Thursday, April 25, 2013
How Low Can You Go?
First Trimester Lows
At my first real appointment with my endo after I found out I was pregnant, I found out that my A1c had dropped from 6.2 to 5.6, which is actually considered normal! That was literally the first time in my life that I'd ever seen the words "normal" next to my A1C! It was a nice feeling! This drop was due to the fact that during the first trimester of pregnancy with Type 1 diabetes, your blood sugar is just low ALL THE FREAKING TIME. Not like 70 low, either. We're talking 50s, here, people. Multiple times a day, every single freaking day. If the first trimester exhaustion doesn't kill you, the lows pretty much do you in. When I told another Type 1 friend of mine I was pregnant, she asked me if I was keeping all the Columbus juice vendors in business. SO MUCH JUICE DRINKING! Seriously it was GALLONS of juice, all day, every day. And glucose. And juice, and more glucose. Sheesh!
I'm not sure about the exact physiology behind this, but my endo explained it this way: "Your baby is basically a parasite, and it's growing super fast right now, so everything you are consuming is going to it first and if there's anything leftover for you, you're lucky." And, apparently in Type 1, that translates to being low. All_the_freaking_time.
My poor husband. He put up with so much during those months! I was seriously a zombie during the first trimester, and pretty much useless (except, you know, for the fact that I was gestating a human being inside of me). If I wasn't passed out on the couch from sheer exhaustion, I was fumbling about with "low-blood-sugar-brain" after fighting off a million lows during the day. And night time was no better! My simultaneously blessed and evil CGM would beep all night long alerting me to my low blood sugar. There were several times I had to keep myself from throwing that thing against the wall. If I were being completely honest, though, I'd say having my beautiful Dex G4 literally saved my life a few times. Being so low all the time made me get used to feeling low. So, I stopped having symptoms of low blood sugar until my sugars were dangerously low (like 35). Between the lack of low symptoms and my sheer exhaustion, I definitely would've slept myself right into a low blood sugar coma or something had that sweet little Dex not beeped at me to "wake-the-freak-up-and treat-this-low!"
Other First Trimester Things
In addition to the constant lows, the first trimester brought all the usual pregnancy things, like exhaustion, having to pee all the time, and a little bit of nausea. Oh, and I did have two colds, the stomach flu, and an outbreak of cold sores (FIVE AT ONCE! My poor mouth! ) during the first trimester, so all of that overshadowed any of the nausea I was feeling.
The one thing that made the first trimester complicated, diabetes-ly speaking was that I developed a total aversion to foods that were healthy. Like I said, I wasn't really sick to my stomach that much, and I could usually just stuff food in my face and that would make the nausea go away. But the food aversions were hard! I had a complete and total aversion to SALAD and pretty much anything leafy and green. Which, you know, is not so great when you're trying to count your carbs and be a good diabetic. I tried so hard to eat salad a couple of times, but even thinking about eating lettuce made me want to vomit. It was weird. Luckily the massive amount of carbs I ate at any given meal, in lieu of the healthy things I would normally have eaten, were off-set by my first trimester lows, so it wasn't so bad. If I hadn't had all those lows, though, I would have been in major trouble!
OK! That's enough for one day! If you didn't read the whole thing, basically you just need to know that First Trimester=More lows than you've ever had in your life!