Friday, February 29, 2008

Ten on Tuesday Friday #24

Ten Movies That I've Intended to Watch, But Haven’t
I rarely watch movies, so I though this would be fairly easy for me, but then I realized that I don't watch them, because I don't get particularly interested in watching them, so, a little more difficult. But I'll give it a shot. Some aren't necessarily ones that I've "been intending to watch" for a while, but I'm clicking around Netflix and Amazon and they look like I might want to watch them someday.

  1. The Star Wars Prequil Trilogy

  2. Brokeback Mountain

  3. Sicko

  4. March of the Penguins

  5. Happy Feet

  6. Moulin Rouge

  7. Harry Potter (but I should read the books first)

  8. Elizabeth: The Golden Age (Shrike talked me into watching the first and I liked it)

  9. The Princess Bride (loved the book!)

  10. I don't know! You tell me what I should see!

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Monitoring Madness

Yet again, we were off to the fertility clinic bright and early this morning (although much less bright - and about twenty minutes less early - than we were supposed to be), for yet another look-see at our little follie-ollies.

After the exam, I was interrogating the nurse, and Shrike said, rolling her eyes, "She's writing a book."

I said, "Well, I probably could!"

The nurse said, "Oh, you have a blog, don't you? Nurse E was looking at it the other day, and we were all laughing."

(In a good way, I hope!)

Boy, I'm glad I've never aired any complaints here about the care or service we've received (mostly because I've not had any).

So - howdy to all the crew at our fertility clinic! Feel free to comment if you'd like.

No need to worry about HIPAA because, well - have you read the blog? Short of posting photos of us in the stirrups, there's really not much more personal you could get!

And, now, the numbers . . . .

Nurse D says that "The cycle is looking picture perfect. It's a bit on the long side, but given how many follicles she had to start with, we wanted to be careful with the meds, and a slow, long cycle is better in that case."

Her estrogen is 1351, which is rising nicely, but not getting into any scary areas.

They saw 23 follicles, but there could be more hiding behind them.

They measure the twelve largest and don't worry about the others. She has one at 15 mm, and the rest are between 10.5 mm - 13.7 mm.

We're leaving her Menopur the same and dropping the Gonal-F to 75 units tonight. Lupron stays at 10 units in the morning.

We will go to their main office tomorrow (and Sunday) to monitor, and will continue to monitor daily until we trigger (3 - 4 follicles at 18 mm or larger).

Both nurses that I talked to today are estimating that she's likely to be ready to trigger on Monday, for retrieval on Wednesday.

We're hoping for a day earlier, though, since she's off work Tuesday and my schedule is lighter that day. That would also put us transferring on Sunday, so I'd only miss one day of work and she'd miss none. Also, we'd have all day together on Sunday to do the trigger shot, rather than having to figure out logistics to do it on Monday, 36 hours before retrieval, when she's likely to be at work.

We'll make it work whenever it needs to be, but for many reasons, Tuesday would be a lot more convenient for us, so, please send some "Grow, follies, grow!" mojo our way, if you don't mind.

Oh, and I also found out today that they will be fertilizing our eggs by ICSI (intracytoplasmic sperm injection - pronounced "ik-see"), in which they inject a sperm directly into each egg. They evidently do this with all their frozen sperm IVF.

That's pretty freaking fancy and very, very cool.

Only the best for our baby/ies!

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Clever Ovarian-Related Title

We had another peek at Shrike's follicles this morning and things seem to be moving along in there.

Dr E was in the room for the ultrasound this time, and as soon as we had ovaries up on the screen she said, "Wow, look at all those follicles! Start drinking lots of Gatorade."

I'm not 100% sure what's up the Gatorade, but it's what you do to stay ahead of the possibility of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome.

My assumption is that the Gatorade doesn't affect your ovaries at all, but from what I read the OHSS screws up your fluid balance and electrolytes and that's what makes you sick. So, if you push the electrolytes, you head off the bad effects of the OHSS. Or something like that.

I quizzed the nurse on that later, and she said that OHSS doesn't actually happen until after retrieval, and Shrike's estrogen level isn't near the danger range now (although it will continue to rise over the next few days) but they want to be careful.

I made her buy four big bottle of Gatorade when we left, with orders to drink up.

But, and I know you're all waiting for this - what were her numbers?

Her estrogen is 957 (over 3000 is when they worry about OHSS) and she's got 27 follicles. One is 12 mm, several are 11 mm and several are 10 mm. Others are smaller than 10 mm.

The threshold to trigger is 3 follicles at 18 mm or bigger, and they grow 1 - 2 mm per day.

This morning, Dr E estimated that we'll be ready for retrieval "late next week, or maybe the weekend."

Later, on the phone, the nurse estimated Wednesday, but now that I think about it, I believe she may have been talking about triggering on Wednesday, which would mean retrieving on Friday.

(A Wednesday trigger date would be based on the 11 mm follicles growing 1 mm/day.)

Tonight, we'll cut her medication dosages back to where they were for the first three days: Gonal-F 112 units and Menopur 1/2 vial. The Lupron will stay at 10 units, and then we monitor again tomorrow morning.

At this point, we'll probably be monitoring daily until she triggers, which will mean two 1.5 hour drives to the main office over the weekend.

Because we just love that trip.

More numbers to tomorrow!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Is There Something I Should Know?

As I mentioned yesterday, on Monday I had a meeting with BigBoss and ED1, about some budget issues.

BigBoss had called the meeting, but in preparing for it, I saw a few things that I had questions about and I brought those up in the meeting.

There were a couple of points on which we didn't totally agree, but all in all, I thought it went well, and was a productive meeting.

When I got to work on Tuesday, though, a couple of kind of strange things happened that made me wonder.

I'm sure that they were coincidences, but I did let my imagination get away with me for a little while there.

First, when I turned on the computer and went to log in to the program that we use to manage just about all aspects of the business, my name was not in the drop-down menu of users.

I logged in as someone else, and went to the employee setup page to check my permissions.

When I pulled up my profile, I saw that the "inactive employee" box was checked!

Then, I tried to email ED1 about something unrelated, and the message immediately bounced back, flagged as spam.

I was beginning to wonder if I'd been fired and nobody had bothered to mention it to me.

I did exchange multiple emails with ED1 today about some follow-up issues from the meeting and other things, and she didn't seem surprised to hear from me, so I suppose I still have a job, but it was a bit unnerving for a little while there.

Wordless Wednesday #49: Time Takes Its Toll

The Valentine's Day tulips aren't looking so good.
Learn more about Wordless Wednesday.

The Follicle Follies

Shrike went in alone for her dildo-cam visit because, well, for no apparent reason, as it turned out.

You see, a couple of weeks ago, we'd scheduled an appointment with Dr T for this morning.

Last week when we saw that she'd probably be monitoring today, and that I needed a lining check on or about Monday, we tried to rearrange things to go to Dr T yesterday, then to the RE together today.

No dice, because Dr T was booked for yesterday. So, when talking to her office, I scheduled an appointment for next Tuesday, but said to leave today's on the book until I decided whether to switch my lining check, or leave everything as-is, and do my lining check and Dr T solo (and let Shrike do her monitoring alone today).

I did decide to do that, so I drove to OldWorkTown yesterday for my appointment (followed by a meeting with BigBoss and ED2) and this morning, Shrike headed down there alone, and I went to Dr T's office.

When I walked in, one of the "girls up front" said, "Do you have an appointment?" I said I did, and she said that it wasn't in the book.

I noticed right off that the lights were off in Dr T's office, meaning that she wasn't in yet.

Looking at the schedule book, we saw that we had, indeed been erased from today.

So, I headed down to WorkTown and took advantage of the extra time to run a couple of errands and pick up some supplies for the center, then still got in to work around 9:30, rather than 10:30 as I'd expected.

In the meantime, Shrike and I played a bit of not-really-charging-very-well-cell-phone tag, and I finally talked to her and found out that they'd said she had 18 follicles on (in?) the right ovary, and 10 on the left, and that "everything looks great, they just need to grow some more; we'll probably want to see you back on Thursday."

This afternoon, we got the official report that she actually has a total of 30 follicles, 6 of which are "measurable" (I'm still not sure if that refers more to their size or their location?) and her estrogen level is 681, which is a big jump from Sunday.

Her medication protocol will stay the same, we'll get the morning off tomorrow (although I'll go ahead and go in to work early, rather than waiting til 10:30) and then we'll monitor again on Thursday.

We're hoping to get a more solid prediction of our retreival date at that point.

We're getting close!

Monday, February 25, 2008

Lining Check

I went in for my mid-cycle lining check this morning, and everything is A-OK.

My uterine lining is 13 mm thick, which is "perfect" and "great," according to the ultrasound tech. They like to see anything over 8 mm, so I've got a veritable featherbed prepared in there.

My estrogen level is 468, which is "exactly where we like to see it," according to Nurse D.

My progesterone is less than 0.2, which means that I haven't gone and done anything truly stupid, like ovulating with my own lame-o eggs.

I will continue to take the estrogen shots every three days, and we'll add the progesterone after Shrike triggers.

And speaking of Shrike, how is my little chickadee (and her little eggaroos)?

Well, she's due for another peek at the follicles in the morning, but she reports that things definitely seem to be happening in there; she's starting to feel bloated and a bit sore in her ovular regions.

It's nice to have that outward sign of progress, but I do hate that she's uncomfortable - especially since I feel like it's All My Fault.

But, she's handling it (and all those tummy shots) like a trooper and is much less whiney than I'm sure I would be.

(Than I'm sure I will be.)

Manic Monday #25

Somewhat appropriately for my blogiversary, this week's questions seem to be built around a birthdayish sort of these.

  1. How did you celebrate your last birthday?
    Let's see, there was a meeting at work and they gave me a balloon, I'm pretty sure that Shrike and I went out to dinner with a birthday coupon at some point, and we celebrated both our days, and Mother's Day with her family. Oh, and the day before my birthday, I had my uterus flushed.

  2. What's the last thing you bought yourself, just for fun?
    Drinks with some friends, last Thursday night. And then I tried to flush my cellphone.


  3. What would the child you once were think of the adult you have become?
    I suspect she would be a little shocked, by a variety of things.

Learn more about Manic Monday.

Happy Blogiversary To Me

Today is one year since my first post on this blog!

When I started, I had all the time in the world on my hands, and I still wasn't sure how long I'd keep it up, or how regularly I'd post.

A year -and more than six hundred posts - later, I guess I've managed to do ok.

With quantity, at least. Not so sure about the quality.

Which brings me to . . .

The First Annual Whozzie Awards!
(and the crowd goes wild!)

At risk of being incredibly self-indulgent, and being reminded that there are only five people reading this stuff, (and four of them are related to me), I'm asking you to nominate your favorite posts from my blog over the past year, in a variety of categories:

  • Stop! You're Cracking Me Up! (Funniest Post)
  • Quick! Pass the Insulin (Sweetest / Sappiest Post)
  • Oh No She Didn't! (Most Outrageous Post)
  • TMI! TMI! TMI! (Most Over-Sharing Post)
  • Do You Email Your Mama With That Keyboard? (Most PG-13 Post)
  • I Hear Ya, Sister! (Post to which you can most personally relate)
  • Would Ya Look At That! (Best Photo)

Of course, you don't have to vote in every category - and, you're welcome to make up your own!

To share your choices, please leave a comment with the category and the title and date of the post. If you know how to make a link, all the better. If not, don't worry, I'll put them all in one post in a couple of days, complete with links.

Vote early, vote often!

Dear Blog Readers,
I'm alive!!!
Love, Whozat's Cellphone

Sunday, February 24, 2008

News From the Follicle Front

This morning, Shrike and I made the 1.5 hour drive to the weekend fertility clinic, for monitoring.

We saw a total of 26 follicles this time - 14 on the right, 12 on the left. Of those, seven (5 R, 2 L) were measurable, ranging from 6.5 mm to 12.4 mm.

She said that the others were "behind" them, so I think that they're not measurable because they're hiding, rather than too small. Maybe?

She did, at some point, use the phrase, "Because she has so many," which I took to be a good sign.

Shrike's estrogen is now at 123 (no idea what the units are), which she says is a nice rise from last time, when it was 47.3.

There's not a specific target number that the look for, but it should be rising as the follicles mature. She said we're expecting to see an estrogen of "several hundred" next time.

Shrike will monitor again on Tuesday morning, and her medication dosages will stay the same until then.

After that check, we'll get another call with further instructions. The tentative protocol calls for daily monitoring from that point on.

The nurse estimates that she'll be ready to trigger (follicles > 19 mm) around Thursday, Friday orSaturday, which would mean retrieval Saturday, Sunday or Monday.

Pretty safe guess, I think, given our original target date of Sunday.

In the meantime, my endometrium and I will go in for our close-up tomorrow morning.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Photo Hunter #48: Wooden

This wooden bowl is made from the remains of a tree that grew at my summer camp.

It's a long story, but the tree was called The Wishing Oak, and the tradition was that it granted wishes.

It blew down in a hurricane, and afterward we discovered that it was almost completely hollow inside.

One of my campers (who grew up to be a good friend of mine) said, "I guess it was hollow to hold all the wishes."

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Friday, February 22, 2008

Follicle Update

Shrike had her first monitoring appointment this morning.

Her 41 follicles from Monday are now 31, which is pretty typical.

Nurse D also cautioned us not to "live or die by the follicle count" because it depends a lot on who's doing the counting and how closely they look.

Her bloodwork looked good, too. Her estrogen level is lower than what they usually expect to see (just under 50; they like 100 - 150) but she said that's probably because of the high dose of Lupron and low dose of stims that she's been taking.

Tonight and tomorrow night she'll take a full vial of Menopur (up from 1/2 vial) and 150 units of Gonal-F (up from 112 units).

Tomorrow and Sunday mornings, she'll take 10 units of Lupron (down from 20 units) and we'll monitor again on Sunday.

On Monay, I have a lining check, and Shrike will proably start monitoring daily on Tuesday.

More news as we have it.

Five on Friday #5: Top of Mind

What is the first thing that comes to mind when you read each of these words and why?

  1. Ice: Snow - We've seen some of each this week.
  2. Primary: Undecided - Because I am.
  3. Dirty: Dishes - There are a lot of these in our sink.
  4. Green: Spring - That would be very nice to see some time soon.
  5. Fly: Airplane - Well, duh.
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Thursday, February 21, 2008

Thursday Thirteen #51


Thirteen Tips for Drying Out a Wet Cell Phone
Stolen from wikihow.com. I'll let you know how it goes.
Yes, if you absolutely must know, there was a toilet involved.
And, perhaps, some alcohol.
  1. Get it out of the water as soon as possible. Check.

  2. Remove the battery. Done, but probably not quickly enough.
  3. Dry your phone. Obviously you need to remove as much of the water as soon as possible, so you can save it from getting into the phone. Use a towel or paper towel to remove as much of the water as possible. As best I could.

  4. Allow the phone to dry. Working on that now.

    Some Drying Methods:
  5. Rice Method - To dry your phone more quickly than room temperature air can manage, immerse it in a can of dry, uncooked rice. The rice will absorb excess moisture, drying your phone from the inside out. (I'm doing this.)

  6. Alcohol Method - Take the battery out. Quicky dip the phone in pure alcohol (on a first aid kit) and make sure it gets to wet the phone entirely inside. The alcohol will dilute the water that might be inside it. Fish your phone out of the alcohol container. Place it under heat (sun, hair dryer...). Alcohol will evaporate easier and faster than water!

  7. An alternate drying technique is to seal the phone (battery, SIM card, SD card all removed) in a plastic bag with a few of the silica packs that come packed with shoes, coats, electronics. Leave the phone in the bag for a day or 2, and the silica packs will absorb the moisture. That's where the battery and SIM card are.

  8. If you have a stove with a halogen light or a light used to warm food, take out the battery and sim card and let the phone sit under it for 10-15 minutes. Not too close though, it could get too hot and fry.

  9. Remove battery and all cards. Open your phone if it is a flip phone or leave it if its a normal bar phone. #Find a couple old socks and put your phone in the sock with it open and tie the end of the sock to keep the phone in. Put another sock around that sock to provide extra padding and protection to the phone. Set your clothes dryer on the lowest heat setting...the no heat setting is best and safest! Heat will melt the phone! Throw in another small garment or two in the dryer along with you cell phone/tied sock package. Run for two to three 1 hour cycles. Let the phone cool for 4-5 hours laying out. Re-attach battery.

  10. Place the phone on the dashboard by the defrost holes and tape it. After a few days of driving with the heater On, it should get dry.

  11. Another method for drying the phone is to set it on top of the vent of a cable box, monitor or TV for at least 24 hours (up to 3 days). The low heat emitted is enough to gently dry out the phone.

  12. Wait. This is the hardest part - Drying should take approximately three days which means leaving your phone alone, with battery and SIM card out, while it dries slowly. Ack!

  13. Test your phone. Hope for the best.

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

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Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Ten on Tuesday #23

Ten Things I Love

  1. Shrike
  2. Our families
  3. Our critters
  4. Spending time with friends
  5. Planning events and pulling them off
  6. Teaching people things
  7. Feeling like I'm making a difference
  8. My summer camp
  9. Cheese
  10. Chocolate

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Monday, February 18, 2008

My Wife Is a Stud

Or, you know, whatever the female, follicle-forming-fool version of that would be.

Shrike went to the fertility clinic this morning for her Lupron evaluation, which involved blood work to check hormone levels ("nice and quiet" as they should be) and a visit to the dildo-cam.

Remember the preliminary antral follicle check that we did on her a few months ago, to get approved for shared risk?

When everyone was so impressed with her 36 antral follicles?

Yeah, well, that was nothing.

Today, she had (wait for it) - forty-one antral follicles!

Show off.

Dr E seems to be very happy with that, but also wants to be careful with her protocol, to avoid ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome.

(Note to Shrike: Please do not click the above link!!!)

She will continue on the full dose of Lupron (the suppression drug) for now, rather than reducing it, and will take less of the gonadotropins that Dr E had original planned.

For those who care about such things, she's been taking 20 units of Lupron each morning, and will continue that until further notice.

Tomorrow night, she'll start 122 units of Gonal-F and 1/2 vial of Menopur each evening.

Those can be combined into one shot, but because of the 1/2 vial thing, it's only practical to do that every other night, when she'd getting the second half of the vial.

So, she'll still get one shot each morning, and will alternate between one and two shots each evening. These are all subcutaneous in the belly.

For my end of the deal, I started last Monday with Del Estrogen, .2 cc intramuscular (in the butt), every three days. So far, that's been Monday, Thursday and Sunday. The next one will be due on Wednesday.

I'm set for a mid-cycle lining check on Monday, but maybe we'll change it to Sunday or Tuesday, to coincide with one of Shrike's monitoring appointments.

I will probably continue my shots the same way until Shrike triggers (with an IM butt-shot of HCG), 36 hours before egg retrieval (tentatively scheduled for March 2).

I think I start on the nightly Progesterone in oil butt-shots either the night of the trigger, or the night after, and continue through something like twelve weeks of pregnancy.

(Or a negative beta, but we're not thinking about that option.)

So, we are definitely on our way here!

Update:
I just talked to Shrike on the phone for the first time since her appointment, and got the lowdown on everything that went on this morning. She said that Dr E called her a "Follicle-Making Machine."

Manic Monday #24

  1. What do you order when you eat Chinese food?
    The buffet, preferably. I usually get a tiny bit of each of several dishes that feature small, yummy bits of meat, such a General Tso's chicken, pepper steak, pork lo mein, barbeque pork, peanut chicken, kung pao chicken, sesame chicken etc. I also love the cream cheese filled wontons, as well as the meat-filled ones, both steamed and fried. And the puffy biscuits covered in sugar. And ice cream.

  2. How much have you controlled the course your life has taken?
    Hmm, about fifty percent?


  3. Whose opinion do you value when deciding how to vote?
    My own.

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Sunday, February 17, 2008

Well, That's a Relief!

Last Thursday, my student who fancies himself an reproductive endocrinologist was there, and knowing that his birthday was on Friday, I said:

Ms. Whozat: Hey, Kid, happy birthday. How old are you going to be? Forty?!? You're going to be forty??

Kid: No! I'm going to be eight. You're going to be forty!

Ms. Whozat: Oh yeah, that's right.

Kid: You're going to be getting old. You just wait, you'll see. Pretty soon you'll be getting old.

Ms. Whozat: Well, it's better than getting dead.

Kid: Oh, you don't have to worry about that. It will be a long time before you die. It'll be, let's see, like at least eighteen years!


Whew!

Things That Are Much More Complimentary Than They Sound

Are you in yet?
- Asked by Shrike this morning, as I was injecting the Lupron into her tummy.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Photo Hunter #47: Free

Free food (sort of):

A few months back, we joined the "customer loyalty" program at a semi-fancy-ish (for us) local restaurant, and at the beginning of February we received a buy-one-entree-get-one-free coupon for our anniversary.

After having our official Valentine's dinner at home on Thursday, we decided we'd go out on Friday to celebrate our anniversary(ies) that we'd ignored earlier in the week.

We rarely get one entree there, let alone two, but we had to use the coupon, because it was free!

After two sides (one came with each entree), we only had room for a bite or two of the entrees, and the whole dessert had to come home with us, but it was delicious.

We had chicken parmesan, and shrimp with oregano cream sauce, each served with angel-hair pasta. Not shown are our sides - shrimp bisque and three-cheese garlic bread.

They make the most incredible shrimp bisque, and sometimes we just split a bowl of that and the cheesey bread, and call it a night!)

Also in the photo are a slice of chocolate peanut butter pie, and the free carnations that they were giving to all the women.

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Friday, February 15, 2008

Some/Thing Blue(?)

I had to do some thinking on which way to go with this topic. There were several things that came to mind, any of which I could probably manage to write on. . .

Blue, as in sad?
Blue, as in Democratic Party?
Blue, as in cobalt, which seems to be my favorite color these days?
Blue is for boys?

Ah, there you go.

When discussing this whole baby thing, we've done a lot of talking about whether we'd rather have a boy or a girl?

(Or, possibly, one of each, or two of one or the other.)

I started out really hoping for a girl, but then tried to make myself envision a boy, since IUI tends to skew a bit toward boys.

Sidebar:
This seems to be because with artificial insemination (IUI or ICI), you tend to be inseminating after ovulation, meaning that the faster Y sperm are more likely to get to the eggs. On the other hand, the slower, but longer living X sperm having the advantage if you inseminate (however that's done) before ovulation. Of course, this means that there are tons of lesbian couples having boys. Ironically. With IVF, I'm pretty sure the odds are even (or the same as the old fashioned way, which may or may not actually be 50/50).

Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against boys, I just kind of felt like that we'd be better off with a girl because, well, because we are girls, and we know about girl stuff.

Ok, maybe not girlie stuff, but girl stuff. Especially as the kid gets older.

Bras and periods, I can handle. Jock straps and wet dreams, not so much.

But, having forced myself to envision a boy (so as to avoid being disappointed), I've kind of come to expect that, and have kind of come to thing that would be kind of fun.

After all, we're not exactly the girliest girls in town, so maybe we would actually be better with a boy.

And we can always send him to a male friend or relative for the things that we just really don't know about. It's not like we'd be the first women in the world raising a son without a man in the house.

If we have two, though, I think we'd prefer to have one of each, because then we get to have one of each, which is cool.

Also, I think there would be less annoying stupid questions from strangers, about "are you identical" (even if they look nothing a like) and then they're all disappointed that they're not.

(Although, there is also a slightly increased incidence of identical twinning with IVF. Shhh, don't tell Shrike. She thinks identical twins are creepy.)

On the other hand, two boys or two girls would probably have a stronger bond, just by virtue of being the same sex.

Also important to consider is that, contrary to how most people feel, we kind of tend to prefer the boy baby and kid clothes.

We're not really about the pink and lacy (Shrike particularly hates pink clothes) and at least the boy clothes for six-year-olds aren't slutty.

I've told Shrike that, even if we have a girl, there's no reason she can't wear the cute clothes that we like. After all, look how we dress. We shop in the boys' department, why can't she?

Of course, it's all just an interesting thought experiment, and probably good to consider and imagine all the various possibilities, but on the other hand, it doesn't really matter what we want, because you git whatcha git, so don't throw a fit.

Check out the rest of The Other Mother's Some/Thing Meme.

Five on Friday???

Hmm, no topic posted yet for this week. I guess they're on vacation.

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I Hear The Secrets That You Keep . . .

Around six o'clock this morning, I was sleeping peacefully, when I suddenly heard Shrike not mumble, not shout, but state emphatically, "I'm mad, God damn it."

My first thought (after "Did I dream that?") was "What did I do?" then I wondered if BigGaloot had done something to her, then I realized that she was sound asleep.

I had to know.

So, I asked, "Honey, what's wrong. Who are you mad at? What happened?"

Sometimes, I will get answers that also come from the depths of her subconsious, before she wakes enough to start making sense.

This time, silence. Then a giggle, as she woke up and realized what she'd done.

It seems she'd been dreaming that we were at the beach with her extended family and they all decided to leave and come home without telling us.

Evidently, she wasn't happy about it.

Valentine's Day

I have the sweetest wife ever. Really.

We're usually not so good with the holidays (especially Valentine's / anniversaries, coming so close to Christmas, when we're still burned out on gift-giving and such), and this year we both managed to forget to acknowledge our wedding anniversary on February 10 until it was technically over.

I greeted Shrike at the door when she got home from work, around 12:30 am, saying "I'm a dick. Happy anniversary."

Her response? "I'm a bigger dick. Happy anniversary to you, too."

We did a bit better on the 12th, the anniversary of when we met in real life, but still no big celebration, certainly nothing befitting the ten freaking years that we've been together.

Could we redeem ourselves on Valentine's Day?

Yes, I think we could.

Shrike was scheduled to be off work yesterday and today, which was a good start. On Wednesday, we were talking on the phone while I was driving home from work.

Whozat: So, what do you want to do?
Shrike: Well, I'd rather not go out to dinner that night, because it will be so crowded.
Whozat: That sounds good. Besides it will be 8 o'clock before I get home.
Should I pick up dinner?
Shrike: Oh, we can play it by ear.
Whozat: We have no food. We have to go out, or I can pick up.
Shrike: Oh, we'll figure it out.
Whozat: (Refusing to just let it go) Well, should I bring something home?
Shrike: Ok, I have to tell you something. I hate you.
Whozat: Well, that's going to put a damper on the Valentine's celebration. What did I do?
Shrike: I went to the grocery today, and bought ingredients for peanut soup. It was supposed to be a surprise!
Oops.

Peanut soup, as I may have mentioned before, is a recipe that my family discovered at Colonial Williamsburg, and which Anonymama makes only for very special occassions like Thanksgiving and Christmas.

(Maybe just Christmas, now that Thanksgiving is hosted by BabyBro and HisLovelyWife.)

Shrike is quite the fan of the peanut, peanut butter, peanut butter pie and, of course, peanut soup.

At Christmas dinner, she generally has seconds or thirds and fills up on soup, ignoring the turkey, dressing, and the rest.

So, while I know that it's not exactly altruistic of her to make peanut soup for me, it is very special and touching when she does because, a> it's Anonymama's recipe and b> Shrike does not cook, so this is a very big deal.

So, we discussed it further, I suggested she also pick up a bottle of wine, we agreed something solid would be a nice addition to the meal, so she'd also make cornbread and get some spinach for salad.

When I talked to her from work yesterday, I told her that I had a little suprise for her when I got home. I couldn't wait, and actually told her during my "I'm on my way" call that I had taken off work today, so I could stay home with her.

Woo Hoo!

Not a bad way to start the evening, with the knowledge that it's not, after all, a "school night."

When I got home from work, the house smelled incredible, with the peanut soup and cornbread both just finished cooking.

Then I saw that she also had flowers (tulips) on the table, and a card (good thing I stopped on my way home Wednesday and got her one!) and some fancy Hershey Kisses (Truffles. Oh my Gawd!)

And there was the CD player, all loaded up with the brand new mix of, shall we say, "romantic" songs, which she'd burned, just for me.

I got out our wedding goblets and poured the wine, we toasted ourselves, and ten years together, and ten-thousand more to come, and George Washington Carver, and had a lovely, romantic dinner.

The rest of the evening, I shall leave to the imagination. . . .

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Thursday Thirteen #50


Oops, I'm running a bit late here, technically posting on Friday, but backdating. Don't tell anybody!)

Last week, I talked about money that I've raised lately for charities or political campaigns / organizations, this week . . .

Thirteen Political Campaigns In Which I've Been Actively Involved
When I say "actively involved," I mean volunteering by circulating nominating petitions, planning events, putting up yard signs (not just in my yard!), canvassing, phone banking, writing-in, working the polls, and other direct activities, beyond just voting and cheering them on.
  1. Anonymama for School Board, 1981 - 1999

  2. Howard Dean for President - 2004

  3. John Kerry for President - 2004

  4. Governor of BlueState (Reelection) - 2006

  5. US Senator from BlueState - 2006

  6. Congressional candidate - 2006

  7. State Representative candidate - 2006

  8. County commissioner candidates - 2007

  9. BlueState Supreme Court candidates - 2007

  10. BlueState Superior Court candidates - 2007

  11. Congressional candidate - 2008

  12. BlueState Auditor General (Reelection) - 2008

  13. BlueState Attorney General candidate - 2008

    And more to come, as soon as we have nominees in some contested primaries.

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

View More Thursday Thirteen Participants

Thursday Thirteen Blog Roll

Some/Thing Borrowed

Although I'm not exactly "borrowing" them, because I only plan to keep them for, oh, nine months or so and spruce them up a bit, then, well not exactly give them back, but you know, share the finished product for, oh, the rest of our lives, the first thing(s) that came to mind for this topic are Shrike's eggs, that we'll be using to make our baby.

I don't have words to express how much it means to me that by using her eggs, we will be able to actually make a baby together.

Of course, no matter how we might eventually come to be parents - whether our original plans had worked out, or if IVF works, or if we end up adopting - of course, our child will be, completely, ours - both of ours - but still, this is different, this idea that we will both be actually, physically making a baby together.

Not just planning it together, and raising it together and loving it together, but making it together.

Granted, it's not quite the old fashioned way, and we'll need some help from good ol' Popeye and a half-dozen or so doctors, and it won't actually be a genetic amalgam of the two of us, but both of our bodies will be intimately involved in creating this new life.

Shrike will be contributing the raw materials, and I'll be, well for lack of a better term, putting in the labor.

She'll be making the dough, and I'll be baking the bun.

She'll be writing the instruction manual, and I'll be . . . .

Ok, perhaps my analogies are getting away from me a bit here .

My point is that, although I can't deny that I am still disappointed that I wasn't able to "get the job done" myself, and I am still getting used to the idea that our baby won't have my eyes or my dimple or my whatever, that is all outweighed by the fact that I am going to be able to have her baby.

And yet, it will also be my baby.

It may have her blue eyes (if we're lucky), her "cheeseburgers" (don't ask), her cute little ears, and her prehensile toes, but it will grow inside me, I will nurture it for nine months (and beyond) and I will bring it into the world.

When I watch the "baby shows" almost every couple goes on and on about how amazing it is that "we made this person together, from our love," and, until we decided to do IVF, that's something that I was kind of sad that we would not be able to say; that we would not be physically making the baby together, but now we will.

Which brings me back to my original point (as though I had one): Some/Thing Borrowed.

When we started this project, I think Shrike expected to be more of an observer of the process.

Holding my hand, cheering me on, running out for ice cream in the middle of the night, sure, she signed on for all that, but she never expected to actually be physically involved, never expected to be having blood drawn, peeing in cups, visiting the dildo-cam, taking pills, getting shots, and having "procedures" that require anesthesia.

This morning, for the third day in a row, I woke her up and gave her a shot of Lupron in her belly. As I removed the needle and put a little kiss on the injection site, she mumbled "Thank you," and prepared to go back to sleep.

"You gotta be kidding," I thought. "Thank me?"

Everything she's doing, everything she's putting - and about to be putting - her body through because a> I want to have a baby (yes, she wants this to, but if I didn't want it, she wouldn't have come up with the idea on her own) and b> It's too late now to do it with my own ovaries, and she's thanking me?

No, honey, thank you. More than I could ever say.

And, I love you more than I could ever say.

And, Happy Valentine's Day.

Check out the rest of The Other Mother's Some/Thing Meme.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Wordless Wednesday #47: Baby Mojo

Kokopelli, Fertility goddess, Anne Geddes baby butterflies, panda family, photo of us from when we first met (also the cake-topper at our wedding), "something old" from our wedding (see below), injectible hormones. Yep, that oughta do it.

These are the actual "something old" items that we carried at our wedding. Both are things that we had as babies, and that we plan to pass on to our baby. The hanky/bonnet was a gift given to my mom before I was born. I am told that I wore it home from the hospital. The bracelet and necklace were Shrike's.

Learn more about Wordless Wednesday.

My Tug Id Nub

I had two more dentist appointments last week, on Thursday and Friday.

Thursday morning, I had one cavity filled, two old fillings replaced and some extensive cleaning done on the upper right quadrant of my mouth.

When I left his office, I was numb from my top jaw to my eyeball, and seriously droopy on that side.

I had a parent conference scheduled for 1 pm, but the dentist told me that, "Oh, you'll be fine by then!"

Well, not so much, but the parents were very understanding, when I explained why I was slurring my words and drooling on their paperwork.

On Friday, we replaced three old fillings (I think) and did a cleaning on the lower right quadrant. This appointment was in the afternoon, which seemed like a much better arrangement.

I had several errands to run afterward, and by the time I was home, the numbness had worn off.

Except for my tongue. The right side of my tongue, especially in the back, is still numb.

Not that completely numb, feels three sizes too big, don't know if you bite it kind of numb, but tingly and "tight" and just not quite right.

You know how when you burn your tongue, and the next day it doesn't really hurt anymore, but it still doesn't work quite right? Like that.

The dentist referred to it as "altered sensation."

Yeah, that's it!

When he was giving me the novocaine, I felt several "zaps" in my tongue. I flinched, and the dentist asked, "Is your tongue getting zapped, or your lip?" so I figured it wasn't a big deal, but evidently, that's when things went (temporarily) awry.

I called yesterday (three days after the appointment!) to ask whether I ought to be concerned.

He said that it isn't unusual to have some inflammation of the nerve ("You were getting zapped pretty good") that can cause prolonged numbness, and sometimes it can take as much as a couple of weeks to resolve itself.

He said that it can actually take even longer, at times, but that he's never actually seen it go beyond two weeks. "Knock wood."

He also said that the resolution can be speeded up with a short course of steriods (Medrol dose pack) but that he wouldn't prescribe that without Dr. E's blessing.

I had planned to ask Nurse D about it when she called about my labwork from that morning (all good), but after reading a bit, I decided that I'd prefer to tough it out with the numb tongue, rather than messing around with steriods right now.

I'm scheduled for another appointment on Thursday, but he said that if I'm still numb then, instead of working on the lower left side, he will probably just do the upper left cleaning that we didn't get to the other day, when I was running so late.

Then, we'll go back and deal with the lower left after the right side of my tongue is back in business, and we can risk losing the left side for a while.

So, in the meantime, I'm waiting for the numbness to wear off, and trying to remember not to experiment with moving my tongue around in different ways, causing me to make really wierd faces.

At least not when there are people around to see me.

Much.

Some/Thing New

For several months now, of course, we've been trying pretty hard around here to create something someone new, and to embark on a whole new chapter in this adventure that is our lives.

Of course, I can't wait til we're actually pregnant and, more so, til we actually have a baby, rather than just thinking and talking and planning about it but, still, the idea of it actually happening is rather, shall we say, daunting.

It's easy to get caught up in the pursuit of the baby, and to not think about the reality of the baby . . . and the toddler . . . and the child . . . and the teenager . . . but when I do stop to think about that, sometimes I'm just, well, I think "terrified" would be the most accurate term.

As much as I want this - as much as I've always wanted this - I still, at times, want to say "You know what, let's just wait a little longer . . . ."

But, of course, as I was reminded last week, that's not really an option at this point.

And, I do think we're ready. I mean, as much as anyone can be ready for something so completely life-changing.

But still . . . New. Change. Scaaaarrrr-eee.

I am comforted (I think) by something that Anonymama once said about getting married, but that I think applies even more so to having children:

You're supposed to be scared. If you're not scared, you obviously don't understand the seriousness of what you're doing.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Some/Thing Old

Hmm, there are a lot of ways I could go with this one . . . .

But, what comes to mind is that today is the tenth anniversary of the day that Shrike and I met in "real life."

Ten years. We have been together for ten years.

My God, we must be old.

The funny thing is that I can't decide whether it seems like we've been together forever, or if it seems like it was just yesterday. Both, really.

I do know that there's not much else in my life that I've stuck with for ten years, and not much else that I plan to stick with 'til the proverbial death do us part.

I think it's all turned out pretty damn well, but looking back, I can't help but ask, "What the hell were we thinking?!?"

We were the very embodiment of the U-Haul joke.

For those who stumbled in here from Het-Land, the U-Haul joke is:
Q: What does a lesbian bring on a second date?
A: A U-Haul.
Not too long ago, I read the that the corrollary to that joke is:
But then we take ten years to decide to have kids.
More on that tomorrow. . . .

Check out the rest of The Other Mother's Some/Thing Meme.

Ten on Tuesday #22

Ten Things I Hate About Politics
Hmm, this one is rather ironic for me, since I'm very involved in politics!

  1. Republicans. (Sorry, I couldn't resist.)

  2. "Swiftboat" style attacks.

  3. People who don't vote, but then think they still have a right to bitch about the government

  4. Mainstream media's "horserace" coverage, in leiu of discussing the issues.

  5. People who just want to say negative things about the other guy, and never tell you anything good about their candidate.

  6. As a liberal/progressive/Democrat, being incredibly out-numbered here in Red County.

  7. The demonization of "liberals."

  8. The willingness of some politicians to sacrifice the needs / interests of one constituency in other to avoid alienating another constituency.

  9. That money speaks louder than people.

  10. George W. Bush. (Oh, did I kind of say that already? Well, I really, really, really hate him.)

Learn More About Ten on Tuesday

Monday, February 11, 2008

It's Gonna Be Some/Thing

The Other Mother is hosting a "blog party / carnival / harmonic convergence" this week, which seems to be more or less in honor of Freedom to Marry Week.

Coincidentally (really, we didn't do it on purpose), this week is also the anniversary of our committment ceremony (February 10, 2001) and of the day that we met, in real life (February 12, 1998 - ten years ago, tomorrow). Not to mention Valentine's Day, of course.

The theme is Some/Thing. . . .

As in . . . old, . . . new, . . . borrowed and . . . blue.

Here's the deal:

For the rest of the week, if you're game, follow this theme:

Tuesday 2/12 - Some/Thing old
Wednesday 2/13 - Some/Thing new
Thursday 2/14 - Some/Thing borrowed
Friday 2/15 - Some/Thing blue

You can post a photo, memory, poem, music, or a combination. Try to surprise us. And once you're done, if you leave a link in the comment section at The Other Mother (and here), everyone will be able to check out what you've done. Feel free to link to The Other Mother, using the "Some/thing" badge. If you're not a blogger, you can still participate by leaving a comment.

Manic Monday #23

In honor of Valentine's Day this week:

  1. What is the most romantic movie that you've ever seen?
    Oh man, I'm really not much of a big movie person, and not one movie comes to mind. Maybe Shrike can answer this one for me.


  2. If you could be the lover of any person alive other than your current lover, who would you pick?
    This is going to sound like a total cop-out, but I really can't think of anyone. Sure, I can think of people who I might want to put on my "list" (of "freebies") but that's just pretend, and that would just be physical. Seriously, I can't think of anyone other than Shrike whom I'd want for my lover.


  3. What scents remind you of a loved one?
    Patchouli, and another perfume that Shrike used to wear, but I'm not sure which one it is. Mostly, though, just her. I can't explain it, and if I try to smell it, I can't, kind of like looking at a really dim light that you can only see out of the corner of your eye. (I can smell her out of the corner of my nose?) but when we're snugged in bed, I can smell her on almost a subconsious level, and it just makes me feel all warm and fuzzy.
Wow. I really suck at this today.

Learn more about Manic Monday.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

So, What's the Grossest Thing You've Seen Today?

Warning, graphic images below!

Overheard at Our House, A Few Days Ago

Shrike: When you get home, it may smell like BigGaloot rolled in something dead. There's a reason for that.

Whozat: Ew, what was it?

Shrike: Well, I know it was a groundhog, because it had a groundhog head, and groundhog feet, but everything in between was unrecognizable.
Overheard at Our House, Yesterday
Shrike: He rolled in the same dead groundhog again. And I think he brought home a leg. It might be in our backyard. So, you know, don't let them bring anything in.

Whozat: You let him bring it home?!?

Shrike: Well, I wasn't going to take it away from him!
Spotted On Our Fucking Bed, Today
(Scroll down for the gross pictures! You've been warned!)








I can't be certain, but I'm pretty sure this is a groundhog foot.
At least he put it on her side of the bed!

Update, Moments Ago
I just let the dogs inside, for the first time after finding and disposing of the body part. Galoot headed straight to the bedroom, and . . .

Now, I know I left that thing here somewhere . . . .

Windy Day

This photo doesn't really do justice to what happened in our backyard this afternoon.
What I should have gotten a picture of, before we cleaned it up, was the huge pile of shattered glass that used to be the top of this patio table.

Or a video of me, wrestling with the umbrella (which seems to have caused all the trouble), trying to crank it down without either it or me blowing away.

So, I guess we'll be in the market for some new patio furniture, come spring.

We're thinking maybe something in wood, or metal, or anything but fucking glass.

Pizza

Believe it or not, we've been making pizza - from scratch! (mostly) - quite a bit lately. It only takes a few minutes, and it's actually pretty damn good.

We started with a kit, but used our own cheese, instead of the nasty powder that came with it, and added some pepperoni to my side.

Then we graduated to jarred sauce and bags of "just add water" crust mix, along with the cheese and pepperoni.

Next, I decided to add some veggies (to my side), and then started doctoring up the crust itself.

The last time I got a hankering for it, I realized I was out of crust mix, so I did a bit of Googling and found a no-yeast recipe.

Easy-peasy!

So, after some extensive evolution, here's my pizza recipe. Sorry about the lack of amounts - you'll just have to throw everything in/on there til it looks right.


Whozat's Extra Special Crust Pizza

Crust Ingredients
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2/3 cup milk
1/4 cup oil (I use olive)

Extra Special Crust Add-Ins
(This is the part you'll have to eyeball)
Italian seasoning
Garlic powder
Parmesan cheese
Shredded cheese (whatever you plan to put on top - not too much)

Sauce
We've not ventured into making our own sauce yet, we just use something from a jar

Toppings
(Use whatever you like - this is how I make it)
Shredded cheese (I usually use a couple of kinds, generally some sort of mozzarella and a Colby-Jack or Mexican blend (not spicy) or whatever I've got)
Parmesan cheese
Pepperoni, chopped
Onions, chopped
Bell peppers, chopped (in a variety of colors)

  1. Preheat oven to 425°.
  2. Mix dry crust ingredients, then "extra special add-ins," then wet ingredients. Without add-ins, use the noted amounts of milk and oil. With add-ins, you'll need a bit more.
  3. Mix and knead dough, then cover and let sit in a warm place for 10 - 15 minutes.
  4. While dough is rising, chop veggies and sliced pepperoni, and mix them together.
  5. When dough is ready, roll it out only a greased pan. This dough recipe claims to make two 13-inch pizzas; I made one pretty big one.
  6. Top generously with sauce, cheeses, toppings. Shrike's side gets just cheese; mine gets pepperoni and veggies, as well. Sprinkle parmesan cheese on top of everything.
  7. Bake for 10 - 15 minutes. It may take longer in your oven, but ours is a bit overzealous.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Five on Friday #4: Chicken Soup

  1. How often do you get sick with a cold? The flu? Something else?
    I usually get colds 3 - 4 times a year, but I think I've had that more than that in the past six months, probably because I've been around germy children. I don't know that I've ever actually had influenza (most people who say they have "the flu" don't), and I don't often get sick with other things.

  2. Are you the sort of person who goes to work or school no matter how sick you are or are you willing to stay at home when it gets bad?
    I would much prefer to take a day off, but I usually can't.


  3. How do you like to treat a cold? What remedies do you like and why?
    As I've mentioned before, I'm allergic to antihistamines, decongestants and cough suppresants, so pretty much all I can do is take Tylenol for fever and aches, take hot showers to steam my head and chest open (now with Shower Soothers!) and whine a whole lot.


  4. What do you do to keep from getting sick in the winter?
    Nothing, really, except that I generally try to get a flu shot. Anonydaddy is a doctor, so I was back home, it was flu shots all around at Thanksgiving dinner, but since I've moved to BlueState, it's a bit more of a challenge, now that I have to actually go looking for it - especially in years when there's been a shortage.


  5. What is your favorite thing to do when you stay home from work or school?
    Pretty much the same as always, messing around on the computer or watching tv - plus lots of whining and complaining.
Visit the Five on Friday Blog

View My Five on Friday Posts

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Thursday Thirteen #49


As I mentioned yesterday, tonight our local Democratic Party held one of it's three annual fundraising dinners. That got me thinking . . . .

Thirteen Political or Charity Fundraising Projects That I've Been Involved In Over the Past Few Years
  1. Local Democratic Party - Headquarters Fund
  2. Local Democratic Party - Raffle Ticket Sales
  3. Local Democratic Party - Annual Dinners & Picnic
  4. Local Democratic Party - A variety of special projects
  5. Hurricane relief for the Public School Foundation in my hometown
  6. Flood relief (Red Cross) for our local area
  7. March of Dimes in memory of a friend's infant daughter
  8. Campaign fundraising - Congressional candidate (hosted barbeque)
  9. Campaign fundraising - Senatorial candidate (cohosted/planned house party & rally)
  10. Campaign fundraising - Governor (in conjunction with a campaign visit)
  11. Campaign fundraising - State house candidate
  12. State Democratic Party LGBT Caucus
  13. Collecting clothes, furniture, etc for local family who had a house fire

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

View More Thursday Thirteen Participants

Thursday Thirteen Blog Roll

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Wordless Wednesday #46: A Tisket, A Tasket

I'm donating this basket to be raffled at a Democratic Party fundraiser tomorrow evening. Don't tell anybody that it's almost completely regifted.
Learn more about Wordless Wednesday.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Out of the Mouths of Babes

At work this evening, one of our younger students was doing a math lesson on calendars.

A couple of weeks ago, unrelated to the calendar skills, I had told him when my birthday is, and how old I am.

(It involved another kid's MLK Day homework, and the fact that I was born about a month after MLK was assassinated.)

So, tonight, after I'd asked him "What's the most important day in May?" (my birthday, of course!) we had the following exchange, at full volume, for the entire center to hear:

Mr. Teacher: What day is your birthday, Ms. Whozat?

Ms. Whozat: The 11th.

Mr. Teacher: Ok, Kid, let's see what day of the week Ms. Whozat's birthday is.

Kid: Saturday! (It wasn't a current calendar that he was looking at.)

Ms. Whozat: Right, but this year, it's actually on a Sunday. It's on Mother's Day.

Kid: You're not a mother.

Ms. Whozat: Well, no, I'm not.

Mr. Teacher: Not yet. (He is privy to our plans. Probably more than he'd like to be.)

Ms. Whozat: Yeah, not yet.

Kid: You can't be a mother.

Ms. Whozat: Why?

Kid: You can't be pregnant.

Ms. Whozat: Why?

(I'm really starting to wonder, at this point, what assumptions he's made about me!)

Kid: It's tooooo laaaaate noooow! You're thirty-nine!

Great, so now eight year olds are dissing my fertility!

Ten on Tuesday #21

Ten Things I Can Do Instead of Watching TV
You would think this would be fairly easy for me, because I really don't watch a lot of TV these days. I do, however, spend a ton of time in front of the computer, some of it contructive, some not so much. So how about five things that I actually do, and then five things I should do:

  1. Blog

  2. Read blogs

  3. Read / send emails

  4. Work on my latest political project

  5. Fuck around with the checkbook / Quicken / online banking

  6. Spend time with Shrike (when she's home)

  7. Clean the litter box

  8. Wash dishes

  9. Cook for a damn change

  10. Burn a calorie or two

Learn More About Ten on Tuesday

Monday, February 4, 2008

Manic Monday #22

  1. Is there anything too serious to joke about? If so, what falls into that category for you?
    Yes. Bad things happening to children.

  2. Would you rather be a tortured genius or a happy simple-minded person? Why?
    I think I'll stick with tortured genius, thanks.

  3. A dear friend or family member has a terminal illness and is in agony. He/she wants you to help him/her die. What would you do?
    Oh wow. That is a hard one. I would certainly respect their wishes about withholding treatment or "heroic measures" (and have my own wishes about such things) but I just don't know if I could actively do something to bring about the end.

Learn more about Manic Monday.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Back in the Saddle

I took my first Lupron injection this morning, which I suppose officially begins the actual IVF process.

The weeks since our last IUI have been kind of a wierd, limbo-esque sort of time for me.

On the one hand, we are still "trying to get pregnant," but on the other hand, we've not actually been trying trying.

It's been almost two months now since our last negtive beta, and it's been odd to go that long with no two-week-waits, no being-a-delicate-flower, no stick-peeing, and no possibility of being pregnant.

Of course, it's not like we've been doing nothing. We've had tons of paperwork to deal with, and legal issues, and financial arrangements and getting ourselves all synced up and, of course, the ever-so-aptly-named mock cycle.

"Ha, ha, ha," said my ass, "I'm bruised and lumpy for no apparent reason!"
But we weren't doing anything that was going to actually, you know, get us pregnant.

Now, though, the clock has started on the countdown to IVF!

I started my Lupron this morning, I've just got a couple more days of birth control pills (more mocking, there!), then I'll bleed - hopefully (again) the last time for a good while - and then we'll start back up with the ass shots, to work on building a nice, squishy, inviting uterine lining.

Meanwhile, by then it will be about time for Shrike to start her meds, and get those eggies ready to come to Mama.

If all goes according to schedule, four weeks from now, there will be a reproductive rave going on at Petri's Party Palace, and another week from that, a couple of those little suckers will be safe inside me, and at least one of them will be settling in to stay for, oh, forty weeks or so.

I expect the next few weeks to be a blur of calendars and needles and doctors appointments, but it sure is good to be off the sidelines and back in the game.

A Favor, Please?

I don't know if they'd want me to go into the details, but we've got some friends who could use your good thoughts, positive energy, prayers and/or healthy-baby mojo, whatever you've got to offer.

Thanks!

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Photo Hunter #45: Narrow

Ann Coulter: Narrow body, narrow mind.

Disclaimer #1: Image stolen from PastDeadline.com.

Disclaimer #2: I have to give credit to Shrike for thinking of using Coulter to illustrate the "narrow" theme. Thanks, honey!

Friday, February 1, 2008

Five on Friday #3: Sweet Stuff

  1. Cake or Pie?
    A small slice of each, please.


  2. What is your favorite kind of candy?
    Chocolate, just about any kind. I am particularly fond of Hershey's Kisses.


  3. Do you actually like conversation hearts?
    You know, we were actually just talking about this at work yesterday. The concensus (and I agree) was that they are fun, but don't taste very good at all.

    Here's a funny story about them, though:
    When Shrike and I were "dating" (talking online, before we met in real life), I sent her a "care package" just before Valentine's Day.

    I bought a big bag of conversation hearts, but I went through it and only picked out the best ones to send to her, keeping all the ones that didn't convey the right message - like "Maybe Later" or "No Way" - or "My Guy."

    Shortly after that, LadyKay's Kiddo#2, who was 10 at the time, spent the night with me, and found the bag of leftover hearts in the fridge. We were eating them, and of course, she was reading them all.

    I kept worrying that at some point she was going to notice that they almost all said really negative things!
  4. Would you prefer chocolates or flowers from a loved one?
    Definitely chocolate, unless I'm trying to behave, diet-wise. In which case, I'll take cash.


  5. What is the sweetest thing someone has ever done for you?
    I don't know that this is the sweetest thing ever, but it's awful sweet and it's the first thing that comes to mind:
    I am very involved in my local Democratic Party and other political stuff,
    and sometimes Shrike gets a bit annoyed by it all.

    (Especially when I want to "invite a bunch of strangers to our house," which I do from time to time. )

    A couple of years ago, I participated in a statewide fellowship that was a long-term training program for progressive political leaders, and those who'd like to be.

    It involved monthly trips to big citys three and four hours away, either for all day on a Saturday, or sometimes over night. It also cost a good bit of money.

    Needless to say, I love it, but it was a bit of a sacrifice on her part for me to participate.

    As I was preparing for the first weekend, I realized that I didn't have a decent briefcase or anything similar to carry my stuff in. I'd been carrying my lunch and other things to work in an old tote bag from a school where I used to teach (complete with mascot logo) but that just didn't seem to project the image that I was looking for.

    She loaned me an old leather satchel / briefcase of hers for the weekend, but it had seen better days. I appreciated it though, and it was much better than anything I had available. But that's not the sweet part yet.

    When I got back home on Sunday, she was at work, but sitting on my chair was a brand new black nylon bag, with room for all my papers (and, later, thanks to Anonydaddy, a laptop) and just about anything else I could possibly carry in it.

    It was exactly what I needed - functional enough to be useful and professional enough to make the kind of impression I was going for.

    Most importantly, though, she'd gone out of her way to find it and pick it out and get it for me, and to me it's not just a bag, but a symbol of her support of me and of my goals and interests - even if they are not things that she would choose herself.

    And that's pretty damned sweet.
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