PCOS - check. Infertility - check. IVF - check. 43 years young - check. Sick of babydust - fricking double check. Join a Scottish infertile as she slowly swirls down the plughole. Now with added donor egg flava.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Happy Anniversary to My Sweetie

It is our 9th wedding anniversary today. I must look it up to see whether this is the plastic peestick anniversary. Yes, I have been continuing with them. The novelty has not worn off yet.

Normally on our anniversary, we are on holiday.

Last year we were in our fave hotel in Amsterdam.

Two years ago, it was Fleet Week and Memorial Day in NYC.

Three years ago, it was Paris, the City of Light and I refused to climb up the Eiffel tower.

This year I have plastic peesticks and a demolished kitchen and I could not be happier.

I like to have a bit of an occasion on our anniversary to commemorate our long journey together.

We met in high school in 1977, I was 11 and you were 13. We bonded over a shared love of New Wave music and I laughed at your hair.

We stayed close friends even whilst I fell in love with another, got engaged at 20 and then jilted him aged 21, on the precipice of wedding plans.

You were always there, my faithful rock, even when I turned away from you into other men's arms.

14 years ago in 1992, I returned from living in England and we rekindled our closeness in a winter of Arctic temperatures and I realised I was falling in love with you. You told me that you had always loved me but you were waiting for me to catch up and realise it. I finally did.

It took us another 5 years to reach the altar as I was ideologically opposed to the shackles of marriage and I did not want to relinquish my independence and do what is expected of all the other women in my narrow-minded small home town.

What I foolishly did not understand was that marriage with you would be like coming home. With a contented sigh. With a loving wink. With a long exhale.

Every time I go to the clinic on the train, I turn away from the sea and look up the hill towards the tiny church where I was christened in December 1965 and then married to you on that day in May 1997. As we pass by it, I wish upon its spire that I can always have you in my life and I am so thankful for every day.

Yes, we have our niggling arguments and petty squabbles but I feel blessed to have you in my life. You are my smile when I cannot and my laugh when I cannot and my anchor when I feel untethered.

29 years later, here we are and I still laugh at your hair and we still listen to 70s music on the iPod. I hope you have gotten a fraction of the happiness and joy out of this journey as I have, my darling.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Do I Look Like an Urban Legend To You???? Updated***

***Update. Peed on a FRER this morning (Sunday) and got an immediate lovely clear pink line. I was very worried that the clinic-supplied tests were faulty. Please feel free to roll your eyes at this juncture.

Thank you for all your lovely comments. You know that I would be even more of a basket case without you all supporting me.***

Faint positive test this morning. Ummm....okaaaay.

I phoned the clinic to say that I had a faint line, skinny and faint but definitely there. They gave me the old message board standard of "Any line is a positive result". I giggled nervously as the nurse said "Congratulations".

The test I did on Thursday morning did have a faint shadow eventually on it but I dismissed it as an evap. line. You could only see something if you held it at a funny angle, shone a torch on it and squinted through your third eye.

When I look at the 2 tests side by side today, it is like looking at night and day. The line is definitely there today, visible to the naked eye whereas Thursday's test needed, as Julie at A Little Pregnant* said, "the light of a thousand suns" to see the photo negative of a something, anything.

I had spent all day yesterday poring over the SA donor profiles and trying to pick one to get that show on the road. I also picked up a very heavy microwave and staggered out of the kitchen with it. I was so utterly convinced it was over, I cannot begin to tell you.

I am still in a state of utter bemusement and would not dare to utter the "p" word. Mr P and I are being cautiously optimistic although the clinic has already booked me in today for a 7 week scan! The prospect of that in 3 weeks seems like the dark side of the moon. I know everything that can go wrong and we are off to a shaky start but I am going to take it one day at a time.

As the immortal and ever-missed Getupgrrl* once said: NBHHY.

* Sorry I cannot do links on this laptop. It is defeating me. I am currently lying down as I have had to increase the estrogen on the clinic's instructions and it has immediately made me feel nauseous. Of course, I do have to leave this bed to go purchase more peesticks this afternoon.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Stll Nothing To See

But I did pee on a stick and it was negative. At 12dp2dt.

My clinic wants me to do one more on Saturday for a final hurrah. Fuckers.

My famous sense of humour has left the building.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Move Along...Nothing To See Here

No, I have not yet POAS. I know that is what you have come here to see. No need to deny it.

I cannot do it. It is 11dp2dt and the same day that Thalia peed and got a positive but that does not comfort me. At all.

I have nothing in the way of symptoms unless poking at the boobage, examining toilet paper minutely and crying when your husband asks you if you could pack up maybe just a couple of dinner plates whilst he continues to manfully destroy the kitchen, move furniture and packs up everything else kitchen-related.

All the deliveries, bar a kickspace heater, have arrived. I can look at the boxes from the cocoon of my sofa and sniff their spicy cardboard box aroma and marvel at how so few boxes can supposedly constitute 73 items on a delivery bill.

If I am going to have an all-out, knock-down, drag-out sobbing and screeching session about a negative result, I really cannot do it on Saturday or Sunday as that is when the electrician and the plumber start to weave their Fantasia-style magic on the room formerly known as my kitchen.


Monday, May 22, 2006

Gather Your Blossoms Whilst You May

Some more pretty flowers for you whilst I wait for the door of the Last Chance Saloon to slam in my face.

It is May again and the cherry tree is blossoming and it makes me cry as it does not seem like a week since last May and the May before that, etcetera etcetera. May is the month in which we married and it can be so lovely. Pity no-one told that to the Atlantic low that is hanging over Scotland and much of the rest of the UK, bringing cold and rain. Luckily I managed to take this photo against a beautiful patch of blue sky this weekend.

My low spirits were lifted last night by a telephone call from that truly magnificent blogger, Manuela. We chinwagged and giggled and I swear at one point I snorted through my nose. It was worth every cent it will have cost you, M!!! Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Don't ask me about symptoms as I am 9dp2dt today and I feel nothing. Well, apart from the huge sobbing fit I threw this morning when a friend from work phoned to see how I was doing. My only answer was a giant sob. However, if you have been reading my blog before, you will know that a sobbing fit is nothing unusual chez Pamplemousse. In fact, it is positively mandatory.

Mr P is busying himself ripping apart the kitchen and I think he is glad to keep out of the way.

PS I was reading an ex-infertile's blog and they said they hated the way that bloggers just detail their lives and they wanted "stories" to entertain them. I was quite outraged at this but then I started thinking "Is that all I do?".

I talk way too much about feelings and emotions (mostly negative) which I think is par for the course if you are infertile. I tell you things that happen to me. Are there enough stories to keep you entertained???

Friday, May 19, 2006


6dp2dt today. Sigh.

My life is structured around Martha Stewart: The Apprentice at 2pm on Discovery and the pills and suppositories to be taken at regimented times around the clock.

Warning: If you are one of those people who insists about talking about Lost storylines or the season finale of Greys Anatomy, please be aware that I cannot frequent your blog until you talk of it no more!!!!! We are too behind over here. We have not even started the 3rd series of Greys yet. Sob.

Someone else asked me about beta day. Hahahahahahaha. Let me say that again. Hahahahahahaha. Are you kidding me? My clinic sent me home on transfer day with a yellow sheet advising me to POAS on the 27th of May, precisely 14 days after transfer. If it is positive, I will get an early U/S to determine whether it is a uterine PG.

Lola at Badeggs* says she is in the Silver Cervix club due to her miscarriages. Well, it seems that I am in the Plastic Cervix club. And don't say to me "But Thalia* is getting betas!". I am a long way north of her and several decades behind in terms of treatment.

I don't like getting blood drawn anyway.

Ooops, 90 minutes till the Goddess starts at 2pm. I must prepare my sofa shrine in anticipation. That means no cooter flashing! Martha would not like it.

* Warning again: Both these blogs contain pregnancy.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

If My Vagina Could Talk Redux

It would say "Enough of those buggery progesterone suppositories. You have turned a once beautiful garden into a bubbling and oozing primordial swamp".

And I would say back "Suck it up, beeyotch! It ain't over yet. It's going be to hand-to-suppository combat for a wee while yet. Hopefully 3 times a day, for the next 12 weeks. Suck. it. up".

It's a riot going on in my pants.

Though I have to tell you that I have not really been wearing any. TMI, I know but I feel that getting dressed would go against the whole ethos of this thing. Better to let the fresh air in to soothe the savage beast, run free like nature intended, hehe. Since I have not left the house since I came back from transfer on Saturday lunchtime, it is easy to accomplish.

Mind you, I did put some clothes on last night but only to ply the plumber with cups of tea whilst we discussed all manner of plumbing things that I now cannot remember. Hopefully Mr P was taking notes. He had better have been as the plumber starts work on the 28th. The joiner starts on the 29th. Appliances are being delivered on the 23rd and the 73 items of the kitchen delivery are coming on the 24th.

Nary a tile has been picked yet but this weekend, mark my words, I will leave the house. Don't does not become you and I can see your fillings.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Ouija Board, Ouija Board

Before this malarkey, if you had said to me how would you like to spend a few days confined to bed with loads of papers, magazines, books, laptop and DVDs? Plus of course, running hot and cold cups of tea, meals prepared and every whim catered for? I would have bit your hand off.

However, the reality is losing its lustre. I get up to go to the loo and I migrate to the kitchen and start tidying things up as I see them. Mr P shouts at me and chivvies me back to bed. I pout and say it won't make any difference.

He is the self-appointed bedrest monitor and is taking great delight in bossing me about.

I love that man.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

All Aboard The Skylark!

Otherwise known as: What! I don't even get an orgasm out of that!!!!

The cheery title of this post belies the truth.

They lied to me at the clinic. They told me transfer was like getting a smear test.

Hmmph. It was fracking awful. I could not stop my legs shaking in the stirrups. I have never felt more undignified and humiliated in all my life. And it hurt. I have read what Amanda at Manana Banana has said about her problematic transfers but I just did not expect that.

I should be grateful to be here, here in the 2ww that I thought I would never attain. I know I should be.

Instead, I am grumpy and pissed off. None of the other 3 embryos made it and the 2 they transferred were so-so. All that effort and planning and all I get is 2 so-so embryos. Call me ungrateful and undeserving but I am mad as hell.

Mr P told me to relax. Hmmph.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Good News Has Been Overdue For Some Time

I got the call.

Out of the 7, 5 fertilised by ICSI and are looking good this morning.

Both the embryologist and I were crying on the phone. She knows our history of failed fertilisation and nil transfers from the 2 previous cycles.

I am gobsmacked. Even though they were not my eggs, I was still worried about Mr P's sperm and whether the ICSI would work.

Looks like that question was answered, hmm?

Transfer tomorrow at 9.30, please, please to all deities.

PS: I cheated on the flower pics. Yes, they are all from my garden at various times of the year but only the bluebells are currently in flower here. In fact, I just noticed the pic of the tree with the birdhouse and realised it is no longer with us. The wee rowan tree succumbed to a fungus last summer and it had to be taken down. At least it still lives on, here on my blog.

PPS: Another household where some good news has been long overdue are celebrating. Go over to Jen at Chew and wish her and her husband congratulations!

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Some Lovely Flowers from my Garden For You All

Now that you have enjoyed the floral display, I will tell you what you all want to know.

My donor is doing great and 7 eggs were retrieved. They are probably being ICSi'd right now, who knows? Mr P's count was better than last time so it is all good!

Fert. report tomorrow and transfer on Saturday.

Thank you for all your support and prayers and love over the last few days (particularly to all my special girls who e-mail me and lift me up).

Notes From The Bunker

I have a pain in my chest from the anxiety.

I spent an hour on the phone to my donor this morning, talking her through what tomorrow will bring, the anasthesia, the nerves, the wobbliness after the procedure, the arrangements for the picking up and dropping off that we will do as she cannot drive afterwards. Talking about how she feels and how the trigger shot went last night.

Have I told you that she is pathologically afraid of needles? She gave herself the trigger without the benefit of an injection pen. I offered to go round and give her the shot but she said no need. She has come a long way since the first visit to the clinic where she had to lie down to have blood taken as she was so green!

I finally had my last sniff of that damned Synarel last night. My nose lining is very grateful. It will be nice to blow my nose without blood streaks on the hankie.

I assumed the position for the first progesterone suppository this morning and I remembered to stock up on panty liners. I am bloated to hell. I just put my shorts on in preparation for going out to the garden and they are too snug, even with an elasticated waist.

I am having flashbacks to the previous IVFs where we had nil fertilisation. I told T this morning in an e-mail that if I could pray, I would do it now.

Who will talk me through this?

Monday, May 08, 2006

Who Are You Calling Weird??? ***Retrieval Update****

Ages ago, loads of people tagged me about the 6 weird things.

Now call me deluded but I prefer not to think of them as weird things. More like my foibles that make me the unique and individual woman that I am now today.

My brain is hormone splatter so bear with me but I think I can come up with a few foibles but I don't know if I can narrow it down to just 6, hehe.

1. The sleepwalking thing, of which we have already had too many examples to bore you with now.

2. I still suck my thumb but only when I am super-stressed or over-tired. I registered with my current dentist 13 years ago and the first thing he said to me was "You suck your thumb, don't you?". Eeek. I still cringe at every check-up.

3. I cannot sleep if my pillows are not to my exact specification. Never stay at the Holiday Inn Express at Glasgow Airport if you have the same pillow obsession as I do! I still shudder at the smell they emitted. It was also flat as a gnats arse and Mr P refused, in the name of marital harmony, to surrender his to me. The selfishness of himself. The reception desk stated that they had no spares but could supply a pillowcase stuffed with towels as a substitute. Well, the air was blue. I had my revenge though as Mr P was very tired out on that flight to Toronto the next day. Ha!

Enogh already of the bed/sleep related things I am obsessed with.

4. I cannot drink mineral water out of plastic bottles. Only glass. This latest foible has been confirmed by the illustrious Jo at the Leery Polyp. I rest my case.

5. I only drink organic skimmed milk. This goes for in the porridge, cups of tea, everything. Ditto with the hormones disruption from #4.

6. I cannot bear to walk around in my bare feet, even at home. I always have to wear my bunny slippers. The thought of carpets in hotel rooms just gives me the heebie-jeebies.

There, now you can see just how completely normal I really am. And Mr P deserves a medal or a knighthood for putting up with me when the above do not take place. Banshees have nothing on me when I am not happy. Though I do prefer the word diva.

Did someone say high-maintenance??


Retrieval for my donor will be Thursday morning. Still radio silence on follicles so don't ask me!!

I am to sniff my last Synarel tomorrow night and increase to 8mg of Progynova and 400mg progesterone suppositories on Wednesday morning. My donor will trigger at 10pm tomorrow night.

I can't stop crying now.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Got a Cure for Potato-Peelers Elbow???

I never want to see a potato again. That is all I am saying.

Lining check today - up to 8.5mm so the crappy feelings from the increase in the hormones has been worth it. Wait for word on Monday re. retrieval date and start of progesterone. Continue to give lining a talking-to and stern admonitions to get with the programme.

Foolish woman that I am, I have been out on the terrace in the sunshine without sunscreen and now I am sunburnt. There must be a hole in the ozone layer right above my house.

Peggie's party tonight and I am hitting the gin. Gonna party like it's 1999. Ooops, too late.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Cruising That Big, Big River in Africa

Despite all my attempts at de-stressing ( gardening, reading, blogging every day, lying on the floor with a cushion over my head), it has not been working.

Sooooo....I decided that I did not want to know what was happening with my donor, other than what day retrieval will be on. I can hear the screaming from here.

Yes, I want to know but I cannot control what is happening so I am not letting myself know. I am still freaking out over everything but that is par for the course.

The clinic phoned me this morning and they want me in tomorrow morning for a lining check. I figure if things were going that badly, they would not have asked me in tomorrow. Logical?

Today I am playing with my new toy (new laptop). Thanks to the resident IT guru, I can now surf blogs and watch DVDs from the holy of holies (otherwise known as my bed!).

I am also distracting myself peeling hundreds of potatoes to make a giant-sized pot of this for my friend Peggie's 40th birthday party tomorrow night. For an expected total of 50 people, that is going to be a lot of potatoes!

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Lucky White Heather

For those of you who asked about lucky white heather, the story is here.

And less prosaic here.

For those of you who have said that I might get bored being at home for the next 4 weeks, all I can say is "Not a Chance!".

I get a lot of holidays (6 weeks and 10.5 days public holidays) but when you have been working full-time for almost 20 years, the chance to kick back and just relax is worth more than gold to me.

I will get the time to keep up with everyone's blogs and comment, even more than usual.

I can sleep in and catch up on my sleep deficit accrued over the last few months.

My garden is ready and waiting for some quality time and May is the month when if I do not get it in order, all will be lost. The growing capacity in May always amazes me and if I do not get that mulch down, perennials split and weeding up to date, there will be no stopping it.

Even just the simple domestic pleasures of hanging out my washing on the line in the sunshine delight me. Then running out to bring it in as the rain comes on too!

Of course, the biggie will be getting ready for the kitchen installation. No, it has not happened yet and the delivery does not arrive until May 24th so plenty of time to clean out cupboards and pack up dishes and stuff. I also still have to order the new dishwasher and washer dryer and pick out floor and wall tiles.

You see, apart from obsessing about the donor egg cycle, I have loads of things to do. As well as keeping up with my TV watching and the new series of Lost and reading books and my long-neglected cross-stitch. I also have a 40th birthday party this weekend and a trip to the big city to see another of my musical heroes.

No way will I be bored!!!

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Another Girl, Another Planet

I am wandering about today, like a fog has descended and covered my brain. Love those hormones, eh?

Thank goodness I am not at work because who knows the havoc I would be wreaking? Yes, I am not at work. Hurray!

I decided for my own knife-edge sanity to take the next 4 weeks off work, Yes, the next 4 weeks. I am looking forward to ignoring the phone, watching crap TV and ordering Mr P about, especially when it comes to housework. I am going to lie there like a pasha and in fact, I may even get a bell to ring. Hee hee.

Being a donor egg recipient means that you follow a medicated FET protocol, nothing more, nothing less. Sniff Synarel twice a day and pop some oral estrogen (Progynova). I started last Tuesday on 1mg twice a day.

My lining is being a bitch or maybe that is just my perception.

I had my first lining check today and it was 5.5mm. Is this really bad after just over a week on the hormones? I have been googling like a woman possessed but all I find are so many different combos of Progynova that my head is spinning.

I have to up my estrogen dosage to 3mg twice a day. Sigh. I was so looking forward to going to that damned clinic and have things go right for once. How naive of me!

My donor has her first stims check tomorrow. I made her up a goodie bag of 3 giant bars of M&S Swiss chocolate, some nice oil for her old stretchmarks and the new Marion Keyes book. It does not really cover my gratitude but it will do for a start. I might even let her babysit on a regular basis, you know, in a few years down the road.

Quick, get out your voodoo dolls and lucky white heather and think great follicle numbers for her tomorrow. Otherwise, you know the kind of whining and shit you will have to put up from me. I am just saying!

Monday, May 01, 2006

The Wizard of Space and Time

There are some moments in life when you forget everything going on around you, good or bad.

I had a whole slew of those moments Tuesday night. In fact I lie. It was totally continuous for hours, days even.

He was a demi-god on the stage in a succession of coloured shirts, white to black to finally pink. He said his white shirt made him gibberish. It certainly showed off his Italian suntan and newly defined upper body. If it is love he has found in Rome, it certainly has transformed him. It was a long time coming.

I danced and I sang all the words. I screamed and shouted. I waved my arms in the air and giggled like a fool.

Best of all, I smiled so much and so broadly for hours that my cheeks ached. I cannot remember the last time my cheeks ached from smiling! I felt released, like 20 again, not 40.

He was like balm to my soul, speed in my veins, chicken soup for my aches and pains.

I wish I could have bottled it. To be able to take a sip and forget about all the donor cycle and medications and pervading sadness and depression. To take a sip and feel so young again.

Morrissey, trouble may love you, trouble may need you but I thank you with my hoarse voice, aching feet and ripples of goosepimples up my back as I re-live your bravura performance again and again.