Tuesday, February 27, 2007
Saturday, February 24, 2007
Friday, February 23, 2007
Part of me has come to expect these questions because I suppose they are innocent enough, and relevant enough to the conversation. I have my answer prepared : "We can't have kids." You would think that would be a conversation stopper, but it's not. I hear "Oh, you're still young, it'll happen"or "When you least expect it, that's when it'll happen." (These well-intentioned people should be Fertility Specialists.) I was given a 0.5% chance of getting pregnant and then there was still a 50% chance of staying pregnant. I don't usually bother with statistics, but this week it's been in my face. I am peri-menopausal. There is no doubt in the diagnosis, my Fertility Specialist sent me packing two years ago with an FSH of 67.
I have been having hot flashes this month that are driving me crazy. The heat starts in my hands, goes up my arms to my head. Then it settles under my bra-line and makes a bee-line down my legs where it feels like a million little pinpricks while my leg pores open up to sweat. I've had visions of how nice it would be to tear off my clothes and run outside to make snow-angels in the sub-zero temperatures we've been having. This lasts about a minute or two and then I'm searching for my sweaters or jackets that I've thrown off a minute earlier because I've got the chills. This happens a few times an hour, and although it's just a few minutes, I can't begin to tell you how uncomfortable it is.
Thankfully, my mood is pretty stable. I do not rip people's faces off when they ask me if I'm going to have kids. Even more thankfully, no one has asked me when my baby is due, because then I couldn't promise I wouldn't start ripping off faces.
As I said, it's been two years now since I've known that we wouldn't be able to have kids. Egg donation is the only possibility, and believe it or not, I do have a friend who has some frozen eggs and they have been offered to us. She now has two beautiful children and she and her husband do not plan to use the remaining eggs for themselves. Greg and I discussed this option and decided against it. While my friend has two healthy children, the eggs were harvested when she was 40. This isn't so much a problem, but the main issue is, is that they are friends of ours. Imagine using her DNA, having a child, and seeing our child and her children together. Biologically, they would be half-siblings. Psychologically, there are dozens of issues. Would my friend truly be able to separate herself from our child? How would her husband feel seeing our child that would look like a mix of Greg and his wife? What if their children died, would my friend want to be more involved with our child? How would it affect my friend's parents and in-laws, and her children, presuming this was not a big secret? And, how would it affect me? Would it make me feel less of a woman because our child is not part of my genetic make-up? Would a part of me always think of it as 'her' child? Or, should I be grateful that at least it would be part of Greg's DNA? These are a few of hundreds of questions we could ask ourselves, and I haven't even touched upon legal, ethical, financial issues.
So, I don't think Egg donation is such an easy option. Neither Greg nor I think it is an option for us, as exciting as it first sounded. And for other reasons, neither Greg nor I are interested in adoption.
I think I have to come up with a better response to people's well-intentioned questions, one where I don't feel like I have to be apologetic, or get into explanations about my early aging process.
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
Sunday, February 18, 2007
Friday, February 16, 2007
I'm starting to get really pumped about our trip to Europe in May. Berlin and Amsterdam are booked, and now I'm working on a four day trip to Prague. I've always wanted to go there, and I'm thinking that this is the perfect opportunity. I want to see as much as we can, and although we could venture forth and see more of Germany or the Netherlands, I've got my heart set on Prague. And since I am the Tour Manager, I get to do what I want! Three countries in two weeks. I think it will be a great first trip to Europe for Greg. I want to give him the travel bug so that we can have a yearly adventure and he'll be as excited about it as I am.
In Amsterdam, I have booked a Budget hotel that is located directly across the canal from Anne Frank's House . I visited the museum years ago, and recall that I had intended to re-read The Diary of a Young Girl when I got home from that trip. That never happened, but it is now next on my reading list. I'm hoping that Greg will also take an interest in reading it, but I won't hold my breath.
A question: Does anyone know of an inexpensive apartment to rent in Prague? Or a Budget hotel, or B&B that they would recommend? I'm looking for something under 70 Euros a night. Thanks!
Wednesday, February 14, 2007
Tuesday, February 13, 2007
Sunday, February 11, 2007
Saturday, February 10, 2007
This morning Greg and I were both up at 7AM. I guess that's what happens when you go to bed at 10PM. Either that, or it is a sign of aging. Nonetheless, we started out our day great: a pot of coffee, a big juicy newspaper, we did the crossword puzzle together, and we had a full day ahead of us to do with whatever we wanted. There was a rummage sale scheduled at a nearby church, one that we could walk to. I had been looking forward to it for the past few days because it's a novelty. (It's not really rummage season, you know.) On the way over, I was laughing and telling Greg the story of one of the sales I had gone to where I had witnessed a cat fight between a Church Lady and a Freaky Seller I had recognized from the Antique Market that we go to on Sundays. It was ugly. (Click on picture and run mouse across)
The freaky guy was decked out in full spray-on hair and his usual glittery top. His make-up was running down his face, and boy! was he angry. He threw a bonafide hissy-fit at the Church Lady which caused her to get pissy and all the women around formed a circle yelling at him! It was quite a sight, let me tell you.
Anyway, Greg and I get to the Church, and we weren't sure where the entrance was as it was not clearly posted, and there was no line-up to get in. We followed a couple of ladies in, but apparently we went in through the BACK door. This little old lady dressed in red SCREAMED at us when we opened the door! "You've come the wrong way! Go back out and around! You can't come in this way!" Then she shoved me. I was so shocked, astounded, surprised, that for a minute I didn't know what hit me! I tried to explain that there was no sign, we didn't know, sorry, perhaps the entrance needed to be clearly labelled with a balloon or something? Then she shoved me again. While I was trying to talk to another lady, just to say a sign would be a good idea, this little 4'10" creature decided to start shoving Greg! All 6'4" of him! She was clearly nuts. At that point Greg got mad and told her that he didn't appreciate her shoving his wife. So she shoved him again, this time with the door! He told her she was rude, and that she didn't have to be such a bitch. Her response was that she could do whatever she liked because she BELONGED to the Church! At that point, I decided that it really wasn't worth it and we'd be better off if we left. On my way out, I could help but tell her that she "wasn't very Christian-like." I think she said something about calling the police.
LOL! All this at 10 AM.
On our way out, I couldn't help but notice that every single person heading into the sale was entering through the doors we had just been kicked out of with that little troll of a woman standing guard.
I didn't tell a soul that they were entering the wrong way.
Is that evil of me?
Thursday, February 08, 2007
In the last two years, the population of critically ill patients in Toronto has changed. There are far more violent incidents involving guns and knives. 10 years ago, this was a rarity, now it is the norm. The ICU is now a locked unit and the police are regular features. The faces have changed, but I have a need to go back.
I am looking forward to this, but am also nervous. Nervous precisely because the ill faces have changed. Not all patients are the 'victims,' some are the bad guys. I know it can be hard to keep an open mind when gangs and violence are involved. I am thinking that this is going to be my new challenge.
I have been planning this move back to the ICU for months, and it will take effect at the end of February. Actually, I will be working part-time in Recovery, and part-time in ICU because I think that this will be best for me. Variety is spice of life.
Last Saturday, I was called into the OR because they needed a pair of extra hands for the latest gun-shot victim. I don't normally work in the OR, and in fact was a little squeamish because they had this poor guy cut open like they were doing an autopsy. I did what I could, and know that my help was appreciated, but I know that my skills would have been much better utilized in the ICU after the surgery trying to keep this patient alive and dealing with his family.
I miss that, and am ready to go back with a fresh outlook.
Tuesday, February 06, 2007
Saturday, February 03, 2007
She gave Mao the first dose, and a few hours later, he was able to tolerate some food without drooling and vomiting. She called me at 1pm with her idea. Would I be willing to take Mao home over the weekend with his pump, give him all his medications, and syringe-feed him every few hours? OF COURSE! She said that this was an unusual situation, that normally she would not send a sick animal home in this condition, but she felt that since I was a nurse, I would be able to handle Mao. (And, she would be able to give me a discount on his vet bill.)
So, today I find myself being a veterinarian assistant. I am familiar with the IV pump, and the IV medications. There was one IntraMuscular injection that I had to give and that was a bit strange in that I've never given a cat a needle before, but it worked out ok. I was able count his heartbeat with my stethoscope, and as luck would have it, I was able to use my dusty Fertility Thermometer for a good cause!
Mao is doing a little better, he even purred for a little bit this evening, which I'm taking as a very good sign. He is tolerating the syringe feeds, and although he does have a bit of a fever this evening, all in all I am cautiously optimistic that he is going to pull through this.
The Vet will be making a house call tomorrow morning to check in on him, and I think that she will be happy with his progress. He might need to go back to the clinic on Monday for a complete check up, but hopefully he is through the worst.