Tag Archives: gestational diabetes

Sweet Dreams are Made of…Bread

I need carbs.  There.  I said it.

There was a brief moment in time about eight hundred years ago where, for some misbegotten reason, I agreed to do Atkins with a friend to help keep her motivated.  For two weeks of my life, I couldn’t think.  I became a mental zombie.  When you rely on your brain as much as I do, this is a huge problem.  These days, I try to keep my carb intake higher on the complex side and pretty low on the simple side.  (What can I say?  Christmas cookies happen…)  Voilà!  My body and my brain are both happy.

Fast-forward eight hundred years.

I may have mentioned once or twice (or twenty) times that I have gestational diabetes again with New Baby.  I may have also mentioned that I’m taking one of my last upper level classes.  These two things don’t mix so well.  My carb intake is so low that it may as well be nonexistent.  My brain is back in zombie mode.  In the past month, my fruit intake has consisted of one banana and half of an apple because of the alarmingly impressive heights my blood sugar levels reach after I ate them.  I miss fruit.  I miss bread.  And carrots.  And milk.  And my brain.

I’m writing an average of two big papers a week.  Normally, this isn’t a problem.  I may be introverted, but I have never had an issue expressing myself through pencil and paper.  (Well…Microsoft Word and my keyboard.)  However, this non-carb thing is throwing off my groove.  What should be a simple task of knocking these papers out…especially since I’m not exactly a newbie to the overall topics under discussion…is proving to be excruciatingly difficult.

Today’s writing session went something like this:

  1. Sit at desk.
  2. Scribble outline of thoughts.
  3. Erase the random “muffin” that appeared under the heading “OSI Model.”
  4. Can’t remember catchy acronym for the seven layers learned in C school, so look it up.
  5. Apparently, it’s “Please Do Not Throw Sausage Pizza Away.”
  6. Mmmmm…pizza.  Six more weeks until I can have pizza.
  7. And cake.  Because Donkey reminded Shrek that cakes have layers, too…not just the OSI model.
  8. Look!  Shiny!!
  9. Rinse and repeat.

I’m at the halfway mark for this class already.  So far, I have an A.  Here’s hoping that I can keep it that way.  And here’s hoping that the dancing PB&J sandwiches have the decency to stay out of my dreams tonight ’cause that was just plain mean.


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Adventures in Almond Land

So, this ride on the gestational diabetes merry-go-round, I decided that I wanted to go even lighter on the whole dairy thing than I did when I was pregnant with Baby.

Okay.  I don’t really want it.  But, with my numbers looking like they live on a pogo stick in spite of the insulin shots, I’m willing to try nearly anything.  (I refuse to try eel.)  This isn’t that big of a deal.  I limit my dairy intake to tiny amounts of cheese, cream cheese, and margarine.  The killer is that I’ve been craving ice cream.  I want cold.  Creamy.  Yumminess.  It may be less than 40 degrees outside, but I want it.  Plus, I got my ice cream maker for Christmas, and I want to use it, dang it.

So far, I’ve tried making three different recipes for actual almond milk ice cream.  The first one I made came from the first recipe of the three listed and consists of almond milk, greenish bananas, cocoa powder and Splenda.  That one’s really good…although it’s more of a sorbet than ice cream in my opinion.  I’ve made it twice with the bananas, and then yesterday, I substituted 15 ounces of pumpkin purée for the bananas.  (Pumpkin has a lower sugar content + higher fiber that seems to = lower blood sugar for this girl.  However, the side trip to Pumpkinville is a topic for another post)  That tasted pretty good as well, although I probably could have (read should have) made it a little sweeter.  Pumpkin is pretty mild, but apparently when mixed with unsweetened cocoa, it morphs into an almost coffee-like flavor.

I’ve also made the “normal” vanilla ice cream base in my Better Homes and Gardens cookbook just substituting almond milk for the dairy stuff.  Good, but I still wasn’t terribly happy with the texture.  Almond milk makes weird custard, apparently.  Who knew, right?

Remember how I was pondering how to make instant pudding with almond milk last post?  No?  That’s okay…neither did I.  Anyway, I gave it a shot today.  Apparently, if you halve the liquid called for, it instantly achieves extra-thick pudding-y goodness.  I made a double batch of white chocolate pudding using that method, then decided upon reflection that it was a little too thick.  (It started strangling my blender, so…)  I added an extra cup of milk, plus a teaspoon of almond extract and 2 tablespoons of Splenda, and BOOM!  Great flavor without the wateriness of almond milk.  I let it set for about 10 minutes, and then ran it through my ice cream machine.

My husband was really happy about his dessert tonight.  So was I.  I have all kinds of pudding boxes with various flavors in my cabinet…let’s hear it for finding a use for them!

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To Recap…

I really could have sworn that I had posted since Monday.  However, the dashboard does not lie.  All of that writing I did this week was apparently for class, not for this blog.  At least I know I posted it to the correct website…I’m pretty sure you would not be interested in the responses I had to write for my discussion board.

This week has been a roller coaster ride of epic proportions in the blood sugar department.  I had four days of awesome, followed by four days of “what the heck?!!” which was then followed by a “Go directly to Insulin.  Do not pass go.  Do not collect $200.00” card from my doctor on Thursday.  I may have mentioned this before, but when it comes to needles, I’m a big sissy.  Possibly the only thing that paralyzes me more than needles is spiders.  Seriously, I still can’t watch Shelob try to eat Frodo.  I have to cover my eyes and ears during that part.  She moves and hisses just like the tarantula that moved into my apartment when I was stationed in Puerto Rico.  Enough with the arachnophobia.  Moving along…I know I’ve mentioned this a few times before, but my husband is awesome.  He gives me my shots at night so I don’t have to give them to myself.

We had our first field trip of 2013 yesterday!  It was Homeschool Day at the aquarium.  My husband had the day off, so he got to go with us, which doesn’t happen very often.  The boys and I were pretty dang excited about his presence.  Daddy is oodles of fun, plus he can keep up with them much easier than Momma can at this point in the game.  She waddles like a penguin with arthritis.  For me, the highlight of the day was seeing both of my boys petting the stingrays.  Oldest managed to drown his shirtsleeve, but he had an absolute blast seeing how many he could attract.  Baby seemed to think that they were very large and strange bath toys and was perfectly happy splashing away.  I got to pet them, too…it’s been a while since I’ve been able to do that and I forgot how soft they are.  Like buttered velvet.  On the drive home, I was especially happy that my husband was with us (and driving) because we found ourselves smack in the middle of a snowstorm.  I hate driving in snow around here because it completely messes with the already dysfunctional drivers populating this area.  Thankfully, we got home without anything worse than over two hours of traffic.  The best part of being home?  Ready access to a potty.  Being pregnant is…painful…sometimes.  That’s all I’m gonna say.

To close out this week’s awesomeness, I got a surprise in the mail today. Because of my “academic achievements” and for being “such an excellent student,” I was awarded…a royal blue velvet bag containing a silver thumb drive emblazoned with my school’s logo. This is possibly the most practical and yet nerd-tastic award I have ever received.  It was also as close to “A Christmas Story” moment as I have ever had.  No, it was not a risqué  leg lamp, but it made me giggle. A lot.  It also made me feel pretty good at the same time.

Plus, I can always use another thumb drive.

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Sugar Gremlins

I had gestational diabetes (henceforth to be referred to as GD) when I was pregnant with Baby.  Unhappily, it wasn’t the kind of GD that was easily controllable with the modified diet.  We had to add in glyburide which helped, but not to the levels that I needed…so then came the insulin shots.  I’m a big sissy when it comes to needles, so my much-enduring husband gave me my shots every night.  (He’s so sweet…I love him so much.  Sorry…I appear to have gotten mush all over this post.)

Even with all of this intervention to try to make my body use insulin, there were days where, for no explicable reason, my blood sugars would go haywire.

I had one of those days yesterday.  Seriously, I ate exactly the same thing that I’ve eaten for three days in a row, and my numbers were all over the place.  I had one good reading out of four.  This is incredibly frustrating to me for several reasons.

  1. I really take the diet seriously.  I don’t cheat.  I may sigh for orange juice and dream about chocolate chip cookies, but that is as far as it goes.
  2. I use the heck out of my little food scale and various measuring devices to be absolutely certain that I’m only getting exactly what my list of “allowed” gives me.  This adds several minutes of prep time to each meal.  Plus, I have to work in three snacks that I don’t have normally into my routine.  Time there has to come from somewhere else.
  3. I hate having to revolve my life around food.
  4. I really like being pregnant, but stressing about blood sugar takes some of the fun of it away.  I think it’s that whole “high risk” label I have slapped on my forehead now.
  5. I am a very goal and results-oriented person.  When I do something, I need to know that it’s actually working.  True story: when I was in labor with Baby and got to the pushing phase, apparently I asked the doctor if it was working.  I have no recollection of this.  (And, no, I was not under the influence of any medication.  The doctor told me that she hoped I hadn’t been planning on an epidural, which I hadn’t been, because there was no anesthesiologist on-site at the moment.  Made that resolution easy to keep…)  My husband thought it was funny.  So when I have these days where my numbers are all bouncy, I feel like a failure.
  6. There is absolutely nothing I can do to prevent GD.   I’m all about Operational Risk Management (ORM…it’s a Navy thing and old habits die hard).  This means that if I am planning an evolution of whatever kind, I try to foresee every possible risk and mitigate it if at all possible.  ORM fails me here, but it works spectacularly for skiing.  I just don’t go.  Attaching myself to two sticks and hurling myself down a slope given my propensity for gravity-related disasters is just not a good idea.

Hopefully, the sugar gremlins took their labors of mayhem elsewhere last night and will leave me and my numbers alone today.  If not, there’s always tomorrow.

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“We’ll be back after these messages…”

I haven’t posted since Wednesday.  I feel kinda bad about this because I’ve been doing a fairly good job about the daily post since just before the New Year.  However, I’m giving myself a hall pass for this gap in postage.

  1. Thursday: 28-week glucose test (for gestational diabetes).  In case you don’t know what this test entails, you have to drink twelve ounces of straight orange sugary-syrup nastiness.  Remember those little barrel drinks from when we were kids?  The ones in really bright colors containing enough sugar to kid-power a small village?  Try multiplying the intensity of one of those bad boys by twelve.  It’s bad.  My symptoms ran from talking really fast to being completely unable to remain motionless to nausea.  And then when the sugar high wore off, I was left with the shakes and the queasies for the rest of the day.  Plus, I got my TDAP vaccine and they took blood from me four times.  I was completely incoherent most of the day…ergo, no post.
  2. Friday: Found out I have gestational diabetes again.  (Yay…)  Apparently, my body can’t make insulin and a baby at the same time.  I’ve never been terribly good at multitasking, so this makes a little sense.  So, I’m back to a very strict diet, testing my blood sugar four times a day (owie!) and I’m on medication.  The good thing about this is that it will (knock on coconut) go away as soon as I have my baby.  It did last time…and I’ve had no issues when I’m unpregnant.  I also had my blood drawn twice and got my RhoGAM shot to keep my Rh-negative self from developing antibodies against my potentially Rh-positive New Baby.  I was really crabby most of the day…ergo, no post.
  3. Saturday:  Bright spot of the past three days…I made almond milk ice cream tonight.  It turned out much better than I thought it would, and that makes me really happy.  I want to try a tofu-based ice cream and frozen yogurt as well…maybe I’ll whip up those bases tomorrow.  I learned that my blood sugar tends to spike a lot when I eat or drink milk products when I was pregnant with Baby, so I’m trying to stay away from dairy as much as possible from the get-go with New Baby.

Tomorrow, we should be back to your regularly scheduled programming.  In theory.

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