Appointment number 4 was my one-hour glucose screening gestational diabetes test, a huge deal for me because really high numbers could mean a transfer out of Sarah’s care and the end of my home birth hopes. I spent hours reading up online on all kinds of opinions surrounding what could be done to achieve the best results possible. It wasn’t about cheating the test, it was about staying away from the edge if I was tiptoeing close to it. If I really had gestational diabetes and the baby was at risk I don’t think there is anything I can do to avoid a hospital birth, and at that point I wouldn’t want to. If baby isn’t processing insulin properly s/he needs medical care. But I do think that diet can have mild effect on test results and so for the weeks leading up to the test I worked extra hard to limit my carbs, which actually felt really nice after a Christmas season of indulgence. In the days before I went on extra long walks to burn off as much sucrose (or is it glucose? I always mix the two up) as possible and drank water like it was going out of style. I’ll never know whether or not my actions made a difference on the test results but the intense focus on diet, exercise, and hydration definitely had a positive influence on some of my overall habits so I’m glad I did it.
The night before the test I grabbed a few nuts each time I got up to go to the bathroom, in hopes that it would keep my levels from spiking when I ate breakfast in the morning. For breakfast ate 4 whole eggs and 2 slices of bacon (no dairy), and then right at 9:30 am I measured out a glass of apple juice equivalent to 50 grams of sugar (my math skills are so bad I had to have TH do the calculations for me!) and downed it right before I walked out the door. My drive to the birth center was about 30 minutes, my appointment was about 30, and at 10:30 am she got the needle out and drew my blood. One reason I love Sarah? She *rocks* at drawing blood. The needle she uses is tiny, she gets the vein on the first try every time, and she’s lightning fast. I got a bit dizzy after it was over so it was a good thing I had a Larabar in my purse. Though I hate having my blood drawn I don’t usually get lightheaded like that. Another anomaly I can chalk up to the strange state known as pregnancy?
My appointment was on a Thursday and on Friday evening I texted her to find out if she knew the results yet. Her reply of “All is well” made my weekend! And it meant I could make my friend a birthday cake (that Clementine cake I posted last week) without feeling guilty that baby and I were struggling with each fingerful of batter I grabbed. Now that I’ve passed the gauntlet I let myself have some toast with my eggs in the morning, or a bowl of cereal. It feels like quite an indulgence after days and days of only bacon and eggs!
Pregnancy overall has still been really easy for me, so I didn’t have much else to talk about. I mentioned the redness in my legs in an earlier post, which I thought was a rash, but a doctor friend of mine took a look and unofficially diagnosed it as vascular changes from being pregnant, possibly from my uterus pressing on my pelvic vessels. If I elevate my legs, two minutes after putting them up my awful looking stumps turn fair and smooth once again. It’s really amazing actually! I have some swelling in my calves/feet each night but I’m still wearing my engagement ring so it hasn’t extended to my upper body at all. My blood pressure is still looking great, 97/70 and baby’s heart was thumping firmly at 144 bpm. I used the little strip to test all of my different levels and my consistently elevated leukocytes have Sarah a little worried. I’m going to pick up some cranberry pills and try to increase my water intake even more. I feel like I always have a mug in hand and straw to my lips already!
The most exciting thing about this appointment? My weight gain has slowed. FINALLY. My average has been close to 2 lbs/week throughout my pregnancy, but in the three weeks between appointment 3 and appointment 4 I only gained 3 lbs, and my home scale confirms that I’ve stayed at a similar pace since then. Early in my pregnancy I went through periods where I felt sick if I wasn’t eating constantly (or what felt like constantly) so I know my caloric intake has naturally decreased. My diet hasn’t changed although I have been working to make time spent walking a regular occurrence during my week.
I still haven’t had the Rhogam shot because That Husband still hasn’t had time to get his blood tested. Sarah was fine with me choosing to delay it, or not even get it at all if that’s what we want. If TH tests RH-Positive I’m going to get the shot for sure, but I don’t want it otherwise. I hope he can get the time to have his blood drawn within the next week. After that, my last big hurdle is pre-ecclampsia. As long as my blood pressure stays in an acceptable range I should be able to welcome baby into the world in our living room come April!