Monthly Archives: June 2012

This one is very snivelling indeed

The Period turned up on schedule on Sunday morning (I awoke, and found blood, luckily not on the sheets), and as predicted I spent the rest of Sunday in considerable pain, vomiting by evening, and then vomiting all day Monday even when the pain was more-or-less under control with regular doses of diclofenac and tramadol. So I ate exactly nothing for 50-odd hours, and only drank in tiny sips until Monday evening (and I’m quite sure not many of those tiny sips made it past my stomach, to be grotesquely honest).

Strangely enough, therefore, I am feeling very weak and dizzy today. Even though today I managed several rice-cakes, three cups of tea, a glass of very dilute mango juice and two squares of black chocolate. The last item a mistake, as I felt queasy again directly after, but so far they’ve stayed down. I thought I could do with the calories, eheu.

So. Yes. I am whining about my periods. Again. I think I’m entitled.


I’ve even been busy

It’s been how long since I last posted? Holy crap.

I think my blogging mojo has not only been snagged in my angst-tangles but throttled. I shall have to bury it at the bottom of the garden and see if I can find a new one in John Lewis.

Anyway. Yes. I do have things to tell you. Let me tell you them:

Item – H is now seeing a counsellor. Once a week, he trots off early so he can get in a good ol’ mind-reaming before work. My reactions to any insights he has passed on to me from this process have been about one third ‘oh! How interesting!’, one third ‘WHY DIDN’T I THINK OF THAT OH MY GOD YOUR COUNSELLOR IS A GENIUS!’ and one third massive eye-roll because I’ve been trying to point that (whatever ‘that’ was) out to H for about nine years now. So, yeah, I think I approve of the counsellor, but am slightly wrung about the withers by her knack for inserting information into H’s brain, whereas I just bounce information off his skull until we both lose our tempers. Anyone would think she was a trained professional or something.

Item – A few months ago Womb for Improvement emailed me details of the Immunology and Recurrent Miscarriage/Infertility expert she went to see in December. I clutched the information to my chest and then shilly-shallied about with it, as I do, while waiting to see if the NHS were going to do anything other than fat-shame me and lose my blood-test results. NHS promptly fat-shamed me and then lost my latest set of blood-test results (FSH and oestrogen, taken in March). So I told H to set us up an appointment, and he did, and we are going to see this expert on Wednesday.

Item – And why am I going to yet another world-renowned miscarriage expert? Well, because The World-Famous Book-Writing Professor’s solution of ‘lose more weight, here’s some aspirin’ seems to have Not Worked, in that I am Not Pregnant, and haven’t been for 18 months, which is fucking infertile behaviour right there. And my allergies have got markedly, infuriatingly worse, which makes me twitch. Clearly my immune system is in hysterics (hysterics! See what I did there!). How can it not be relevant? I Declare My Immune System Relevant!

Item – Speaking of immune insanity, I now cannot take white wine not even cooked in risotto. Two mouthfuls of fancy delicious risotto at nice Italian restaurant with my in-laws, and I had to flee to the bathrooms to clutch my stomach and groan like a door-hinge in Dracula’s castle. Also, the roof of my mouth swelled, and my lips and throat became violently itchy. It was fun, dudes. So, list currently stands at:

  • White wine (very much so)
  • Red wine (less so, some wines actually drinkable, others not at all) (And yet, I can eat fresh grapes! Make sense, damn you!)
  • Beer/lager/stout (wheat-and-gluten-free lager I had a few weeks ago was fine. It even tasted fine.
  • Honey. Cooked, raw, in small quantities in other foods, all bad
  • Raspberries
  • Bananas
  • Kiwis
  • Hazelnuts
  • Walnuts, to a lesser extent
  • Wheat (not so much the burning itching, yes so much the violently inflated gut and concommitant painful belching and groaning

Item – So, aspirin. I tried an experiment this month. I took 75mg of aspirin every day from about a week after my period started. A lot of women with RPL are put on low-dose aspirin throughout their entire cycle. It’s cheap, it has very few side-effects, and if I have thrombophilia at the best of times, well, I’m getting frantic, here. It did not delay ovulation. I am not pregnant. I was still in considerable pain for over a week after the end of my period (giving me nearly three weeks of daily cramps. Hurrah!), so it didn’t help with that, but then I wasn’t really expecting it to. However, ovulation itself didn’t really hurt. I had pain a few days before I ovulated, but pin-pointing the day itself was a bugger, as my temperatures were all over the place (too many lie-ins) and I just didn’t GET the terribly stabby I-am-burst moment (hour. Day. You know). Which was weird.

Item – Period due any second now, so that’s Sunday screwed and Monday (I was going to go to a concert on Monday) buggered and Tuesday ballsed up and I am just praying I will be able to go to this expensive private appointment with expensive private specialists. Do you think it would help if I turned up in his office eau-de-nil in the face and then passed out on seeing the bill?


Heredity versus remembrance

So, you may have noticed I haven’t been blogging much. Oh, you hadn’t noticed? OK, fair enough. No, this isn’t a blog about the Mike Leigh film. Or testicles. Well, maybe it’s slightly about testicles, but not in the way you were hoping. Off you trot.

OK, the rest of you, hello! Yes, I’m not blogging very much. I am a tightly wound knot of seething raging anxst and my mojo has been snagged in the tangles and can’t work free just at present. If I tug hard, I get a giant snarl – do any of you knit? Have any of you tried to find the end of the yarn in a centre-pull ball and got what we knittery types cheerfully call ‘yarn-barf’? Like that, only with off-topic wailing.

Let’s just pick a snarl and thrash our way about in it.

H’s Grandmother’s funeral upset me, in a way that his Grandfather’s funeral really didn’t. Grandfather’s funeral and memorial celebration the next month were extremely moving, powerful, beautiful, funny, occasions, and it was abundantly clear how loved, how missed, how memorable, he was. I cried, I still miss him, I found both events comforting and joyous, and I think a lot of other people did too. This was Grandfather. He was wonderful. He is part of us all.

Grandmother’s funeral was small and quiet, which is probably what she would’ve liked, so it’s not that at all (Grandfather’s funeral was also small and quiet (memorial celebration, not so much)). The people who spoke, her friends, her co-religionists, who’d known her from a young bride, simply had very little to say about her. The conductor of the service (who was one of those who’d known her all her adult life), get this, spent more time reminding us of the schedule for the afternoon and where we had to be when than eulogising her.

We had letters from Grandmother’s cousins reminiscing about what a funny delightful young woman she’d been, but this radiant creature didn’t feature in the funeral at all. She’d somehow been wiped out by marriage and motherhood. And now old age and death had wiped out the private, quiet, lady, who wrote good letters and loved music and flowers and among whose scraps of paper we found a beautiful poem she had written on the back of an envelope and buried in her desk. All that was left was this hollow shell – supported her husband in his work. Raised several children. Died. That was all the people who’d known her best and longest could say for her, on the day we buried her in the same grave as her husband, with her children and grandchildren standing there listening.

(I told H, if I get a funeral like that, I’m climbing out of the casket to make a fuss, I swear. I’d rather be remembered with shudders as the book-obsessed cantankerous old mad cat-lady with the tongue like a razor I shall insist on being than remembered so perfunctorily).

This is the poem my MiL asked me to read at the graveside:

Heredity
by Thomas Hardy

I am the family face;
Flesh perishes, I live on,
Projecting trait and trace
Through time to times anon,
And leaping from place to place
Over oblivion.

The years-heired feature that can
In curve and voice and eye
Despise the human span
Of durance – that is I;
The eternal thing in man,
That heeds no call to die.

The reason given for my reading it, instead of H? I am good at reading aloud, I understand poetry, I wouldn’t make a hash of the sense of it coping with the enjambed lines, interesting syntax, and metrical variations. I can cry and still speak clearly. I am not particularly self-conscious about public speaking (I read it very well, thank you). H’s poem was easier, but considerably less apropos for him. He should’ve read Heredity. I could have coached him, if we’d been sent the text sooner. He’s the one who looks like his mother, and therefore like his Grandmother. I’m the barren wife who has slammed a portcullis in the path of this particular family face, and as long as H stays loyal to me, there ain’t gonna be no leaping over oblivion. Call to die, heeded. Human span of durance, all you’re going to bloody get.

So, there’s that. Grandmother’s actual memorable self has pretty much disappeared, probably in large part because she married and had kids, but we’ll remember and celebrate that above all things, even as we forget what made her unique. Get the barren one to make the point especially. Then we can all look at her as she reads it, and at her husband’s family face, and back at her, and appreciate the fuck out of that irony.


Morass

Item – Before you all get the idea it’s All Grim All The Time chez May, I here now testify that most of our holiday was excellent. We wandered medieval cobbled streets hand-in-hand. We had a picnic in the warm evening sunshine. We met rare-breed lambs and piglets, and got to pat them. We found any amount of tea-shops that had gluten-free cake, and what’s more, edible gluten-free cake (pause for astonished faintings). We ate really rather a lot of spectacularly delicious meals. We spent an entire afternoon lounging in our room at the B&B, eating chocolate, drinking tea, and reading books. We saw art and photography exhibitions, and castles, and excessively valuable porcelain collections, and interesting trees. There was sunshine. I feel it important to emphasise this as mostly the weather has been an Almighty Bucket of Shite, as is traditional, nay, mandatory, on Bank Holidays in Blighty.

Item – Also, despite the vast quantities of cake, three course meals, ice-creams, and general snackery inserted into face during this week-and-a-half off, I did not put on a single ounce. Very well, I didn’t lose a single ounce either, but, did I mention how much yummy carbohydratey goodness I was snarfing? So hurrah!

Item – Low point, weather-wise, was standing on the battlements of an exceedingly unheated castle in the rain and the wind, wearing thick wool socks and a fleece under my rain-proofs, and feeling so cold all I could say was ‘sod the castle and bugger the view and especially fuck the rare and precious carved and painted fireplaces for not having any bloody fires in them. Tea-shop, NOW. GRAAAAAR’.

Item – Another low, well, not point, exactly, more low trench, was the daily bouts of lower abdominal pains and cramps. I hate my uterus. The feeling is clearly mutual.

Item – Oh, and the sudden and unexpected outbreak of anti-Semitic (and remarkably un-fucking-funny) jokes a bunch of students elected to noisily indulge in as we passed them in the street, brought on by a historical monument complete with plaque referring to the presence of Jewish people there in the Middle Ages. I very rarely hear anti-Semitism out loud, or, at least, most of the not many people who have broached the matter in my presence have accorded me/us/themselves the dubious courtesy of disguising it as anti-Israeli-policy-with-regards-to-Palestine sentiment (ohh, can-shaped kettle of worm-fish! Let’s not discuss it). So I was very very shocked indeed. And beyond heartily wishing them all an evening spent vomiting noisily in the gutter while having their wallets stolen (a statistical strong possibility, given they were already inebriated (natch. Pfft)), I… did nothing. Except be astonished at how upset I was. Please understand, I get ballistically upset any time I hear any kind of bigoted or prejudiced talk, about any race, or religion, or sexuality, or gender, or identity (there are certain subjects some of my family do not dare mention in front of me any more. Hah!). But, yes, astonishingly, it’s absolutely foul to hear talk like that and know they mean you. Illustratively, H was very annoyed with the young turds and thought they were disgusting and also wished them an evening of gutters, but had put it behind him to carry on cheerfully with his otherwise pleasant evening within minutes. As, I confess, I would have, if the little douchenozzles had been amusing themselves at the expense of any other group of which I wasn’t a member.

Item – There’s a lesson in that: empathy and decency can only get you so far. Some things you don’t get unless you experience it. Like sexism! And infertility! Discuss!

Item – So, yes, funeral for H’s grandmother tomorrow. The weather forecast is abysmal. I think my suit of mourning will consist of neon-coloured waterproof jacket and someone else’s wellies, while I read appropriate poems at a hoarse bellow into the teeth of the gale. Heigh ho.


I go, I come back

You know the thing, right, when you go on holiday, and leave all your worries and stresses in a big heap just inside your house door, and have a simply smashing time paying other people to do all your washing up for you while you prance about stately homes and have picnics in the sun? And then you go home? And all your worries and stresses are now hungry, and promptly rugby-tackle you to the floor and sink their creepy little fangs into you? Yeah, that.

Hello, internets. I’d talk to you, but work has Gone Mental and I’ve got a funeral to go to on Friday. Eheu.


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