Tooth & Nail

Oh Christ, I am dreadful at this blogging business. I write SO MUCH stuff. In, you know, my actual head.  I natter relentlessly away to you all, just as if you are sat, trapped, in my car passenger seat. Driving back from the Harry-activity du jour is generally when I construct my best mental rants, on the basis that I am not subject to the inquisitive barrage of back-seat barracking. (A barrage! I rejoice! When, that is, I am not devoutly praying for increased depth of topic exploration. ‘Why’s that, Mummy?’ is pretty much where Harry is happily stuck, currently. And I understand we may be here a while yet. I am not impatient, precisely, merely keen to progress.)

ANYway. Things are sounding a little more hopeful on the Harry-education front, and I have been talked down from my ledge a little. I had many lovely, useful, kind, help-proffering comments, none of which I have replied to, although I have meant to and still mean to, because A) I am disgracefully inept at time-management and B) we have been on holiday. To – to Harry’s great joy – Legoland and the seaside.

I yield to no-one in my enthusiasm for lego, but the seaside – featuring, as it usually does, sand – is not quite my bag, even with glorious weather. Harry comes by his sensory oddities genetically when it comes to icky textures. Both my father and I, although not dirt-shy per se, will adopt pained expressions and proceed to trample the weak in an urgent effort to find soap and water when we are coated with something sticky, gritty, slimy, profoundly wrong, etc. Harry does prefer his sand at tool’s length if possible, but is such an enthusiastic constructor of what I will loosely term buildings, that he no longer minds the grotty textural trade-off, and he and John are as happy as… well, sand-boys. I do love watching the sea, but I think that it joins the land in a thoughtless and badly laid-out fashion; some sort of wooden decking arrangement along the whole English riviera & Jurassic coastline would suit me better.

I am back home, however, and currently taking fright at the dwindling timescale on a number of self-inflicted projects, chief among them: the need to drop, say, half a dress size? before the wedding, with marquee reception next door, of Harry’s godmother at the end of the month. And, because I am the neighbour from hell, I am pinching their marquee afterwards for Harry’s birthday party. My dress is an eBay purchase

 and arrives, I think, tomorrow. I will let you know when I try it on if the nervousness, dieting and 3xweekly gymming needs to upgrade to outright bloody panic. Preliminary – and belated – measurements suggest my bust and hips – those mighty bulwarks of English womanhood! –  are probably vaguely compatible, if currently a little snug, but that, disappointingly, I have the stomach of a woman two whole dress sizes bigger. *gnaws nails*

And speaking of gnawing nails, I have spent this evening (once I had finished making fimo pirate treasure coins for Harry’s party) (I told you my projects were self-inflicted) compiling a summary list, shown below, for Last Chance Saloon Consultant, whom I see in a week’s time.

And those of you who remember how ‘really depressed’ my latest miscarriage rendered my Professor, might be amused by her recent advice to recurrent miscarriers. Leastways, I tried to laugh, but couldn’t, quite. There is a heap-big-important fertility conference happening in Sweden currently, and the take-home message so far, judging by the headlines, has been keep your chin up and brush your teeth – but, after reading the articles, I am gnashing them too much to comply.

Ann’s Woeful Reproductive Summary:
1 premature IUGR birth RIGHT uterus (unplanned conception)
2 chemical pregnancies LEFT & RIGHT uteri (Frozen cycle IVF [L] & unplanned conception [R])
1 miscarriage at 7 weeks LEFT uterus; normal growth, no heartbeat (Fresh cycle IVF)
2 miscarriages at 8 weeks LEFT uterus, normal growth, normal heartbeat (partial IUI cycle & Fresh cycle blastocyst IVF)
2004       6 cycles Clomid
5 out of 6 cycles regularised to sub-40 days
LH surges detected during menstruation
Serum progesterone tests ‘indicating ovulation’ 2 days before menstruation
?2005     IUI cycle – Unsuccessful
Miscommunication between medical team
Dominant follicle on RIGHT ovary, but sperm replaced in LEFT uterus
Downregulation successful, accompanied by frequent arrhythmia
?05/06   IUI cycle: pregnancy LEFT uterus
Delayed response to Norethisterone
1st downregulation attempt unsuccessful, had to repeat
Eventual downregulation accompanied by arrhythmia
Sub-optimal response in LEFT ovary to gonadotrophins
Cycle abandoned part-way (as we were aiming for LEFT uterus pregnancy) but still conceived
6 week scan normal with heartbeat
8 weeks scan normal growth, no heartbeat
Medical management of miscarriage
2006       IVF cycle: pregnancy LEFT uterus
Down-regulation successful, accompanied by arrhythmia
Sub-optimal response to Menopur
Continual bleeding & cramping, beginning at 5 weeks pregnant
Embryo growth appropriate up until 7 weeks but no heartbeat developed
Miscarried naturally (?9) weeks
Re-admitted (?3) days after loss of pregnancy sac with severe cramping pain
No retained products / obvious infection
2006       IVF frozen cycle: chemical pregnancy LEFT uterus
Down-regulation unsuccessful: 20mm follicle at baseline scan
Eventual down-regulation accompanied by arrhythmia
Continual bleeding & cramping from 5 days after embryo transfer
Jan 07     Unplanned conception: Harry, RIGHT uterus
Slight bleed at 9 weeks with very strong cramping that week
Continued to cramp & bleed at decreasing intervals and with increasing severity throughout pregnancy
CTG & home doppler detecting fetal distress/decelerations
Premature vaginal delivery: 33 weeks
IUGR: 1.7kg
NICU: Fully ventilated
SCBU: 4 week stay
Mar 10   Unplanned conception: RIGHT uterus
Chemical / 8.2mm sac seen
Mar 11   IVF blastocyst cycle: pregnancy LEFT uterus
 Antagonist cycle
Good response 300iu Gonal F
No arrhythmia
Developed OHSS ; severe symptoms for 12 hours
40mg heparin / 150mg aspirin daily
Normal growth; heartbeat stopped 8w5days
Medical management of miscarriage
 Heavy blood loss, +++ large clots; IV fluids
Fetal tissue cytogenetics ordered
Re-admitted 4 days following loss of pregnancy sac with full labour contractions – LEFT uterus only
No retained products
24hr-cyclic severe cramping pain LEFT uterus for 8 days following re-admission, gradually decreasing
Raised white blood cell count, but I’m fairly sure no infection present

13 Responses

  1. Ugh. Great advice there.

    Love the dress! I bet you’ll look stunning in it!

  2. Well that’s good to know isn’t it – and how do you like your platitudes? Personally I enjoy them toasted!

    Can you ask the Last Chance Saloon Consultant if they offer a Mini Anderson Shelter or Storm Anchor for your prospective babies. Or even just a large tube of superglue? I know I shouldn’t joke about this because it is horrible situation to be in. If it helps to bolster your courage, despite extremely severe endometriosis and recurrent ovarian cysts I managed two full term pregnancies over the course of 7 years (two years to first son and five years later a second son with major surgery to re-arrange ‘bits’ in between). I know I don’t have your particular uterine arrangements and that I was ‘lucky’, especially in having #2 – but sometimes luck happens. You already know that science can be just as fickle!

    The dress is gorgeous, go and buy a super control brief/girdle type garment if the abdomen won’t behave!

  3. Ah, but when you update, it’s great.

    fimo pirate treasure coins? Well, I think we need to see those..

    Nice threads! You’ll look lovely.

    About your reproductive history – you’ve been through a hundred years war, truly. It’s heart-breaking. I am so sorry, Ann.

  4. Ooh, your dress is beeyootiful!
    Like Twangy says, when you do update, it’s great.
    As for your reproductive history, well a) it makes me angry, that it’s just so unfair. b) it makes me sad, and c) it makes me want to give you a great big hug. I know none of those really help, and won’t change anything, but I’m just sorry. It sucks.

  5. Little known fact: I use to work at Legoland.

    For one easter I was “eatertainment” staff – which essentially consisted of me working in the pasta patch making pasta to order. Not the best job, but didn’t diminish my fierce love of lego.

    And yes, I’m not loving these headlines coming out of Sweden.

  6. Your news of preparation on the Harry’s Party front only serves to remind me of how very much I enjoyed helping him celebrate last year and how sad I am that I cannot be there to see your magnificent work on the Cake, Birthday Celebrations For the Purpose Of.

    Gorgeous dress. As you will be wearing it.

    And I can only hope that there are better days ahead on the reproductive front.

  7. Also…love waves and water and spent plenty of time in and on both. But sand is the work of the very devil.

  8. That dress is *gorgeous* and you will be gorgeous in it as well (I mean, you are already, but that dress is so lovely). And I agree, as long as most of you fits into it, put on some sort of girdle-y thing and call it a day!

    I am glad that the education-related concerns are a little mellowed. Reading the Professors advice made my eyebrows go (( : | and then > : | . And your history was more :((( . Really hoping that you’re able to get more help from the Consultant.

    • Hmm, that was supposed to be a frowny face with two extra frowns, but it didn’t come out quite right … I guess there is no image-emoticon to go with that one!

  9. Is the dress bias-cut? If it is, fret not. It will gracefully accomodate, and you will look even more delightful.

    Yay for holidays! Eeep for sand in sandals. Ick.

    Fimo coins for pirate treasure? Where were you when I was tiddy and wee and having birthday parties? I had to make to with CARDBOARD.

    Your Professor – I could shake her. Do you want me to shake her? I can go shake her if you like.

    Your woeful Reproductive Summary made me cry. Not helpful at all of me, I know. I shall stop in an instant, I promise. But, shit, girl, you’ve been through the mill. Shit.

  10. May I strongly recommend the control underwear route. Made my stomach quite manageable in a not-too-dissimilar dress a few weeks ago. The dress is GORGEOUS! how long have you got til the wedding/pary, and what shape will harry’s cake be this year?

  11. What a fabulous frock!! Hope we get to see a pic of you in it. I swear by Spanx for tummy control (are they only available in the US?) Anyway, our home grown deity, Oprah, loves them too so they must be good! (At least that’s what we’ve been told).

    Harry (and sibs?) may someday know how very precious they are to you and how dearly they are wanted. Sorry that the maternal labyrinth includes so many twists and turns for you.

  12. IUI is good for pregnancy success. it is much easier and more cheapest from another treatment. At now so many people are like this.

    pcos solutions

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