Monday, October 20

Spinning right along

Again, I'm in disbelief at the amount of time that has passed since I last posted. So much has happened.

I'm scheduled for my hysterosalpingogram (HSG for you normal people) for Thursday morning. It seems, after much blog reading, that half the women say it was the most painful thing they've ever had to do; the other half say they didn't even feel it. Joy! I wonder which half I'm in. I guess I'll find out on Thursday.

Husband's visit to the urologist revealed a slightly swollen vein in one of his testicles. He now has to have a colo ultrasound to make sure his sperm ducts are open and not clogged. He may have to have surgery on his testicles.

Aren't we just a load of fertility fun!

In other news, I've been a cooking fanatic. I was off for (most of) last Monday for Columbus day. Who knew that was a holiday? I didn't. But anyway, I took advantage of this time to make butternut and acorn squash puree from the squash I bought at the farmer's market. I also made the frittata I posted about earlier (delicious!), a roasted chicken, beef soup (from beef bone broth I made from meaty soup bones from the farmer's market), mashed potatoes and individual sweet potatoe puddings. It was all tasty. We are about to polish off the frittata and the soup. Tonight we'll have the roasted chicken with potatoes, green beans and gravy. I have the chicken frame (or carcass) in the freezer. It will be combined with some more chicken bones and used to make a broth, which I will then use to make the super-yummy butternut squash soup with gruyere cheese croutons.

Up next will be a pork roast. I went to the farmer's market again this Saturday and bought a bone-in pork shoulder roast, german sausages, ground pork (for meat loaf) and lard. I also bought two half-gallons of milk. I currently have one quart of the milk sitting on my counter in a jar. I'm waiting for it to separate so that I can make some cheese and whey. I might have to ping Cheeseslave on this because I'm not sure my milk is going bad in the right way. We shall see. But! when I get my whey, I'm going to make some homemade sauerkraut to go with those german sausages.

In other other news, I've decided to run a half-marathon in April. I've come up with a training schedule that will gradually increase the distance I run over time. I've combined the 30/30, 5k and half marathon training schedules from this site. So far, I've completed two days. I'm concentrating on just getting my jog in every day this week.

That's about it for me for the last ten days.

Friday, October 10

Breakfast taco Friday!

The company I work for buys us breakfast tacos on random Fridays. I suppose the fully stocked fridge with cokes, organic teas, juices, cheese and fruit just isn't enough. I got treated to a whole wheat, black bean, avocado and cheese taco for breakfast. Two words: Yum. Me. And the black beans and avocado are on my list of foods I should be eating more of.

Acupuncture was wonderful yesterday, as it always is. She did a few new points on me for my immune system. They must have worked because this is the first morning I've not sneezed twenty times and had a sinus headache.

Last night, Husband and I went to our friends' house for dinner. Husband played with the baby for almost an hour. It was so awesome seeing him interact with the baby. Made me a little wistful for when it will be our time.

I've thinned the beets. They still only have primary leaves, but are getting taller. I think they look a little leggy, like they aren't getting enough sun. I might move them this weekend.

Yeah for the weekend! And it's a three-day weekend! Thank you, Columbus.

Wednesday, October 8

Ear wax can ruin a birthday

My birthday weekend went mostly great, with the exception of Sunday, the day when I had my whole family and some friends over to the house. Saturday night my left ear become stopped up. And I mean completely. I could not un-stop it. This lead to vertigo, nausea and an unhappy birthday girl. It was hard to talk to people because I couldn't hear and I wasn't sure how loudly I was speaking. I really wanted to sit and talk to my Mom, but couldn't. I wanted to tell Mom and Dad what I planned on planting this Spring and where, but I couldn't. All I could do was take some decongestants and hope that would help. It didn't.

I finally went to see my regular doctor on Tuesday to get some help. Turns out it was all ear wax. And a *lot* of it. The nurse used this tube-nozzle-spray bottle device to clean out my ear with warm water and hydrogen peroxide. It felt awesome. Then I could hear again!

Other than that, my birthday was awesome. Even though I couldn't really talk much, I loved having my family over. My brother-in-law bought me a beautiful bougainvillea.

Now I'm 31. Well on my way to 32.

Fertility update

This visit with Dr. Physician went much better. It was fast and painless. And by fast, I mean I'm not sure he even took two complete breaths before he had measured my ovaries and uterus and prescribed Provera (medroxyprogesterone). Apparently I have a lot of follicles, which is good; but they don't want to eke out the eggs in a timely manner, which is bad. Provera will bring on my period in the next ten days. Then Husband and I will start our antibiotics and I'll get a hysterosalpingogram (HSG) to make sure my tubes are clear and open. Most likely they are and I'll start clomid to bring on the eggs. Go eggs!

I do need to make a list of questions for Dr. Physician. The lack of eggs is due to a "miscommunication" between my hypothalamus and pituitary glands. These are edocrine glands, I believe. I'm still in the process of researching this. I kind of feel like the provera and clomid and treating symptoms and not fixing the real problem. I'm concerned about long-term problems due to this miscommunication.

Husband also had his urology appointment yesterday. He has a swollen vein or blood vessel in one of his testicles. He'll need surgery. Like totally-under surgery. After surgery 75% of men see an increase in their sperm counts.

Here's our schedule:
Oct. 7th - 16th: I take provera, we get our blood tests, Husband tries to get in with his primary care provider to get a referral for his surgery

Oct. 17th - 20th: I should start my mense, on day 2 we start the antibiotics and I schedule the HSG (hysterosalpingogram, I like that word)

Oct. 28th: follow up to go over all this with Dr. Physician

I think this is setting Husband and me up for a really enjoyable holiday season. We may actually be preggers by Christmas! Or we may be suffering through disappointment and more hormones.

Monday, October 6

Dinner plans

It's a little slow at work today. My Monday-morning brain is taking awhile to get going. I have too much non-work related thoughts spinning around my head. The solution, is to just get them out.

One of these niggling little thoughts is what to do for dinner this week. And what can I make for lunches. I think I've come up with a good idea. I still have some really good bread cubes leftover from making the mufaletta. Here's how it will play out:

  1. Divide bread cubes among a 12-cup muffin tin
  2. Make some bacon, chop up some tomatoes, green onions, spinach and cheese
  3. Mix them all together and divide among the muffins
  4. Mix 6 eggs with some cream, salt and pepper
  5. Pour into the muffin cups
  6. Let sit so that the bread can absorb some of the egg/milk mixture
  7. Spinkle some more cheese on top
  8. Bake until puffy and golden
That should give me twelve mini-fritattas that I can take to work with me for lunch. I can also eat them for breakfast if I so desired.

Heathens again

Another weekend has passed and we did not manage to drag our lazy asses selves to church. That's not to say that I'm not in-touch with God right now. I'm not as in-touch as I'd like to be, but God is definitely not absent. I need to step up the prayer life. It's strange how much I will resist something so simple and so good. I even know that I'm happier when I've been praying. I enjoy the presence of God I feel during prayer. (I'm not sure "enjoy" is even the right word for it, it's not strong enough) But I always seem to think of something else to think about or to do instead of praying. And that something else is never fulfilling or beneficial. So, in my typical vein of making New Year's resolutions any time of the year, I resolve to start praying once everyday. After all, every fraction of a second is the start of a new year, even if it's not a traditional calendar year.

I made chicken broth last night. I did not use pastured chicken bones. I used regular old grocery store chicken bones. I decided I can't be that picky about my food until I quit working. Husband will use the broth to make chicken tortilla soup tonight. His soup is sooooo yummy. I can't wait. I don't even require the tortillas. There is one thing I'm worried about. I used the recipe in "Eat Fat, Lose Fat" and added apple cider vinegar to the broth. The recipe calls for "any" vinegar. I did not precisely measure. I poured and guessed. The broth has a sweet, apply smell. It doesn't smell bad. It smells quite good, actually. But I believe I used too much vinegar. And I also don't think apple cider was the best choice for the any vinegar. I know you are all dying to know how this turns out (especially my vegetarian reader), so I'll keep you posted.

Other than that, we spent copious amounts of money on clothes this weekend. Husband needed some new shirts and ties, and I also needed some new work clothes. We are now in a budget crisis along with the rest of the country. However, if a boost in consumer spending can in any way help the country's current economic situation, then Husband and I have done our part. You may express your gratitude through gifts.

Friday, October 3

But, we've only just met

I'll recap last weekend later. I have more important things to blog about today. Wednesday we had our fist appointment at the fertility clinic. It was a prime example of how strongly incorrect expectations combined with one little comment from a nurse can greatly effect a patient's attitude. I was under the impression that our appointment was solely to discuss Husband's sperm analysis. Therefore, I was confused about who the "patient" should be on the forms. The nurse informed me that the woman is always the patient even if there is nothing wrong with her. (more on the ludicrousness of this later) So I started to complete the forms with me as the patient. Whatever. She then started to ask me routine questions. One of which was what medications I was taking. I said that I'm taking the herbs prescribed by my acupuncturist. She just kind of smirked and said "He'll (the physician) will make you stop taking them." I just looked at her and politely smiled, thinking, he can't make me do anything. That one statement was enough to get my heckles up. I realize she's just a nurse and she can't analyze every comment she makes throughout the day. It probably shouldn't have affected me as much as it did. But it did.

We then met with the physician. He was pleasant enough. He did not have a high-handed manner. We discussed the herbs and he voiced his concerns and said that he'd prefer I not take them. We discussed my ovulation, Husband's sperm. He explained what I needed to know (mostly that ovulating at day 19 isn't any better for conception than ovulating on day 60, bummer) and referred Husband to a urologist.

He then stood up and said, "well, let's get you on the table for an exam."
My stomach knotted, I felt sweaty. "What kind of exam? Do you mean a pelvic?"
Inner me "You want to do WHAT to me! I don't think so, buddy!"
Him, "um, yes"
Me, "no, I'm not prepared for that today"
Inner me "do not vomit, do not cry, you are fine, breathe"
Him, "that' s not a problem, I can examine you when we do the ultrasound. why don't I just listen to your heart and lungs?"
Me, "yes, that will be fine"
Inner me "do not to hyperventilate. breathe through your nose and out through your mouth. deep breaths. calm."

He finished his exam. We finished with the papers and scheduled our next appointments. Husband and I tried to have lunch together but I couldn't eat. I had no appetite. I had anxious stomach and I didn't know why.

Was I dreading having to go back and be "examined" by a male physician? Was I finally accepting the fact that we have fertility problems? Was I suffering from my latent aversion to being a "patient"? I think it was all of the above.

Some friends of mine had to use IUI in order to conceive their fist child. They used the same clinic and physician that we are using. They told me how she hated the process. While she was being inseminated she was telling the physician how much she hated that they were having to do this and how much she hated him right now. I didn't understand this sentiment at first, but now I do. And I don't want to be in that same emotional boat. I want to be happy and excited about conceiving my child, even if it's not by the traditional method. I needed to change my attitude.

And I mostly have. I'm excited about my ultrasound now. I like looking at my organs! I'm going to finish my herbs for this cycle; but I've spoken with my acupuncturist and she said it'll be fine to stop them. I'll probably have to take clomid. But in the end, we will hopefully get to be parents and have our lives changed forever. And that will give me something totally new and different to be stressed about.