Day 1 as a (gestational) diabetic…

Last night T and I went on a mini date night to the cinema. (Side comment: We invested in Unlimited cards for the cinema a few months ago, which we got at a discount – they have been a great investment as it means once we’d been a few times, we now have effectively free cinema trips for an entire year.)

Before the flicks, we decided to go and get some dinner so we went to a burger place as T was meeting his other friend today and they were probably going for pizza (the other choice) and also I was thinking a burger without chips (fries!) is probably not that bad for carbs, and anyway I’d told the diabetes nurse I was only going to start the following day. I also had a milkshake because, in for a penny, in for a pound…

Felt fine. We went to see Arrival, which I really wanted to see. It was not what I expected! It looked good but it was really quite boring and I kept falling asleep! T had to prod me at one point as apparently I was snoring! In my defence, I think I’ve been very tired lately. Not sure if it’s the anaemia or pregnancy or gestational diabetes or all three.

So far, so Friday night. (My new kind of Friday night where I’m not out at a bar getting tipsy!) Went to bed, and then at around 03:30 in the morning I woke up with stomach pains. It was really weird, and felt like period pains. I was worried about it and wondering whether to wake T, and I googled abdominal pains 31 weeks to see if it was normal or not.

There didn’t seem to be an internet consensus, other than it could be Braxton Hicks (which I thought didn’t hurt but was more like tightening, which I’ve been having for months already). Also most people said that their doctors had said not to worry as long as it didn’t go on for a really long time and there was no bleeding.

After a while I felt like I needed to go to the bathroom so did that… (TMI time: number two!) Went back to bed. I still had the stomach cramps for a while. And then suddenly I really needed to go again and rushed to the bathroom and I had really bad diarrhoea. (TMI – I warned you!) I think I mentioned on my last post that since taking the iron tablets that I have felt like when I need to go, I really need to go… Well this was pretty bad. Since starting the iron tablets, I have had mild diarrhoea once in a while but not as bad as that. Maybe it was the burger/milkshake. 

Anyway, after that I felt much better and went back to bed and the stomach cramps went away. It was weird as I felt that they were more in my stomach / bump area but they seemed to go away after that.

Then at around 05:30 I woke up feeling cold. Now, what follows is something I have had once before in this pregnancy – it’s a feeling of intense shivering, teeth chattering and uncontrollable shaking. I woke T and he put the whole duvet cover double folded on me and also my dressing gown, and I grabbed Dog as a handy hot water bottle and I was still shivering.

I asked him to look up what it might be, as it seemed worse than last time. Last time was also at night, early on in the pregnancy and eventually the shivering went away after a few minutes. But this time lasted a lot longer and felt worse. I just couldn’t stop shaking. T was searching online and he said apparently it happens to quite a few people in pregnancy and it could be a sign of dehydration or low blood sugar… and with the whole gestational diabetes thing, we thought maybe it was that. 

He got me a drink of water and I drank all of that, and then he got me some grapes. (I had been shivering for quite a while by this time and it was not fun!) I think I had about 6 grapes and shortly after that, the shivering stopped. We then thought to test my blood sugar (we should have done it before eating the grapes but I was too busy shivering) and I think it was 4.7 which is quite low. Maybe before the grapes it was less. 

Online it seems to suggest that less than 4 leads to hypoglaecaemia (low blood sugar) and one of the symptoms is shaking. When I woke up this morning and tested pre-breakfast, it was 5.3 so higher than last night before the grapes. So I’m wondering if I had a “hypo”? I couldn’t really find much information online about it, but it was definitely a bit odd.

Today (the weekend) I tried to do everything right, so I got up and tested again. I guess it was not really fasting blood sugar as I’d had the grapes at 05:45 or something. The official blood glucose targets during pregnancy for our hospital are:

Fasting <5.3

1hr value after meals <7.5 (NICE guidelines are 7.8)

2hrs after meals <6.4

For breakfast I had sugar free Alpen (muesli) which I even measured out to the correct amount (45g) which is really small! And then for my mid morning snack I had an apple and some cheese which we had been recommended during the diet session yesterday.

What happened is… Well, I was so tired for the entire day. We took Dog out for his morning walk, and then I had my breakfast, then sat and watched some tv, then had the snack and then fell asleep for the entire afternoon. I am thinking that this really isn’t ideal as I can sleep during the weekend but I can’t sleep all day during the week!

I woke up feeling peckish but also really tired. T was having some crisps, so even though I know I’m not supposed to have them, I had some. And then had enough energy to take Dog out for his evening walk. I guess I’d missed lunch but I think I even fell asleep before lunchtime. This GD business is not ideal! I had another apple and cheese a while ago and have put diner in the oven. (Chicken goujons bought before the GD thing. But hopefully protein and a bit of carbs.)

My feeling is that the lack of carbs really contributed towards my complete lack of energy today. Like I tried to do everything right but clearly needed something carby to give me the energy not to sleep all day. I need to go to the supermarket and do some shopping according to the diet leaflet, but that’s what I was intending to do today and that clearly didn’t happen as I slept most of the day! Argh.

So yeah, so far Day 1 of being a diabetic is not really doing it for me.

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26 comments

  1. MrsKirstyHoll

    That does not sound cool. 😦 I found the aneamia ain’t cool and I agree the iron tablets seriously mess with your system. I was told fibre and orange juice help…. but I’m more the other way…. (sorry tmi). When the iron tablets kick in you should feel better. My system went from nackered to being semi normal. But I imagine the GD isnt helping 😦 hope you feel better soon!

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  2. sewingbutterfly

    The guidelines seem very vague! You can always seek out a nutritionist or dietician that specialises. My SIL had GD with her first pregnancy and found it more useful than trying to guess herself.

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    • Nara

      We get a dietician every two weeks but I’m not overly convinced as we were told to drink diet drinks?!? Which I can’t imagine are good for you. Am just sticking to water and cutting the juice / hot chocolate! 😭

      Liked by 1 person

      • sewingbutterfly

        I guess they throw the diet drink stuff in there to give you options for when you go out maybe? Sounds odd as most dieticians I know hate diet drinks! Sticking to water is probably best, plus it is excellent for milk supply and for protecting your digestive system 😉

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      • Nara

        I really don’t like soft drinks generally so I’m happy to stick to water! It would be nice to have a hot drink option though… I’ll have to make myself like tea! 😩

        Liked by 1 person

    • Nara

      Ah it’s okay. I’ve definitely been diagnosed with the diabetes and I have no idea what the other stuff is! Fortunately I don’t think I have an incurable disease! 😂

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  3. dinksbydefault

    I am so behind. Sorry you have to deal with GD 😦 . Hopefully you will get in the groove and figure out exactly what it takes for your body and baby to be happy. 31 weeks is so close yet so far!

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  4. RJ

    Can you read this?! My app won’t let me comment!

    I’m so sorry you’re feeling poorly. Starting a new diet is super hard. Luckily you only have a couple months max left until you meet baby!

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    • Nara

      Yes I can read it! ☺️ I’m feeling a bit better as have had a few days now of testing and diet. It’s just a bit tricky figuring out what to buy in the supermarket!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. thegreatpuddingclubhunt

    I too have woke up twice in past two weeks with extreme chills, uncontrollable shaking and shivering, I thought I was coming down with flu or food poisoning (I’ve had diarrhea and tummy pains too, but that’s not overly unusual for me). I was terrified it was early labour. But I had no other signs…now that you say you had similar I wonder about the anemia thing and it seems that these symptoms could be related.
    It sucks a lot about the diet thing 😔 so much new stuff for you to learn – you are a trooper!

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    • Nara

      Ah I thought it was just me! Maybe it was the diarrhoea but last time I didn’t have diarrhoea, just shivering. That’s why I thought it might be the low blood sugar. Although maybe it’s anaemia if that’s what we both have! It did calm down after eating the grapes but it had been going on a while so maybe it just stopped because of that. Yeah the diet thing is annoying! But has made me a lot more conscious about what I’m eating. I think it just requires a lot more pre planning than I’m used to!

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    • Nara

      I’m managing to improve the scores so far so hopefully getting it under control!

      The cinema cards are amazing! The price we got them for (discount) was about four-five trips and they’re valid for a year. So we try and go two-three times a month. It’s really good! (Enjoying the quiet time, haha.)

      Liked by 1 person

  6. MrsD

    Are you getting enough protein? Based on what you said you had during the day it sounds like maybe you’re not getting enough overall calories. I did the same thing when first diagnosed with GD. I had eggs for breakfast every day because they’re really high in protein, though I got so sick of them that even now, 6 months post partum, I can’t even look at an egg! 🙂 But I’d say to stock up on lots of meat, nuts, eggs, cheese, and greek yogurt. That should help you feel fuller and have more energy. I also noticed that when I had too much sugar, I got a weird taste in my mouth. After my daughter was born that went away, but I guess it was my body’s way of warning me to quit cheating on the low carb diet!

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    • Nara

      I think you’re right. I wasn’t getting enough so I was feeling sooo tired. I had scrambled eggs on toast this morning and I feel so much better and my blood sugar was way lower! I got some Greek yoghurt as well and had that on dessert last night and was within range, so happy days! I have some nuts too. I will have to get some meat or something. Thanks for the tips! Yes I get the weird taste thing too!

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    • Nara

      Yeah they’re great!! Full price it’s quite expensive but we got a big discount using a voucher site, so I think we only had to go about four times to make it worthwhile!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Pingback: NaBloPoMo roundup | From zero to zygote

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