Archive for June, 2009

over-reaction?

Posted in General, Infertility on 30 June, 2009 by juniper76

I got an email from my manager today which really upset me.  And I mean crying for hours upset, not just annoyed or whatever.  I think I probably totally over-reacted to it, but I’ll lay it out there for you to decide.

First a bit of history.  Last year when we reached the point that IVF was our next step I told my boss (now our regional manager, but then our office manager) that we would be starting IVF because I knew that it would involve a reasonable amount of time off work, possibly at short notice.  I’d already been undergoing other treatments (eg IUI) for 7 months at the time and had been coming up with vague non-descriptive excuses for the time I had taken off.  Understandably, he was starting to get a little annoyed so I decided full disclosure was the best option.  At the time he was very supportive of what we were trying to achieve (ie a family) and after a long discussion we agreed to a couple of points:

  1. I would maintain a high level of communication so that they could best plan for my time off.  This has typically involved providing (in writing) estimated dates of leave at the start of each cycle and providing updates as they become available (ie after each Drs appointment).  There have been some snags along the way which have limited the success of this item (eg unforeseen side effects to drugs, etc), but I like to think that it’s improving with practice.
  2. I could have a minimum of 2 days leave for ER, 2 days for ET and 2 days if AF started.  As mentioned above, the actual leave requirements have sometimes been much higher than this, but so far they have been very accommodating.
  3. I could keep a certain amount of sick leave and annual leave in reserve for non-IVF related leave.  I opted not to keep any sick leave in reserve (who’d plan to get sick?), but I said I would like to have 2 weeks of annual leave available to me.  I particularly wanted the annual leave in light of the compulsory Christmas closure each year.  I also hoped to have 2 weeks of annual leave available to me when I finally got to take some maternity leave, but I haven’t mentioned that one to them.

So, as I said, they’ve been very accommodating.  They have been patient.  They have been tolerant.  And, I can tell, they have been getting annoyed.  Let’s face it, in the last 6 months I’ve probably worked about 50% of the time.  And that’s in spite of my best efforts.  I don’t know if it’s just me being unhealthy, or if the IVF is taking a toll on my body that I just didn’t forsee, but I seem to keep getting sick.  Which means more time off than just what I need for IVF.  And since I ran out of sick leave in December, the last 6 months have been leave without pay.

And then today I got this email from my manager (our new office manager and my group manager):

for non sick leave days could you please use your annual leave (until we are at 0 days) rather than LWOP

Now, I have maintained my annual leave balance at the agreed upon 2 weeks.  I have used a day here and a day there whenever I was sick for a full week so that I would have some money coming in.  So, anyway, when I first read this I went off the deep end.

Did I over-react?  I don’t know.

When I came back and re-read it later I wondered what he meant by “non sick leave days”.  So I started my reply to him with that.  I asked him what he meant.  I explained what I’d being doing for the last 6 months.  I also explained what our boss and I had agreed to 12 months ago.  I made a point of acknowledging just how much they had both put up with since October.  And (possibly the most dangerous part) I explained that I could only do the best that I can and that, lately, I have been made to feel that “my best” is inadequate.

Now I just need to wait and see if it blows up in my face.

I know they’ve had enough of me doing IVF.  I know they want me back in the office on a regular basis.  But they have their families.  They don’t understand where I’m at.  They can’t.  They don’t see that me giving IVF anything less than 100% is the same as them giving their children less than 100%.

chicken casserole…

Posted in Cooking, General, Infertility on 29 June, 2009 by juniper76

Good evening world!  Damn, I should have written this in the morning.  “Good morning world” has a much more upbeat ring to it, being at the start of the day and all…  It just sounds like bottled sunshine!

Anyway, another day another sneeze.  Still getting over the latest cold.  But determined to see it gone before the week is over.  Speaking of… where are my vitamin C tablets?  (Chewable, of course!  And raspberry flavoured!)

The good news is, on Saturday I finally got around to having a go at my long-awaited chicken casserole.  And completely missed the target.  Lately I’ve been on a bit of a vege kick – trying to make sure all our meals aren’t just protein + carbs  (ie steak and potato, meat and pasta, meat and rice, etc).  We have a bad habit of getting too much take-away and those meals seem to inevitably be meat+carbs sans veges.  So, as a consequence, I went overboard on the veges.  The result was still good.  Actually it tasted just fine.  And there was enough for more than three meals.  But it wasn’t what I had pictured in my head.  It wasn’t creamy (which probably means it was healthier than what I had pictured).

So after that I caved and asked my mum if she remembered the recipe she used to cook, since that’s what I was craving.  The good news was, not only did she remember it, she had made some just that day and was having it for lunch the next day if I wanted to come over for some!  I decided NOT to share my cold with her, but she did email me the recipe!  So once DH has recovered from this week’s flood of chicken casserole I’ll have another go at it.

There was something else I was going to write…  What was it?

Oh, that’s right.  Now that AF has finally left the building I’m thinking about the next cycle.  And I’ve suddenly realised that I’m on Day 12.  Now, after an IVF cycle, that may be anywhere from 3 to 13 days before ovulation, but still time to start thinking about getting in some BD if we want to be TTC this cycle.  Which means I’m now really keen for this cold to be gone ASAP.

Note to self: make sure you take the thermometer back to the bedroom with you tonight – time to start temping again.

Ok, that’s all.  It’s time for bed.

you’ve got to be kidding…

Posted in General on 26 June, 2009 by juniper76

I mean, seriously!  What is wrong with me?  Or do I just have shit bad luck?

I’m sick.  AGAIN.  Seems to be different this time – full blown sinus pressure, blocked nose, sinus headache and sore throat.  And now the coughing has started again.  Ugh.  I didn’t have sinus/nasal issues last time, so I’m thinking this is something new.  And I’m wondering if I managed to pick it up from someone at work who has been off for a sinus infection lately?  Is that a reasonable suspicion or does it not work like that?

Anyway, so I was off work again.  So much for my plans to actually work a full week.  I just know my boss is going to be jumping up and down about me missing yet another day so close to end of financial year.  Not looking forward to Monday.  Especially not looking forward to Monday if I haven’t knocked this on the head by then.  I think I should go in sick just to prove that I am sick.  No, I want to get over this quickly.  I’ve had enough of feeling like crap and there’s only so much tv I can handle watching.

Time to blow my nose again.  Good thing I stocked up on tissues on Wednesday…  Got those lovely 3-ply with aloe vera ones!  But wishing I’d bought the eucalyptus ones.  Oh well, I can always use the eucalyptus oil we’ve got in the bathroom…

puzzled…

Posted in General, Infertility on 24 June, 2009 by juniper76

I’m really not sure how it happened.  I find myself lost in a dark, miserable place.  Is it just about TTC?  Has it really dragged me down this far?  Two and a half years ago everything was bright and fluffy.  There were frickin’ fairies flittering in the flower-laden fields of happiness.  And they had glitter on their wings.

Two and a half years ago it was a bright, sunny January and we were finally ready to start our family.  Actually, DH had been ready for ages but I wasn’t.  Heck, even when we started TTC I was more than a little afraid of the fact that we would have a child by the end of the year!  I really did believe that – by Christmas we would be a family of 3.  So, scared but happy.

We bought a new car because DH’s car was about to stop working and mine wasn’t safe enough for our children.  I even fought tooth and nail to get paid maternity leave for myself at work.  It was one heck of a fight, but I won.  And see how much good it has done me.

I missed out on a promotion and was told it was because I wanted to be a mum and work part-time.  Nevermind that the man given the job was expecting his first child that year and would have his family of 3 the very same Christmas that I had thought we would.  Talk about a slap in the face.  Even though endless apologies followed, I don’t think my boss really understood just how much that hurt.

Maybe that was the start of the end?  I couldn’t have what I wanted at work because I wanted to be a mum.  But I wasn’t becoming a mum either.  Can’t have what I want at work, can’t have what I want at home.

What can I have?

I can have my friends and my family.  There’s something to be grateful for.  But our friends’ lives are conusmed by their children so we hardly see them – “we can’t see you then because such-and-such is sick”; “we can’t do dinner because that’s after such-and-such’s bedtime”; “we can’t see you any time soon because we haven’t worked out how to handle going out with 2/3 children”.  About the only way we do see any of them is to drive to their house at a time that suits them.  Over the years we’ve bent over backwards to accommodate our friends with young children and now it just hurts – mostly because they’ll probably never reciprocate, either because we’ll never have kids or because they’ll have their hands full with their own kids and won’t be able to.

I do still have a job, which is probably a miracle at this point considering how unproductive and unmotivated I am.  And a job means I can still pay my bills, which means we have a roof over our head, a nice car (which we’re still paying off) and most other modcons we want.  We can afford food and petrol.  We can afford IVF.

But we also have time on our hands.  Time that I don’t know how to fill.  I have no purpose beyond TTC, no goals other than a family.

I’m trying to be grateful for the things I do have, but this desire to reproduce is so primitive and all-consuming that it can be blinding.  Maybe that’s how I got lost in the dark?  I just can’t see the light?

boring…

Posted in General, Infertility on 23 June, 2009 by juniper76

I have come to the conclusion that my life is indescribably boring…

Well, maybe not indescribably.  Let’s have a go at it!

First of all, I’m still sick.  Boring!  Heck, I’m bored with saying it.  Everyone else must be sick to death of hearing it!  Boring, boring, boring!

Second of all, we’re still TTC.  Two and a half years of TTC  involves a lot of emotions – disappointment, sadness, hope, frustration.  But my entire life consists of work and TTC, and – you guessed it! – that makes for a pretty damn boring life.  Not to mention side effects of the drugs, recovery from the procedures and so on and so forth…  I’m not ready to quit, but I am fed up with all the crap that goes along with this IVF malarky.  It would all be worth it if only we were pregnant, but so far it’s all the crap and none of the reward.

Third, I’m getting bored with work.  Don’t get me wrong, I love my job, but recently I’ve found it really hard to sink my teeth into it.  I don’t know if I’m just burnt out or if it’s more to do with the fact that I desperately want to be at home being a mum instead of still going to work.  Or maybe I’ve just been spoilt with having a job I love and now the honeymoon is over?

Anyway, between work, IVF and being sick it’s been weeks since we went to see any friends.  So, bored and just a little lonely.  Thank god for my online friends – it may be weeks since I saw a friend IRL, but I speak to my FF friends every day.  Love you girls!

So, haven’t been anywhere, haven’t seen anyone, haven’t done anything.  Boring, boring, boring, boring!

Meh, I’ll try to come up with something that’s actually interesting for the next post.  In the meantime, I’m going to watch some tv…

AF is a bi-atch!!

Posted in General, Infertility on 18 June, 2009 by juniper76

Ugh…  I feel like I’ve got someone on the inside of my pelvis trying to kick the sh*t out of me…  Talk about adding insult to injury.  Or maybe the other way around?  First a BFN and then crippling pain…  Needless to say, I’m missing even more work.

I spent today playing Fallout 3.  DH suggested it and I started playing yesterday.  I’m not good at it, but it’s something I can lose myself in for hours at a time.  I’ve got it set to “Very Easy” and I’m still running out of ammo.  Oh well.  If all else fails I can look up the cheats DH said are around…

The one plus side to any AF-from-hell is that my appetite is one of the first things to go.  There was some confusion over whether or not DH was bringing me lunch today – I thought he would call if he wasn’t, he thought he would call if he was – so I didn’t eat until he finished work (around 5pm).  And, to be honest, I wasn’t that hungry.  If only it lasted a bit longer (minus the AF pain), I might actually finally lose some weight…

And…. suddenly I feel like I need to hurl.  I do wonder if my FS really understood what I was talking about when I said I got painful periods.  I’ve been complaining to doctors about this for years and they’ve always dismissed it…

the day after yesterday…

Posted in General, Infertility on 17 June, 2009 by juniper76

That would be today.  I went to work this morning, but only for 3 hours.  I’ve been feeling pretty crap (physically) since yesterday – lots of cramps and the feeling of impending AF.  I’ll get over it.  In times gone by I would probably have worked through it.  But these days I feel so drained that I don’t bother trying.  If I feel under the weather, I stay home.

The good news on the TTC front is that our Dr did agree to some more testing.  I’ll go into more detail when I know more, but DH & I will be going for blood tests and the lab will be taking a closer look at some of DH’s “boys”.  This will be the first time that DH has been jabbed with a needle as part of this process.  I’m taking great delight in it!  I do feel a bit sorry for him though since I’ve never seen any men lining up for a b/t, just lots of women.  Poor boy.

The good news on the non-TTC front is that my BFF has finally gotten home from her 9 week jaunt to Europe.  I can’t wait to catch up with her (and her husband and daughter).  I’ve been missing her the last few weeks.

As you can tell, there’s nothing really interesting going on right now.  This is the calm after the storm.  I’ll try to find something more interesting for the next post…  No promises though.