Wednesday, April 26, 2006


So........our vacation.....

Well, it didn't get off to the best start, sorry to say. We get to the airport at around 6:30am, e-tickets in hand, and go off to the computerized check-in. After putting in the confirmation number several times with no success I finally saw a ticket agent, who informed me (after she input the number a few more times) that the etickets were for Sunday, April 16th, not for Monday morning. At that point, I started to freak out right there in line. I (stupidly) thought that April 16th was on a Monday morning, and I was also stupid enough not to check it before the weekend. The nice ticket lady said that they could put us on a flight that left at 3:55, and I promptly started to cry, blubbering that we were going on a cruise and that we needed to be on the boat by 4:30, and pleasepleaseohgodplease can't you put us on anything earlier?

Sean later said that he saw that whole vacation flash right before his eyes like a dying man. I, of course, felt like the dumbest ass in the whole world. I was lucky that I didn't curse and swear though-there were nuns next to us checking in and it would have been a no-brainer that God would get us for that one.

Luckily, the nice ticket lady gave us standby tickets for the 8 and 9 am flights, and booked us on the 12:30 flight. Don't worry, said Nice Ticket Lady, your luggage will be on whatever flight you board, so please hand over your credit card so I can charge you the $350 fee to change the flight and print out paper tickets (FUCK!). Then began the Great Race to the Gates to see if we can get on the flights. The first flight (at gate 81) was a no-go-overbooked, in fact. So, we run to Gate 120 (on the other side of the airport, naturally) to see if we can get on the 9am flight. And, we wait.

If anyone has never had the misfortune to fly standby, SUCKS. The stress, waiting, staring down the other standby passengers aggressively, like the plane is a lioness in heat and you're horny lion; sending those "pick me" vibes to the attendant at the gate and shaking a human skull while doing a voodoo dance in front of the counter (okay, so that's just what I do). Not my idea of a good time. I'd rather have a colonic, to be honest (and my poop chute is an exit only, thankyouverymuch).

Well, that bone-shaking must have worked, because we got on the 9am flight. Seperated seats, of course, but who gives a shit. I of course, due to the laws of nature, get stuck behind this freaky woman who was asking everyone around us to change seats so she and her daughter could sit together. Naturally, nobody wanted to change (they both had middle seats), so she was bitching and moaning and slamming her back into her seat. At one point, as I was bending down to get something out of my bag, she sat back into her seat and hit me in the head. It wouldn't have been a problem if it hadn't happened again. Needless to say, she didn't like me much after I ripped her a new asshole.

We get to Tampa, make our way to the baggage claim area and wait like cows in front of the barnyard gate for our luggage. And waited. And WAITED. Finally, when we saw the same tired leather suitcase with the bright orange bow around the handle and the golf clubs go around for the 40th time, we figured out that our suitcase was MIA. So, off we trundle to the baggage area to file a claim, thanking our mothers silently for the reminder to pack extra underwear in our carry-on bag. But, lo and behold, our suitcase is sitting right outside the office-yay! Game on! We then find a cab and take the 20 minute ride to the port.

After this, the drama is over-really. Just the getting there was the shitty part.

We booked a suite for this cruise-not because I like to live above my means or anything like that. Honestly, it was cheap as hell-$800 per person for a suite with a balcony. Who am I to pass up a deal like that? Little did I know that there are some perks to these suites-namely, the ability to bypass the big snaking line and go to a special area to check-in. Whee-we were on the boat in 15 minutes! Let's unpack and hit the buffet and laugh at the people still waiting to get on the ship!

The weather was beautiful all week, the seas were calm, and I got a hell of a tan. Oh, yeah, and we fucked like rabbits all week-for some reason, tan lines seem to turn guys on. The room was nice, the balcony ROCKED (and yeah, Sean did moon me one morning as I was standing on the balcony, watching us plow through the Caribbean-I didn't have my camera though or else you'd all get to experience THAT). We sat with some pretty hilarious people, all of whom were from either NY State and Massachussets. And, we ate like pigs. Oh, yeah, did I mention the SEX!? Faboo. I'd forgotten what fun sex for pleasure is.

Our destinations were, overall, okay. Costa Maya was interesting (it's in Mexico, almost at the border of Belize), but Cozumel was kinda sad. We'd been there two years previously and it was hard to see the effects of Hurricane Wilma-one of the two concrete piers were completely destroyed, and there was a lot of rubble, trash and uprooted trees along the shoreline. We did some exploring, but mostly hung out on the ship.

Flying home was terrific-because we got to fly First Class. When booking the tickets, we bitched and moaned that the price of the airfare back to Newark was so damn expensive due to Easter Vacation. We then noticed that, for only $15 more per person we can fly First Class instead of Economy-woot! It was the best plane ride I've ever taken, and I'm spoiled forever. Booze in real glasses, a good meal on real china, dessert, hot towels for your hands, automatic comfort made up for........

Flying into a soggy, cold, overcrowded New Jersey airport. We were delayed in Tampa due to weather, then waited on the runway in Tampa for 45 minutes, then circled around Baltimore for a half hour before we got home. The Mother-In-Law and Big C picked us up and were late due to traffic, so we didn't get home until after 10pm. The kitties got lots of loving and we've been unpacking and doing the mounds of laundry ever since. So, it was a well-deserved rest.

Hey, did I mention that the sex was amazing?

Saturday, April 22, 2006


Finally home. We were delayed an hour and a half due to bad weather in the Northeast and flew into Newark where it was rainy and 45 degress-a nice (!) change from the sunny 86 degrees we left behind in Tampa. Gotta love New Jersey in April.

However, eating a gourmet meal off of real china and glassware (with wine!) and having dessert in First Class just about made up from the above mentioned flight delay. That and the nice wide seats with the automatic controls. I think I'm in love.

Missed the cats, and it was mutual. I noticed that the cats only slept on my side of the bed (due to the extraordinary amounts of cat fur planted there) and they won't leave us alone.

Got Shelli a cute magnet for her collection. Must send in the mail (unless I can bring it to her first!!).

Cruise was great-didn't want to come home. Had LOTS of sex-real sex, not baby-making sex (although the stupid "Ooh, it's my fertile time" thought did creep in once or twice). Ate like a fucking pig. Got a nice tan. Bought some new goodies. Thoroughly enjoyed the suite and balcony........especially when Sean mooned me one afternoon as I was out there.

Will write a play-by-play tomorrow, after I get some sleep and try to get my land legs back on track.

Time to snuggle with the babies (and my man) in my own bed, and looking forward to it.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Bon Voyage

Triduum is almost over. I've been singing almost every day since Palm Sunday (I had one day off on Tuesday), whether it be a rehearsal or Mass, as well as trying to fit in cleaning, washing clothes, packing, and running out for last-minute things for our trip. Oh, yeah, and making a cake and the poopie cupcakes, which turned out quite well-gotta try to take a pic of them tomorrow.

So far, everything with Big Important Clinic is doing well. I had my cycle day 3 bloodwork, which looks good, and yesterday I went for the bloodletting from hell-nine vials. NINE. Plus, I had to fast for the bloodwork (not to mention that it was Good Friday and I was fasting anyway. Sheesh.). I now have a lovely purple bruise the size of Iowa on my left arm. I'm sure it will go with the beautiful blue dress I bought for the cruise *grumble grumble* Then, we had to go to see Dr. Petite for our saline sonohystogram, and we were given the all-clear. Of course, I was crampy and leaking saline for the rest of the day, which wasn't fun-especially since I had to sing all day. Note to self: Have some brains and do not schedule invasive reproductive tests when you know you have to perform five hours later. It's just not that fun.

So now, we just need to take our IVF medication class on May 11th (I mean, what's the point? Oh, yeah, it's required.......), Sean's gotta spank the monkey for a sperm sample to test (and he can see if the hospital has any new porn since the last year's visit), and we're on our way. Fresh cycle #3. Whoopee.

It's weird-all weekend I've been thinking about the past year. This time, last year, I was bloated and miserable and in the middle of the two-week wait from hell from my first cycle, which we all know was a bust. Then, in the middle of everything yesterday, I realized that, had I not miscarried, I would have been due Monday, April 17th-coincidentally, the day we leave for our holiday. More than likely, Triduum this year probably wouldn't have happened for me-I might have been in the hospital either giving birth or recuperating from it.

Just another reason to cry on Good Friday.

I might not be back on until next week (sorry, much as I love you all, I will be sucking down margaritas poolside and will be waaay too drunk to type, or even string a sentence together-at least, that's my goal for the week), so-Happy Passover to those who celebrate, A Happy and Blessed Easter for my Christian friends, and, for those who celebrate neither-have a wonderful warm and sunny Spring week.

Peace out-see y'all on the 22nd or so.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Back in the Saddle Again

Well, it's Cycle Day 1. Again.

I had to call Big Important Clinic today to let the on-call nurse that dear Auntie is here for a visit. I talked to a very nice nursey and gave her the goods, and she told me that (since we're still working on our "checklist" ie. bloodwork, saline sonohystogram, etc) I need to come in on Tuesday for Cycle Day 3 bloodwork, as a baseline. Whoopee-the sticking has begun. At least it's one-stop shopping for the bloodletting and the wanding.

I also have to call Dr. Petite's admin to schedule the saline sonohystogram. Hopefully we can squeeze it in (no pun intended there) before we leave for vacation.......otherwise, it's gonna seriously suck ass.

Seven days...................

Heh......I just felt like that freaky dead girl in "The Ring".

Seriously, though-I can't wait. I had to sing the whole of Palm Sunday weekend (5 masses), which is exhausting. This week coming up is Holy (Hell) Week-we have a huge rehearsal tomorrow night, a cantor rehearsal on Wednesday, then we're singing for Maundy Thursday, two services on Good Friday (the Veneration of the Cross and then a "living" Stations of the Cross, performed by our Youth Group), then the Easter Vigil on Saturday and Easter Mass on Sunday. Not to mention that, afterwards, we're driving to Sean's uncle and aunt's house in Pennsylvania for dinner. I'm going to be mush by then.

Speaking of Easter dinner-I've volunteered to bring dessert, which will be a carrot cake with cream-cheese frosting. We went to Williams-Sonoma (LOVE that store) last week, after the consult, and saw the cutest stuff there for the holiday. They had these adorable little chicks hatching out of their shells, all make out of white chocolate.....yummy. Anyway, they had these sweet plates there, with little bunnies on them (here's a pic-you can't see it very well, but there's little paw tracks on them), and I pointed them out to Sean. He told me that he would color the paw prints brown so they look like rabbit turds. Well..........

THEN he got it into his head that he is going to make a special "dessert" for Easter dinner. He's going to make chocolate cupcakes, dye some cream-cheese frosting green and ice them, sprinke some dyed-green coconut on top to look like grass, get some little chocolate bunnies to put on top, and then...........

Get some mini-chocolate chips and put them on so it looks like the rabbit pooed and then ran away.

He's serious, folks. He's already gone out and got half the ingredients.

The sick thing is, his family would think that it was hilarious. It will be the hit of the holiday.

And I thought that MY family was fucked-up. Go figure.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Hope Springs Eternal (Yet Again)

Thanks ladies, for the encouraging words. It's hard not to get excited, but, I've been through this before. I just don't want to get my hopes up yet again.

I was feeling sort of disloyal after we got home, about changing doctors. Sean thinks that I'm insane-we're ultimately paying, albeit through insurance, for services, and if we can get them elsewhere in a better place I shouldn't feel bad about changing. Which, deep down, I do know (and I'm still switching). But, it's like changing your hairdresser-as much as you hate not getting an appointment and getting bullied into that "new" cut that you just can't style the same way at home as in the salon, you don't want to start over, either. Don't worry, I'll get over it.

It also seems as if that auld 'ho Auntie Flo should be here within the next day or so, which is great. If she shows up tomorrow (which I have the feeling she will), then I can go on Saturday morning to the Big Important Clinic to get my cycle day 3 bloodwork, and not have to miss any work-yay! One of the advantages of a big clinic-weekend hours and monitoring hours starting at 6:30am. Not to mention that coffee machine and pastry basket. Yeah, I know-the small things make me happy.

Everyone tells me that they have a "good feeling" about making the move; that, under the eye of a large, successful clinic in a teaching hospital I'll have the odds going for me. Realistically, it's probably true. Emotionally, well..........that's another issue. I'm afraid to get excited. Perhaps the stress of having to micromanage myself medically in Dr. Vest's office, as well as the wacky office hours (monitoring three days a week, the other two days closed by 11:30 am, and no weekends) added to the stress of having to do a cycle. It seems as if there's many more people to call if you have a question, not to mention a nurse on-call in the evenings. I guess it's the mark of a good, professional clinic-one that realizes that a woman's cycle doesn't comply with the 9-5, Monday through Friday mentality.

Okay, I admit it-I'm sort of excited. Scared shitless, but still excited.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

A Change in Scenery

In other non-reproductive news, it looks like I have, in addition to my lovely bout of sinusitis,
a small case of fungal infection of the toe (my big toe). When I got out of the shower this morning, I looked down, as I was drying off, and saw that a bit of my toe (close to the outside part) was discolored. I thought at first it was a bruise, since sometimes the little kids step on your feet accidentally. When I looked closer, though, it didn't look like that-it was soft and a little flaky, but didn't hurt. And, just for the record, I have extremely strong nails that never flake. Uh-oh. Although I've never personally had one, I know what they look like, so I freaked out and looked it up on Dr. Google. Fuckfuckfuck. There goes the pedicure for the cruise.

I called M up to pick her nursing brain (she also used to be a manicurist, pre-nursing days), and she told me that if it isn't spread across the nail, which it's not, you can soak the nail in hydrogen peroxide three times a day for about 5-10 minutes and it should clear up in about a week. I have to make sure that I keep it clean and dry, and disinfect everything-nail clippers, etc.-because you can spread the infection (apparently it's a type of ringworm-urgh). Just what I needed, right?

13 days until vacation. I'll be really pissed if I can't have pretty toes by then.

So, on to today's consult. Well, what's to say?

Holy crap. What a difference. It's like comparing a beat-up Ford station wagon to a Mercedes.

The meeting went very well. We got there on time, checked out the waiting room-very large, with a coffee machine and pastries/muffins available for patients (as well as a mini-fridge). The staff was very friendly and professional. The doctor personally came out to get us, which I wasn't expecting; usually, a nurse does that. The RE is a very tiny, cute Asian lady in her 40's (all the RE's in the practice are women, which is cool), so let's call her Dr. Petite. Firm handshake, looked you in the eye and gave us a smile while she led us to her office.

She had our medical information right in front of us, and seemed like she took her time to review the records. She told us that she feels that the combo of drugs that I've been on (long Lupron protocol with Follistim, HcG trigger and PIO) is good, however, since it's been proven that I can produce a fair amount of eggs, to start at half the dosage I've been having, maybe stim a bit longer to let us get the most amount of mature eggs. The problem, she feels, is that my estrogen levels were way too high and that it might have impeded in implantation. She also feels that the lab played a big part as to our success. Yes, I know that they're trying to sell their lab; but, to be honest, it IS one of the best around. And, let's face it-the lab that Dr. Vest uses is okay, but nothing spectacular. Like comparing a Ford to a Mercedes.

So, Dr. Petite said that we can start a cycle in May, if we'd like. I did ask her about whether, due to the tubal issue, a laparoscopy is in order; she felt, since the original HSG showed that the bulging tube was spilling, that tube is still considered viable. She did explain that when you use a large amount of dye during an HSG (which they did), sometimes it will cause a bulge in the tube. She feels that if no other ultrasounds, especially during any of the stim phases of my cycles, showed a hydro that there's a good chance there either really isn't one, or that there is a small one but the tube is still opened, so it's okay. Just in case, she's going to schedule a saline sonohysterogram once I get my period, to see what's going on-which is a hell of a lot easier than another HSG or a lap-woot!

I had an ultrasound, done by the doctor (which we got to watch on a monitor that's right above the exam table-cool), where she pronounced that everything looks great-normal uterus, saw the ovaries and showed me where I ovulated. She also took some cultures (required), and we met with our patient coordinator who seems really nice, scheduled an IVF class (also required, but no big deal) and a financial person. Luckily, insurance will cover this, so it's just a formality.

So, now I have to get a shitload of bloodwork that apparently Dr. Vest never had me do-CMV, syphillis, Hepatitis B and C, HIV, Indirect Coombs, Varicella titer, Cystic Fibrosis profile, type and cross match, TSH, prolactin. Sean has to go for bloodwork too (hah!) and another spankfest at the semen analysis lab. I also have to get the results of my last Pap, and then get blood drawn on cycle day three and schedule the sonohysterogram. Whew! That seems like a hell of a lot of work, doesn't it? But, once we're done, we'll meet our IVF nurse, and we're back on the rollercoaster. I really wasn't expecting this. I was fully prepared to talk about surgery, what to expect, what would happen. I'm starting to feel like it's a new lease on my (reproductive) life.

The upshot was-if it were legal, I'd marry this woman. I liked her a lot-she took the time to answer our questions, really listened to us, and was very reassuring. She feels, especially since I got pregnant once before, that it will happen. I just find it kinda funny that I was orignally referred to her, couldn't go because of cost at the time, but was led back to her anyway. It looks like it was meant to be.

Perhaps a change of scenery is just-at least, in this case- what the doctor ordered.

Monday, April 03, 2006


Tomorrow's the big day.

Had to go to my primary doc today-turns out that I have a sinus infection, brought on by my allergies. Wonderful. So, I got my drugs and hopefully they'll work.

Anyways, that's all for now-I'll update when I get back from Big Important Clinic to let you all know what happened.