Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Week 16: Life Within!

This week marks the first time I felt the baby move this pregnancy. What a relief! I have recently heard two stories of women who miscarried late - at 15 weeks - and was sincerely hoping that my child hadn't passed from life to death inside my womb and was waiting to also pass out of my body. In my first three pregnancies, I felt movement absurdly early: 9 weeks with my first, 10 or 11 with my second, and 10 with my third. So this was normal given the pattern of most pregnancies, but atypical for me. The midwife at my doctor's office suggested that it might reflect a different placement of the placenta (anterior instead of posterior).

I also went on retreat with the Sisters of Life this week. Their work is to promote the sanctity of human life through prayer, but they also run a few mission houses where they serve women with crisis pregnancies and women who have had abortions. Women may come and stay with them during their pregnancies, up to a few months after the baby is born. It's a beautiful work, and you should check it out!

In any case, a lot of mostly hidden anxiety came out about this pregnancy while I was reflecting on my life. There's something about silence during a retreat that really helps to focus your attention on the fears within your heart. That certainly happened for me this week, and my greatest fears these days seem to be about my blood sugars (especially the low ones).

I should probably preface this by mentioning that earlier this week, a few days after Christmas, my blood sugar was very low when I woke up one morning. I became very stubborn when my husband tried to help me. It happened several days in a row, these severe lows, and I was very discouraged by it. It's one of the only reasons my endocrinologist can point to justify why he believes I shouldn't have more children (which is something he says almost every visit). At least I didn't almost drown myself in a bathtub this time, but I think I rather disturbed my spouse!

So lows are a continual challenge. It's interesting to note that it was about the same time of year, same time of pregnancy, when this happened last time around. Most of the time I think that I just need to get better about dealing with the lows (which is true!), and then sometimes I wonder if it really might be wiser not to have more children. I'm not sure the answer is all that clear-cut, given how awesome babies are. But I do know that, at least this time around, I just have to play the hand I've been dealt and manage the lows as safely as I can.

How do you and your family deal with your stubbornness when your blood sugar is low? I told my husband to just keep repeating the same words over and over: "Your blood sugar is 34. Can I help you? Your blood sugar is low. Would you like me to bring you something? Your blood sugar is 34. What can I do for you?"