Random thoughts

I don’t know if this is a common view but I’m viewing pregnancy as the existence of two separate entities – me and not-me. So me, I’m reasonably healthy and so is baby not-me but baby not-me does stuff that pushes my body into less healthy zones (ie GD). It’s like a weird dichotomous existence for a while.

Sometimes I wonder what baby is doing. Like, how is he ok going upside down so much? God knows I get dizzy fast. Doesn’t he? Or does size make the gravitational/BP difference irrelevant? And what does it even mean that he’s awake? Does he observe things? Like what? Muffled sounds of the shitty TV shows I watch? Can he see? I know this has been happening for millenia but somehow it’s new and weird and fascinating.

I have to say, all this diet and exercise control is teaching me so so much about how to eat for my body. My mom (who has diabetes) was inspired by my determination and is doing the same thing (testing glucose, monitoring diet and exercising). I won’t follow it this strictly but post-pregnancy, I probably will follow a more lightweight version of this diet. And I’ve learnt a ton. Like:

  • 15 min walk post meal does a lot to lower blood glucose. Endo: “basically exercise acts like a shot of insulin”. Also the closer to the meal it is, the more effect it has.
  • Total carbs per day matter less than per sitting carb consumption. Obviously total carbs still matter but if you are allowed a max of x carbs/meal and y carbs/snack while leaving an hour between each thing, there’s only so much you can eat.
  • Nothing is really bad. Carbs are good. Protein is good. Fats are good. Hell, sugar’s good too. But everything in moderation.
  • There isn’t that much difference between the whole grains and more refined ones in terms of glucose. But the whole grains have a bit more protein and tons of other healthy stuff so they’re still preferable. Ditto fruit sugars vs refined sugar.
  • Resistance training is importance because it builds muscles helping decrease insulin resistance.
  • Eating small meals + lots of snacks really works for me. Tbh, even pre-pregnancy, that’s sort of how I used to eat. Just even smaller meals now with more snacks.
  • Processed food in this country is ridiculously unhealthy by.. most metrics.
  • Eating out is a bitch. I ate brunch outside a few weeks ago which was amazing and perfect for glucose. But it takes a lot of mental work. We’re going to a friend’s place this weekend and I just said ‘sorry, but I’m bringing my own food’. It’s too hard to calibrate/measure someone else’s food.
  • A version of this diet might be an easy way for me to lose weight (in the future)
  • And with some luck, I might end this pregnancy in better shape than I started just based on the amount of exercise I’m doing.

Anyways, after taking what the dieticians said with a pinch of salt and basically following my body/blood tests more, I seem to be hitting a decent midway point. I’m probably a bit on the low side on calories but on days I’m hungrier, I add more cheese/fats, on others, less. The dietician kinda looked at my meals and was like ‘well, if you go on insulin, you can have more than salads’. But honestly, I like salads. And I’m fine with having them, maybe not everyday but most days. Plus mine are pretty hefty. Actually this diet isn’t massively different from my usual. Just.. adjusted a bit. And consciously adding more calories.

So yesterday was a perfectly calibrated day (for me). Food for the day:

  • Breakfast: Think Thin Oatmeal (ok so for some reason, this is the only oatmeal that works for me. Normal unflavored Quaker Oats spikes up sugars.)
  • 15 min brisk walk right after
  • Morning Snack 1: Homemade smoothie (frozen berries + almond milk + spoon of peanut butter + avocado + spinach)
  • Morning Snack 2: ~10 pistachios
  • Lunch: Nachos w/ beans and cheese and veggies (ok, not the healthiest but I wanted a change. I counted out the nachos to make sure I was ok carb wise. And after 10 loaded nachos, I was surprisingly full).
  • Walked between labs schlepping a lot of weight
  • Standing desk for ~30 min
  • Afternoon Snack 1: Greek yogurt (I need to sub this out with plain greek yogurt with fresh fruit + nut add-ins)
  • Afternoon Snack 2: Cucumber + hummus + homemade pesto
  • Afternoon Snack 3: A tiny amount of chai (which is homemade so the only carbs come from the milk itself) + pumpkin seeds. And by tiny, I mean like 4oz of which only 2oz is milk and the rest is water.
  • 10min barre-ish workout
  • Afternoon Snack 4: Seeded cracker + mascarpone cheese + sliced strawberries (this is currently my favorite snack!)
  • Dinner: Salad (it’s really filling because I put beans and chickpeas and cheese. And croutons. Because if it’s not spiking with them yet, might as well).
  • 30 min of moderate speed biking (its at like 6-7mph most of the time)
  • Bedtime Snack: Glass of milk (I need some carby night snack or my ketones don’t do so hot)

Another thing I’ve learnt is while this sort of diet/lifestyle takes too much energy for most people to follow (hell, even for me for longer stretches of time), this country really really eats unhealthily. Ok, so maybe I’ve been watching too much of diners, drive-ins and dives. Mostly I’m shocked at the amount of fat, salt and calories in each of the meals shown. I mean, unless you’re a construction worker or an athlete or something where you need 4000 cal/day I cannot see why portion sizes are that big. Especially since most of these places seem like regular places to eat. Honestly, I’m coming to believe that taxing the hell out of sodas/fast food/processed food would do a lot for public health. And supplementing that with subsidies for local small-scale farmers/other way to make fresh food cheap.


Update from yesterday

I think a lot of my stress in the last few weeks is due to the following :

  • I can eat low carb (ish) and keep sugars in check. But eating 150g carb AND keeping glucose down seems.. less doable.
  • Feeling out of control of my own body. Whatever I do, it only sorta listens.
  • Feeling like my opinions are being downweighted – with doctors as well as with extended family

But you know, I really have to snap myself out of this. Because the huge huge silver lining to all this — THIS IS TEMPORARY. One way or another, come August, I’m done. That’s only a bit more than 4 months from now. That’s a limited time period. Compared to all the fertility treatments where every single month had such high emotional stakes because we never knew if it would work or what was going wrong or if it work ever work — GD? This is solvable. Or at least manageable. And we know when the challenges will end.

So I need some meds. As long as I’m taking them safely, big deal. Baby needed meds to exist, apparently baby still needs meds to grow. Or rather mommy needed meds to make baby and now mommy needs meds to grow baby. It’s not ideal no. But it’s only temporary. And this is the mantra that I’m going to keep telling myself – it’s all temporary.

Also I keep reminding myself (but need to tell myself even more) – everyone had some issue or the other with their pregnancy. It’s all common and there’s nothing you can really do about it. And that’s also normal.

I will say, this is all a far cry from the things that all those magazine articles tell you about pregnancy. No, the worse thing is not stretch marks. Or the nausea. Or even the peeing when you sneeze or whatever. Those are normal (at least in that they occur in the majority of women). The worst thing is when things aren’t going the way that they should be and you’re plunged into a whole world of interventions that you’re vastly uncomfortable with but there’s no way out but through it so you grit your teeth and try to make it through. (Hmm, this kinda sounds familiar…)

Week 18

Sloooow progress.

Glucose is … well, it’s all mentally draning and I’m a bit bluesy about it all but it’s so far ok. I met the nutritionist today which was great. She was very encouraging and clarified a bunch of stuff. Such as I actually was going too low with carbs. So now I’m introducing more carbs back into my snacks. So yay fruits! On the other hand my lunch was really not good glucose-wise so I’m not too happy about that.

Mostly I’m just kinda mentally exhausted with pregnancy and want baby to be here. I’m constantly worried about everything all the time. Am I gaining too much weight? Am I gaining too little weight? Are my ketones ok? What exercises should I do? Am I causing my baby to be messed up because I’m not eating the right thing? Will this piece of chocolate harm the baby? What did I do wrong that I was diagnosed so early?! Will there be other repercussions for baby?

It’s all very far from the peaceful pregnancy that I had imagined. Somehow I thought that once I got pregnant, it would be easier to be pregnant.

And then there’s all the family drama. Short story is that in spite of living halfway across the world, in-laws want to visit right after baby is born. Preferably for a month but even just a week to ‘peek in and see the baby’. I was not expecting that. And they phrased it in a way that we’re damned if we do and damned if we don’t. (Also to note, the expectation would be that we’d pay for it). For all this, they’re very nice people. But frankly I want my mom around for my labor and delivery. Also they’re way more religious than hubby and I and it has a way of invading every part of life. So I’ve been arguing with Hubby about why on earth are they asking instead of waiting for our cue? Hubby at some point said that it’s his son too and he wants his parents to be there. At which point, I exploded – I was the one who dealt with months on end of treatments and injections, I was the one who’s dealing with all sorts of lifestyle interventions and medicines, I’m the one dealing with all the side effects of hormones, I’m the one doing all the mental planning for my daily food, I’m the one doing all the planning for everything baby-related. And frankly, I’m the one who’s the actual patient, at least for now.

Mostly I do not want that many extra people at home. We’ve never said that we don’t want them around or anything. Just not at the birth or in the immediate time after. So it’s been a few weeks of going round and round about all this without any conclusion. Bah. So mostly I’m just frustrated and annoyed with a whole bunch of things in life.

Glucose Monitoring comparisons

Ok this is probably a weird post and completely irrelevant for pretty much everyone. Still, I kinda hope my insurance company sees this and deals with it (BCBS – pay attention).

My doctor (the one who retired after terrifying me) gave me a Contour Next meter. When it came time to get new test strips, *surprise* insurance doesn’t cover this brand. This is in spite of checking at the doctor’s office that it is covered. I only had a couple of strips left so I shelled out $75 for 50 strips (which was the smallest size) until the endocrinologist could prescribe the meter/strips for the brand that is covered by my insurance. Enter the One Touch. Which I hate. Let’s go over why:

  • First thing that you notice is that the test strips are so flimsy that each time I try and grab one, I end up with several in my hand.
  • There are no second chances. If there isn’t enough blood in the first prick, that’s it. So I routinely end up using 2 test strips for a single test because the first one would error out. Sometimes a 3rd because results are buggy. 1 week in and I’ve used up most of a 50pack box.
  • The lancets are $#%#! to get out of the lancing device. I stabbed myself this morning attempting to get it out. (Ok, actually after reading the owner’s manual now, it turns out that there’s an ejection button. Still, this gets dinged for being less user-friendly and needing more steps).
  • Meter feels cheaper. (Actually I don’t really care about this but if I’m listing issues with this, I might as well).

The few things that are nicer in One Touch: the carrying container is sleeker and the lancets are easier to put in.

In the end, I’m pretty sure I’m paying more for these just because of the sheer number of test strips I go through. Now BCBS, wouldn’t it be better to shell out a tad more for a better meter resulting in better usage?

I will say both meters have issues. There’s tons of user error possibilities plus meter errors. Some weird things that I have seen:

    • High numbers post-breakfast. Two tests within 30 sec of each other on the same finger, same lancing site had a 20 pt difference. 10 min walk brought it down another 20 points. Oh and I apparently didn’t wash my hand cream all the way off so that might have contributed to the drop as well. Turns out that my hand cream has honey in it.
    • 20 pt difference when using different fingers/hands (again, within a minute of each other).
    • Same lancing depth in different parts of the finger result in different amounts of blood (basically the same region but on the left side of the finger vs right side of the same finger).
    • Manuals indicate that once you’ve used it, it’s all a biohazard. I mean, fair enough. BUT you’re (as in the doctor) are recommending this for daily use, multiple times a day. How on earth do you avoid exposure to others??


Basically I’m not a fan. Even less so when you think that doctors are using this sort of buggy number to prescribe insulin. Any wonder I’m fighting so hard against it?


Some fun stuff (for a change)

I macakede a cake for Hubby’s birthday. And at this point I’m gaining confidence in working out carb counts and meals so I actually had a piece (that tiny piece in the picture is mine). Frosting was amazing so definitely doing this again! The holes are form the candles so it was slightly less messy than it looks 🙂

And it’s the small wins that make all this manageable!

Week 17

Ugh, at this point, I’m literally counting down the weeks. Frankly I’m considering this a halfway point, if only to make it easier to mentally handle.

Strangely enough, I’m posting way more often now than I was during fertility treatments. I suppose part of that is during cycles there’s entire stretches where nothing is happening and you’re just waiting — for the next test, for the next cycle, for the next appointment.

So far, pregnancy has been just as stressful as fertility treatments. During those, my constant worry was ‘will i get pregnant?’ Now its ‘will I end up with a healthy baby?’ I think I had one month of peace which was stressful in other ways – deadlines and getting sick. And now, it’s really just a battle with GD (which I think will continue all the way through).

I will say, I’ve learnt a TON about the way the body works in the last couple of weeks. I’m also slowly making peace with the fact that I’ll almost surely end up on insulin by week 24 and likely by week 20. Mostly I’m trying to push it off for as long as I can. And there’s some completely illogical sense of comfort in feeling like I made it to viability point.

My current endo is .. somewhere? vacay? work travel? dunno. But her backup one called me yesterday and we had a long conversation which was quite good. Essentially I said that I was still working out what foods worked and didn’t and a lot of the spikes were me trying foods and seeing that they don’t work. And that my current ranges are so high that I’m uncomfortable starting insulin which would almost surely drop me into hypoglycemia a chunk of the time. For instance, depending on what I eat, my post-lunch glucose range is between 80 and 140. I actually felt better about the conversation — she understood. But also she said that in pregnancy things change so much from week to week that they prefer to be on top of it and adjust things as needed.

Other things that I did that made me feel better – it’s been impossible to get endocrine appointments. And I’m really really uncomfortable with being on meds that f* with my sugar levels without regular check-ins. So my next appointment is in 6 weeks and I’m on the waitlist and trying to get an earlier appointment. But after that, I made appointments for every 2 weeks until after my due date. So hopefully this situation won’t happen again.

As for diet/exercise, things that are working for me:

  • switching to a high protein oatmeal for breakfast and brisk walking for 15-20 min after.
  • mid-morning snack of a smoothie
  • ensuring that there are fats/proteins in each meal
  • lots of cheese
  • exercising at least 30 min a day (either walking or biking)
  • starting to do resistance training (any links/videos/tips are welcome!)

And after all the interventions, what happens, happens. If I still need some support from insulin, that’s fine. The doctor mentioned that one reason they prefer GD patients to go on insulin is that it reduces some of the stress of maintaining the diet/exercise. I said that for me, especially when there’s so much variance based on the meal, it would just add stress. But I recognize that if post meal glucose is consistently in the 150s, yeah then insulin makes sense.

I’ve also taken comfort from the fact that babies are fine even with gestational diabetes. The main issue is if you don’t address it. The fact that I’m on top of it and paying attention to sugar levels — all that is a good indication for baby.

I do sometimes wonder what I did wrong to result in such an early diagnosis. Should I have started a more diabetes friendly diet a while ago? Should I have tried harder to lose 5-10lbs? Did IVF affect things? But at the end of the day, none of that line of thought is useful. This is where I am, and I need to find strategies to make it through another 5 months. Hell, I’ll settle for 4 and change.

Small things that I’m grateful for:

  • It’s going to be spring soon. There will be crops of delicious non-carby veggies coming to the farmers market soon and I can feast on radishes with fresh butter or grilled asparagus or juicy tomatoes to my heart’s content.
  • My parents are willing and able to be around to help. I’m extremely grateful for this because it’s kept me sane over the last few weeks, especially when Hubby was traveling. Tbh, I’m rather put out with Hubby right now — he’s in his own work bubble and blissfully unaware of most of the medical and lifestyle repercussions of all this. I mean, he knows what’s going on but he’s hardly mentally involved in figuring out how all the rules translate into my lifestyle or in dealing with the doctors.
  • Having the luxury to not consider anything other than carbs in my food optimizations. Fats and salts — not paying attention at all; might as well enjoy the few upsides. Costs — it’s 5 months, we’ll survive. Effort to prep — I can ask my parents to help out if it’s too much for me.
  • I can also walk outside much more now that the weather is warming up – it’s a mile and a half commute to work and I walked it once last week for my exercise.
  • Baby is starting to make an appearance. I doubt anyone else can tell but what was previously my belly fat is distinctly stiffer. And I think a little bigger as well. I think I might get away without buying a whole lot of maternity clothes – turns out clothes that I’ve always found comfy are perfect for pregnancy. So I’ll probably need some leggings, a few tshirts, some maternity/nursing sleepwear and underwear but.. that’s probably it. Anything else would just be so I feel pretty (which is always nice).
  • I’ve been slowly buying more baby stuff — mostly the non useful stuff that’s totally cutesy :). But I need to start figuring out the actually essentials.

Week 1 of glucose monitoring

So now I’m checking my glucose 4 times a day – fasting, and 1 hour post-meal for each meal. It’s .. not amazing. But the data scientist in me can appreciate the interest of that and getting data to analyze. So far I’ve been doing only a rough job of things – tracking my glucose levels and just noting what I eat (without measurements or anything).

Anyways, I send my 1 week test results to my new endo and promptly get a reply saying “you should start on insulin”. And I was FURIOUS.

For starters, I’m still experimenting with recipes/meals that work and ones which don’t. Also after a while of no exercising, I’ve starting walking/biking for 30 min/day. But that’s only for the last 5-6 days. So yes, I have spikes but some of that is from me futzing with things and so some meals don’t work. Also there isn’t a clear trend because it’s all too noisy still.

For another, most of my levels are within a margin of error of the post-meal target. As in the glucose meter itself has a +- 20 pt error range. Most of my high measurements are <15pts from the target. Further, my low ones (like after a salad) are really low. Adding insulin to that is just going to send me into hypoglycemia.

I’ll add a chart with more data later but for now, I’m just so so mad. Clearly she didn’t listen to me. Also clearly, she’s assuming that I’m not even trying to control with diet/exercise. And clearly, she’s just following her instructions without thinking more deeply about it.

I’m not averse to insulin. After all the fertility treatments, certainly itty bitty needles don’t scare me. I’d like to avoid it, sure but if I need it, then fine. But when my glucose levels are within a margin of error of the machine, that seems.. risky frankly. What’s better? Experimenting with diet a bit more to find a balance? Or regularly risking hypoglycemia and then dumping soda into your body? If a fetus is going to be affected by high glucose levels, wouldn’t they be affected by crashes?

Mostly I’m so angry at doctors who don’t LISTEN. And assume you’re an idiot. And not working towards your own care. And decide to dump medication on your without properly trying other interventions (especially when I’ve made it very clear that I’m very wary of insulin). And I don’t understand how they can be so cavalier with medicines like insulin!

Ugh. Anyways, I convinced her to give me a bit longer to experiment (so they’re giving me.. a weekend. sigh). Also said I’m not comfortable starting insulin without meeting her first. And next time I talk to her, I’m pulling out my pedigree (hey! I’m an educated adult who bloody does all this sort of analysis for a living) and dumping all my charts and graphs on her. And showing her my analyses of which meals work and don’t.

16 week checkup

The good news – baby’s doing ok. Well, they only really check heartbeat and that’s ok. I was a bit worried with the flu and everything but for the most part, figured that my body’s immunity would protect him.

The less good news – ok, I think I have to make peace with the GD diagnosis. I think part of the reason I’ve been on such a freakout about it is that its so early. And I keep telling myself that there’s nothing I could have done. I have too many dings against me and I suppose they all added up — PCOS + family history of diabetes + south asian + thyroid stuff. I’ve been trying to comfort myself with the knowledge that it’s a super common diagnosis and doctors know how to deal with it.

From the OB’s perspective, she’s not worried — my fasting numbers are consistently good and so’s my Hba1c. Her attitude is that baby hasn’t been exposed to high glucose levels so far and that long range, my insulin’s fine (hence good fasting, 2hr post meal numbers) but in the short term my pancreas can’t keep up. I’m trying to look at it as a good thing that we caught it early, before the baby was affected.

So why is it still stressing me?

For starters, I’m vegetarian and going low carb as a vegetarian is hard. My current list of recipes that work: tacos, avocado sandwich, salad and pasta (with a tiny amount of pasta and white bean pesto sauce). It’s not a long list. I think one of the keys (for me) is always to have fats in every meal. And for someone who loves to cook, it’s.. not easy. I’m slowly starting to get into the mindset of seeing this as a cooking challenge.

For another thing, I’ve already adopted a lot of these ideas in my diet a while ago — my snacks for the last several months have basically been greek yogurt, nuts, olives, fruit and smoothies. And starbucks hot chocolate so fine, I got rid of that. But there’s not a whole lot left to optimize diet-wise so I’m struggling a bit for new ideas.

I’m not scared of insulin shots – god knows anyone who’s been through IVF has no reason to fear the itty-bitty insulin needles. But I am terrified of hypoglycemia. That’s been one of my long standing fears – of crashing and then losing consciousness.

And this whole constant monitoring of what I eat and my sugar — that does stress me out. I don’t like thinking about what I eat this much. Or the hour wait until I figure out if this meal worked or not. Or the feeling like I’m failing at this. It all puts me right back into fertility treatments where I constantly was aware of everything going on with my body (and not in a good way). It also makes me feel… trapped and out of control. And then guilty for thinking that.

According to the OB (and frankly my own common sense), it looks like I’ll be on insulin before the end of the pregnancy. So my aim is just to delay it till 24 weeks if possible? Why? I don’t know – it makes me feel more comfortable to hit viability point. Makes me feel more ‘normal’ that I’d be at the typical point of diagnosing GD.

At any rate, plan of action (that I’m trying to sound proactive and strong about but mostly for the last week I’ve been curling up and trying not to cry and wanting my mommy to fix everything because mommies can fix anything and I have no idea how I’m going to be that fixing person for another being):

  • Exercise more. Between diet and exercise, I have way more scope for improvement in exercise (which went down to nothing for the last few months between the carefulness post-transfer and then morning sickness and then deadline and then flu). So far I’ve been either walking or biking for 30 min/day. I want to slowly add more into this (I’m looking for some better yoga/pilates videos that are pregnancy friendly) but for starters, just focusing on the 30 min.
  • Follow more keto- blogs for inspirations for meals/snacks. It’s not exactly the diet I should strive for but it should help get more ideas. Plus it’s ‘in’ now so there should be a plethora of these. And look for diabetes diet blogs too.
  • No more crazy pushing myself for deadlines. It’s not worth it.
  • Work from home more. And don’t feel guilty for it.
  • Tell myself that it’s not my fault. And it’s really common. And the babies end up fine – the only issue with GD is if it’s untreated. And that this isn’t a reflection on me  – just bad luck. And my lifestyle choices are mostly healthy. Shit can still happen.
  • Try and enjoy the other parts of the pregnancy. Have fun looking at maternity clothes. Choose cutesy baby stuff that I’ve been eyeing for ages.
  • Remember that I live and work near a hospital. In case my fears do come true, someone can easily get me to the ER.
  • Remember that I’m not alone in this. I have my doctor on my side (who at least doesn’t seem like an idiot). Plus Hubby. Plus my parents. And take all the help I need from all of them.
  • Remember that this is a temporary challenge. In 5 months, I’ll have forgotten all of this.

Having it all..

This is probably going to be a recurring theme for me.

The last few weeks I’ve been a bit blue about work-life balance. Somehow in my friend circle, there’s basically no mom I know who (i) has a solid career (ii) has a kid(s) (iii) is not crazy stressed all the time. Well, I take that back – I know two. I’m not sure how they do but I have guesses. In one case, she had her mom, her dad, her uncle AND her aunt around to help with kid #1 (and later with the other kids). In another, the mom was almost tenured by the time she had kid #1 so she was able to go on sabbatical during his early childhood and had generally established herself. I think the shock to my system came when I learnt that a friend (who I thought was handling things really well) quit her job. I’m not judging her at all for it — just a bit sad about yet another talented woman who couldn’t put the pieces together.

I get a bit more about why they quit (or never worked) now. Because it’s just so physically exhausting. Lately, I’ve been just so tired and drained. I do love the work that I do but I wonder if it’s worth it. Possibly this is temporary – deadline burnout + getting sick + GD diagnosis. But also, I’m just tired and anxious. Or maybe my tiredness is making me anxious.

You know the main reason I don’t want to quit? Because once I quit, I have no idea how to ever get back onto an on-ramp. And there’s some ego about not giving up but frankly, this is stupid and ego vs health, health wins.

I’m lucky enough that we don’t need my income to live comfortably. (Well, unless I actually go towards a big data job that actually pays six figures instead of NIH postdoc salary.) Actually, frankly, it might be easier with just Hubby working – we could move closer to his work which is a beautiful town with a great school district. And I could have enough time to myself to take care of myself, to take care of baby, to be more centered. Clearly I’m already fantasizing how to pull this off.

But.. I don’t know what I’d do when baby is 5 or 10 and in school and needs me less. That’s what I worry about – what will I do then? How do I keep in touch enough that I can shift gears again? How do I keep up the intellectual life that I love without some version of work or school to center it? How would I keep myself from getting lonely and isolated?

I’m not making any decisions yet – anything I think right now is going to be a bad decision borne of stress and panic attacks. But increasingly, I feel out of control of my life and my body and I really don’t like the feeling at all.


Endo consult

So met with (potential) new endocrinologist today. She was sane. In that I didn’t feel panicky after meeting her. She got that the glucose tolerance test might have been messed up and gave me the option of either retaking it or monitoring glucose at home. I chose the latter because frankly, if I can avoid that test, I will.

So now the plan is that I test 4 times a day to check how my body’s processing things. If things look ok after a few weeks, I can potentially come down to 2 checks per day. I have a list of instructions about food/exercise. Which were actually pretty well written. I hadn’t appreciated how important communication is with patients. Doctor #1 was talking about how I should get 45%of my calories from fat, 30% from carbs and 15% from protein. And was planning to hand me off to a nutritionist. And we were struggling to figure out how to do that. Doctor #2 told us to aim for <45g of carbs per meal and <15g per snack. And gave a list of starches/other foods that were approximately 15 g of carbs (like 1 cup of plain yogurt or 1/4 of a baked potato) and a list of options for proteins/fats. Which seems so much easier to follow. Also, frankly, I do a lot of those anyways, just need to tweak things a bit more. And add in exercise. For various reasons, my exercise has been basically at nothing (until implantation was certain, I was taking it easy; then morning sickness; then deadline mode where my life was basically get up at 7, work till 11, go to sleep; then the flu). So I need to start making more of an effort there.

I don’t know that a lot of doctors even think about how to communicate with their patients. Or maybe I’m not giving them enough credit. Even for us, who are both highly educated and veterans of fairly intense fertility treatments, the way Doctor #1 spoke was just overwhelming. And discouraging. And guilt-inducing. And hard-to-follow instructions.

But overall, these are doable things. And she didn’t say things like “the baby’s organs won’t grow properly if you have diabetes”. Or “our 3 goals are healthy baby healthy baby healthy baby” which as much as I want baby to be healthy, I also want me to be healthy. Much more matter of fact and “ok, here’s what you should aim for”. And then, ‘come back in 2 months’. Which gives me faith that this is totally manageable.

So, I’m feeling a bit of relief on that front though this whole thing is just such a mental drain.

Flu/Cold/Whatever is still being weird though I’ve managed to diagnose part of what’s bothering me. Basically the phlegm at the back of my throat is too thick and mucousy and makes me want to throw up every so often. Cough drops are (oddly) helping with that. And at least I’m able to keep down my comfort food of yogurt rice. So hopefully by Monday, I’ll be in a state to go into work and not throw up.

I will say that a lot of me is feeling ‘UNFAIR.’ As if all the fertility treatments weren’t enough, I now have to go through a careful , watchful pregnancy. But it is what it is and once I’m back to somewhat normal energy levels I think I’ll be able to make peace with that.