Pregnancy Updates: 18 weeks

For years, I have heard women all over talk about how much they “loved” being pregnant. They had the best time, it was the best time of their lives, blah blah blah. I have to say, I am NOT a fan of being pregnant.

Let’s start with the morning sickness. I honestly had NO clue that I was pregnant. I was sick for about a week, mostly just headaches and generalized achy feelings. I had a hair appointment for one of those nights and decided to go to it even though I was most definitely not feeling well. My appointment that night was for a perm. I woke up the next morning sicker than I have ever been in my life. I figured it was just from the chemicals used to perm your hair, which make it smell like rotten eggs for several days following the treatment. I could not stand the smell at all. After three days of being sick, along with some other mild symptoms, I decided that maybe I needed to take a pregnancy test. I was lucky, my morning sickness was fairly mild after the rotten egg smell finally washed out of my hair. However, there are many other complications to be worried about besides the sickness of the first trimester.

Pregnancy actually can affect your hearing. I began having some troubles early on, which I thought were issues with my hearing aids. Some days I feel like everything was so loud, and other days I feel like I can’t turn up my hearing aids loud enough to hear what is going on. I am not sure why pregnancy affects the hearing, but I can attest to the fact that it most certainly does. I assume it is related to the fact that pregnancy does lead to sinus and respiratory issues, which can affect your auditory canal.

At my first appointment with the my doctor, I was roughly 10 weeks pregnant. They decided at that point to go ahead and do a glucose test on me, because they determined that I was at high risk for having gestational diabetes. In most cases, the glucose test is not done on an expecting mother until 24-28 weeks. The doctor determined that I was high risk because of my weight, and because of my age. I did not pass the glucose test, which I attributed to the fact that I had not fasted prior to the glucose test. I had not been told to fast before the appointment, and it was the week of Thanksgiving. I got a call the following Monday saying that I had not passed the glucose test, and that I needed to come in for a four hour glucose test. I failed that one as well. As a result, I was prescribed a glucose meter and told to check my sugars as soon as I woke up, and one hour after meals. I was also supposed to take a class that would tell me how to manage my gestational diabetes.

I put off taking the diabetes class for several weeks. I was told at the end of November to take it, and I didn’t take the class until the first week of January. Part of that was just me being stubborn. I have been around diabetics, and I had it in my head that I knew what I needed to do to manage my gestational diabetes. I did a quick consult with Dr Google, and decided that I was all set for self management. I eventually decided to schedule my diabetes class, on the off chance that I did learn something from it. I LEARNED SO MUCH.

Here’s the thing: gestational diabetes is completely different from Type One and Type Two diabetes.

A doctor that has worked with gestational diabetes patients for 40+ years is the doctor who taught the class. A dietitian also came in to talk to use about our individual, specific dietary needs. My doctor had already told me at my first appointment that I was to watch my weight gain during pregnancy. She told me that I needed to try to keep my weight gain as close to, or below, 15 pounds of total weight gain. The diabetes doctor gave me a very strict diet to stick to.

After going to my Gestational Diabetes class, I felt a million times better. For starters, I had been trying to basically starve myself of carbs. I felt hungry all the time, and I wasn’t getting enough nutrients or food. The diabetes doctor told me that I HAVE to have a certain number of carbs every day, because my body and the baby both needed the carbs to function. They dietitian broke that down into telling me exactly how many carbs I have to eat for every meal, and broke my day down into three meals, and three snacks. This has been such a blessing to me. On one hand, I feel like my whole day is planned around eating. On the other hand, I feel full. I feel like I am getting enough nutrients. I have more energy. And my blood sugars have been the best that they’ve been since my diagnosis. Both of my doctors are extremely pleased with my blood sugars. The other good thing about this super strict diet is that I have only gained 2 pounds for my pregnancy. My main doctor, Dr C, is very happy with my weight management.

I thought the gestational diabetes was something I could handle alone, but it wasn’t. I am unbelievably happy that I went to the class. I am also happy that being on such a strict diet keeps me from giving in to my cravings. If I was allowed to eat what I wanted, or if I didn’t have the self control to watch my diet, I am sure that I would already have gained a lot more weight.

Overall, I can’t complain too much about my experiences with pregnancy. However, I definitely can not wait to not be pregnant anymore. I most definitely would NOT say that I “love” being pregnant. All in all, I can not wait to hold my baby. And that will be the best part of this whole experience.