Sunday, September 27, 2009

Not this time

We decided no to go ahead this month. I felt so sick for so long I think it affected my ovulation - that, or i'm just useless with the sticks.

I tested for a few days, didn't get a result, stopped. I thought i'd missed the surge so I went in for a blood test on day 18 and the clinic said it looked like i hadn't "surged". Eh? Weird as my cycle's never more than 27/28 days. They said test some more (Boo) and come back on Monday if you still haven't surged.

Surprise, surprise, no surge so i'll go in for another £30 blood draw to see what's what. Looking like i might need a H.RT (drug controlled) F.ET. I'm not sure i like it being called H.RT - makes me feel like a lady in meno.pause not one attempting to reproduce. Other bummer is that they're not likely to let me cycle in December, because although they work all hours, the Immune test clinic in the US doesn't so they couldn't get those tests done then. A pain, but not the end of the world.

I feel relaxed about all this now - for the obvious reason that i've a baby sleeping in the room next door. As time goes on i'll be less calm about timing - esp as 41 is fast approaching - and i might regret this farting about. Still, gotta do what's right now, and we don't have much choice anyway.

BTW - i'm delighted that two of my long term IF buddies have had recent BFP's. Makes me smile every time I think of how they must be feeling. It's the most wonderful time - like the lead up to Xmas. Even if I never get to experience that feeling again, i'm so, so grateful to have been there.

Mr G's currently at syn.agogue as tonight is the start of Yo.m K.ippur. We've a lot to thank G-d for - our prayers have truly been heard and answered and for that we're blessed. I'm fasting this year - last year I couldn't as I was pg with B. As i've been sick and am still coughing up gunk, i may allow myself water, but will try to do my best to honour the fast.

Oh, finally - how awful is that story in the US about the lady who's had to give up her baby to the couple who are his biological parents. She's grown that baby and given birth and now has to give it away. I read that she's not allowed to carry another pregnancy - couldn't find out why - so her last chance was wrecked by stupid idiots. How could they ever compensate her for that? Goodness only knows. My heart goes out to her. I know she already has children, but that can never be easy.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Treatment update

Second post of the day. On treatment. My scan on Thursday (mid-cycle) went fine. I've a follie on my R ovary ready to go. All bits still in place. I was told to start the pee.sticks to predict ovulation. I HATE doing those. It brings all the stuff back more than anything else. Last sticks I did were good news. Feels like a huge step back in time. Why can't this just happen? Why must we have to rely on all this flipping medical stuff.

I suppose, if we were younger, we might give it a year or so trying naturally, but then that's pretty stupid as our chances without ICSI are pretty well nil, so who'm i kidding?

The Dr at the clinic has said we can do this cycle as the F.ET if we like. Like now. Not next month. No build up. Next week.

Didn't see THAT coming. Now not sure what to do. In some ways, i'd like to get on with it without time to get nervous and hopeful, especially since it has such a low chance of success. In other ways, i feel that perhaps I should have done more prep, like like acu.puncture or eating well to be in good condition and should have arranged some help for the 2WW. But then, there might not even be a 2WW, and there I go getting all ahead of myself!

Final factor in the decision, and possibly the main one, is that if i'm feeling so sick, it's probably not the best idea to do this next week. If we don't do it this month, we'll probably have to wait until December, as we're off for a 2 week holiday (how exciting) to Is.rael in November. Can't wait. Might be best to chill out, enjoy the hols and round off the year by seeing if the frostie is in our future.

We need to decide in the next couple of days. I've a day to myself - well, a few hours whilst Mr G's out with B - and i'll try to take it easy. A bit of last night's Strictly (hurrah) and some chicken soup (that's gotta do the trick) and maybe a warm bath. Mmmmmm..... xx


I am feeling SO rubbish it's not true.

On Tuesday - day of the big talk (more on that later) I woke with a sore head. I thought it was down to the big glass of rose and half glass of champagne i'd sunk the night before, party animal that i am...not. I'd been out to a pub to meet some of my new local friends, and drunk quickly on an empty stomach. I took painkillers and got through my performance.

I felt more achey all day and had to stop for Nu.rofen during the afternoon when out returning winter coats (bought 4, took back 4, then bought 2, will take back one, hurray) whilst my Mum minded B. Woke up Tuesday feeling AWFUL. Temperature of more than 38 and aches, tiredness, plegmtastic etc Hasn't really improved over the week, but my temperature has come down a bit. I've got loads of stuff on my chest that i'm coughing up and my head's packed with so much gunk all i can hear is ringing. Have had no help with B until yesterday when my in-laws AND parents turned up to help.

Mr G is taking B to his folks to eat the New Year (Jewish) lunch that I was meant to eat with them. I'll stay here and rest and recover.

The talk went well. The ladies were all charming. Judith J.ones was a little stand offish, but she's also v deaf, so that may have been part of the reason. Here's a pic of me and them
I'm the one trying to get away with wearing a maternity dress because I didn't have much else to wear!
B was a star. The centre where I chaired the talk is a Jew.ish cultural centre and many of the folk had read our tale of IV.F. They were very keen to meet THE baby.

Will blog on treatment news in next entry. Thought it best to keep this short. xx

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Julie & Julia

Got out to the cinema for the first time in MONTHS last night.

I'm interviewing a lady called J.udith Jones on Tuesday as part of the Ham and High Lit Fest - H&H being the paper i wrote for full time and now do part-time. My event is here

J.udith Jones was the publisher who first discovered Julia C.hilds. She' s now 80 something and still working hard. When I agreed to do the event I had no idea who she was. I'm now quite nervous but also excited. What an opportunity to network with some fantastic women!

Anyway, I thought I should see the movie before Tuesday and I'm so glad i did. It's fantastic. I enjoyed every minute and was so engrossed that I laughed, welled up, sighed, exclaimed etc throughout. I felt so much in common with both ladies, who were both as into their food as I am and who managed to make it their careers. Mr G said so much of it reminded him of me.

What I didn't know and what was touched on very lightly was that JC was infertile. She passed a pram early on and made a face, and later in the film, burst into floods of tears when her sister wrote to her to tell her she was pg. It made me cry. I so felt her pain with her. We've all been there and we'll all keep on going back there.

I realised i'm pretty emotional at the moment. Not sure if it's because we're heading into our journey to try for B's sibling or what really. All around me women are deciding when they're going to try for their second, like they just can - and they can. Some are already pg. It makes me so angry that we just can't do that. They take that luxury for granted. not even realising what a blessing that is. I know we have our blessing, but this time i'm not apologising for how I feel. This never goes away and will always cause Mr G and I pain. Obviously we do still have B and that makes a huge difference, but we're still not like all those carefree fertiles.

Anway - go see the movie if you haven't already. It's excellent. (Not sure if they're trying to make the point that if JC had had children she might not have written the book nor if i'm a little uncomfortable about that, but perhaps that's getting a little 'deep' about the whole thing)

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

This n that

First, a big shout out to my wonderful BeeCee who'd had fantastic news. I cannot begin to say how excited I am for her!

A few little changes in both my sides of the early stages of quest for B's sibling:

Frozen Cycle
Spoke to both clinics about moving my one solitary frostie from old clinic to new one. Various forms must be signed and transport arranged. I could pay someone called Costa £150 to move the embie across London or I could borrow a Transporter (which sounds a bit S.tar Tre.k) from new clinic and make the journey myself.

Or I could leave it there and have old clinic transfer the embryo. That would be the least trouble and cheapest option. New clinic's frozen cycle is about 1/2 the cost of their fresh cycle which in turn is double that of other clinics. The cost is likely to be the same as a whole fresh cycle elsewhere. As the chances of a safe defrost are only about 50% then i must be mad throwing our money away like that.

The big BUT is that new clinic did something that meant I have B. Maybe it was just the right egg/embryo but maybe it was their much longer and more careful transfer procedure - without scan, unlike every other clinic. If it fails - as is likely - then i'd rather it failed at new clinic where I know i've given it my best shot.

What do you think? Should I just get it defrosted and transferred and not spend too much on it? Throw everything at it as who knows if i'll be able to face IV.F again? Waderidoo?

Met a girl at a local playgroup with two gorgeous little girls. One, mixed race and one white. Turns out they're adopted and are sisters - both with a Polish mother. They were living with different families - i don't know the detail just yet as I was also chasing B around and listening from afar - and she's adopted them and they're now reunited with her as their Mum. She had their snacks in the same green rucksack I use for baby snacks. I got it 'free' from the drug company to carry my Pu.regon. I knew she had to have an IV.F history but she'd obviously got her happy ending via adoption.

I struck up a chat with her over the rucksack and we're meeting up next week to talk about how she adopted her little girls. It didn't sound quite as grim as I expected so perhaps there's light at the end of the tunnel.

Monitored Cycle
Found out my stats for this month. FS.H was EIGHT! EIGHT! I haven't had a score in single figures since I was 37. LH, Oestradiol and Prolactin also all checked out in the normal range. I'm sure i've not had a fertility renaissance, but it was SO encouraging not to have gone through the fertile ceiling just yet.

I just know i'm going to be in turmoil over what to do. Mr G and I will have some soul searching to do over B's sibling and whether we're strong enough to weather more treatment or even the pressures of adoption.

Friday, September 04, 2009

Adoption sure ain't the easy route

Whilst we're going to use our frostie we're well aware of the miniscule chances of that working.

So, we're also looking at adoption - something we'd already decided we'd like to do to grow our family. I spoke to Norwood yesterday. They're the adoption agency we'd like to use and who we spoke to before IV.F 5 worked.

I've spoken to two social workers in the last couple of days. The first started by telling me they couldn't help us (full stop).

Good start.

She said that our local council don't have a contract with them (Norwood) for international adoption. I said we'd consider domestic now (unlike last time) so perhaps she COULD help us. A friend (who i don't know very, very well) had just arrived at my flat as I took the call so i said i would have to speak later. The (Anti)Social worker told me someone else would call the next day.

Next day a more social worker called. We had a more productive chat, but one which was perhaps even more frustrating. She told me that as a white, Je.wish couple we had zero chance of adopting a baby (young or old) in this country or adopting a smallish child without siblings. (Door slams in face)

She went on to say that international adoption (from Russia most likely) was our only real chance. (This is going to cost no less than £35-40,000!!!)

Despite the fact we are now 40 (41 in December) and 42, we are also too early to apply to adopt at all as B is too young!! He will need to be at least a year before they'll even talk to us. This is to give a big enough age difference between him and the adopted baby. THEY WON'T EVEN TALK TO US YET despite the fact there's less than two months til he's one!

Sooooooo - if we want to adopt a child that has no parents of his or her own, we'll need to wait until our mid 40's (as it'll take a couple of years once we start) AND spend a HUGE sum of money we don't really have.

It was a calm and civil chat - i understand the need for a decent age gap to give both children enough care - BUT WTF???!!! I said that they're pushing us toward IV.F again. It'll be cheaper and quicker than adoption.

Once i'd sat down and thought about it i realised the pros of going the adoption route (if we can afford it):

1. We could spend the same on IV.F (which we did last time - well a bit less) BUT not be guaranteed a healthy (or any) baby after all of that (Of course, if we were successful first time (ha ha) we'd spend a quarter of that
2. Although we'd have to wait, it's the equivalent of my getting pg much sooner. Even if I got pg tomorrow - which obviously won't happen - I wouldn't have a 12 or 14 month old baby until 21 to 23 months time - nearly two years. If we adopted we'd be in that place about the same time. If it took us two years of treatment I might be 42 nearly 43 by the time i managed even to conceive.
3. No injections
4. No injections!
5. We'd be giving a home to a baby who might otherwise grow up in an orphanage.

The con is the money and the fact that i'd dearly love to be pg again and bring up a baby from newborn BUT i know how lucky I was to do that once. I should be grateful i've done it at all and at least I have. (I know i'll still yearn to do it again, but that's not necessarily the route i'm meant to follow.

If you've stayed with my ramblings, well done! Apologies for this but it's actually helped to clarify things a little for me.

Must go - have supper to prepare and all B's food for tomorrow as Mr G is on duty. I'm off to work in the morning !!

ps: Friend on bedrest is at home but cervix is shortening further. She's 27 weeks - i think - so i've everything crossed for her

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


Not sure how best to express this one.

My friend doing her 'last chance' cycle at 41 got one egg. It wasn't even good enough to use.

Her husband was already on a flight from Holland to do his bit. She'll tell him when he lands that it's all over.

I'm gutted.

VIsited my friend in hospital who's now 26 weeks. Took her some home-made tabbouleh salad which she's been craving  She's in a hospital that equipped to try to save babies as tiny as 20 weeks. People transfer from other London hospitals because of this. She lost her twins at 23 and 24 weeks. The hospital she was in wouldn't even try and at the time she had no idea about this hospital. How must she feel?

She's in a ward of 4 beds. There have been a stream of women in to be induced so she's had to listen to a stream of ladies in labour. The nurse said they really try not to let that happen but there were no other beds. Lying there trying to hold onto your 6 month old pregnancy listening to others give birth. How must she feel?

The consultant told her she'd be in at least 2 more weeks and then most likely transfer to a hospital with a standard neo-natal unit. She's got to endure that torture that much longer. How must she feel?

I got home tonight and as I was crawling up the corridor on my hands and knees after a laughing baby thanked G-d for our blesssing.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Just a little something extra

Is it me or are there more and more people going through IVF?

Perhaps it's the snowball effect and as i've made no secret of my treatment, perhaps people feel they can share with me?

I've several friends going through cycles at the moment. My hairdresser is on her second cycle as she has endometriosis. She's one of those girls you feel is a dead cert. She's fallen pg in the past but can't now. She has 6 frozen from her first cycle. She's 34. I feel she'll be fine. (Hmmmmm - just read that and apologise. It was an ignorant thing to have written and I should know better. I hope things work out for her, but i'm well aware that you never know who'll succeed in this lottery.)

Another is from the relaxation group I joined through my first clinic. She's on her 5th or 6th cycle. She's 41 or 42 and her response is not great. She's doing a second go at my fab top London clinic. I've everything crossed for her.

The last one is an old school friend who lives in Holland. She has a 9 yr old but never managed a second baby. She did 3 rounds several yrs ago but couldn't face it any more. She feels on the edge of her fertile years and felt she had to try one last time. She's also at my clinic as she wanted to try them as their scores are so good and the hearsay so full of praise. We had lunch this week and I can feel from her whole being how much hope there is and how far she has to fall if this doesn't work for her. She's knows rationally that she's been blessed with one child, but biology says something different.

I hope they are all lucky.

I have another friend who lost twins at 23 and 24 weeks last year. They were conceived on her 2nd cycle. She had OHSS twice and has really suffered. She survived (just) and was brave enough to have one more cycle. She's now 25 weeks pg with another baby after her 3rd round of treatment BUT has been admitted to hospital as her c.ervix is again shortened. She'll be there at least 3 weeks as they try to get her little one to a size that they could even try to save him/her. It's SO unfair. I'm praying that this baby lives. I'm not sure how anyone would cope with that much upset.

Why do some people pop out babies as easily as peas from a pod and others endure so much? There's absolutely no sense to all of this. I'm blessed but already eyeing pg women with children & trying to avoid their company. I'm sorry if that's offensive to those still trying. I do know i'm one of the lucky ones - especially when i talk to my friends on the other side.

Pamela Carter RIP

A couple of years ago, Mr G and i 'adopted' an old couple.

I've told the story before of how we passed her (Pam) struggling on the street with heavy shopping attached to her wheely walking stick. It was a cold Boxing Day and just after we saw her, Mr G said we must help her. We turned around and offered to help her home. She was lovely. Very interesting and bright - i've since found out she was then in her late 70's. She and her husband lived in a nearby basement apartment and had no children.

At the time she felt like the ghost of Xmas future. I started taking her a newspaper in every other Saturday and have done so for the last couple of years. Two and a half to be exact. As she and her husband (George) were both heavy smokers, i have visited less often in the last 18 months but still tried to make sure we got that newspaper to them every other week. She's white, English born and bred and her husband is from Trinidad. As their marriage would have been unusual - to say the least - in the 1960's when they wed, they had become a little reclusive.

A few months ago Pam let on that she had terminal cancer. She never, ever complained and rarely admitted to being in pain. Her niece - who i've come to be very fond of too - worked hard to get Pam proper medical care and a few weeks ago Pam was admitted to a hospice. I was able to take Barney in to see her there and he brought a smile to her face.

On 7th August, 2 days after her 81st birthday, Pam passed away. I visited twice the day before. She was barely conscious but i touched her arm and told her that her niece would be there the next day to see her. (Her niece lives about an hour's drive from Lond.on) 5 minutes after her niece sat down and took Pam's hand, Pam let go and slipped away. She was in so much pain by then it was a blessing.

I felt sad, but it wasn't until her funeral last week that it really hit home. I watched George sitting in a wheel chair - he was admitted to a different hospital just after Pam was taken into the hospice with non life-threatening problems. He also has severe dementia and is struggling with her death. He only saw her once in the hospice. He was sobbing and unable to say anything other than "Pam was great" in his Caribbean twang. It broke my heart. Mr G and I were both in tears.

After the funeral we found out that Pam had left us each £1500. We were shocked. I'm still not sure how I feel about that. We "adopted" then purely because we liked them and wanted to help. If i'm honest there was an element of "there but for the grace of..." about our actions. My husband is a kinder and more charitable person than I am but I try to do my best with actions.

It's been an emotional month.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Nine months

B turned 9 months today. He's been longer out than in now.

In celebration of his anniversary here's a link to a website on which he's modeled a bear suit (don't he look too, too cute) and a little bit about him:

Weight - somewhere in the region of 19lbs I would think. He's on the 25th percentile - well, just below - so he's a little baby. As they don't measure height here i have no idea how tall he is. He seems pretty average.

Favourite thing to do - crawl up to the sofa, stand up and press the keys on my laptop or crawl over to the telephone, take it off the holder and press the buttons. Remote controls do it for him too.

Least favourite thing to do - lie still have have his nappy changed or have his face wiped- which elicits screams like he's being murdered.

Favourite toy - probably my mobile (cell) phone but as that's not generally on offer, his purple Lamaz.e elephant that plays tunes, in fact most things that play tunes go down pretty well.

Sleeps - not enough for my liking, but we're very slowly getting there. I'm not generally up several times a night any more (i just know i will be now i've typed that) so we're still not an overnight kinda baby. Naps are sporadic. I think perhaps had i tried harder to follow a specific routine things might be easier. And then perhaps they wouldn't be....

He's a happy, sociable and smiley baby. He loves being around other kids and really engages people around us. He's been crawling for a couple of months and people told us he'd be walking by 9 months. He's not, thank goodness, but he's all round our home and in everything. Never a dull moment and he's always up for a laugh. If we're laughing he'll start too. Sometimes, if he falls asleep on me - only really when he's sick now - he laughs as he's dropping off. I always wonder what the joke is.

IF news - can't do monitored cycle until i've had a couple of normal periods. I've only had one since i stopped feeding B. I'm in no rush. B keeps me busy and if he's all we have i'll still feel blessed. As Mr G and I aren't working so have zero income, just savings to keep us at the moment, perhaps financially we shouldn't even try.

Still doing more thinking than acting on my new blog. You'll be the first to hear when I finally get something sorted.

Off to get some supper and try to catch up on another episode of Brothers and Sisters. I love that programme. I'm so far behind, the ads are all for Xmas stuff. Kitty and gorgeous Rob Lowe (drool, drool) have just found out they'll be able to adopt a baby. I've found a lot of their story lines very emotional. (I need to get out more) I've also noticed that i've missed the last 4 episodes of the series as our box failed to record. Does anyone know if this is out on DVD yet?

Have a good weekend xx

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


I'm torn.

I want to continue sharing my (unexciting) world but am finding it difficult to blog. This blog wasn't created to write baby stuff, it was to off load my IF thoughts and emotions and communicate with others in the same boat. I'm still infertile, but as I've been so darned lucky as to have been have my prayers answered I feel like the day-to-day stuff is not really blog-able. I don't want to upset those still on their journey.

For some time i've thought I should stop moaning on about my issues over this and should set up a new blog which will detail my daily stuff and, in particular, the foodie side of life - which i'm itching to offload since i lost my column. I'm going to make that a priority and create a second blog. I'll post a link to that one in due course.

I'll keep this one about IF, IVF and that side of myself, which is still very much in existence.

On that subject, we went back to our clinic yesterday. We've been discussing 'what next' for some time. As i'm now 40, i'm constantly being asked what will we do about a second baby - 'you've not much time to waste'. I'm grateful for my one but I know that if we don't try for a second I may regret that in the future. We've one frostie at our first clinic from our very first cycle. The odds of that coming to anything are MINISCULE. Our chances of a fresh cycle working were about 1%, 5% at most. Problem is, there's a little bit of me and Mr G waiting for us. We can't destroy it - it could be our baby. Most likely it will come to nothing, but Mr G and I feel we have no choice.

So, yesterday we took B to the clinic for our follow up appointment. It was very odd arriving there with B. I felt SO uncomfortable sitting there with him. We could've found a sitter, but he's not well and we also don't really want to go public about our plans. Too much pressure. I could see those mid-cycle glancing or avoiding glancing at B as he chattered away in his buggy. I kept saying to Mr G that i'd wait outside but he told me to stop being oversensitive.

We were seen by someone we'd never met before who'd clearly never read our file. For £100 we learned nothing more than we knew already. We'll have to do a monitored cycle and then can do a frozen cycle for about half what it cost to do a fresh one there. Not worth doing a fresh one in case we end up with more embryos. The monitored cycle will tell if my FS.H has shot through the fertility roof making fresh cycles pointless anyway. The stupid Dr who'd not read the file said if my FS,H was more than 10 then we'd be best not to do a cycle. I pointed out that B was a result of a cycle done with FS.H of 10.4 or 10.6. (That makes me angry that she'd not checked up anything at all)

So, next month, a monitored cycle.

I popped into the office as i saw one of the original nurses there. She was really pleased to see me and B. She said it was nice seeing me (and girls like me) back to normal as she only sees people at the height of their stress. I went to the bathroom there (tmi but bear with me) which was where they used to do my proge.sterone injections if Mr G was away. I sat there and my heart sank. Can i do this again? Can I face the injections? Reality bit.

We also sent to shake the hand of Mr T - head honcho there. He was all smiles and talk of siblings. (Portia P raises eyebrows and looks doubtful) We told him he'd changed our lives. It's true.

I need to pop back to read what's going on for you all. I've a dinner for 70 to cook for Friday - which i'm doing for free as it's a charitable cause - so it'll most likely be at the weekend when things have calmed down. B has croup too - which is not terribly pleasant for any of us as he's pretty sick and sleeping badly. I'm exhausted but apologise for moaning. I know it's too irritating to hear moans from those that have.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Time to earn a living

I need to go and turn on the oven, wash bottles, get some washing on, change my clothes etc etc so i'll keep this short.

Just after we got back from Portugal, i found out i'd been ousted from my restaurant review column. Some weirdy, beardy (hope none of you has excessive facial hair) author who i'd interviewed 3 yrs ago when i kicked off the column has managed to get in there whilst i've been on maternity leave, and has stolen my gig. I suppose that's what happens when you go off to have a baby, but i'm mighty p'd off. He doesn't know anything about food and that really, really winds me up. He's just in it for the free meals and booze and to satisfy his big, fat ego! He writes far too many words all about himself really.

The Editor made the decision without even telling the Features Ed. As far as I knew, i was going back and had already written 3 pieces for them. They'd even given me a date to file again!!! I suppose I should check out my rights but as a freelancer, it's not great to rock the boat I suppose. I'm SO mad though!

As it happens, it would be hard to go back to it. It's impossible eating with B - who spends all the time trying to be anywhere but sitting quietly. I also can't afford childcare to spend time writing as it doesn't pay enough. I could have done it in my evenings, but they're so short as I'm always running around getting ready for bed as i know B will be up in the early hours...Perhaps i'll try to go back to writing in the future...

Sooooo, as I need to earn a few quid, i'm going to try hosting a P.ampered Che.f party. If it goes well and if I like it then i'm thinking of selling it. I can also offer my cooking skills on the side and sell lessons and/or catering. It's new to me although lots of my mates have bought PC stuff. I know it's more established in the US - what do you girls know about it?

I've my first party on Monday.

Really must go and do some chores now. I was out with some girlfriends drinking last night - it was great to be back in the real world for a bit - and i'm paying for it today. I wouldn't change my life for all the tea in China - or even all the chocolate in the Green & Black's factory - but sometimes it's nice to get out for some "me" time.

Many congrats to lovely Meredith on her new arrival.

I'm also really happy to report that my friend who lost her 23 and 24 week old twins last year (this month in fact) is pg (16 weeks) with a singleton. I'm so, so happy for her and have everything crossed. (She had IVF3 to get there)

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Its been too, too long since I posted properly. I've had the odd whinge and moan and a few show-off pics of my little boy but no real meaty stuff.

I think it's time for an update. Barney turned 7 months on 1st June. 7 months!! Amazing and I'm still pinching myself every day and night.

He's crawling, and has been for a couple of weeks or more. He was going backwards, but now can get where he wants to, which is pretty scary as we're not nearly as child proof as we should be. By all accounts he's a bit young for such mobility but as he's quite small and light as well as pretty strong, there's just no stopping him.
(Since i wrote this, he has progressed to pulling himself up on his knees and sometimes even onto his feet. He's so strong. I think the reason he's so busy is that he's so inquisitive. He just has to find out what the sticker on the wall feels like or what Mummy's computer tastes like. Today he wriggled out of the booster seat he was strapped into in a cafe that refused to let us in with the buggy, so he could stare and grin at a cute lady eating her breakfast at the table behind us!)
Here he is trying to crawl onto a table on holiday

He's also babbling - ba-ba, da-da, ga-ga - and making burbling noises.

The overnight sleep still eludes him (and us) and every time we try to get tough and leave him to cry, he pulls off a cold or (this week) a tooth (first tooth!!) so we bottle out of it and go to him at night. The tooth is so cute. A tiny tip of pearly white which has produced much unhappiness as it cut through his gums. (Make that two. The second one came through a few days later and is just as cute. Not so cute when he bit my boob when he was feeding though.

He's eating three meals a day (bless) and nothing has made me so happy as when he ate a whole pot of my chicken and apricot casserole.
It felt like the hugest success ever. He has good and bad meals - perhaps the teething pains - but is also not much of a milk drinker. I have to really work at it. I'm still breast feeding, but very few times a day as he's far more interested in the world around him than staring at my chest (unlike his father) so it's impossible to get him to BF by day. (We're now nearly done with BF-ing. I've been cutting down and this week, he's barely interested in feeding from me as he has a terrible cold and it's too much trouble. I'm really down about it. I think it's the cocktail of hormones receding finally but it's making me so sad.

I know i'm darned lucky to have (a) had him and (b) got to BF at all but i'm unlikely to have any more babies - there, i've said it. At 40 and a 1/2 with 5 IVF's under my belt to have Barney, i do need to be realistic about my chances of managing a second success. This will be my only chance to do this and i'm not ready to stop. Not sure i ever will be. Still, this is about him and he's doing ok on the bottle, so that's that really.

On the whole issue of a second child, i'm starting to turn my head to the issue. Do we try again? Can we afford to? Do we try to adopt - which was always going to be our plan. Also an issue of money - not only to pay for inter-country adoption (as we'd be lucky to find a baby in the UK) but to move so we have room for more of us. We're squeezed in as it is. We're not in great shape financially - well, we are ok but there's not a lot coming in at the minute. It's no time to spend huge money.

I'm thinking we might pop back to wonder clinic to see if they'd even let me try again or if they think we could try to use our frosty. It's not like I can give it a year or so and see what happens. We'll never get the surprise miracle that p's me off when others recount tales of x and y who adopted/had ivf success/gave up and "amazingly discovered y was pg!!!" Severe M factor don't work that way. We've just graduated from simple infertility only to have to redo the year again.

I hoped i'd never feel like this. When I got so lucky I thought i'd be grateful with my lot. A part of me worries i've had all my luck to have a healthy child (please G-d) at close to 40. Am i tempting fate in trying again at perhaps 41? Who knows?

He's the sunniest smiliest baby and engages people wherever we go. I'm sure everyone feels this way about their little ones.

I think this post is long enough. I'll post again with an update of where i am professionally - short preview is "nowhere".


Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Shout out to Soapchick

Hi honey

Had no idea you were going private and would LOVE to stay updated.

Pls, pls mail your password or invite or whatever to my address!

Am so pleased you're moving forwards and really want to stick around and support you.

Didn't know how else to get to you xxxxx

ps: Just so you don't feel left out....hello everyone else!! Thanks for reading xxx

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Survivor's Guilt

Here's the thing...

...I've been so concerned not to upset those of you still waiting for your babies that i've been guilty of (a) not posting and (b) posting rosy tinted posts that give no idea of how things really are for me this side of IVF.

I love my little boy, i really do and i know i'm immensely lucky, but this is the hardest thing i've ever done. I've not slept a full night in about 15 months - 9 months down to tension and inability to get comfortable (well, much of that time) and the last 6 because my son resolutely refuses to sleep through. Sleep deprivation was ok at first. It went with the territory and i was (and am) determined to love every minute of my new role. Mostly, I do, but this far down the line and it's wearing me down just a little.

In the past month i've had one root canal (4 dentist visits in total and £1600), a trip to the emergency dentist to have an abscess on another tooth pierced and drained (£260 and a lot of pain - so much so I came out of that appt and sobbed like a baby) and now, a throat/ear infection that has been going on now for well over a week. Enough already.

Breastfeeding was/is a privilege, but when my little boy decided (at 3 months) he preferred a bottle I completely lost it.It had taken a lot to get started - it's flipping painful but we'd got there. When he actually retched (yes!) when faced with my nipple - they're not bad!! - there were hormonal tears for weeks. After much perseverance (and ignoring a breast feeding counsellor who told me to give up) i managed to woo him back and he now feeds without a fight. It's time to start weaning him to a bottle but as i don't think i'll get to do this again i'm loathe to give it up. Having said that, hours pumping milk so Mr G can bottle feed him at 11pm when i catch up on some badly needed zzzzz's really takes it out of me.

Every waking hour is spent anticipating B's next need. Every trip out of the house has to be planned. Do i need the buggy? Do i need the car seat? What meals will we spend out? What's the weather going to do? I have to carry up the kit in stages from our lower ground floor flat and make sure B is fine whilst i'm doing it. It's all part of the job and it's getting easier but even leaving the house was at one time a huge achievement. [Just read that para and think perhaps i deserve a sharp, slap for that one - apologies - but i'm leaving it in for completeness]

Even as I type this i feel guilty - how dare I even think about complaining when i've got what i was wishing for and so many haven't. I'm sorry. I'd rather get real then portray this sunny, perfect existence. I don't want anyone believing i'm sitting smugly here in happy-ever-after land.

I adore my little boy but he's a handful. He's incredibly mobile for 6 months and cant' sit still for a moment. It's great he's so interested but it does wear a 40 year old Mum down.

I hope i've not been totally offensive but i felt i just had to get this off my chest.

I'm also conscious that I can't wait too much longer before making some decision about whether or not we try for another little one. As it'd have to be another IVF or adoption, both of which will cost us some, can we even afford to think about it? This recession has hit us hard and i'm not sure we can afford to have a second baby. Is it fair on B for him to be an only child?

I'm not ungratefully moaning about only having one baby. I wouldn't dream of it - i'm still counting my blessings that I have one more than i imagined i would. I'm just a little sad that it remains a problem. I'm also a lot mad at people who say that because we've now had one we're going to be one of those couples who have a second, surprise pregnancy. We're not. They just don't get it and that p's me off.

Again, i'm sorry. I don't want to upset anyone. I hope I haven't. I'm still rooting for those of my girls in the trenches and i know I don't really have the right to compain when i'm over here.

Monday, May 04, 2009

Six months

My little boy was 6 months old on Friday. I can't believe it. Mr G and I sit and look at him and want to pinch ourselves.

He's gorgeous but a total monkey. He is proficient at rolling from back to tummy and loves then pressing up with his arms. He's on the verge of crawling and can rock backwards and forwards on his hands and knees and stretch his legs out. He moves backwards but cannot yet go forwards and screams (yes SCREAMS) with frustration as he gets further from not closer to his goal!

I'm totally smitten but also completely exhausted. He and I have had some cold virus for the last week and I feel awful. Really sore throat and ears and blocked up head. Recovery isn't helped by a sleepless baby. Even when well he's not a great sleeper and still hasn't gone through the night - or even close - at this point. One smile and he's forgiven.

Mr G, B and I are off on hols next week and I can't wait. A holiday with a mobile 6 month old is questionably a holiday but it'll be a change of scene and (hopefully) some warmer weather in which to chill.

Must go now, time for bed. Mr G is nagging me to go sleep and I do need to. I'll try to fill in some gaps sometime soon.

Here's the boy

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Just to say - which I should've mentioned in my last post.

We chose to have yesterday's blessing on 14th February as it was the anniversary of the day our little boy - and his co-embryo - were transferred into my safe care. It's a day i'll never forget and seemed a good day to celebrate.

Mr G said he spent last Valentine's Day watching a man (fantastic IVF Dr) with his hands up my bits and spent this year's Valentine's watching another male (a v little one) mauling my bo.soms. Maybe next year he (Mr G) will get a look in.

I hope you all had a good Valentine's. It's not a day i'm that fond of. I hated it as a single bird and feel it hugely commercial and a bit pointless now as you should spread the lerrrrve all the time and not just once a year. Now it's become a tiny bit more special in my book. Mr G and I had a lovely dinner out but talked mostly about Barnaby and gushed over a new photo Mr G had taken on his phone. Here's a pic from yesterday

Not great of me but then i'm not who the crowds came to see. Barnaby loves my dress - all that black and white has him mesmerised.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Quick update

I'll make this quick as i need to get to bed.

Barney went to bed at 7pm and will be up again any time from 10.30 til 12. Mr G will feed him with some of my expressed breast milk (I feel more and more like a cow) whilst I grab some sleep. When B next wakes - some time between 2 and 3am - Mr G will wake me up and i'll take over. I'll feed him and then sleep in the day bed next to his cot until morning. He'll most likely wake a couple more times and have one more feed - at 5ish - before morning. I've got him into the habit of sleeping on me from about 5.30am until morning. This has the benefit of allowing me a bit more sleep than if he was in his cot and continually waking. It's also one of my guilty pleasures. He should be in bed but I get to cuddle him and smell his gorgeous baby smell.

If I get to bed soon, i'll get some sleep in before the broken sleep happens. It's hard to drag myself to bed as this is the only time of the day I get to myself.

I love my little boy dearly but he sure is hard work. Every waking moment (mine) is spent thinking of him and anticipating the next need he'll have. He had a cold a couple of weeks ago which was so hard on him as he was so snuffly and couldn't breathe properly. That's when I started having him sleep on me - so he'd be upright and more able to breathe. This week he's been teething - which involves lots of drooling, fist sucking, fussy feeding and LOTS of crying. Little love is really suffering.

Tomorrow we're having a baby blessing in our synagogue. We've invited our extended family to join us for some sparkling wine and canapes afterwards. I'll post some pics. The words are really emotional - I just hope I hold it together.

There's so much to say but where to start? I love being a Mum but it's been a huge adjustment. He's not an easy baby but he has personality and is bright as a button.

I'll write again when i've more time and can actually put together something a bit more considered and interesting. xx

Thursday, January 29, 2009

It still doesn't feel real

I have a baby sleeping in the room next to me.

A year ago:
I was taking a cocktail of drugs and getting up every day in the dark to go and get my blood tested and get scanned.
I was downing litres of milk and water to help grow healthy eggs.
I was hopeful but also disbelieving that this cycle would be any different to cycles 1, 2, 3 and 4.
I was licking the wounds caused by the last clinic i'd been to telling me we'd never succeed at IVF and that I should give up.
I was wondering what to do next and what I would do with my life.

Eggs were taken from my body and my husband's sperm injected into them. 4 embryos were created and we waited to see what would happen. On Valentine's Day 2008 two of those embryos were returned to me.

One of those embryos became Barnaby. I still can't believe that little boy next door sighing in his sleep is real.

I so want my blog friends to get there too.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Some pix

Introducing (again) my little man:

I'm totally and utterly in love...

Friday, January 09, 2009

Bad blogger

Wow - probably the longest time i've had between posts, due to a combination of not really being sure what to blog about now and partly being totally immersed in coping with looking after a tiny human being.

My little boy is (as you'd expect me to say) gorgeous. He's starting to look like his Daddy and is as big a drama queen. He's not one to take anything quietly and makes his views well known. For the last couple of days, everything has provoked huge teary outbursts - I think he must be overtired. When he's not wailing - because he isn't all of the time - he's super smiley and so, so inquisitive about the world. I have to cover his eyes to help him sleep because he just doesn't want to switch off.

A full night's sleep is a distant memory and i'm not sure when the next one will be. I'd NEVER complain as i know how lucky i am, and you sort of get used to it. I quite enjoy spending the early hours looking after my little boy - I've waited long enough.

Right now he's asleep in his Moses basket. His Daddy is on his way back from a business trip to Denmark. Mr G has waited 41 years to bring his child a pressie back from a trip abroad. Today is the first time he's had that child to buy for. It's a big moment.

The whole 'having a baby' thing blows my mind. I still can't believe that he's here and ours and almost have to pinch myself every day.

I want to post some pics but need to get Mr G to pass them to me. I'll post some as soon as I can.

There's so much to say, but I think it should go on a different blog. Once i've worked out how to post about being a Mum i'll sort out the second blog.

Right now i'm freezing cold and I want to check the little man is warm enough. It's so cold here in the UK it's mad. I'll post again when i've the pix and when i'm a bit more coherent.

Oh - meant to say - there's been a flurry of BFP's in my blogger circle and i'm so excited about it. There was a similar batch last Xmas time and it happened again this year. It's made me so happy. To my PG blogger girls - you know who you are - CONGRATULATIONS!!!!! To those still waiting - keep trying. I missed the Xmas batch last year and it still happened for me. This time last year I was about to start IVF 5 - well, hoping to as I wasn't sure my FSH would be low enough. Look where I am now. A totally different start to the year. I wish the same good luck to all of my friends struggling with IF. xx