Category Archives: Gluten avoidance therapeutic bitchathon

‘Tis the season. Hi.

Gentle Readers, Season’s Greetings. How have you been? How are you all doing? Me? Oh, fine, fine. It’s a long story. Have a cup of tea. Or coffee. Or cocoa. Or wine. I don’t know what you like. I don’t know what I like. Excuse me, I shall just go and stare into a cupboard for a few minutes.

Anyway (I went for tea. I’m British) anyway, (I see you were serious when you asked how I’d been. In that case, I shall tell you. In Items. Because Items are traditional.

Item – Working from the toes up, my left leg, the one that developed the big fat DVT. How is that? Well, I had a final ultrasound scan of it, during which the sonographer kept a poker face to out-poke all poker faces. Then a week later we saw the haematology consultant (a third one. Consistency being a thing that huge NHS hospitals can’t actually do on the budgets they actually get). I had been somewhat bothered by the way my leg is still more likely to cramp, to get tired, to ache, than my right leg. It was weird and I didn’t like it, and I was somewhat concerned that despite all the walking about and trying to get fit again the stupid thing was not cooperating. And, well, of course it isn’t cooperating. Third Haematologist told me that though my popliteal vein was no longer completely blocked (yay?) the clot hadn’t completely dissolved and had now scarred over. So my left leg will get oxygen starvation if I over-do it, and will ache and swell if I stand about for too long, and is at risk of another socking great clot if I push my luck. Fucking A, man.

Item – Compression socks. I hate them. They have a purpose and their purpose is excellent and my ankle is not swollen on a regular basis with thanks thereunto. They still suck. I still hate them.

Item – Cerazette! Still my bestest friend in the universe. Every few weeks, I spot painlessly for a week. Otherwise, my pelvis is filled with peace, calm, sunshine and dancing rainbow unicorns.

Item – Cerazette! Demon! My hair is falling out. I have a metric fuckton of hair to start with, so it will take a great deal of falling-out-ness before I start to look so much as wispy, let alone Leonardo da Vinci, and yet I am not amused. Not at all. Sodding hormones. On the other hand, I’d rather be spear-bald than spend three weeks out of five in so much pain I can’t really function, so fuck it. I have hats.

Item – Wheat. I ate some. Within 24 hours my oesophagus was so swollen I was having trouble swallowing (and had to go retch a few times when I had not chewed obsessively 27 times before swallowing, as ‘stuck’ is a thing). This is an official food allergy thing, apparently. I also got gut ache and wind and mild runs (trots?). I decided I hate delicious yummy wheat with a passion. Not trying that again. Damn it all to hell.

Item – Trying again. We were waiting for the all clear from the Haematologists (many and varied). The consensus is I will have to be on low molecular weight heparin AND aspirin from conception to six weeks after end-of-pregnancy. Also, I will have to wear stockings on both legs, and will probably be a physical wreck throughout. Hurrah! But, I can try again if I like. So we will go see Riverside Clinic in January, and see what can be done about tucking Frosticle back in me. On the other hand, a fresh IVF cycle? Possibly a really bloody silly idea, as ovarian stimulation/hyperstimulation is in itself a damn fine way of triggering blood-clotting. We shall see. My current feeling is, if Frosticle doesn’t ‘work’, I am getting seven cats and a pet owl and a horse called Horse.

Item – To my fury, Third Haematologist went on about there being no genetic ’cause’ for my thrombophilia, therefore I didn’t technically ‘have’ a thrombophilia, and I rolled my eyes, and what I would like to say is, actually, I don’t have a currently recognised genetic cause that you can test for. I ABSOLUTELY FUCKING DO have a thrombophilia. You fucking idiot.

Item (secondary, diversionary) – I much preferred First Haematologist, who was sympathetic and sensible, and Second Haematologist, who was actually The Doctor slumming it while evading the Family of Blood or somesuch. (I am perfectly serious. He referred to ‘eight of your Earth weeks’ at one point and H got the giggles (yes yes yes, so did I)).

Item – Work. I am back at work full time. It’s fine. I’m coping. Leg is not being so much of an arse as it were to interfere with my day-to-day duties.

Item – Family. Oh my God I have had it up to here with my family. I will no doubt get back to you all on this.

Item – Counselling. My NHS-provided counsellor, who I see once a week, is lovely and wonderful and has made me realise I spend an inordinate amount of time beating the everlovin’ shit out of myself for everything and anything from untidy hair to being a vile antisocial Bitter McTwisted of Doom. If anyone spoke to a friend of mine the way I speak to myself I’d disembowel them. I am practicing being sweet to myself. It is weird and hard. Also, she keeps reminding me, my family’s hang-ups are theirs, not mine, and I don’t need to take them on board at all. Build Team May! If people are not on Team May, skip briskly away into the distance singing ‘la la la’!

Item – Marriage. H and I are not happy. H has dealt with the Summer of You Must Be Fucking Kidding Me, well, badly. I have also dealt with it badly, but H has taken the proverbial biscuit, bless him. Communication has gone to hell. I will let H tell you about it. That is my revenge upon him, ho ho ho. Hi, H! Stage is all yours! So!

Item – Couple-counselling. We tried to find a counsellor. We had an initial visit in which the man would NOT. STOP. TALKING. When I bought up the whole ‘children now seriously unlikely’ thing, he had to stop me there to tell me ‘I didn’t know that’. Which, actually, was the first red flag. A good counsellor does not tell you what you should and should not be thinking about this sort of stuff on the first visit and before he knows any of the medical history apart from ten mother-fucking miscarriages in a row, you absolute 24-carat gold clotheared dickwhistle. And then tried to slut-shame me when I said I had a higher libido than H and the lack of sex and more specifically communication about sex in our marriage was making me sad and angry, by explaining to me as if I was very stupid indeed that in normal marriages, it was normal for both spouses to lose interest and get ‘too’ used to each other. Well then, I’m abnormal, as I haven’t lost interest in H at all, as I just explained, and the issue is the lack of communication, not the lack of sex per se, so sod you very much. And then, he never turned up to our second appointment. He made his excuses the next day via the practice manager. His excuse was not per se stupid, but his not getting in touch himself to grovel just a bit? Was a great fat honking flashing neon sign saying ‘this man is Not The Counsellor For You, Also, Has No Fucking Manners Whatsoever’. So. Start again.

Item – I have a disgusting cold. So there’s that.

Item – Christmas. Every card I write, every Christmas decoration I hang (or get H to hang), every present I buy or plan I make, I drag kicking and screaming from a black, angry, pissy abyss of raging misery. Just so you know. The only thing keeping me going is a) H’s various concerts (it’s a good thing, being married to a musician) and b) the prospect of the Doctor Who Christmas Special.


We’re home! I am unseemly-excited about this, which makes me sound like an ungrateful twatweasel, because the In-Laws were darlings and we had a lovely peaceful Christmas, bendy stale rice-cakes and accidental wine-poisoning notwithstanding (basically, red wine, even in small quantities, even very cooked in soups and sauces etc., will, after several doses, make my sodding tongue swell up and my oesophagus burn. Not as alarming and extravagant as my reaction to white wine, but still).

However, now, home-version, at 3pm on a weekday afternoon, H and I are in pyjamas still, and playing computer games, listening to pod-casts, making soup, eating chocolate, and swearing out loud with impunity. And blogging! Hi!

So! I brought you all here today to talk to you about Metformin (good link, hey?). I’ve been on it for a few months now, you see. I think I have gathered data. Are you interested? Tough, I am: –

  • Traditional side effects – Um. When I first geared up from two pills a day to three, and then also ate several pieces of cake, I did in fact have the Officially Endorsed Buttsplosion, and it was grotesque, and if that happens to you often, oh I am so very, very sorry, because eurgh. Otherwise, my side-effects are as follows, even when eating cake and chocolate (feel free to hate me. You’re welcome): Nada. Zip. Sorry. OK, so if I forget to take the pill straight after a meal and whang it down any old how with a slug of milk (goat’s milk, natch. I am a snowflake after all), I feel very faintly sick for a few minutes, and if I eat a mahoossive quantity of sugary food I get wind, but other than that? Gastrointestinal distress, nil; May, happy.
  • Odder side effects – Absolutely to my astonishment, sugar cravings. OK, so I always had a sweet tooth (and, incidentally, having a sweet tooth is not a moral weakness, and all of you thinking of being smug in the comments because you don’t have a sweet tooth, really, do be quiet. It’s no more to your credit than being a natural brunette or having small feet is (Can you tell my family get on my tits? Can you? Can you?)). And when I’d eat sweets I’d get a bit of a head-rush followed by a bit of a sugar-crash (yes, we know my insulin leveller is not clever). On Metformin, I do not get the rush or the crash, but now my body is under the impression I haven’t eaten any sugar at all and keeps shrieking for more. ‘But I had a gluten-free brownie just 30 minutes ago!’ ‘No you did not I want sugar gimme sugar.’ And so on. So, I was clearly addicted to the rush-crash thing. Which is worrying. And so, now I am on Metformin, I have to spend even longer talking myself down off the Gimme Chocolate Gimme Now Ledge. And my sweetie consumption did in fact go up for a while. Which brings me to…
  • Weight loss – not a fucking ounce. In fact, I promptly put about five pounds on when I first started taking the bloody drug, and have only just lost them again. I think. I’m sick of weighing myself and haven’t for ages. I’m going by waist-measurement and how my trousers fit. As a corollary to this, why is it always when you go ‘oh, fuck it,’ and buy jeans one size up for comfort, that you then lose the ‘oh fuck it’ weight and your brand new jeans are far too large?
  • Hair, facial. The first couple of months my PCOS moustache and whiskers did in fact thin noticeably. And then grew back. So fuck that.
  • Cycle – not only has my menstrual cycle not shortened at all (still ovulating on day 21 at the earliest), but my luteal phase has got shorter. Yes, you read that right, shorter. From 12/13 days, to 11 days. Every single month since I started taking Metformin. THIS IS NOT WHAT IT SAID ON THE TIN.
  • On the other hand, I had three periods in a row that were noticeably less painful, with no vomiting, and I had a lot less pain in the week or two leading up to ovulation. Hurrah! Until last month, in which I vomited with vigour and then, in my exhausted drugged-up doze, bled so much I soaked the sanitary towel, knickers, pyjama bottoms, sheet, mattress protector and all in less than an hour. And I’ve been in pain every day since. Which is infuriating and a total bastard and I am now giving Metformin the stink-eye.
  • The packets the Metformin comes in are stupid. Most people take three tablets a day, right? So why do the foil strips have twenty tablets? And a stupid useless dimple smack in the middle? Which could easily have taken another pill, giving seven days’ supply per strip? Why? Why? And why are the boxes so small? Two strips, 40 pills, 13 and 1/3 days’ supply, per box. It’s really really stupid and annoying. Not even a full two weeks supply. And why not a month’s supply per box? It’s not as if we only take the pills for ten days, like antibiotics. Bloody pharmaceutical companies.
  • I do find it hard to remember to take a pill with every meal. There have been skipped pills, forgotten altogether pills, and pills taken at weirder times of day. I am blaming the stupid packaging, because that is psychologically easier than admitting I am a vague and useless snowflake with the attention-span of a fruit-fly on Mary-Jane.

And there we have it. Is Metformin doing me any good at all? Debatable. I don’t know what to do. *Flails hands about*

Boxing Day

Hello, Best Beloveds! I am sitting on the spare bed upstairs at H’s parent’s house, having a good old festive lurk. Cute Ute the Despoiler is whining about something-or-other, which gives me the perfect excuse to be officially Left In Peace, also, not have to do any table-setting or vegetable-preparation. Sometimes, there is something to be said for a Uterus of Doom.

And I am writing this on H’s iPad. It is… amusing. Also, the autocorrect half fills me with delight, half makes me stabby. I may be brief, therefore.

Item! (why not?) – Christmas Day with H’s family was quiet, mellow, peaceful, and pleasant. I very much hope you all can say something similar, at least about the ‘pleasant’ part. Nobody rowed, nobody wept, we all sat around telling the naffest jokes we could think of, and the gift-giving was restrained and tasteful and delight-inducing. Yay us!

Item – My food issues are very awkward. Or, I am feeling awkward about them. There was the incident of the stale and bendy rice-cakes that had been in the cupboard since the dawn of the Jurassic. Of COURSE they tasted like polystyrene if their best-before date was in June. It’s not an inherent quality of the rice-cake, I pinky-swear. Fresh ones are bland, yes, but crucially, crisp and inoffensive. Also, I would’ve liked some cake. Four varieties of cake being joyously scoffed all around me and I am stuck with fruit salad. Or chocolate. Chocolate would do. Only no one is opening the chocolate boxes because they’ve all had SO MUCH CAKE. I know, I know, super-speshul snowflake problems. Especially as MiL made The Christmas Treat Of My Youth in a special flour-free version. Alas, everyone else is eating it in microscopic quantities and bitching about how rich it is, so MiL thinks I’m just being polite when I lavish well-earned and happy praise on it, and puts it back in the cupboards. Argh. It’s supposed to be rich. Argh argh argh.

Item – And booze! The only thing I can drink is gin in tiny quantities, and everyone else is swilling champagne and burgundy. Of course they are. Of course they SHOULD. It’s bleedin’ Christmas. Apple juice doesn’t have quite the same effect. Argh argh argh.

Item – I was very nearly driven insane by Christmas cards addressed to Mr & Mrs H Hlastname. I can tolerate being called May Hlastname, because not everyone realises I didn’t change my name on marriage, but Mrs H Hlastname? Are you freakin’ kidding me? Have you not MET me? Pinko feminist atheist, yes? The one with the hair and the attitude? And don’t tell me it’s etiquette. Since when is it etiquette to call someone by the wrong name?

Item – The In-Laws have a set of lovely neighbours who have a darling little boy, to whom the In-Laws are rather attached, and who made them a Christmas card and tree ornament with his own fair hands. It’s adorable. And it makes me sad, because the In-Laws so very clearly very much want dear little people to dote on in their lives, and H and his brother have not provided any, and in H’s case, this is my fault. And it’s just sad. My MiL is surrounded by friends who are all happy grandmamas, and she isn’t one, and it’s not fair, and I am sad about it. Obviously, sadder on my own behalf than on hers, but sad for her nonetheless.

Item – This post is very itemy because I keep being interrupted. It is also ridiculously grumpy for someone who is actually having quite a nice, peaceful, festive season. I hereby order myself to cheer the fuck up and quit bitching.

Item – Nevertheless, I would like to be at home right now, in pyjamas, drinking rum toddies and watching Doctor Who (which no one he wanted to watch) or the King’s College nine lessons and carols (grumpily vetoed by BiL), or Swan Lake (too long and ‘intellectual’) or Rutter’s Nativity (ditto) or Rossini’s Cenerentola (oh, for God’s sake, May, shut up).

This post is brought to you by the word ‘and’

Next weekend, H and I are going to a family wedding. I have approximately 97 million first cousins, so this sort of thing will keep on happening. We are also having the in-Laws over for a night for a completely unrelated jamboree the same weekend. This is going to involve a great deal of flinging ourselves in and out of cars in a state of agitation and silk frocks. Hurrah!

To that end, and also to Christmassy ends, H and I spent the day trapped in a gigantic shopping centre, in which I nagged H into buying a smart suit with the argument ‘but you need a new suit anyway’. H is disgruntled because he has a perfectly nice and rather more colourful jacket that he wanted to wear instead. He is right. It is a lovely jacket. It just makes him look like a Bond villain. Which is probably a rather jolly thing to look like at a wedding, but he doesn’t have a pair of trousers that go with it, and no Bond villain worth his horrendously overbred Persian cat would appear in unsuitable trousers. In the new suit, he looks merely handsome and suave. Heigh ho.

There was a party-frock sale also, so I tried on five dresses, one of which made me look like a Lorne sausage that had been trodden on, one of which made me look like Elizabeth Taylor at a Royal Variety Performance (stylish, but so very not me), one of which made me look pregnant with a fourteen-hooved yak, one of which actively prevented me from sitting down, one of which was very nice, actually, and one of which was divinely cute and crucially, NOT on sale. So I bought that last one. Again, I say, heigh ho. Also, it’s HARD, finding cute party frocks, when you are 36DD and have a belly and hips and an arse like a bouncy castle and yet, crucially, a waist also. HARD, people. And DEPRESSING.

And so and obviously and therefore, my period is due that weekend. Bwahahahahahahahaha!

Matters not exactly contiguous

Item – Shall I tell you what was fun? The Hairy Farmer’s Not-So-Hairy Wife came to my demesne, and H and I dragged her over two museums and through the streets in the rain, just to wear her out good-and-proper, then, like the social burrs we are, trailed after her to the concert she’d actually come to town for. And she didn’t mind. Or at least, said she didn’t, because she has beautiful manners. The internet is a weird and wonderful thing, Gentle Readers. It lets you make friends with people because you genuinely like them, rather than just becuase they happen to live nearby and don’t actively terrify and repel you (remember school? Well, I went to boarding-school. There’s a reason we teenage bosom-buddies all lost touch. We were really mostly putting up with each other. And now? On the internets? REAL FRIENDS, thank you).

Item – In matters reproductive, H and I are still waiting for the endometrial biopsy results. Surely they should be arriving any day now? Gah. Frettlement.

Item – Also, Satsuma, being a cow of an ovary, is refusing to be definite about whether she has or has not ovulated, and I have not helped by spending the week on holiday and therefore getting up at all hours of the morning and thereby making basal body temperature unreliable at best. It may have been yesterday. It may not have been. H and I have been, eh, connubial, you know, practice for the well-timed medicated-cycle sex. This may be a two week wait. It may not be. Who knows?

Item – Having another attempt at the Occupational Health interview tomorrow. Will report back.

Item – Oh, and Metformin! Yes! I must tell you! I’m now taking 1500mg a day, in three doses. Side-effects: I am slightly more thirsty than usual. Possible side-effects: one day I ate some meat-balls containing gluten, and then had a few stomach cramps, and the next day I ate a cake and a chocolate mousse and another cake and then my bowels pressed the eject button and there was a very very unpleasant 10 minutes in a public lavatory praying no-one would come in and I thought, is this metformin-plus-cake-overdose? Or is it gluten? Or unholy combination of both? In any case, no more wildly festive cake-partakeathon, no matter how tempting the gluten-free selection acutally is for once.

Item – Related to the metformin, H thinks I have lost weight. I got on the scales, and the scales said ‘hahahahaha no you haven’t. Quite the opposite! Well done!’. Bugger. So I put my trousers on and my belt said ‘no, actually, you are thinner.’ So there’s a side-effect for you. Metformin is turning my bones to lead.

Grief Bacon

Gentle Readers, my period appears to be turning up a day early (I say ‘appears’. It hasn’t appeared. I have had cramps for 24 hours, I feel sick, my bowel has done its trademark premenstrual panic-and-empty routine, I feel so very grim I’ve called in sick, and yet? Not even spotting. But anyway), so I am in a sort of heap in the living-room with the Olympics on in the background (there appear to be… horses? What happened to the swimming?).

I haven’t been posting very much recently out of a giant, swamping feeling of anxst. And I am very, very bored of telling you all about my anxst. The whole infertility/RPL/borked innards saga has been pretty much nothing but anxst for six years (seven, really, but six blogged), and as well as being bloody unpleasant to live through, it is so fucking boring now. And this is not one of those excellent-reading heart-warming IF/RPL/Borkage stories that canters through high drama diagnoses and treatments and losses and! Finally! The Take-Home Baby! in two or three years, giving everyone a lovely story-arc with weeping-happy-tears resolution, crucially, before everyone gets royally sick of the whole thing and wanders off to find a blog less wall-to-wall tedium and frustration.

*Musical interlude in which we play May a concerto on the world’s tiniest violin*

However, my trousers are getting tight and I daren’t weigh myself, because I have been dealing with the Unspeakable Anxst Du Jour by eating rather more than I think is wise. The Germans, who have a splendid way with a compound noun, call this kind of ensquidgerey Kummerspeck, or grief-bacon, the weight you put on because you are comfort-eating your way through a crisis. (This, and ‘shark week’ for the days taken over by menstruating, are my new favourite terms. Oh, the infinite ways in which the raw, sarcastic, redolent-of-pain-and-blood ‘shark week’ is preferable to the twee, coy, tea-cosiness of ‘Aunt Flo’).

For the sake of my favourite jeans and my dignity in attempting to sit down therein, I shall now vent anxst all over this blog-post. You have been warned.

Your mileage may vary, but for me personally, the best way to be told of a friend/relation’s pregnancy is emphatically not by ultrasound photo on FuckBucket. If the announcer is not particularly close to me and has no clue as to my woes, or, perhaps, not much of a clue and is a clueless clot from the clue-free shopping channel anyway, I’ll let it pass. I might even say ‘congratulations’ (note lack of exclamation mark).

If, however, said person knows me, loves and is loved by me, knows my woes, and still thinks I can learn this alongside every twerp dick and hairball she went to primary school with, well, I get a twitch in my eyelid, is what I get. No, I don’t want a phone-call, either, though I appreciate the personal touch there, and will tough it out. Email me. Or write me a letter. I don’t need eighteen paragraphs of ‘I’m so sorry, I know this is so hard for you, I feel so guilty,’ either, because I don’t like being Bitter McTwisted the Kill-Joy Queen. A simple ‘Dear May, I am pregnant! Just thought I’d let you know before I start babbling about it on FuckBucket. Baby is due on [whenever]. Thinking of you, Much love, Friend-With-A-Clue’. Then I can have my ‘happy for you, sad for me’ moment in dignified privacy before emailing back ‘WHEEEEEEE! CONGRATULATIONS! SO MANY HUGS!’.

The real knife-in-ribs twist is, this friend answered the long, loving, concerned-all-for-her-and-her-toddler letter (with re-cap of our own medical disasters as shortest paragraph in said letter, and done in a ‘just to let you know our news’ way and NOT a ‘where were you, you unsupportive bitch?’ way) I wrote to her to restart our friendship with a brief ‘that was a lovely letter and I was really moved. In touch soon’. And then ignore me for months. While I, you know, had surgery and shit. And then, 24 hours before the Grand FuckBucket Announcement, email me a link to a completely unrelated funny and add ‘we should catch up soon’ at the bottom of that. Oh, hell, no, we should not catch up. She gets three kids (yes, twins. Ultrasound of naturally conceived twins) in the same time I get, what, three? Four? miscarriages. She can’t face me. She offers no support or love or even so much as a ‘how did the surgery go’? I think, right now, we will ‘catch up’ approximately as and when I become the Chief Rabbi of the British Isles.

Meanwhile, because we can’t do naturally conceived twins in a Surprise! ‘oh, goodness, I don’t know how we’ll cope!’ way *hiss*, we have to decide whether we want to blow an entire fucking house-deposit’s worth on, not a baby, but the mere chance of being allowed to buy a metaphorical lottery ticket for a baby.

H is still deeply pissed off with his job, by the way, and therefore is rather distant and preoccupied and also rather given to comfort-eating, which is getting a bit mutual-enabling. As have my gluten-free baking experiments – oh dear, if cake is good, we’ll eat it. Who knew?

And then there’s Olympics. You can’t have missed them. The last time they were on was the summer just after my first miscarriage, and I was grieving and angry and wondering if I’d be able to get on with the trying-to-get-pregnant any time soon. As I said then, on the subject of waiting to TTC:

No, the main reason they don’t want you TTC-ing at once is, apparantly, a) so you can take a month to ‘finish grieving’ and therefore not have a full-blown nervous break-down during the first trimester, and b) so they can accurately date your pregnancy from the date of your last period. To which I say a) finish? I was supposed to finish this already? But I’ve got enough left here to keep me going until the London Olympics, and b) how amazingly thick does a doctor or midwife have to be to assume the date of the last menstrual period means jack for a good 20% of the women they are going to see? No, wait, flash-backs to the Early Pregnancy Unit From Hell, don’t answer that.

And here we are at the London Olympics and, oh, God, nobody tell poor May-in-2008 what happened next or she really will have a full-blown nervous break-down.

I don’t think I mentioned it on the blog ever, but I found it in my old-fashioned paper diary (I’ve kept a sporadic diary since I was 8) – When I was first pregnant I had a lovely little fantasy of sitting watching the Beijing Olympics and feeling my baby move for the first time, and being able to tell her in 2012 that we watched (well, were in the room for) the 2008 Olympics together and she did somersaults along with the Olympians. And then I lost her. And all her tiny embryonic siblings since. And it’s finally 2012 and the Olympics are on again and I’m still not pregnant and another dream has died and I keep weeping whenever an athlete wins or loses or just, you know, turns up and represents. We’re all here again and all those embryos aren’t.

Give me a dah dah dah



I’d got as far as the bus-stop this morning, when my lower bowel decided (unilaterally, I might add. No consultation with the rest of me what so ever) that it didn’t care for, oh, something, and wanted whatever-it-was outside, stat. I sprinted back home in terror, flung the door open, belted past a startled (and half-dressed) H, and locked myself in the lavatory for 20 minutes. Then I came out to bitch about it all, and went back in for another 30 minutes. Came out, phoned work, feeling like a total fucking idiot, went back in. And so on, all morning.

Thank you, Universe. Thank you right in your face.

I was careful, yesterday (if I eat a Bad Thing, it takes between 12 and 24 hours to give me cramps and diarrhoea). I did not eat a single thing that could even possibly contain gluten, or bananas, or wine, or any of the other things that irritate my digestive tract. I have cut out coffee, I have cut out dairy (my eczema was flaring. I am so attractive right now). And I’m not ill. Apart from not daring to be more than a few second’s sprint from a lavatory, I feel fine. My guts should be the happiest guts in the kingdom, ungrateful little weasels that they are.

H is of the opinion that after a migraine, I can suffer several days of ‘postdrome’. He has a point – I was still slurring my words and transposing phonemes (Spoonersims ahoy!) on Sunday night, despite the migraine (The Migraine!) thwopping me one last Tuesday. I also know a lot of people get diarrhoea pre-and-post-migraines. Could it be that? A week later? Do I need to keep a headache-and-the-shits diary (don’t answer that. Of course I do).


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?


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.