I treat readers of this blog in the same way I treat houseplants: I like having them a good deal, but my ultimate contract of care concerning them seems to primarily feature neglect. I always intend to water them, mind you. My Cactus plants thrive, but the tender, fragile little delicates slump, quick or slow, into sad, inescapable decay.

Greetings, my dear Cacti! We are the prickly rare-bloomers who can hold our drink!

And I do like this blog. Love this blog, in fact. I’ve clung onto it in the chilly face of spousal opposition, counsellor criticism, and enough personal outings to fill an entire Enid Blyton book. I have to choose my subject matter rather more cautiously these days, which is, admittedly, a right-royal pair of hair knickers to wear; yet I would pay a higher price than a little sticky-tape to the cake hole in order to secure my conduit to you, my fine, proud, rigidly upstanding Cacti readers (I will cease the analogising soon, I promise. I shall submit my pet cactus to AccidentalDong.com and have done.)

Accidental Dong contender

whose words, however spikey, I value.

I have not, as it happens, been moping. I made a decision vis a vis further offspring, treated myself in delicious fashion to a long (long!)-delayed read of Dorothy Dunnett’s Lymond chronicles – and that lost me a week’s sleep that I didn’t begrudge a single wink of – and went on a little holiday.

John's teeth departed his jaw courtesy of a hockey ball, btw. I haven't clobbered him with the frying pan lately.

Yes. My hair really does look like this in the morning.

I had hoped that Harry, knocked about from his bout of ‘flu, would revive a little, but we’ve brought him home as hard to handle and exhaustion-prone as when we left. I console myself, grimly, that downward spikes in behaviour with Harry often presage a development surge – and try to ignore the fact that John and I have been seething subjects of a succession of tiresomely jejune envelope-pushing swipes, for comically trivial parental transgressions against the toddler code, such as daring to proffer a sandwich containing the incorrect filling or placing the CD player on the wrong shelf.  

Enlarging, no pun intended, on the offspring topic: all systems are go for the great Yes. If I sound brief and jaunty, it’s in painful contrast to the actuality of my torturous sorry-I-could-not-travel-both thought processes, but I feel you’ve suffered enough thousands of words. My final cogitations can be loosely summed up, albeit untidily, by the Buddhist parable of Krisha Gotami (also referenced recently in a post at Glow In The Woods, an excellent website that I feel everyone should know of, at least.) which I hope I shall not be telling with a sigh, somewhere ages and ages hence.

Onwards. Our IF clinic demands that you have to go and watch a video about it, as well as having your photo taken before being allowed to be infertile these days. I protested, avec sharp expletives, that I have had 6 rounds of clomid, 2 rounds of IUI, 2 rounds of IVF and 4 miscarriages under my ample belt, as well as something a little livelier than a mole between my ears. I have, damn and blast it, their bloody t-shirt; I require no video-showings. Protested; to no avail. We have our Introduction to Infertility (or, whatever) video showing and an IUI cycle to look forward to in a couple of weeks. Hubba hubba.

John is particularly irked by my insistence on starting with an assisted cycle because, as he rightly says, we are not, in fact, infertile, and could likely manage an organic pregnancy all by ourselves, given a year or so. I agree: we might. We probably would. But I am nearly 36, congenitally impatient, a habitual aborter, possibly anovulatory, and all my instincts concerning Project Pregnancy scream blitzkreig

So. If I jump in: I jump.

You will, of course, my rare desert blooms, see me both before and after the flipside.

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