Yesterday was one of the most stressful days of my pregnancy thus far, and I didn’t truly realize it until today.
I have this fear of needles. When I was a child, it sometimes took two nurses to hold me down and pry my fist apart so they could prick my finger. So, I’ve been ridiculous all along. I’m obviously not that bad about it now — I just have to look away and breathe deeply. But I still can feel my blood pressure rise when I walk into the lab for a blood draw. It really just stresses me out.
I had to go in for the standard glucose tolerance test yesterday. For the uninitiated, that means that you sit down in the lab and drink a very sweet drink designed to test your body’s response to sugar. Then, an hour later, they draw your blood and check the sugar levels. At my doctor’s office, during that hour wait you have your normal doctor’s appointment.
I downed the sickly-sweet drink and went in for my appointment – urine sample, weigh-in, and blood pressure check. My blood pressure came back pretty high — which is very unusual for me. The nurse left the room and I tried to relax and breathe, and not think about anything (i.e. the needle that they would be using in less than an hour to draw my blood, the possibility that I could have gestational diabetes which would result in me having to stick myself to check my blood sugar and even possibly use insulin, etc.). The doctor came in a few minutes later and checked my blood pressure again, and it was normal.
I’m fairly certain that I had unknowingly worked myself up to the point of raising my blood pressure. This resulted in extra blood being drawn for extra tests, extra steps to the usual examination, and an extra appointment scheduled in one week instead of two — the doctor wanted to make sure I wasn’t exhibiting symptoms of pre-eclampsia. All because I was worried about gestational diabetes and the potential for having to stick myself — a fear which turned out to be totally unfounded because, as I found out this morning, my glucose numbers looked great.
After suffering through last night with being upset and getting very little sleep (and googling pre-eclampsia and eclampsia — here’s a tip: DON’T), I got a call from the doctor’s office that said my other labs looked great too. So no pre-eclampsia concerns at this time. I am just a bit anemic, and need to add an additional iron supplement to my daily round of vitamins. That’s it.
*insert huge sigh and maybe some tears of relief*
Sometimes, I just need to learn to relax and not worry so much. Then again, that’s kind of like telling the sky not to be blue.
*Post title from My Own Worst Enemy by Lit