Friday, November 30, 2007

Mincemeat & Seaweed

This post has been sitting in my "Post" box for a week or so. Meant to post but didn't get time.

It's a quick one to explain "Mincepies" as it became clear it's v much an English delicacy.

The mincemeat is not (as you'd think) actual meat, but a mixture of dried fruit, chopped candied peel, brandy (or other liquor) perhaps some finely chopped nuts and apples. Sometimes suet is added.

The mincemeat is used to fill individual shortcrust pastry cases. You can use filo if you like too. Being a dried fruit lover, I ADORE mincemeat and mincepies. Here's a couple of pics

Yum, yum, yum. yum, yum, yum.

Next, the seaweed i've been referring to. I may have assumed you to know all about my fun and games with the fruit of the sea and i'm not sure if i've explained properly what i'm talking about...

I've had trouble with all of my transfers. The route into my cervix is a narrow windy maze and i'm often being told (by Dr's from between my legs) how tight my Os is. (Os not Ass unfortunately). So, new clinic does what old Doc wouldn't - a dilation early in the cycle. A thin hard stick ("Di.lapan") made of seaweed is wedged into the cervix and left to expand (tamp.on) like for 4 hours, leaving my tight os dilated to 6mm. A marvel of modern science harnessing nature. I've even found a pic of before and after Sorry it's so tiny. the black stick is how it goes in and the jelly like yellow tube is how it comes out. My weird and windy cervix had bent the jelly into an "L" when it emerged.

Feeling a big frail today. My tummy doesn't like the antibi.iotics at all, which have effectively given me an internal colonic in the last 24hrs. Still, it was full of over indulgent birthday food, so perhaps a good thing. TMI i'm sorry.

Time to do some work. xx

Monday, November 26, 2007

The post in which I do quite a lot of moaning.


I've been popping the Prim.olut for a week. It's basically progesterone and I really don't like it. I'm spotty - which I offends my great vanity - a bit prone to tears and quite a lot down.

I'm also hating the fact that this fortnight of Prog.esterone fuelled fun might all be for nothing. If I don't get my period before 4th Dec, then it's game over for 2007 and i'll have to start all over again in Jan. That's p-ing me off, esp since we're trying to plan a getaway for 2 weeks in Jan. If we have to cycle in Jan, we won't be able to go away then AND it'll be too late (and too expensive) for a Dec break.

Add to all of this the fact that i'll be 39 on 3rd Dec for which i'll be both spotty and grumpy! Can you tell i'm on Prog.esterone by any chance?!

I suppose i'd better just get on with it and stop moaning.

On the "life" front all's been pretty quiet. Spent Friday and Sunday helping cook for my Synag.ogue's bazaar. We're new members of the congregation and it was nice to meet lots of others. I got asked several times by the other ladies in the kitchen if I have children. Children! Not even just child - they assume you might have more than one! I wish. Sometimes i'd just say no and other times i'd "come out" as an IV.F'er. Actually easier to 'fess up as you've then got another topic of conversation.

Also, discovered that one of my fellow teachers at the school I teach at is about to start her first IV.F. She's a geriatric newly wed (well, 39 yrs young) and has found out her hubbie (who has 3 children) is no longer able to make babies. I didn't pry too much, but it gave us an instant bond and we're going to try to teach the same class together next term.

Oh - am LOVING Stric.tly It's a high point of my week. M.att and F.lavia's dance was superb this week. It made me smile and smile to watch it!

Time for bed. I'm keen to start my new book. I've just finished The Hand Maid's Tale - which I think I enjoyed and which definitely gave me food for thought. I've had a day off from bedtime reading (during which Mr G actually got a look in) and i'm ready to start The Island - can't remember the author - about a leper colony. Sounds like an odd read, but it comes highly recommended by many friends. Need to get under my nice warm duvet and crack it open. Night night xx

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Eating for success

Well, we're 2 days into the pre-cycle bit. I've had 4 doses of the Prim.ulot and all seems well.

Only thing is that having really worked hard to shed some (and I stress some and not all) my IVF weight, I now seem on a mission to eat everything that I can. Hunger is irrelevant on my mission and will power has fled screaming. I need to get a grip or I could manage a stone this cycle and that's really not on.

The eatathon kicked off with all my baking for the market stall - more on that later - during which I rather overdid the tasting. I think i've hooked myself on sugar. I need to go cold turkey with it really, but can't seem to steel myself to do it. Today, I had a good girl breakfast of porridge with some raisins but soon went down hill tasting home made mincemeat for mince pies (do you eat those in the US?) with my market stall partner. I had lunch with a friend at a Farmer's Mkt. Delicious creamed mushrooms on a thick slab of white toast and a few tastes of roasted vine tomatoes with rocket and parmesan on toast. Lush. We then went home for some of her home baked cup cakes and 2 cakes we'd bought at the market. Tonight i'm off to meet another friend for MORE food! Gotta getta grip!

The market stall was fun if freezing! We did ok but won't be retiring just yet. Having vowed we won't do it again, I think we'll go back a couple of times before Chris.tmas to sell off the rest of our stock of jars and biscotti. I might even get festive with some Christmassy mince pies too. I must just try not to eat them all whilst manning the stall.

Got to run now - have to fit some work into my busy eating's a tough job and all that xx

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


A quick (end of the evening) post to say that the drugs are ordered. They'll arrive on Friday (I hope) and on Monday, i start the 14 days on Primo.lut. In just 2 and a half weeks or so i'll be back in treatment.

It feels good to be doing something again, but you know, deep down, i can't really believe there's an end in sight. I'm not saying it in a depressed, sorry for myself way, but after 3 failed attempts and the feedback we've been getting, I really can't connect a baby to all of this mucking about with needles, drugs and doctors. It's weird. I've sort of disconnected treatment from babies. It's easy to forget that's what it's all about.

I feel ambivalent about it. On the one hand, hopeful - new drugs, different protocol and more info on why I might not have succeeded in the past - the immune results have pointed that this might have been an issue. On the other hand, who am I kidding? My old eggs and Mr G's twitchy sperm are really not great bets. The likelihood is that we don't have to look further than that for a reason why we're still two and not two and a half or even three. I've got to stay real.

Anyway, on Friday, my bathroom shelf will be packed with medical boxes and my fridge will offer not just gourmet delights but a fair few chemical ones too. All systems are go.

I'm off to bed to rest up for tomorrow's fun and games. I'm selling my cakes, brownies, biscotti, chutneys and fruit butters at a stall in central London. Should be cold but good fun. Tomorrow night i'm off to teach beginners to make tasty treats. All good fun.


Tuesday, November 06, 2007


They're out in force to celebrate day one of my cycle. Even though i'll be doing a flare protocol again, this month at least, I can start the lead up to IC.SI No 4.

So now we have a plan: from day 14 to day 25 of this cycle i take Prim.ulot - not entirely sure what this does other than attempt to improve my egg tally.

I'll start Le.trozole on day 2 of next cyle and get busy with the Menop.ur on day 3. I get to shove a third needle in my stomach on about day 6 when we're joined by Ce.trotide.

If (no, when - of course we'll get there) we get to ET I get to take Eno.xaparin (for blood thinning), Pred.nisolone (the steriod to counter my antibodies) and (my personal favourite) - mainly to force me to shove my finger up my a** twice a day and generally make me feel just as grim as possible during the IV.F process, oh, and keep my Prog.esterone levels up too.

Of course there are various other pills, potions and jabs along the way too unexciting to mention AND the added pressure that my next period must arrive before 4th Dec (day after my 39th birthday). If not they won't let me stim as they close their theatre over the holidays. This new clinic just love to pile on the stress!

Still poorly with my bug and now having to cancel work this week - a flippin' nuisance. I dispatched Mr G to our local J.ewish deli to pick up Chicken Soup as it was all I could face. Not sure it's worked yet, so i'll need more tonight.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Flipping body mucking me about - apologies long post

I'm sitting on the sofa in my gorgeous White Co.mpany pj's. They're all white, with a v long knee length top with lace on the cuffs and a round neck and loose trousers with lace on the ankles. I was feeling v glam until Mr G said that with my white robe over them I look (a) like someone from an asylum or (b) about to do judo. That took me down a peg or two.

I don't often sit around in my pj's but was struck down yesterday by some sort of stomach bug. I felt massively sick, achey and had terrible stomach cramps. It got worse last night. I got up in the night and was so dizzy that I felt it safer to drop to the floor. At least the room stopped spinning. I was ready just to curl up and die there when Mr G called out to ask where I was.

"On the floor" i told him. (Obviously) He leapt up to carry me back to bed. He then headed off to the bathroom. I got up again as I felt SO nauseous and then wasn't sure how i'd get back to bed. I stumbled back to bed, must have passed out and then came to feeling just as sick and crampy. I was actually scared and made Mr G leave a light on outside our room as that made me feel safer.

You can tell i don't get sick often as i'm really not v good at it! I've spent today in between bed and sofa. It feels like post transfer time - the only other time I lay around like this. I'm still feeling pretty sick but not so achey. Hope i'm back to normal tomorrow.

I was meant to meet my folks with Mr G for an early supper before they went to see a play at a really good local theatre that's on my doorstep. We've had to cancel that, which is a shame.

On the IF front. We decided we'd go ahead next month. I'm not sure I want Mr G injecting Me.nopur and i definitely don't want to wait. But, wouldn't you know it, my p.eriod has failed to deign me with its presence. It arrived on day 25 last month and rarely goes beyond day 28 (and then only really after a cycle) and we are, today, on day 29 and not a sign of it. If we'd been anywhere near each other at one of my fertile moments I might now be deluding myself with hope of pregnancy. Not a hope - although that doesn't stop the odd moment of hope that a miracle sperm has grown a tail and jet propelled itself into one of my ageing eggs. How sad and deluded.

Typically, there's a cut off for pre-Chr.istmas cycles. The blasted p.eriod must show up before Wednesday. Aren't bodies (and our minds that probably cause this problem) the most annoying things.

F'ing new clinic has just billed us for more than £1000 and we've had nothing really done yet! I can tell we're not going to stay friends forever.

Just had to fill you in on two chats I had with IVF girls with babies. One managed hers on her 6th go and the other, on her 10th. Both had been told they had premature ovarian failure and one had an FSH of 22 (22!) at one point although it was 11 on her successful cycle - when she managed to produce just one egg. Both said don't give up. The one who managed it on her 10th go had success eventually with Dr Sher in NY. She's english and flew there 3 times to his clinic.

I'm sure it can be done if you have enough goes, but you just can't be sure, so who's willing to put themselves through this that many times? The chats were great though at a time I was feeling v bleak. I'm not going to go all rosey tinted glasses about it, but it inspires me to try at least a couple more goes.