Whoa Nellie

Item – Excuse long absence from blog. Had migraine. It sucked.

Item – This weekend, just to shake things up a little, I have Norovirus. Hello. Every single muscle, layer of skin, bone, joint, nail and inch of gut aches, I am freezing cold despite the fact H is wandering about the house shirtless, I have consumed exactly three cups of cold tea since yesterday evening, and this morning saw me taking a plastic washing-up basin to the privy for a half-hour I’d give my eye-tooth not to have to endure ever again.

Item – So, last post’s comment-related kerfuffle. 1) I want to make it perfectly clear Sheila is a dear and valued Gentle Reader of some duration, and who has dealt with some of the same doctors I have, and therefore I take her comment as coming from a place of friendly interest, affectionate concern, and natural curiosity. And I’ll get to answering it all when I feel less like the entire French Rugby team ran me down and sat on me. 2) That said, I also see where The Comment That Broke The Camel’s Back is coming from, I think. I myself have found it amazingly fucking irritating when people have popped up on my blog for seemingly the sole purpose of telling me I’m Doing It Wrong, and that my doctors are Doing It Wrong, especially if it devolves into people playing the ‘The NHS sucks and socialised medicine sucks and no wonder you Europeans are dying in ditches in droves’ card (especially because of the awkward fact that, actually, Europeans aren’t dying in ditches in droves and for MOST purposes the NHS is one of the best health services in the entire world and May is also a socialist herself so BACK THE FUCK OFF*). 4) So, my rule of thumb is, a long-term reader and commentator who has so far been a total darling, and very supportive, and who has had similar history, can be allowed questions and phrasings that could possibly come across as aggressive and self-righteous from a relative newcomer to the blog who has an axe to grind/bone to pick/kerfuffle to get off on. So, Sheila, please carry on. Comment That Broke The Camel’s Back, I appreciate you going to bat for me very much, but I think you batted the wrong person this time. 5) I am a little unclear who is calling whom a concern troll. But let’s just go with, no one is a concern troll today. Just, people are concerned, bless them. And leave it at that.

*P.S. – Being a socialist in Europe is normal, healthy, intelligent, and reasonable, and there are lots of us. We think the (I, of course, generalise) American hysterical reaction to the word ‘socialist’ is fucking hilarious.

P.P.S. – Socialists! Socialists! Socialists! “Though cowards flinch and traitors sneer, We’ll keep the red flag flying here!” Tee hee hee. Sorry. I am light-headed through fever and lack of nourishment.


33 responses to “Whoa Nellie

  • Betty M

    This post is why you are so much loved by your gentle (and in some cases socialist) readers, May! Many commiserations for the vile norovirus a virus with no upsides whatsoever.

  • Hairy Farmer Family

    I – personally, IMHpontificatingO, etc – think using phraseology such as ‘maybe you have the best of intentions, but…’ and ‘does not give you and your ilk license to run around the internet…’ and ‘If you are trying to impress people with your knowledge, you have failed spectacularly’ and, beauteously, ‘zip it and move along’ is discourteous enough (especially following fairly illusory provocation) to count as trolling. Personally, I would not bless ’em.

    But I am hormonal and angry and stabby and malevolent today, so don’t mind me.

    I am sooooo sorry about the noro. There is no greater hater and fearer of the beast than I, and I extend my profound commiserations and sustaining thoughts of dry toast. Damnit, gluten! Ummm. Dry…. crisps? There is, BTW, a norovirus vaccine in advanced clinical trials. We just need to hang on in there a handful more years, clutching our loathsome sick bowls.

    • May

      All the rage has been purged from my person. I am as mellow and benevolent as the Dalai Lama. I am clearly VERY unwell.

      Ricecakes. They look, feel and taste exactly like cork drinks coasters, but for that very reason are very polite to troubled tummies.

      • QoB

        when you are feeling better, corn cakes are also good, and slightly tastier than the rice variety.

        • korechronicles

          i thought long and hard about my response to exactly the same phrases in that particular post and, as is apparent, tried to address it in a way that was not aggressive but which clearly came across as ambiguous. I’m sorry. I just felt so strongly for Sheila, whose post seemed to me to be more about her genuinely wanting to tease out the issue rather than one of telling May what to do. I thought if a comment of mine had attracted that particular response it would be enough for me to run away and never return.

          Behind the anonymity of our aliases on the internet is a real person with real feelings. I wanted Sheila and other long time readers who were told we should know better, that not everyone agreed with that particular commenter’s perspective.

  • QoB

    Having had my first visit to an NHS GP this week, after which I skipped merrily to Boots, where they gave me three months’ worth of anti-baby pills and I paid… wait for it… not one fecking penny, I am delighted with ‘socialist’ medicine. SOCIALIST SOCIALIST SOCIALIST.

    Much sympathy on the noro. Urgh. I hope the ’48 hour bug’ is accurate in your case.

  • Mina

    Noro is horro-R. I feel your pain. More precisely I felt it, and hope to god never to feel it again. I ate ice chips a lot during that time. And afterwards I still managed to gain those pounds I lost all the way back, go figure. Wishing you the very best.

  • twangy

    Sending you powerful anti-noro thoughts, May, you poor woman.

    Be well.

  • Dr Spouse

    I’ve had the “you’re doing it wrong”as well.Bloomin’ annoying, though I think here we have all managed to lay down our weapons this time.
    I am getting more and more afraid of the norovirus. Can you catch it across the internet, do you think?

  • Jenny F. Scientist, PhD

    I once had an experience with the socialist NHS! They saw me for free, and then the nice family (friends of friends) who was trucking my influenza-, bronchitis-, and sinus-infection-ridden self around apologized because my prescriptions were going to cost… drumroll! SIX POUNDS EACH. And then I laughed my ass off.

  • Sheila

    Thank you May – I was devestated to think I had hurt you in any way and I’m so relieved that you hadn’t taken my comment in any way but the kindly way in which it was meant.

    Hope you recover soon from the dreaded norovirus – I had it once and wouldn’t wish it on anyone.

  • a

    Hope you’re feeling better soon. 😦

    I always miss the kerfuffles. That’s probably good.

  • AMH

    So, I guess here is the problem re: people offering (or seeming to offer) unwanted advice. You’ve been on this journey a long time. Your doctors have, in many instances, not done things that are standard of care elsewhere (I spent years making comments about metformin, for example, and now you’ve finally found a doc who will prescribe it). Along the lines of some people are visual learners, some people are auditory, etc., some people offer support and compassion by offering a shoulder to cry on, and some offer something to do, a plan, ACTION. It’s not meant to be insulting.

    It raises kind of a meta issue, actually – what is the purpose of blogging about your journey if not to elicit some possible approaches that might work for you? Are you looking only for virtual “pats on the back” from strangers on the internet, or are you looking for what has worked for others, sleuthing, plans to bring up with your doctors? Speaking only for myself, what finally worked for me was a treatment plan I researched myself and convinced my doctor to try against his judgment, so I’m personally a fan of being aggressively DIY about driving your healthcare providers toward possible treatment options.

    Why are you doing this? Why invite comments? I don’t mean to be aggressive, I am honestly curious. Because when sharing with people you actually know, I would expect you’d get a much higher ratio of “pat on the back” compassion versus “action plan” compassion. But when you’re talking to strangers on the intertubes, it’s got to be at least 10-1 “action plan” over “there-there, have a cry on my shoulder,” simply by virtue of the medium, right?

    • Hat

      I recently reshared this on Facebook…. and it’s worth sharing here..

      I don’t share my thoughts because I think it willchange the minds of People who think Differently.

      I share my thoughts to show the people who already think like me that they’re not alone.

  • denise100709

    Thank you AMH! That’s my question for some bloggers! There’s another who has regularly been complaining about ‘lurkers that come by and are waiting for her to have a train wreck’ apparently because NOT leaving a comment means you are a sadistic asshole. But, she then flamed people for their ‘unhelpful words of sorrow’ or something to that effect, saying this was disingenuous and meaningless. And them there’s the complaint that a commenter tells you what you could do! So I feel like sometimes my choices are laid out as (1) sadistic lurker, (2) useless fake empathy commenter, or (3) bitchy know-it-all that tells people what to do! So I tried asking that blogger what she wanted from her readers if anything, but of course the phone crashed and ate my comment. I decided to stop following her because she didn’t seem to really want readers, as far as I could tell!!

    • AMH

      I guess I’ll also say this, it is 100% natural for a woman with as much stacked against her as May has to be depressed, and indeed she had acknowledged as much. A big symptom of depression is just a kind of paralysis. Being reactive rather than proactive. Passive rather than active. So I’m not entirely sure if May’s in good medical hands who are doing a great job with her care, or if they’re kind of neglecting her and her depression is manifesting as passivity.

      It is frustrating as an observer to really care and want a positive outcome for May, and to have every suggestion rejected because “healthcare providers are on it, you’re just an idiot on the internet.” I don’t know if it’s just different personalities, May being more trusting of medical establishment than I am, or if it’s depression. Because once I got past a year, my timeline is “we’ll try this for 3 cycles.” (And fwiw, metformin got me out of 89+ day cycles, so 3 cycles meant 100 days or less). So, we’ll try this plan for 3 cycles, then we’ll move on to something else. I just see months and years of May trying timed intercourse and rejecting things like IUI and IVF and clomid and clomid alternatives and metformin and injectables out of hand, and I do not get it.

      • Amy P

        Well, after 3 trials of clomid doing not a whole lot, I wouldn’t say she’s rejecting it out of hand…

        • carole

          And I don’t think she rejected IVF out of hand either and certainly isn’t now. IVF is pretty much last chance saloon (at least my doctors always seemed to consider it so) and you don’t rush in there unless you really need to. When someone has demonstrated that they are capable of getting pregnant all by themselves (well, not [i]exactly[/i] of course, but I digress), it’s actually reasonable to explore the other options throughly first.

      • H

        The last couple of years may have been just timed intercourse, but remember it’s not just a simple TTC blog here, a real issue is the recurrent miscarriage (RPL). May tried clomid – six cycles of it – and in the end it had counter-productive effects… not much has been rejected out of hand, but the highly (over?) medicalise route has not been one we wanted to leap on, partly because of the early promises and subsequent disappointment.

        Also, there didn’t seem to be much point in IUI/IVF until the RPL reasons had been understood, and treated if possible. Another factor was my views and reluctance to go down that certain routes, such as IVF – as outlined in my post a couple of months ago https://nutsinmay.wordpress.com/2012/11/11/the-roller-coaster-of-ivf/

      • wombattwo

        I really don’t think you have to “get it”. All we as humans should do is listen, and try to see things from the other person’s point of view, whilst realising we cannot possibly know the exact details of what has led them to that particular decision.

        May is an adult, and part of a partnership. What they end up doing, how far they go in their quest for a child is their decision, and they need to be at peace with it. Everyone is different, and being more aggressive is not right for everyone. We should all accept that, and not think that our own way of doing things is the best for all.

        None of us know the minutiae of what has happened in May’s appointments, and nor should we. It is difficult, nay impossible, therefore to conclude whether her doctors are neglecting her or not.

        Also I think May was not complaining about Sheila’s (very gentle and reasonable, I thought) question, rather the somewhat aggressive phrasing of the response to it. Writing a blog is not always for the purpose of ascertaining “medical” advice from others. Sometimes it is for support. Sometimes it is because writing helps.

        I will also say that in a rather imprecise area such as infertility/RPL, where we know so little, and it is often a case of trial and error, so called standards of care have to and should be flexible, and applied to the patient concerned, rather than a blanket rule.

        • Chickenpig

          I think here in the US they are very quick to move to IVF as a cure-all. Because of this, some ppl think that anything short of IVF “isn’t doing enough”. Trying rounds of clomid and timed intercourse isn’t being “passive”, it is using the least expensive and lease invasive means first. Without doing rounds of clomid, getting pregnant, and losing multiple pregnancies, May and H wouldn’t have known that they have a RPL problem. Doing rounds of IVF would have been a very expensive experiment. Now the doctor’s know what an extreme case this is. RPL is a mysterious area where many RE’s are afraid to tread. They usually stick to using PGD, and if you can’t stay pregnant with healthy embryos they throw their hands in the air and say “we’re stumped, maybe you should move on to: donor egg/donor sperm/surrogate/ whatever” . It is why I am intrigued to see where 4th Opinion goes, and it is also why I assume that 4th opinion is really on top of things, because he didn’t just say “Why don’t you just use donor eggs and/or a surrogate? or get out” . Yes, assuming that your doctor always knows what he/she is doing is a mistake, but I think that getting a 4th opinion is kind of proof in itself that May and H are pro active and knowledgeable, as well as open minded.

  • korechronicles

    Sorry about the norovirus. Nothing worse than needing a chuck bucket for an extended period of time. If it’s any consolation I managed a sympathy migraine on your behalf last night. Probably a message from the universe to pull my head in.

    Can I send you some Vegemite for the rice cakes?

  • wombattwo

    If you were closer I’d get the other half to make you some rice porridge. Great for rehydrating, and when the stomach can’t cope with anything else. Sorry about the norovirus, it’s miserable.

  • Chickenpig

    OMG not the Norvo! I hope you feel better soon. That is one nasty virus, and I hear that it is getting nastier and more infectious all the time. We have had it here recently, and the doctor called it the ‘boomerang virus’ because it comes baaaaack. When you are feeling better, disinfect everything. They have closed schools down here in the US just to try and go nuclear option on the norvo because it just goes round, and round…you get the picture.

  • Alice

    Europeans ‘dying in ditches’, that’s just so funny, I’m going to try and work that line into a few conversations this week!

  • Womb For Improvement

    Ooh missed that shit storm. But as someone who has benefitted massively from The Shelia’s advice and frankly encyclopedic knowledge of all things immune related I can also vouch for her best of intentions.

    Anyway back to the NHS, I consider it like my family, I am perfectly entitled to moan about it but woe betide anyone who isn’t related having a go.

  • L.

    Goodness gracious. May just said she didn’t mind thoughtful input, I think, so why wank all over her blog about not being able to give input on blogs? But also, yes, people talk about personal and painful things not just because they want Your Important Internet Opinion (even if you totally are right or have a truly helpful idea) but because telling stories can heal, and feeling heard–just heard, nothing more–is especially powerful. Sometimes that’s all someone wants.

    May, as usual I am not as edified about the issues at hand as many of the other commenters but i am glad you sought out opinion #4 as clearly several things about #3 weren’t sitting right with you. I am glad you feel like you have a plan that makes sense and that you’re willing to go with. And, although I think I understand why you won’t hope or foster optimism, I hope it is okay to quietly hope a little for you all the same.

  • Kylie

    Right, I go off to a no Internet connectivity corner of NZ ( lots of lovely wine tho) and wow, a lot happens.
    Hope you are feeling better, rice cakes really do the job in the anti-nausea stakes, but a little salt makes them semi tasty too.
    And I remember my first experience of the NHS ( after growing up in the US). Ah, they prescribed me supr duper ibuprofen pills 500mg! Which were practically free, and then tried to offer me free birth control pills. Which was a surprise. I miss socialized medicine, the semi socialized medicine of Australia, is not quite the same ( pls excuse spelling of socialized. iPad keeps “correcting” it)

  • Carol

    Sorry to hear your suffering with Norovirus, sounds awful and hope your feeling better now.

  • Emily Erin

    May dear, are you still standing? I surely hope that the Norovirus has left the premises by now! Wishing you good things.

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