For anyone reading this post because you've been diagnosed with gestational diabetes, I'm going to tell you now, it ISN'T YOUR FAULT. This happens to pregnant women who are perfectly fit and eating right. Sometimes the placenta just gets in the way of your body absorbing insulin. It's a disease, girls. A manageable, temporary one, but a disease nonetheless. It happens to the best of us.
Wish I could say I was the best of us.
So, yeah, it wasn't my fault. I ate horribly with all my pregnancies and never had a GD diagnosis before. But this time, coming off the holidays, eating carbs without restraint, and pounding the M&M's several times a day, I hadn't done myself any favors.
Don't beat yourself up, even if you did pound the M&M's. Oh gosh, I miss M&M's.
After being diagnosed, I hit up Dr. Google. Which is, of course, not always the best idea. I got some ideas on what to eat and what not to eat but my information was fragmented, skewed, and frustrating.
No sugar, no carbs. Lots of protein, lots of veggies, fruit sparingly.
Okay. Fine. Let's get this started. I quit eating sugar (duh) and bread, loaded up on vegetables (go me!) and made sure my carbs stayed low, low, low.
I was miserable. I was moody, tired, and after about two days of eating this way, I started getting symptoms of dizziness and confusion. I couldn't think straight.
Then I did the best thing I have ever done for myself and my unborn daughter: I went to a gestational diabetes training class. Best two hours and $100 I have ever spent on my health. At least until I can start drinking Shakeology and running again. But I digress.
This class was so enlightening. I learned that I COULD eat carbs. My body and my baby NEEDED carbs. No, that doesn't mean I could go back to pizza, Cheerios, or even a huge fruit salad. I just needed to know what I could eat, WHEN to eat it, and how much I could have.
I also learned how to check my blood sugar, which is seriously NOT a big deal! I received a glucometer for free from the instructor of my class. It came with a sample of lancets and test strips. Poking my finger really didn't hurt. I could barely feel it. And it's fascinating! I get results in five seconds.
I also learned that exercise, even just a twenty-minute walk, doing some brisk housework, or dancing in the family room with my kids, was a great way to keep my blood sugar regulated.
After only twenty-four hours on this new regiment, I am feeling 100% better. I have more energy, I have ZERO heartburn, I'm sleeping better, and I am just a nicer person to my children. And with my new diet (which allows me a little whole wheat toast in the morning if I want!), my blood sugar levels are right on point. If I can keep this up, I won't need to do insulin, which will be so great (even though the insulin demonstration at my class was really cool and having to take insulin would so not be the end of the world).
In six weeks I can have this baby. And all of this will go away. I can have a milkshake and a sub sandwich. But you know what? I don't want to lose these new good habits. I want to see what will happen:
1. I get preeclampsia after having my babies. It's happened after every single one of them. Even after baby #3, where I was in better shape. It will probably happen again because doctors don't really know what causes it, but I'm curious about what this strict diet and a little extra exercise will do.
2. I'm 34 years old. Losing the baby weight is sure to be tougher than when I was 28 or even 30. What about this time? How's it going to go?
Time will tell.
It feels. like. forever.