I am slowly learning that being a first time mom is full of surprises – and lots of belly butter! – but being Type 1 Diabetic adds some extra tidbits along the way. My conception story is a little less than conventional for a T1. You really pick up on that when the doctor seeing you at your third prenatal visit asks you, “So when are you planning to get pregnant?” … #awkward
When you have T1, pregnancy is supposed to be SUPER planned for. Or should be at least. When I found out I was pregnant I was still working to get my body into optimal baby mode. My sugars were wacky and my A1c was way too high…. 8.2 to be exact. At 8 weeks and 5 days (about a month and a half later) my A1c was down to 7.7! Small victories.
Today, at 10 weeks, I got set up on a Tandem insulin pump and I’m loving it already! I’m hoping that not having to deal with rounding my bolus units and having a flexible basal will fix the over/under correction problems I’ve been having and eliminate the crazy nighttime lows.
Because of my somewhat less than conventional T1 conception I was scrounging for resources as soon as I saw those double lines. I hadn’t had the month’s of tight control and training from a high risk OB to tell me what to expect! For any T1 ladies out there who are having a little surprise, or even if you are planning on getting pregnant, here are the things I couldn’t have lived without that first month! (both diabetes related and not!)
- JDRF’s Pregnancy Toolkit was so informative and comforting. If you are a type A Type 1 Diabetic this is the most comprehensive and least complicated guide to what steps you should take before pregnancy and how pregnancy changes the way you manage you diabetes – and it’s FREE! You can download the PDF from the link above and they’ll also send you a paper copy in the mail.
- What to Expect When You’re Expecting, I realize seems a little cliche and typical, but I LOVE how this book is organized and the way things are explained. Some books explain things in a more confusing way than your doctor, but this one talks you through things in a realistic and comfortable way. This latest edition also has great sections for your partner!
- Joining the Type 1 Diabetes and Pregnancy group on Facebook has been so comforting! I am only the second in my friend group to get pregnant and I don’t have any Type 1 friends near me that are women. In other words – this group is a wonderful resource for advice, product recommendations, and even just emotional support! It is a closed group so you will have to request to be added but it’s definitely worth the wait!
- My CGM. I’m not sure that I would recommend starting on a CGM after pregnancy because, since conceiving, my numbers have occasionally been inaccurate. HOWEVER! Since conceiving I have also had a much harder time feeling lows coming on and, had I not been wearing my CGM, I may not have noticed until it was too late. I’m very confident that my CGM has saved me from going to the ER on multiple occasions.
- SNACKS! I haven’t really struggled with morning sickness all that much but I am FOREVER hungry. We shop mostly at Aldi and some of my favorite snacks are their unsalted almonds, SimplyNature Organic Popcorn, Fit&Active string cheese, and oranges… or just fruit in general really!! My favorite thing about these snacks is that they’re all low carb and contain healthy fats and fiber.
- Coconut Oil and Burt’s Bees Mama Bee Belly Butter – Two words ladies: BUTTER UP. My mother in law has had four kids and she told me to start lathering early. Not that I would argue with a little pampering, but this is one thing where I’m not really sure I want to take my chances. I like these two products because they don’t have crazy smells mainly, but I’m planning to try at least one more recommendation that I got from my cousin before I set my heart on one product. I’ll update when I do! 🙂
**disclaimer: I have not been paid by any of these companies to review their products, this is all my guaranteed very biased opinion.**
Real talk. Weird things are happening to my body AND my diabetes. Highlights? I had a lot more low blood sugars, my CGM readings were occasionally WAY off, and my bellybutton feels weird all the time! Haha 🙂
I’m so excited to be joining the ranks of motherhood and hope you fellow first time moms out there find this post helpful!