So if you follow me on Facebook, you'll know I have been feeling super sorry for myself for the last 24 hours. This morning, I cried so much I've given myself a headache.
If you're not familiar, here's a short explanation lifted from the Diabetes Australia website.
In pregnancy, the placenta produces hormones that help the baby grow and develop. These hormones also block the action of the mother’s insulin. This is called insulin resistance. Because of this insulin resistance, the need for insulin in pregnancy is 2 to 3 times higher than normal. If you already have insulin resistance, then your body may not be able to cope with the extra demand for insulin production. This results in gestational diabetes.
When the pregnancy is over and blood glucose levels return to normal the diabetes disappears, however this insulin resistance increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes in later life.
If diabetes is not well looked after (i.e. blood glucose levels remain high), it may cause problems such as a large baby, which in turn can create the risk of injury at delivery, caesarean delivery, forceps delivery and a need for the baby to be looked after in special care until the glucose level stabilises after delivery. Other complications may include pregnancy loss and premature delivery. If any problems occur, the hospital will know how to care for you and your baby.
On the up side, I don't make big babies, GD or not.
And to better understand where my head's at, a short history of my previous pregnancies:
Pregnant with Luca – diagnosed with GD at around 28 weeks. Induced at 39 weeks (because of GD). Posterior position of baby leads to obstructed labour and emergency caesarean.
So if I've had GD before and I know how to manage it, why am I so upset?
- I am already stupidly tired (single digit iron levels not helping) and finding this pregnancy to be an uphill battle as it is. Mentally, the thought of dealing with this exhausts me.
- The reality of managing GD, while absolutely possible and absolutely necessary, involves serious meal planning and trying to step up my physical activity. Low GI meals combined with my fussy eaters? Is not going to be easy. More exercise? Also tricky. Hey, just go for a walk – great idea apart from the sciatica and pelvic instability that flares up when I attempt to pick up bread and milk at the local shopping centre. Also, taking my two for a walk is an exercise is extreme high blood pressure.
- Last time, I became insulin dependent. I only required one shot in the evenings because no matter what I ate, my blood sugar spiked. So it was mild and I totally got used to it. But shooting up into your belly as well as doing four finger pricks a day to check levels ultimately sucks.
- I am now classed as having a 'High Risk Pregnancy' and this does not bode well for my birthing plans.
This is my last baby, my last birth and I was hoping to take the lessons from my previous two labours to try and make this one really awesome. Whatever that means. My two biggest desires were to be free of the constant monitoring and to avoid an epidural. Being strapped to a machine the whole time is not only uncomfortable but made staying active difficult and utilising water (shower or bath) for pain relief impossible. I believe the epidural, which I had both times previously, prevents me from trying different positions from which to push. Flat on my back felt wrong both times. I was hoping to change this.
Also, if I don't go into labour early, then the possibility of the hospital wanting to interfere becomes very likely.
And I haven't even gone into what it's like to have a baby born with low blood sugar. Of all the problems your baby could have at birth, yes, it's not so bad. But then again, a baby born with no problems is even better, right?
So, forgive me, my friends, for this most un-Angie like stream of negativity, but I have a heavy, heavy heart right now.
But don't fear, I will pull myself up and out of this and get on to the business of maximising my chances of having the birth I want.
Any time now…..