest of the story:



In the end, I do hope that there was just some problem that my body had digesting that much glucola and that I really don't have gestational diabetes in my every day life, pregnant or not.

But only time will tell....

I'll keep ya'll updated!!

xoxo

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Hi Guys!! A Little Update

Hey, guys! I'm so very sorry that there's been so much "radio silence", so to speak, on here. When I first found out that I was pregnant, it seemed like every pregnancy update was the same. Then suddenly, out of nowhere, it snowballed, and life carried me away!

Isn't that how it always is?!!

But if you follow me on Facebook, you know that I haven't been totally silent! I've been making more YouTube videos!!

Have you seen them yet?!


Here are some summary pics to show you a little bit of what I've been posting on YouTube (in no particular order):









So head on over to my YouTube channel to check out those videos and others I have posted!! 

I'm hoping to be able to do a little update post on the baby and what I've been up to lately...if not today then hopefully within the next week!

xoxo

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Road Trip!!! Birthday Party!! Pregnancy Fitness!! WITL Dec 3-9

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 3....

Pregnancy Update: I am now 21 weeks!

Maybe I didn't mention it really last week (or maybe I did...I don't know! hahaha), but we left on a little roadtrip on Friday evening. We got to our destination: Northern Kentucky suuuuuper early in the morning on Saturday. I think we checked into the hotel at around 2:30 am

I had booked our room at Red Roof Inn because kids and one family pet stay for FREE! But I was unprepared for how nice the hotel was going to be. Now, it's probably not "fancy" according to your standards, but we really, really liked it! We got a suite with 2 queen beds plus an office nook with a full-sized pull-out couch! Plus a free continental breakfast.






On our way up to KY, I bought a cute serape (Mexican blanket) at a gas station. I love my serape!


This coffee machine was much loved during our visit!



We were in KY to meet my parents, who had downsized on their holiday decorations and were giving us the things that they were no longer going to use. My mom has always been super into decorating for the holidays but she said that since the kids (grandkids...my kids...hahaha) aren't up there, it just seems like a waste to decorate their big house. So all of the decorations were quite a blessing for us!


They also brought Austin his birthday gifts, so he was super pumped!


Gypsy (who got to come along for the fun) was keen on watching everyone working down below in the parking lot.



We had planned on staying overnight Saturday night but decided that since Austin's birthday was the next day and I had to pick up his cake by noon on Sunday, we had to go. Plus, we didn't want to spend all day long on Sunday on the road. It's about a 6 hour trip, so we left late on Saturday evening.

Here is what I caught Levi doing the second we walked into the door of our house....

He said he was stretching out his legs.
hahaha


SUNDAY, DECEMBER 4

Austin's birthday party!!

He wanted a Shopkins-themed party this year.








Our cat got to the cake before we did, the little stinker!


After we ate cake and opened presents, we watched Elf, which everyone loved.

MONDAY, DECEMBER 5

I put up Christmas decorations and pretty much just took it easy for the day.

(lets see if I remember to include pictures!)

I was contacted by a friend who is starting her own law firm and asked if I could design a website for her, so I am working on that this week, too.

Dinner was Creamy Corn Soup with Dinner rolls

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 6

My midwife came for a routine prenatal visit.

Here's a little update for you guys (in case you missed it on FB):


Dinner was Wendy's. I just had a small fry and little over half of a Jr Bacon Cheeseburger.

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 7

Grocery pick up and put away day!! Woooo!! hahaha


A massive headache kept me down for awhile until I took 3 Tylenol. Those of you who have been reading my blog (or are friends with me either IRL or just online) for awhile, know how much I hate (HATE!!) taking medicine. But sometimes you just need to, ya know? I tried resting. Eating. Drinking water. I tried a kale juice.


Nothing helped except the Tylenol.

I'm wondering if it was because I was doing a lot of work on the computer and my brain just crashed. hahaha

I made a copycat recipe for dinner of Chili's Chicken Enchilada Soup with cheese quesadillas. I had the Chili's soup YEARS and YEARS ago and all I remembered was how much I loved it. I have NO clue if this soup that I made actually tasted like Chili's....the baby wasn't too fond of it....but Antonio and the big kids LOVED it! I didn't even bother trying to give the little boys any because it was slightly spicy and I knew that they would rebel. hahaha I just made them bigger quesadillas instead.


THURSDAY, DECEMBER 8

Lunch was a big salad! I have loved salads so much in this pregnancy and I've decided that if that's what baby wants, that's what baby gets.

Organic greens, a whole avocado, a whole hardboiled egg, some tortilla strips and salad crunchies (pepitas, dried sweet corn and a couple of other things were in the mix) topped with some French dressing.



I *finally* got my motivation mustered up and took the first step in trying to implement a regular workout routine for myself and Mahri, who has always been my workout buddy.

My plan WAS to do a few 10 minute segments of a Prenatal Pilates video that I bought off of Amazon Instant Video and then lift some light weights and do some lower body stuff.


Yeah.

That plan didn't work out so well.

Mahri complained when the video was first starting about how this was going to be a wimpy and restrictive workout, considering it was for pregnant women. Being that she used to do 40 minutes of high impact Zumba classes with me, she figured this was a slow walk through the senior citizen park.

She was wrong. Girly Girl forgot that it's been quite some time since either of us had done a Zumba workout. Let alone ANY type of workout at all! hahaha

She and I gasped and eeked our way through our workout.

We ended up completing 2 of the segments before calling it a day.

I didn't even attempt to do any additional weights.

We'll try it again tomorrow....unless we're too sore...then give us a few days, mkay? hahaha

In related news....I was highly surprised to see that my workout pants still fit me...albeit a bit stretched in the waist:


I made a delicious butternut squash pasta sauce and poured it over whole grain pasta.



It felt good to have such a healthy dinner after a workout. I miss those days! I reminded Mahri of our days when we had been working out 5 days a week and eating really healthy...within 3 months we were so slimmed and toned! (long story short: I ended up falling outside while gardening and injuring my SI joint and psoas muscle, so I had to give up on workouts for awhile....turned out to be a long while since my motivation ended up taking a hike)

Being that I'm pregnant, I am not trying to lose weight. But I would LOVE to tone my arms and lower body (butt and legs). Plus eating healthy is NEVER a bad thing, you know? So, hopefully we'll be able to keep this up! I figure that since I haven't had much of an appetite anyway and am not really pigging out on junk food like I tend to do while pregnant. I mean, don't get me wrong! I do eat junk food! But not like I have with previous pregnancies. So why not take advantage of it by eating healthy and working out, that way there's not a lot of junk food sabotaging me, ya know?

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9

Mahri and I worked out again! Woohoo! This time was lower body...and dang did it work it! hahaha


It's funny because now that I'm beginning to exercise, my appetite is picking up slightly.

Breakfast:
2 over medium eggs seasoned with salt, pepper and smoked paprika...and a little ketchup. I buttered some pumpernickel bread but barely ate one slice of it.


Lunch was a big salad:


Fruit smoothie for snack!


I'm thinking of getting acrylic nails (again)...but the ones I want, I'm not sure would be very conducive to mothering 5 children....but aren't they so pretty?!

What do you think? Should I go for it?? hmmm....


Dinner was a dupe recipe for Olive Garden's Zuppa Toscana soup. It was AMAZINGLY GOOD!! I was surprised that my little guy, Levi, who hates sausage loved it in this recipe! I used mild Italian sausage since the little guys don't like spicy. The rest of us just added Sriracha to ours and it was so good!


Well, that was my week, guys! Thank you so much for stopping in! How was YOUR week?!! Let me know in the comments!! xoxo