Getting Diagnosed with Gestational Diabetes- Where to start emotionally


Gestational Diabetes.  Something I did not expect would ever apply to me.  I was at a healthy weight before pregnancy, did not gain excess weight during pregnancy and yet at 27 weeks after taking the glucose tolerance test I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes.  It was hard for me to accept at first.  I felt like I had been doing everything right to have a healthy pregnancy, and yet I still had these health issues. From joining online groups, I'm not the only one who took it hard initially.  And the research isn't very reassuring either.  It seemed like every article I found was focused on the complications or talked about how much lifestyle and diet needs to change.  I want to share the things I did when I was diagnosed that helped me to cope mentally.  The next posts will be about the dietary changes and lifestyle I've adopted.  


It's tough to come to terms with mentally. I kept telling myself. "This isn't a life sentence. It is a temporary inconvenience, one that I need to deal with to make sure baby and I are healthy".


Step one is to wallow in the self-pity and embarrassment and all other feelings.  Find a comfy place to think or a person to vent to and set a timer- somewhere between 10 - 20 minutes.  Once the timer is up, the time to wallow is over.  To help break up the cycle of self-pity, make sure you have a task to move on to.  Gardening, cooking, laundry, a hobby, anything to get you moving and out of the zone.  


Step two is relaxing. Find a way to pamper yourself or that helps you to relax.  For me, a warm bath with some essential oils, a few minutes of meditation, walking, and crocheting are my go-to.  


Step 3 is to find the joy in it.  I know that sounds weird and tough, but find some favorite foods you don't eat very often that fit your next diet requirement.  It is important here that you are adding food to your what I can eat list, not taking it away. So think about foods that are high in protein or natural fats you don't often indulge in.  Some of my favorite 0 carb treats are biltong, nuts, cheese, and avocado that I didn't eat very often before.  


Adjusting to the diagnosis is hard, but it helps to remember you don't have to give up everything, just cut down on a few things and can add other things into your diet and your day.


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