Glucose Screening

29 Weeks Pregnant

I just had my glucose screening test, which was certainly nothing to write home about, especially the third time around. I went to the lab and was promptly handed a bottle of an orange sugary drink and was told that I had five minutes to down the sucker. As I sat in the waiting room taking tiny little sips, watching the minutes tick by on the clock, I kept having flashbacks to that Orange Crush commercial from the 80s where a woman asks some kid in knee-high tube socks to hold her bottle of Orange Crush for a minute, and when she comes back, the bottle is empty. She looks at the kid in disbelief, and he just shrugs his shoulders and says, “It evaporated!”
I kept waiting for mine to evaporate, but no such luck. I downed the last drop just as the clock hit the five-minute mark, then waited for an hour to have my blood drawn. I sat there the whole time thinking: “Is this really necessary?” Or, is it just another case of too much testing? I’ve never had a problem with gestational diabetes, so I wasn’t expecting to have any issues this time around. And sure enough, when my lab results came back, everything was normal—except for a case of anemia, which is easily remedied with some iron supplements and some extra green leafies and red meat in my diet.
I’ve since learned that this test really is necessary, though. My poor sister is currently struggling with gestational diabetes, and her doctor now believes that it may be what caused her to lose her son halfway through her previous pregnancy. She was tested early this time, in her first trimester. (This required fasting, which just strikes me as an incredibly inhumane thing to ask a pregnant woman to do in her first trimester.) When that test came back positive for gestational diabetes, my sister then met with a nutritionist to try to control her blood sugar levels through diet modifications. That meant counting carbs and carefully planning and timing her meals and snacks throughout the day. Still, her blood sugar levels were dangerously high, so she’s now pricking her finger four times a day and taking insulin. My sister is, understandably, worried about her baby’s health, but is doing everything she can to bring a healthy baby into the world.
On a happier note, she just found out that this baby is a boy—a very-much wanted and waited-for boy who will join three big sisters in December. Until then, we are all watching and waiting and hoping that our family will have welcomed two new healthy baby boys come Christmas time. I couldn’t think of a better Christmas gift.

Join's Managing Editor Dana Rousmaniere each week as she blogs about her third pregnancy.

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