The 1st of Many Prenatal Doctor Appointments
As most of you know, I have type 1 diabetes. Because of this, I am considered high risk while pregnant and have way too many doctor appointments. Today I am 8 weeks pregnant and had my very first appointment. Luke made the mistake of joining me for it because he was excited to see the babies heartbeat on the ultrasound. I say mistake because we were there for 3.5 hours and we thought that it would be okay to bring our 14 month old son since we would have an extra set of hands. He lasted about an hour before he lost his mind and Luke had to take him for a stroller ride.
The first part of my visit was an ultrasound where we got to see the baby and it's heart beat. This never gets old and is very exciting, but our experience was quite different than the first time around because I didn't have a toddler trying to climb on top of me. The ultrasound technician quickly let us know that he could not be on the bed during the ultrasound. Luke was able to glance at the monitor and steal a quick kiss in between our son opening all of the cupboards and trying to get into the hazard trash cans.
Next, I was off to see my diabetic educator. She is probably the most important person that I will see over the next 9 months. Her job is to analyze my blood sugars and make adjustments to my insulin regimen. During weeks 8-12 insulin requirements drop and then from weeks 12-40 they increase until delivery. In the first trimester I will see her every 2 weeks and between visits she will also view my blood sugar data online via my CGM clarity app. Keeping close to normal blood sugars is key to having a healthy baby.
Something that has been bothering me was the fact that diabetics have increased chances of having a baby with abnormalities due to high blood sugar. I finally just asked her what are the chances of this happening to my baby with my blood sugars. My eyes swelled up, but i was glad that I asked because her response lifted up a burden that has been weighing me down from before conception. She said that with my A1C of 6.0 I am at NO increased chances over the general population. (A1C is the average glucose over the last 3 months) She said that in all the years she's been doing this, that she's only seen these types of problems come from A1C's in the 8 or higher range. Wow, hearing this made my heart flutter. I seriously walked out of her office feeling 10lbs lighter. Praise God. I am doing a good job. My baby will be healthy!
My last appointment was with a high risk OBGYN. She said that my ultrasound looked great and spoke of my future appointments. I let her finish before I unloaded on her. I explained to her all of the terrible things that had happened during my son's delivery, like the fact that he had low blood sugar for days due to my high blood sugar during delivery. I told her that I wanted to know who's job it was to monitor my blood sugar and why hadn't they done it? (Once I was admitted I had handed over my blood sugar responsibilities to the hospital staff) I told her that during the entire 2 hours of pushing I didn't remember my blood sugar being checked once. I then explained to her the burden and stress that went along with having a baby with low blood sugar. I had already went 2 days with almost no sleep prior to delivering Thor and now that he was here I had to feed him every 90 minutes around the clock for 2 days even when he wasn't hungry until finally his blood sugars normalized. I told her that these were the hardest days of my life and I'm determined to make this delivery smoother, even if I have to bring a friend in to manage my blood sugars for me.
To say that I overwhelmed her is an understatement. I had been waiting months to discuss all of the things that happened during my delivery that I deemed preventable. I thought about switching to the University of Washington Hospital, but how would I prevent things from happening if I didn't have this kind of history. I decided to go back to Maternal Fetal Medicine because although my experience wasn't perfect, we were in fact both healthy at the end of the day and they did an excellent job at caring for us up until my delivery and even caught my preeclampsia. I think the problem is the disconnect from the high risk doctors and the normal delivery staff. They just aren't trained in dealing with these types of issues on a regular basis. I treat my diabetes everyday and there are days when I don't know what the heck is going on.
I also asked her about my risk for developing preeclampsia again and she said that I'm still going to be monitored for it throughout my pregnancy because of increased risk, but that she will start me on baby advil at 12 weeks and it is shown to reduce likeliness. I'm curious to do my own research on this and I'm praying that she is right. My question is, why wasnt I on this last time since I was at high risk for developing it? My only guess is that this is new or that she is just trying to ease my mind by giving me something to lean on.
This time around is going to be a lot different. I'm not a newly diagnosed Diabetic. I have the information and knowledge to protect my little guy or gal and I'm going to do my best. I did my best last time around, but this time my best is better and I am optimistic that we will have a smoother pregnancy and delivery. If it wasn't for all of this medical crap, I really do love being pregnant!!! I'm planning on giving an update after each of my doctor appointments so you all can follow my pregnancy journey!!