Tuesday, November 16, 2010

World Diabetes Day: The Late Edition??

I know, I'm a week or so late for the diabetes blogathon, and I know that I have not blogged since July (?!?! Really!!?!). I DON'T know what my deal is. I'm in a slump of sorts. I've been trying to figure it all out for months.

Maybe it's because before I got pregnant, I didn't really have a good diabetes routine. I didn't focus much on it. I checked here and there and bolused along those same lines, but it wasn't a focus for me. It was just there, and I had to deal with it to function, but it was certainly not a priority.

It was certainly not the priority it became once I was pregnant... maybe the better term would be obsession. I obsessed over it. I checked 25 times/day the first two days I found out I was responsible for another life. I cried when I had blood sugars of 130 for more than 30 minutes and I checked my CGMS every 10 minutes, at least, even when I settled down a bit. It was easy, though. Well, not easy, but it was worth it. All of the time, dedication, the finger pricks, the huge CGMS needles, the site changes... all of it was so worth it. It was for her. So why can't I do it for ME?

Well, here are my 6 things I'd like for you to know about diabetes, and they do all somewhat run together, but here they are:

1. There are no real rewards.

Sure, living, and especially living without complications, is a reward. But it isn't tangible. It isn't like we get a gold star or a tootsie roll at the end of a hard day's work. And even then, it isn't a guarantee. Even if I do everything I should, I could still have complications, and diabetes could still kill me.

I think that is why it was easy when I was pregnant...I was working toward a goal, a very tangible, perfect little reward. But now, and before? Well, I am already living, and shouldn't that just be a given? That I get to continue living, without having to FIGHT for it every.second.of.every.day...

2. It doesn't stop and it will never end.

...Diabetes is all day, every day, there are no breaks, and there are no vacations; the further you try to run, the harder it will hit you. There is no escape. It's always on my mind. I'm always calculating, wondering, and waiting. I never know when my next low will hit me, when the next time I'll be shaking all over, unable to focus or think clearly, covered in sweat, and faced with the fear that this may be the one that gets me...

3. It is scary.

...This may be the one that knocks me unconscious, the one that I'll never wake up from. The one that will leave me helpless, and maybe I'll have my daughter with me, or maybe I'll be alone. Or maybe it won't be that quick, maybe it will just debilitate me, leave me blind, or require amputations, or dialysis... These are not always conscious thoughts and I certainly don't live in fear... but the reality is always there, no matter how deep I try to bury it, and that reality won't go away, no matter how hard I try...

3. It is HARD.

...To do well is far from easy. It takes a lot of effort, a lot of time, a lot of thought and calculation. You have to always be on your A game, never slacking or losing track. There is no mindless snacking, or getting too busy to eat. Things that other people take for granted are the things that keep us alive. One wrong move, one guesstimation that is off can send us spiraling out of control. So we have to be determined, and dedicated and check check check to make sure we're on track, but that is no guarantee that we will be. No matter how hard we try, there is no such thing as truly getting it right...

4. I'm never in control and I'll never really get it right.

...Even when we're at our best, we're always susceptible to things going wrong: bad sites, bad insulin, wrong calculations, getting sick, and the list goes on. The fact of the matter is that there is no such thing as total control. We are never really in control of anything... Diabetes always has the one up. So sometimes I just don't feel like fighting it anymore. What's the point if it's a losing battle, if it's a battle I can't win...

5. The fight is worth it and despite it all, I am truly happy.

...I guess the thing is, I'm not in it to win it. I'm in it to keep fighting, and it isn't a losing battle, just a continuous one. Life isn't guaranteed, diabetic or not, but every day I get to spend with my daughter, and my husband, and my family, it's worth it. That IS my reward, and they are certainly tangible. So what if the fight doesn't end, who said having somthing to fight for was a bad thing? It keeps me on my toes but it doesn't take away from my happiness. I have so much to live for and couldn't ask for more out of life. I don't want anyone's pity or for anyone to feel sorry for me. I don't need that, because, I'm okay. I'm truly happy. If given the option to remove diabetes from my life, would I take it? Yes. In a heartbeat, but then I would never have come to appreciate the value of a good fight, or the million other lessons that diabetes has taught me, and I certainly would not understand how close the bond can be between people who have never even met, but who rely on each other for support...

6. Together, we are strong.

I have never known a more powerful group of people than the group of diabetics that we have in our online community. I am proud to be a member, and even when I feel weak, I can feel the strength of our group and know that it will be okay; we may fight our own individual battles, but we also fight together... and that is powerful, and to me, having that kind of support, makes having diabetes a breeze (most days!).

Monday, July 19, 2010

Life After Baby....

Wow, what a complete whirlwind the past several months have been! Kate is now 3 1/2 months old (or 15 1/2 weeks :)). She is growing like a weed and she somehow gets cuter every day! I love being a Mommy, yet somehow it still doesn't feel quite real.

I was talking to Brad about this yesterday. I never thought I would get pregnant, either because I couldn't or because I shouldn't, but I did and I had the most amazing, uneventful pregnancy imaginable which resulted in the most perfect miracle I could never have dreamed up myself. I find myself looking at her sometimes and just wondering if this is all real, but it really hasn't hit me yet. I don't think I've absorbed the magnitude of what has happened in our lives... Considering I have not slept through an entire night since Kate was born (and only once have I slept for 6 hours in a row!), I still cannot form complete sentences that make any sense, I reread typed words and sentences and realize nothing makes sense and words a mismatched and misspelled (sorry about that), and I find myself unable to speak of much other than my precious daughter, you'd think it would feel real... but how do you erase a lifetime (or so it feels) of doubt about whether this day would ever come?

Please don't get me wrong, it's a good feeling, a comforting one and I cherish every minute of my time with Kate. Sometimes I just look at her and my eyes well up with tears and I think my heart is just going to explode with love for her. I try to soak every moment in, because I also know that I may not be able to give her a brother or a sister one day, for all the same reasons I thought I'd never get the honor to meet her and be her Mommy.

I also know that just because she is here now and she is no longer dependent on the constant care of my body to help her to grow and thrive, that she is still dependent on me and to ensure that she can grow and thrive in this world, I have to continue to take care of myself. I also know that I don't want her to watch me neglect my diabetes and then have one of my greatest fears come true, that she is diagnosed with diabetes as well. I know that regardless of if she is diagnosed, I have to be a role model for her, just in case. If she is diagnosed, I want her to know that there are worse things, and that diabetes doesn't have to be so bad, because, heck, her Momma has it and is doing just fine. I want her to know that life with diabetes is still life, and a heck of a good one.

I also know thatI want to stick around for a while, and to do that, I have to make sure that I am taken care of. I've got years and years to watch my baby grow up and transform from a tiny baby, to a sassy little girl to a strong woman, and then one day, to a Mommy herself. I want to watch her and support her through it all.

But my goodness is it hard! It's something I didn't read about or hear about when talking about pregnancy and diabetes, although I suppose I should have figured it out. I will say, that keeping up good control after giving birth and welcoming this tiny little baby into our lives is HARD and my diabetes is once again on a back burner. After being so diligent, I am amazed at how quickly I've forgotten it. I suppose my main problem is that I feel like I don't have time to check my blood sugars, especially when I have a crying baby on my hands. I feel like I can't just put her down to check, especially if she needs me or if she's busy talking away and laughing at me. I don't want to miss a moment, even to check my blood sugars. I am also still breastfeeding, although I was never able to do so exclusively, unfortunately. I often wonder if my out of whack blood sugars had something to do with that... Gaining control of my daibetes is something I've been really trying to work on over the past several weeks; I know it is important. I mean, if I want another baby one day, my future child will depend on it. And Kate still depends on it, too. She will always depend on me to step up and take care of myself, no matter how tired I am, or distracted I am. She needs me now and I don't want her to have to go around telling people that her Mom had diabetes and has X complication because she didn't take good enough care of herself. It would absolutely break my heart...
I suppose all I need to do is know that when I am neglecting myself, Kate is feeling neglected, too, and she is likely making this face at me:
BUT when I am doing my job and making sure my health is taken care of, and therefore that she is taken care of, I'll be getting many many more of these:
Now that should be motivation enough!!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Back to Work After Baby

Whew, what a whirlwind the past three months have been!! There is so much that I want to write and talk about, but who knows if I will ever get the time or opportunity... I hope I do! These include more details on how my c-section actually went down, and some about the recovery, a lot about breastfeeding, and even more about being a new mom with diabetes (whoo, and is it harder than I thought it would be!!).

I feel like I have barely had any time to keep up with all of my wonderful OC friends and now that I am back at work... I will actually have time to do that! (Sad, huh?) At least that is one thing that I am actually excited about with my return... It has been pretty hard so far, though. I came back last Wednesday, and have cried every day since, even when I think I won't. Kate is at daycare, and I think she is happy and doing well there, but I miss her so much. I hate that I am not there to see her perfect smile, her wonderful pout, and even those sad little tears. Its hard knowing that I am missing it all... The thought is always in my head that I was so blessed to have had Kate, but can I really hope for more?? I suppose that fear of not being able to have children never goes away, even after our first little miracle has arrived safe and sound.

In other news, I love being Kate's Mommy... I am figuring out all of her little quirks and getting to know her wonderful personality. She is starting to "talk" and laugh and is the most precious little thing. I can't believe she is old enough to do most of the things that she can now do, because I still feel like she should be this tiny little newborn! It's true, they really do just grow before our eyes!
Here are some new pics of my beauty:

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The Diabetes Side of Things

I suppose the best time to blog is probably in the wee hours of the morning, after Kate's middle of the night feeding... how did it take me so long to figure that one out?!

I want to blog more about how the diabetes side of things are going since I've really neglected doing that. I want to eventually write about how the c-section went and then the first few days with Kate, but really just haven't had the time to do it!

Speaking of time, I feel like my diabetes has really fallen away from my focus now that I have all eyes on Kate. I feel like I don't have time to check like I should and sometimes even forget to bolus for food... I mean, how long does it take to check my blood sugar and bolus with my pump?? It's just hard because I usually have her in my arms, so it makes it pretty difficult.

Kate is 9 weeks old today and is only napping for a grand total of around an hour to two hours at the very most during the day, so I have very little time for myself! I don't know how she is getting so little sleep, but she is!

I am really trying to make diabetes part of my focus again throughout my day, because it is important and necessary, especially since I am still breastfeeding. I want to be around for my little girl, and would like to eventually have a couple more little ones, but I have to re-focus and get back on track!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Most Beautiful Smile I Have EVER Seen :)

I know, I know, it has been way too long since my last update!! I have tried updating before, but it takes so long to type my updates out (several days) that they have been deleted, and for some reason not saved in drafts, before I could post them!! I guess that is what my new life as Kate's Mommy is going to be like :)

Kate is 8 weeks old!! I just can't believe it! I feel like just in the past week or two she has grown so much... we've watched her transform from a tiny little newborn to a chunky precious baby! AND over the past several weeks she has slowly begun to work on her beautiful smile and started showing us little bits and pieces of it last week when she showed off her final product... and goodness is it beautiful! She's starting to laugh now, too. It is amazing how from the very moment I wake up in the morning, my main goal for the entire day is to see Kate smile!

She is also starting to coo and talk to us, which is so much fun. The first time she did it several weeks ago, I was so taken back by how much I loved the sound of her precious voice!! I was looking forward and excited about her cooing, but I had never thought about the sound of her voice as one of her "firsts" to look forward to! What an absolutely beautiful sound that !

Kate had her two month appointment and she is now 10 pounds and 3 ounces and is 22 1/2 inches long. We went with our list of usual questions, one of which always includes "how cute is too cute?" but I know the answer to that one :)

We have also been traveling and making sure Kate is getting out and about. We've driven the hour and a half to spend some time with my parents when she was 3 1/2 weeks and then a week or so later again when our a/c went out at our house (see Kate without a/c in her bouncy chair... in her crib for her night without a/c on the left; she sleeps this way every night, although usually covered up) and also the 5 hour drive to see Brad's parents. It was so much fun and it was so wonderful to get out of the house!! I never thought I would enjoy just getting out and seeing the light of day as much as I have!!

Kate has also continuing to roll over, which still just amazes us! Brad loves to show everyone her neat little trick and we are just so impressed with her. She still continues to amaze us with how strong she is and how well she holds her head up. She is also so alert! We recently took our first Mommy/daughter trip to Wal-mart and she just looked around at all the colors and things the entire time! She loves getting out of the house, meeting new people, and unfortunately, she seems to really enjoy shopping!! She is just so good and is a wonderful joy! I can't help but have this crazy, scary feeling that she will be crawling and moving before we know it!! Yikes!! :)

So, that is some of the things we have been up to. I will make sure to try to update you all more often, but it really is so hard! Kate is only taking two or three 30 minute to 1 hour naps during the day (but has been sleeping 5 and the 4 hours during the night!), so that leaves me with very little time to do much (I now have a toothbrush/toothpaste downstairs, as well as upstairs)!! But, I wouldn't rather be doing anything other than spending my days with her... waiting for that smile!

Please know that I do think about you all very often and the only reason I am looking forward to returning to work is that I will have more time to catch up with how you are all doing, as well as share more on what is going on in our lives. I really do miss you all!!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Almost one month later...

I cannot believe that my baby girl is almost a month old already!! Time really does fly and it makes me sad that she'll never be this little again, but I know we have so much fun ahead of us!

We are doing well and enjoying our time together while I am home (yep, already dreading the return to work :( ) and we trying our best to figure out the Mommy and Daddy thing ;) She's made it this far, so we must be doing something right!!

Brad is an absolutely wonderful Daddy and Kate has him wrapped around her very long little finger already! Brad has a way to make Kate fall asleep and is so gentle with her; he can even make her stop crying by, get this, holding her tiny little hand!! They definitely love their Daddy/daughter time and I love watching them!

Kate is such a joy and is a wonderful baby. She makes us laugh and smile all day (and night) with her feisty little personality and all of her funny faces and little grunts...and boy are there lots of them! My favorite is when she yawns really big, and then she follows it with a long grunt and a face scrunch, all in one silly flowing action. She is also so alert and will open her eyes wide and just gaze around her. I know she can't see much quite yet, but you'd swear she could.

She is also so strong! She cranes her head back and turns her head from side to side and she can even roll from one side to the other. She can hold her head up for an impressive amount of time and can even lift her little body off of us when lying on our chests....and has been for a couple of weeks!! We definitely see a lot of determination and a dose of stubbornness in her, too. Kate is definitely a spunky little thing and is just so full of amazement. Every day we are so incredibly in awe of her and we are already so proud of every little thing she does!

Breastfeeding was a challenge at first, but we are doing better now... it is definitely one of the most difficult things I've ever done, mainly because it was so important to me and I had no clue what to expect, so I was constantly second guessing myself. What I thought was an inability on my part to satisfy her ended up being her love to pacify on me! Introducing a pacifier was a lifesaver for us, even though I was extremely hesitant at first, since "they" say you shouldn't! But, she does fine with it and I am feeling better about all of it. We do still have to supplement her with a few ounces of formula at night, but we are trying to stop that, too... although, we will see how that goes!

Even when there are no more lights in the sky and all is quiet in the world except for in our little house, we can't help but smile and laugh at our precious little Kate. What an awesome adventure we are now on, one that I am sure will bring lots of ups and downs, but mostly lots of love and happiness in our hearts and in our lives. Brad and I are just so thrilled to have Kate with us and we cannot wait to see the little person that she will become!

Thank you all for your love and support and we can't wait to share this incredible new journey with you all!

P.S. - If there is anyone out there who has questions about diabetes and pregnancy, or just questions about life with baby, please please don't hesitate to let me know. I am certainly no expert, but I am happy to be an open book about my own experiences!!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Baby Kate is here and goodness is she a beauty! :)

That's her furrowed brow expression at 2 days old...oh Mommy and Daddy are in BIG trouble!

Whooo, what a whirlwind it has been... Kate is napping and I finally have few minutes (seconds...??) to catch everyone up. I have not watched tv or been online since her birth... and no I can't imagine what I've done all that time either, especially since only 2 -3 hours/day has been sleeping... so here it is, my precious girl's "birth story":

Kate arrived on March 31 at 12:42 weighing 6 pounds 8 ounces and is 19 3/4 inches long. She's beautiful and more than I could have ever imagined! I went ahead and decided to have a c-section due to a more controlled environment and my retinopathy. You were all right, even though I was extremely scared of the surgery, it wasn't so bad after all and once I saw my beautiful daughter, it didn't matter anyway.

I am having trouble breastfeeding and it has been quite a challenge... one of the things I wanted most was to be able to breastfeed, but it doesn't seem to be coming naturally for me. I've gotten about 2 hours of sleep each night since she's been born (is that normal?!?) and am pretty tired, but trying as hard as I can. I am not giving up easily, but know that it may not work out... she is continuing to root around even after I feed her and never seems to be satisfied, but i don't know if it is lack of milk or if she is starting to pacify herself at the breast because she frequently falls asleep right when I put her back on. I guess we just have to figure it all out and I keep telling myself that regardless of what happens, she will be okay.

I just wanted to give you a quick update while I could. Kate is just so precious and it has definitely been love at first sight and even though we are struggling a little, she really is just perfect in every way and even in between tears and sleep deprivation when I see her little face, I can't help but smile and even with the exhaustion, frustration, fear and anxiety, this mommy thing is pretty awesome!!

Monday, March 22, 2010

So.... c-section or induce??? How do I decide?!

Another Friday appointment and ultrasound gone, but more questions are left unanswered. This past Friday, I saw both my OB and my MFM Specialist, but I really wish I had seen my OB after MFM...

First my OB, who I trust very much. At my appointment, she mentioned that if my protein made another significant jump, she would schedule me for THIS Wednesday rather than next. The deciding factor will be the results of my weekly HELLP Panel and 24 hour, which I turned in this morning. She has been saying, and repeated again, that everything so far has gone remarkably well and that she doesn't want to push it by going too far. We've all come too far for things to go poorly now, and I agree. I trust her and I know that she will do what is best for both my and my baby...

Then we went for the u/s with MFM and saw a doctor who I had never seen before, since ours was out that Friday, and well, they are "Friday checkups" for a reason ;) All looked great with our wonderful baby girl, who was now about 5 pounds, 7 ounces. As usual, she hid her face, but nevertheless, I think I could pick that little u/s face out of a lineup with 100 other babies! All continues to look great, and again, we can't hope for more than that! However, on the way out the door, the MFM doc asked us what our plan for delivery was. So, I told him that based on my ophtholmologists recommendation, we were scheduled for a c-section. His response went something like this (remember, he is one foot out the door):

"Really?? I have never heard of a c-section being recommended based on diabetic retinopathy... You could certainly go through a vaginal delivery and when it came time to push, they would just use that vacuum thing or forceps... You could always get a second opinion (from another ophth), ... mumbled something about it just being his opinion ... but I am a specialist so I guess that is what I am here for " and then he was gone....
Basically, all I heard was that I don't necessarily have to have a c-section, while my husband just looked at me and shook his head, reading my mind and hoping I wouldn't go there, afterall, he also trusts my OB and really wants what is best for both me and the baby.
So, now I'm confused and don't know what to do. I mean, the MFM doc IS a specialist, so he should know a little something about it... but my OB also knows me and I trust her opinion, as well... and my ophth, who is my cousin, but doesn't have a huge amount of experience yet, let alone experience with T1 pregnancies and I know she got her recommendation from the black and white pages of a text book... and then there is MY opinion and my dream to have a normal delivery, but who knows if that will happen regardless of the "plan"... and so the circle goes...
There are pros and cons to each, but how do I know what outweighs the other when I don't know the OUTCOME?!
So, I've called my OB this morning to get her opinion. If she still thinks c-section is best, then I'll go with it, but I want her to know that I am still open to being induced, if possible and even if it ends up resulting in a c-section anyway.
One thing I do know is that my protein was stable after today's results and we have another week for this baby girl to grow, to get stronger, and to help us make an educated decision on how exactly she will enter this world on March 31st... although, you know, if we can push it back into April, I'd be okay with that, too ... ;)
New updated nursery pics coming soon!!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Getting closer... but hopefully not TOOO close!!

Ahhh, another week down and we are almost to 36 1/2 weeks! Yep, still crazy ;) Last friday, we had our usual: perfect u/s, doc visit and this time my bp was even about what it is at home (134/82) rather than the 150/90 that I usually get when I sit down in the doc office chair in that little bitty room... then blood work followed. Everything looked great, as it has been, and I was sent home with my wonderful orange container to collect my weekly 24 hour.

Well on Monday the nurse called with my results, and the protein is continuing to go up... so, she said "we will not put you on bed rest, but we are going to limit your activity and you can only work 4 hours a day..." After we hung up, I called Brad to talk about how absolutely silly this is. I mean, I literally sit at my desk all day and do nothing at all. I get up only to use the restroom and to get my lunch. At home, I know I will be doing so much more than that, especially with my precious little Bella, who enjoys going in and out of our house constantly when I am home! I can't work part-time now... I need all the leave I can get for AFTER she arrives!!

So, after I told Brad that I was going to refuse to listen and just wouldn't tell anyone at work... he convinced me to just call and explain the situation to my doctor, so I did :) And I get to work all 8 hours, as long as I PROMISE that I sit there with my feet up (not only awkward, but very uncomfortable, haha!) and that I do NOTHING when I get home... so, I complied, and am still complying (go me!).

I don't like to just sit there, especially when I FEEL perfectly fine and capable to do whatever I want, but I have decided that the doctor probably knows what she is talking about and that for my sake and our precious angel's sake, I will do it :) I mean, at least I am not on bedrest... I don't know how those amazing women get through bed rest!! They are defniitely stronger than I am... the thought of it causes my blood pressure to skyrocket!

So, for now, things continue to be the same and we are just about another week down! Less than two weeks until we meet our precious girl :)

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Nursery Pictures and Baby Belly: Her Current and Future Homes!

Today, instead of just the regular diabetes check-up update, I really wanted to share some fun things, because well, I think I am kind of fun, and well there is more to me than diabetes :) So, here are some pictures of baby girl's nursery and an updated picture of me, in all my big belly glory!

Getting her nursery to where it is now has been a long process and it is still pretty messy in there, but it is all coming together!! These pictures were taken several weeks ago, so things have even changed since then, but hopefully after we accomplish a lo this weekend (hey, I said hopefully, didn't I...) I can take new pictures :) We've gotten so many wonderful things from so many wonderful people that her little bity room is quite full, haha!

Soooo, this is what we started with, after we emptied out the messy office/junk room stuff and somehow found a new place for it to all go, but before we got started with paint, new blinds, etc. It only took two coats of primer and two coats of paint to get the yellow covered...

...but we did it! We went with just a neutral paint color, mainly since we don't plan to live here forever and didn't want to have to repaint later on, and we also didn't want anything TOO pink, so we thought neutral was a good way to go. I think it makes a nice background for all of the dark furniture... It's actually not as white in person.

I told you it was still messy in there!! We've actually made several changes since these pictures were taken... Her crib and changing table are still on that same wall, but the secretary with the glass case on top is now moved to the wall opposite her crib and we have our glider in there, too, where the secretary used to be... next to the window, which is the big brown rectangle that actually kind of looks like a door in these pictures... It really is crazy how fast that little room filled up! Haha!

These are some little knobs that my Mom and I found for the new closet doors that we bought... and painted. They are just so cute and I love that they add a little splash of color and character.

And lastly we have her "new" closet, just about complete. We painted the inside, replaced and painted the closet doors, and then Brad had to move the hanging bar up a little, which took much longer than either of us expected, but he's proved himself to be a very specatular handy man once again! He definitely likes to show off for his girls :)

We also added two sets of drawers/shelves under the hanging rod... I'm still not quite sure yet how to organize it all; although I figure that will likely come when I know how the space will actually be used.

Now we just need to decorate!! We have lots of great things to put in her glass case and on her walls from our wonderful showers, and next we will add her curtains, bed skirt, bumper and bedding, which my Mom is working on (as we speak, actually :)). Here are the fabric samples of what we are using. The daisy pattern is her curtains, then the polka dot/brown is her bumper and skirt and the pink/white stripe is actually sheets that I have had forever that we are going to make into crib sheets for her! We aren't using the green and the solid brown is very soft minky that will be on the opposite side of her bumper and will be used for a blanket with the daisy pattern.

I can't wait to see it all complete! Baby girl definitely has the nicest room in the house and she'll be joining us in only about 3 more weeks!!!

And finally, an updated picture of my growing "baby bump"! Good thing this picture doesn't also capture my ankles.... which are quickly growing into tree trunks! YIKES!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Well, It's For Real...

My Ob, Dr. G, agreed with my ophth... March 31st via c-section it is. I know it's the best thing, and I knew immediately that it was. I mean, if not a c-section, they would still induce me at 38 weeks, and that is no guarantee against having a c-section. There is always the risk of going through the induction process, being in labor for hours, and STILL having a c-section... I know this is the best thing for us both...

... so why do I feel like such a failure? Why do I feel like I haven't done my part in making sure my baby girl is safe and that somehow I haven't done my job in giving her the absolute best environment to thrive and flourish. If I had, would these new trouble spots in my eyes have even shown up? If I hadn't tortured my body for years and years then would this have ever even been a concern? No, probably not... I know I can't take it back and I know that in the grand scheme of things, I have done a good job, but why do I feel like I could have and should have done better?

This weekend my husband was out supporting a co-worker in a breast cancer walk, and then they went to a local bar for a drink and then off to another co-worker's house to hangout. While there, he let the co-worker call to tell me I should go hang out with them (she was a bit tipsy at this point) and she kept telling me I needed to go, I needed to eat anyway and that I needed to have fun... well it all just hit me like a ton of bricks. I was all alone trying to get everything ready, like I always am, and no, I couldn't eat whatever junk it is that they are having, because I don't want my blood sugar to spike or to eat all the salt since they are monitoring my swelling so closley, and we only have three weeks left to get the house ready and painted and cleaned and organized and no, I don't need to have fun because in a few short weeks, they are going to cut me open and take my baby out on THEIR terms because I didn't do a good enough job of taking care of her. FUN isn't a priority for me right now! (Of course, I nicely told her that I couldn't go and saved the dramatics and water works for after the phone was off)

I know, totally illogical in so many ways, but for whatever reason that phone call just made it all come crashing down on top of me... or maybe it was the confirmation the day before that I was in fact scheduled for a c-section and that all the hope I had been holding onto to not only have a natural birth, but to make it closer to 39 weeks than 38 was gone, ripped from me like the tearing of a page. I guess it even sounds silly that all of that is so important to me, when after all, I have already achieved more than I thought imaginable... I am having a baby!! I guess when I dream, I dream big? I set my goals high... maybe too high?

I am just crushed that I will never go into labor, I will never know what it feels like to have a contraction and I will never hear the joyous cry of our baby after SHE decided was ready to be born and make her grand entrance. I guess it all sounds silly and I know the result is the same, but it was important to me. I desperately wanted that. I wanted all of the messiness and the completely unglamorous scene and the pain and the tears and that joy. I thought I could have that... I thought I had done my job.

I am sure that this will be such a silly post when I look back at it after she is here, but for now, I just feel kind of raw. I'll get over it, though. I mean, my BABY GIRL IS COMING!! I can't be any happier about that part of all of this ;) And in the end, that really is all that matters...

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Breaking News: Baby's Birthday is Set... Huh?!?!

Ahhh, developing news! I had my eye appointment on Monday and it showed that I some new "spots" in my eyes. I did have laser surgery about 7 or 8 years ago but since then, things have been great... until now. I know that pregnancy can cause this and my ophthalmologist did say that it wasn't a lot and will likely go down after I have the baby, but she is recommending a c-section just to be safe.

Okay, not what I wanted to hear, but I see my ob every Friday and figured we would discuss this with her. On a side note, by ophth is my cousin and I know she is not extremely experienced with T1 patients, let alone those who are pregnant and that she is getting all of her info from a book, not from experience... while she is very very intelligent and trustworthy, I wanted to get the opinion of my ob before getting too emotional about it. I left feeling a little down, but not terribly, because I didn't have all of the information I needed yet.

Well, after my eye appointment, I had my records faxed to my ob. Well, I missed a call from my ob yesterday and just figured they would say that my ophth was recommending a c-section. I got in touch with them this morning and the nurse just said "well, your ophth is recommending a c-section so we have you scheduled for Wednesday, March 31st at 12:30 to have your baby..."


Now that is NOT what I was expecting AT ALL! I was just so surprised by the call because I see the doc every single Friday and assume that this decision could have been made after we had discussed it two days later ... I mean, if she really thinks that a c-section is best, then I am going to do whatever it takes to make sure my baby is safe, but I want all the information, and I believe that I at least get a say in what happens. We have so much to talk about tomorrow!!

I am just still kind of shocked that based on that call, the decision is made on her end! I mean, that's it. I get a phone call and BAM, here is your baby's birthday, thanks for playing?? I guess I don't really know how I was expecting it to all happen, but we hadn't even discussed scheduling a day for induction or c-section yet and I was going to talk to my doc about all that tomorrow anyway. My emotions are just in a whirlwind right now, although, I am sure after tomorrow, I will settle down a bit... It just seems so unreal.

She called about two hours ago, and I am already feeling a little better about it, but I will definitely update you all after my appointment!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

I could get used to this... which is good, since I have no choice!

I love having ultrasounds every Friday! Every single Friday I get to see our precious girl pop up on the screen, show off a little, while always hiding her face from view, of course. Of course, it is hard to get away from work for a significant amount of time each week, but it's necessary, and while I don't want to use tons of leave now, rather than when she is here, I do enjoy getting that special time just watching her.

My routine has become this: Every Friday I have an ultrasound, see the doc, get blood work done for the HELLP Panel, pick up my 24 hour urine kit and head back to work. Then, either Saturday or Sunday I do my 24 hour and then head back to the hospital on Monday morning to drop it off.

Of course, throw in my endo appointment this week and eye appointment next week, and that is a LOT of doctors!! I really don't mind, though, especially since so far, they have brought only a sense of comfort that all is well.

As a side note, my protein has actually gone DOWN from the last time I blogged... it was 1150 last week and was 1250 this week. The week before those it was 1590 but my doc said that sometimes extra fluid intake can cause a higher number, so that's good!!

I am still aiming for 4-6 more weeks, although the closer I get to my due date, the more I find myself pushing back my expectations to closer to 39 weeks :) Gosh, she will really be here before I know it!!

Monday, February 15, 2010

One Day At A Time

I am still taking everything one day at a time, and it is amazing how taking each excruciatingly long day as a blessing and moving on to the next can quickly add up to 32 weeks! It is truly incredible.

My weekly u/s and check ups started Friday and all went well. The specialist had done them all prior to this so this was the first since the pregnancy was confirmed that my OB saw my baby girl. I think she was actually impressed :) My fluids look good and she is right around 40% on the growth charts. She said she could tell that my blood sugars have been well controlled, which made me extremely excited. It isn't often that we are actually applauded by our doctors when we do well, so I took it all in :) Baby girl is still looking great by all accounts and she even hiccupped on command and we saw her wiggle her tiny little toes! She is truly amazing.

My protein is still increasing; now up to 1500, but again, we are doing 24 hours every week and so we'll see what the next one brings. I asked when delivery would be necessary and she said that if it gets up to around 5000 she may consider it, but we'll see. Hopefully I can make it to at least 38 weeks. My blood pressure was still high for the first two checks, but thankfully the nurse checks until she gets a good one ;) The first was done over my sleeve and was 150/84 and so she pulled it up and I started getting a bit panicky thinking about bed rest, which resulted in a 154/90 ish. So she did it one more time, while I tried my hardest to calm down: 134/83. Whoo, thank goodness! So, I'm on my feet and at work for one more week! Yay!

As it gets closer to the day that we get to meet our baby girl, I have been reflecting a lot on this journey. I honestly feel as though it is has still not completely sunk in that I am really doing this. That I am pregnant and that I am now blessed to know what it is like to have this baby growing inside me and to feel her kick and her ever more frequent hiccups. It was something I never dared to dream about before because I knew it would hurt too much when I found out that it wouldn't be possible for me, especially since so many years of neglect were at my own hand... but here we are, and we've just about made it through to the end!

I was thinking about how I feel like this pregnancy journey will be over before it ever really sinks in and that then it will be too late to actually sit back and enjoy all of the wonderful things that pregnancy brings (and even those not so wonderful things). Maybe it is that I am so pre-occupied by the never ending focus on my blood sugar and diabetes (even while sneaking in a bit of king cake for Mardi Gras) that has me distracted from allowing myself to believe this is really true, but that is so much a part of it all, and really, that's okay. I just want to try to cherish it all before it is over, and the next chapter begins!

Do I wish that I didn't have to worry about the effect my diabetes will have on my precious child? Of course, but I also know that complications can happen in any pregnancy, and at least I know that I was being watched so closely for any signs of problems. I know that my baby girl will not have an undiagnosed heart problem due to a hole in her heart and I know that if my blood pressure increases even in the slightest, all precautions will be taken to make sure we are both taken care of. I get this extra care because of my diabetes. I have also been able to see her every month since the day she came into existance! I imagine that pregnant women everywhere are constantly concerned that all is well, and I was able to have that extra reassurance.

I think the biggest lesson that I've learned is this: I can do this. I can be healthy, despite my diabetes and despite what others have told me or what they believe my future to be. You know what, I can even be happy. And it really isn't all that hard, in the grand scheme of things. Annoying, yes. Frustrating, all the time! And do I still worry about whether or not I will be able to be the best mother possible to my daughter without my diabetes getting in the way or throwing some horrible complication at me... us? Every day. But I feel like I have been given an amazing opportunity to prove to myself that I can do everything within my power to maintain good control and to keep those complications away to the best of my ability... and that is really all I can do.

Well, here's to one more week down... hoping for at least another 6 weeks to go!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Signs of Pre-Eclampsia

Gosh, I know I say this every single time, but it is still just crazy... I am 30 weeks. I can't beleive it! Baby girl is doing just fine. At her last u/s the doc said that she was "growing perfectly"... I can't even begin to ask for more than that!! She seems healthy and happy in her cozy (and getting cozier by the day) home. She is moving around regularly and it is just so fun to watch my belly protrude as she attempts to stretch and move. I swear sometimes she just gets to dancing and my entire belly pokes out in a million places at once!! I can't help but giggle constantly at her little acrobatics!

Well, it seems that although she is doing well, my blood pressure is on the rise. When they check it at the Doctor's office it is around 140-150/90... although my home monitor never gives me those high results and usually says I am around 135/85 at the absolute highest (only once or twice). I went to see my ob yesterday and she told me that I have orders to take it easy, not do anything when I get home, and if it gets any higher, I will be placed on bed rest... and then when I got home and check, my bp was 111/76. Go figure!

I am also going to do weekly ultrasounds, 24 hour urines, and HELLP panels to monitor how she is doing and the protein in my urine. My weekly ultrasounds were scheduled to begin at 32 weeks anyway, so we are just starting a week early. The 24 hour urines will be a huge inconvenience, but I'd do them daily if that is what it takes!

My protein has gone up from 305 at 12 weeks, to 550 at around 20 weeks, to 990 at 28 weeks. So, it's on the rise, but I think it is still within an okay range for now, but protein is part of pre-e, so they just want to make sure it doesn't get out of control.

I have only had protein in my urine once with the dip stick in the OB's office, and even then she said she was surprised it hadn't shown up sooner and that it likely was due to something I ate, although I don't know if that even matters since my 24 hours are on the rise.

So... that's my update. Not great news, but not horrible either. Basically, I just do my best to keep my blood pressure down and continue on what I am doing. If I do have to go on bed rest it will kill me only because it will eat up my maternity leave, and I'd much rather spend that time with my precious girl instead of just sitting around, but I'll do what I need to keep her growing and healthy for as long as possible. Hopefully we can at least make it to 36-37 weeks, which is only about 5-6 weeks away! OH MY HOLY COW!! Ooohh, deep breathes, deep breathes ;)

I have a baby shower this weekend, and am required to sit the whole time, but I am very excited for it. Thankfully we did it as early as possible "just in case", since it seems it might have been necessary. I'll keep you all updated! Thank you so much for your comments, thoughts, and prayers. They mean so much to me. I am so blessed to be surrounded by so many friends who know the ups and downs of diabetes!!
Oh, and her latest u/s pic... I know it's hard to pic her out, but it is her full face, tilted with her forehead toward the top right, chin toward the bottom left, and you can see both eyes, nose and her Daddy's lips!! :)

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Week 29: What an Amazing Journey It's Been

I can't believe I am here typing that I am in my 29th week of pregnancy. It really still all feels so surreal to me. I feel like I know it is happening, but that I am somehow just watching it happen from a distance or to someone else. It's just incredible :)

I feel her not so gentle kicks and nudges constantly these days and my belly often takes it upon itself to begin moving like a bowl of jello, and I can do nothing but laugh! It's crazy and had no clue that would happen! We are still steadily working on her room, which is at this point easily the nicest in our humble home, but heck, she does deserve the best! It's fun to hang out in her room and think about how before we know it, it really will be HER room.

I am still completely obsessed with registries and continuously try to figure out what I need to prepare myself for our precious girl, but so far, the lists of items have not yet sent me any magic answers. I feel like I am trying to find Waldo among all of the swings and strollers and carseats and bedding and bottles and blankets and bibs. He's definitely gotten pretty darn good at this hiding thing...

On the diabetes front, I am feeling better about resistance this week. It's still there, and it still confuses me, and mostly it still scares me, but it hasn't been quite as bad as it was before. The long list of appointments continues and I saw my endocrinologist this past Monday. My A1C only went up .1 to 5.3; however, I am quite skeptical about this whole accuracy thing because I know that my numbers were not nearly consistent with what they were before. My meter average has gone up from 100 to 120, so I know I am not totally delusional. Kerri over at Six Until Me seems to be having the same doubts... but all I can do is trust all is well.

I also saw my ob last Friday. I think my blood pressure is starting to creep up and I am definitely swelling more, and I had 3+ protein in my urine when they checked... so I was off to do another 24 hour urine. My ob did mention that I probably shouldn't worry and that she honestly expected me to have had protein show up before now, since well, I've always had some protein due to my diabetes. So, when the person called with my results she said the doc said all was well, but I asked her what my protein was so I could pass this info on to my endo and she said 990, but that my ob had said it was stable so it was fine. Last 24 hour in early December showed I had 550, which doesn't seem stable to me! I discussed this with my endo when I went and he said that as long as it isn't around 3000 they probably won't be concerned. But, I can't help but be a tad concerned...

I check my blood pressure at home and it usually doesn't get higher than around 130ish/82ish, with some occasionally a tad higher, but most closer to 125/80. I know pre-eclampsia is more common in people with diabetes and I am honestly thinking about it 24/7, I can't help it. I am not stressed about it necessarily, but I am constantly on the look out for signs. I mean, swelling, I am swelling, but how much is too much? And, sure, I get headaches, but they aren't unbearable... I have a total battle going on with whether what I am going through is normal in someone who is pregnant or if I should be alarmed... Thankfully, the doc appointments will be picking up again soon and so I will no longer have to solely rely on my own judgement on these things... whew!

We get to see our baby girl tomorrow for an u/s, as well, and that always puts me at ease a bit. And don't worry, I've got a long list of questions for the maternal fetal specialist :) Seriously, every single day is an amazing blessing to me and I am just praying those days keep adding up to more weeks for baby girl to get stronger!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Third Trimester: Nesting is in FULL Force!!

I am so sorry I have been a stranger!! I think I have just become so occupied with just making sure things run smoothly, I haven't taken the time to write about it, since diabetes and doing well is always on my mind... I still look down at this very large belly and question whether it's all real. It is, I know it is, but I was so scared for so long that I would never get to where I am today it's hard to believe. I know I am so blessed and so grateful and just so happy. I cannot wait to meet this precious baby girl!!!

Resistance started hitting hard around week 22... I rarely saw any numbers under 100, although many were close and it was extremely frustrating. I think I've hammered all that out now but it was very difficult at the time. I know it will become hard again, but today is good and I am thankful for that. Regardless, it's all so worth it. I have a strange feeling that this won't be the last time I worry about my baby girl 24 hours a day ;)

I am also in absolute full nesting mode, haha!! I find myself continually trying to nest, but realize that I have nothing left to do until we get closer... Her furniture is all in her room and today we started putting together a closet organizer to add some more storage space. When I can't "nest" around the house, I find myself totally obsessed with my registries for her! I am constantly looking at them to see if I've thought of everything I might need. Suggestions from any Mommies out there on what I NEED, what is nice to have, and those things I should just forget are completely welcome!! This whole 'not knowing what the heck I am doing' is pretty hard!! I keep reading books and trying to be prepared, but they are talking about things I have no experience with and I know it won't make sense until she is here, and that's just how it is supposed to be :) Thankfully, I've been totally obsessed with babies and kids since I was one myself, so I have lots of babysitting experience and experience with newborns, but I know it will not be close to the same... I am just ready to move on to that next chapter!

I am now 28 weeks along and probably have at most 10 weeks to go, and hoping and praying that I make it close to that. So far everything is great, but I know things can change in an instant and I am trying my best to be prepared. But, all in all things are wonderful. I love her little tap dances in my belly and just grin ear to ear when I feel her moving around. It will never get old. I am just so in love with this baby girl and am anxiously awaiting the day I can hold her in my arms!!