|Because of my diabetes, I'm automatically put in the "high risk"
category for pregnancy. Therefore, I get to enjoy all of these extra tests, beginning
with blood work immediately after I find out I'm pregnant to see how
"pregnant" I am. The two variables they check are hcg, which basically
measures how the baby's growing, and progesterone, which measures how my
body's supporting the pregnancy.
They did back-to-back bloodwork to make sure my levels were doubling or at least rising. I'll be honest and say I didn't know anything about these variables or what they should be during pregnancy. All I could think of was that "progesterone" sounded like a name of some dinosaur.
|"Rawr, I make babies grow."
My first results were fine, right on schedule for where I should be. But my second results were less than stellar. My hcg levels were fine, almost doubling from 500 to 970. But my progesterone levels actually went down from 18 to 12.
The nurse prescribed for me to go on progesterone supplements to get my levels back up above 15. Even though she said it is normal for those numbers to go down, I was still freaked out. If this is normal, why am I being put on supplements? I googled progesterone levels and what they should be at this point in my pregnancy. Big, big mistake. Never ever google anything related to your health, especially pregnancy. I pretty much scared myself into stressing out and crying at random times (of course, that could be the pregnancy itself). I was also dealing with a weird complex of taking these supplements and wondering "Am I not woman enough to carry my own child?"
I went back in for more blood work the next week to make sure my levels were still rising. I had to wait 24 hours for the results: torture! I had less than a day's worth of supplements in me, so I was worried about the time between my last blood work that was 4 days ago. However, I got the best call the next day. "Hello Holly? Your results are wonderful. Your progesterone increased to 25 and your hcg increased to 9,000!" I was so relieved! The next set of blood work they took the next day made the nurse sing, "Your results are out-stand-ing!" Progesterone stayed the same at 25 (the nurse said that was fine) and hcg increased to 18,000.
These results made me so relieved! Also, the fact that my progesterone levels doubled in 4 days mostly from me (and not the supplements) made me feel a lot better. And the fact that the hcg levels (a.k.a the baby) increased out-stand-ing-ly made me feel like he/she is doing great regardless of my shortcomings.
All in all, I'm somewhat grateful to be placed in the "high risk" category because of my diabetes. It means I get the comfort of extra monitoring and testing that lets me know that the baby and I are doing OK. It can be stressful if there are any hiccups, but the doctors can do their thing to help me or the baby before anything bad happens.