appointment # 7 – GD

This is wordy. Please hang-in with me, because I’m having a very bad day.

***

I don’t know what you all think of me. But if I had to describe myself I would say that I am a well educated, smart, independent woman. I know how to do my own research and figure things out for myself.

My last post about my recent experience at the doctor’s office was fueled by frustration. Mostly frustration with myself, and my severe anxiety caused my being in the doctor’s office. Just typing that sentence made me tear up.

I did feel very bullied after my last appointment, because of the few things I was able to choke out between tears, the doctor pretty much just said “no” like I was a toddler asking for more cookies.

But today I saw the same doctor, and despite my anxiety, he has redeemed himself.

This appointment was supposed to be about my slightly elevated blood pressure. I guess if blood pressure is over 140/90 , then it is considered prehypertension. Last time my BP was 140/80, so I had this appointment today to take the BP again and see if it was high because of stress (did I mention I did a lot of crying at that appointment) or because of hypertension.

But the numbers they got today were probably useless.

For all of you future nurses out there – don’t give people stressful information while you’re taking their BP to see if they have hypertension.

So my states today?

Weight: the same as it has been for 7 months.
Baby’s heart rate:  154 – perfect!
My blood pressure: 140/79

still elevated. Of course, I don’t think she realized that my BP was the reason I was there, because as I was saying “I’m just here for my BP” she said “So you 3-hour test results came back…” but as she heard me talking to paused, and then let out a little grimace. I knew it wasn’t good. So as she took my BP I tried to maintain steady breathing, as she tried to offer words she probably thought we comforting.

Maybe it will be better next time.

She finished taking my BP and said the doctor would be in shortly.

I just paced around the room trying to not cry. But I failed. I had told B-man to stay home because I thought it would be a really short appointment. By the time the doctor came in I was hyper-ventilating and crying like a little baby.

Last time he was very quick. He just gave me information, and when I said I was fine he shook my hand and left. To be honest I was glad for him to walk out of the room last week because it allowed me to breath and calm down.

But this time he came in, shook my hand, and then waited. He passed me tissues, and patiently waited for me to calm down. He let me ask my questions. It was a very slow process, but good… I guess.

We talked about what a diagnosis of GD means.

The one thing that really upset me was that it automatically means an induction at 38 weeks.

<rant>

Considering that I was planning to not use any medication, this is particularly upsetting.

I want to share some numbers with you, and maybe you can see why it is even more frustrating than just have the label:

Gestational Diabetes
Fasting 95 89
1-hour 180 184
2-hour 155 160
3-hour 140 105

So on the left are the thresholds set by the American Diabetes Association for the diagnosis of GD. The right are my numbers. The go from perfectly normal, barely over, barely over, perfectly normal. If either of those two bold numbers had been 5 points lower, I wouldn’t have this label. I wouldn’t be considered “high risk” and I would have to put up with all the crap.

I guess I should just avoid drinking 100 grams of sugar for every meal.

But seriously. The test shows what my body does when it is put under stress… which is not what happens everyday. So instead of trying to get a more realistic of what my body can do, I am going to have this “high risk” label slapped on me, and now I have to go to doctors appointments every day and through my plans of a natural childbirth out the window.

Which makes me mad.

</rant>

After talking about the “diagnosis” he brought up another topic. He mentioned that every time he has seen me I have been super stressed and crying. Okay, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to notice that. But then we had a good discussion about my past anxiety/depression problems and that he realized this situation was stressful for me. We talked about the possibility of postpartum depression and that if I wanted to start taking anti-depressants before the baby is born so that they are active by the time of the birth, then that is an option.

I would prefer not to. I would rather not screw up my child’s hormones before they are born. I am very blessed to have a lot of support and help. Maybe I’m pushing myself too much, but while ADs are an option, they are my least favorite option in the entire would and I really want to avoid them unless I have to.

And I am the one who decides when I have to.

So semi-thoughtful doctor gave me plenty of things to think about.

It’s probably good that B-man wasn’t there, because without him there I was able to calm myself down and actually get some productive talking done.

***

The diabetes specialist called to make an appointment. Of course, it wasn’t really to make an appointment. It was to inform me that the diabetes education class meets on Thursdays at 9:30.

When I said I couldn’t attend a class every Thursday for five weeks because of work, the woman on the phone said “Well, this is kiiind of important, don’t you think your employer would understand?”

Well… to be honest… no. It’s not that kind of job. It is a BRAND NEW JOB, one that I am very lucky to have, and I wish she would’ve kept your snotty attitude to herself instead of being rude.

After lots of “hmmm” and “aaahs” she gave up on trying to find an appointment that would fit into my schedule, and said she would call back.

And ya know what I have to say to that?

Boo. I’m paying you, so stop making me feel crappy.

***

I kind of wish they would just tell me what I need to do so I can do it, instead of sending me to these stupid group meetings. Grrr.

Continue the fun!

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8 Comments

  1. I was curious about GD, so looked it up online. I found this:

    "Strong evidence, based on prospective studies and randomized controlled trials, in favour or against the effectiveness and safeness of induction in women with GDM, are missing." They are currently conducting a study to decide the question (link: http://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT01058772).

    So if it's important to you to have a natural birth, maybe you should refuse the induction, or at least get another opinion. The main risk for natural birth is that your baby will be too big, which they should be able to guess at before delivery anyway.

    On the other hand, I had to get an induction due to high blood pressure/pre eclampsia and low amniocentic fluid, and still had a complication-free, pretty easy vaginal birth: this might happen for you too!

    1. Yah, after my day-long cry fest B-man and I were able to sit down and talk about it. We decided that if my blood sugars stay fine through out the rest of the pregnancy, than I will probably refuse induction – but that it is a good option to have in case things get more complicated.

      I hadn't considered looking that up, so thank you go sharing!

    1. Thankfully, a few days later, I can think a little more clearly now. It's not the end of the world, just a giant pain in the buttocks.

  2. I'm sorry. It's not fair that you feel locked into a diagnosis and a course of action that doesn't seem to reflect your health situation very realistically. I'm glad you've talked about refusing induction. You have options and you should feel like you do.

    1. That's what my husband is for – because really, that was his advice. It just took me hours of crying to actually listen to him (because umm… when are men actually right?). lol.We're just going to play it by ear.

  3. So is the reason why they induce at 38 weeks is to keep you from having such a big baby? Or because the longer your baby is in your womb there's more risk for other medical complications?

    Obviously no one reading your blog is in your position and if they were, they aren't you. So I urge you to think about what's best for your baby (like I know you are) and go from there. I guess the only thing I would ever worry about is whether or not my birthing choices are over shadowing the needs of my child. After all, no child really comes back to their mom and says "You know what, I kind of resent you for not giving birth to me ____" Sometimes I think birthing choices are more about the mother and sometimes less about the child (sometimes).

    The GD woman can go one some where. I hate when people do that! At the horrible practice I was at I had to cancel an appointment because I was between jobs and didn't have insurance. They tried to bully me into getting and paying fully for a sonogram! They wouldn't even bill me later or let me do payment options so I told them no, absolutely not. The woman on the phone then made me feel so bad as if I was killing my baby. Blah to the medical field!

    1. The doctor gave me kind of conflicting information. He comforted me saying "Well controlled GD usually results in average sized babies" and then he said that women with GD are induced at 38 weeks to prevent any problems from happening (growth or complications). We've decided to just play it by ear. Of course we will do whatever is best for the baby, but at the same time I don't want to rush into something just because it is "recommended".

      Of course… by the time I get to 38 weeks I might be more than willing to be induced and push the kiddo out! I worry about being induced because… what if my body isn't ready? I'm worried about all of the interventions that come *after* being induced, and that the possibility of a c-section sky-rockets. You're right, I will do whatever it takes, but I would rather avoid complicating things more if I can.

      The short story: we're going to play it by ear and do what needs to be done.

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