Distractions – a little off topic!

Well… I don’t know about the rest of you but I am pretty much done with Covid 19 now and wish it would just do one! It’s been a week of lock down here in the UK and I am going stir crazy… and I went into work on Thursday as I work in a school!

Before anyone starts having a pop and telling me others have been in lock down far longer… I know!!! But that doesn’t mean I can’t have my rant!

I think it’s amazing how people are finding ways to get through this. We have amazing people like Joe Wicks doing his online daily work out (which was harder than I was expecting!), good old Carol Vorderman doing her online maths classes and David Walliams doing his daily online story! Zoom has gone from Zero to Hero as people are trying to find new ways of socialising with their friends, virtual coffee mornings and cocktails parties, online choir practice as well as online Sunday lunches! As a human race we are remarkably resilient. We have amazing people who are volunteering to go out and about helping those who can’t get out for their essentials and retired healthcare professionals coming out of retirement to do their bit!

But I just wonder how long it can last? Will it change us as a human race? Will youngsters think that they no longer need to go out or will it make people realise just how much they appreciate the good outdoors and human contact? Or will things just go back to the way it was?

Only time will tell and we have a long way to push through before then! Wuhan is due to come out of lockdown on 8th April… the world’s eyes will be looking that way to see what will happen!

So how am I coping with the lockdown? A LOT of online learning, helping family members by getting essentials, taking part in the Joe Wicks workout and planning my move which is still currently set to go ahead next week. It would appear I will have 10 days with no internet so that will be interesting… or expensive if I cave and use my 3G! My drama group is having a weekly online chat, and my colleagues are keeping each other entertained with daily anecdotes of their lockdown lives!

But I am craving human contact right now! I still have amazing cuddles with my kittens but I haven’t had a human hug for over a week and it is killing me! I am a huggy person. I love a cuddle. I am currently exremely envious, no, jealous of those who have people in their household they can still hug. I refuse to believe I am alone in this! I can see it now, when all this is over I will be going around hugging everybody to make up for it!!!

Please comment with any lockdown ideas you have. Please share my blog! PLEASE!!! I need contact! I need distraction! Not just from Covid 19 but from the break in my journey. Because out of all of this, that is what I am finding the hardest… I know I am not alone but it would be nice to hear/read it!!!!

Take care for now, stay safe, stay inside, try Joe Wicks’ workout and we WILL get through this!

fgh <— my kitten’s contribution!!!

Current Affairs (warning I will rant)

I am one of those people that loves immersing myself in current affairs. I sit and read the BBC news app and will choose to sit with a news channel on or listen to 5Live. But right now I am torn. I care, I really do. Covid 19 has torn our world apart in a way that no one was really prepared for. We have spent the last few years talking about how we are killing our planet and ourselves with Climate Change but no one talked about a virus that would take down our vulnerable and isolate us from each other. But I am finding it harder and harder to listen to the radio or watch the news. Plus, there MUST be other things going on in the world. Wars don’t stop for Covid 19.

I know there are human beings who like isolation but most of us crave human contact. We are driven to be sociable. Now, thanks to something so small it can’t be seen by the human eye, we have to go against everything we believe in. If you live on your own, then you are on your own.

Of course, humans are humans, and this week I’m beginning to agree more and more with Doctor Who that a lot of them are silly. Okay, I am putting this mildly. Stupid and selfish. I am angry. I am broken hearted. There is so much positivity in the community groups and the care our NHS workers are giving, our teachers still looking after children, retired NHS professionals stepping up. I feel there is hope but I see people ignoring the government advice and putting people at unnecessary risk. Not to mention those who are using this as a chance to destroy property and livelihoods even more than they have already been destroyed. So now not only are we battling a virus but we are battling human beings who seem incapable of using common sense.

People are losing loved ones and I hate it. I can’t stand the fact that something can destroy people’s lives in so many ways. I am seeing people I love scared what it could mean for them. I have all but shut myself in my room to help protect my Mum. I need more than ever to move out next week so I can keep her safe. If I go out, I come in and go straight to the shower, I wash clothes I have worn outside straight away. It’s like a science fiction movie.

With all this going on, I feel guilt. Because I know that treatment cannot go ahead right now and I am devastated. I said before I had decided to postpone but until this happened I think deep down I thought it would still be fairly imminent. But now I have to be sensible. The NHS is going to be under immense strain. I am waiting on an appointment with a consultant regarding my abdominal pain but I do not have much hope that it will be anytime soon. But then I worry about the pain getting bad enough to go back into A&E again, I will be taking up valuable resources. I try so hard to stay at home, I do. And if I do end up in A&E, what could I be bringing back to my Mum? And yet I am devastated. For me, for what I can’t have right now.

So, this is my current affair. Not just mine, there are so many women out there who are putting treatment on hold because of this tiny life destroyer. I know we are not important in the grand scheme of things right now but it’s still hard.

I want people to follow the advice but I also want to move house next week! I want people to stop bulk buying things they don’t need to bulk buy, or I could potentially have no loo paper in my house! I want human beings to switch their brains on. I want a child. I really want a child.

I know this will end, I know my treatment will happen. I have had more mood swings in the last couple of days that I usually have during a whole week of PMT! I am trying to distract myself with online learning and shopping lists for my house, and many many kitten cuddles.

Stay safe everyone. Look after yourselves. If you are self isolating ask for help. We will beat this! And I will have my baby!!!

Uncertainty!

Sorry it’s been a couple of weeks since I’ve written. Things have been a little up in the air! Since I last wrote I went to the clinic and signed all the legal paperwork that is needed to ensure that I am the sole responsible parent for my future child as well as information release forms and agreements for sperm storage. It was a lot of forms and signing but it is done! So that is it, all the formal stuff out the way! Things are really moving forward… except I have been told by the nurse that they want me to re-do my progesterone blood test and my thyroid function before moving forward. I knew about the thyroid but not about the progesterone.

This is where is gets tricky. I do not have a regular cycle, and I am definitely not your 28 day cycle kind of person. So a 21 day progesterone test does not apply to me. So instead I need to have mine 7 days after I ovulate which means I need to track my ovulation. Ok, so in theory that is fine, except you have to book a blood test at my GP about a month in advance. Fortunately my clinic will do the blood test, it just means more money… worth it though!

So I went home from the appointment, ready to track my cycle and get the blood test asap. And then… hospital again! Yep, another trip to A&E in excruciating pain. This time I got an urgent appointment for the next morning. Scan done and nothing found. I was told I needed to go back to my GP to be referred to another department (not quite sure why my GP has to do it!).

My decision now is that now that I have a house to move to (oh yes, I have a house!) and as much as I want to move forward, my sensible option is to try and find out what is going on before I do anything. I feel at the moment like I take one step forward and two steps back.

Of course this probably all seems pretty trivial considering what is going on in the world right now. But everything is relative. And in my world this is still such a major thing. My brain swings from worrying about Covid-19 to worrying about how old I will be when I have my baby… or if it even happens. I hear other people talking about the issues raised with having children and all the uncertainty around working and how lucky I am because I don’t have that problem. I WANT THAT PROBLEM! I want to be coming home, thinking about whether I need to take my child to work, or if my child’s nursery/school will be open for me because I’m a key worker. I do not see myself as lucky. My heart breaks more every day that my health issues and this world health crisis goes on.

My clinic has emailed to say they will still be going ahead as normal but please don’t come in if you are at risk or showing symptoms. Right now I am technically neither but I have other issues in the way.

There is so much uncertainty for everyone right now. I work in a school and at the moment I am still going in. But for how long, I do not know. No one does. Will I need to go in everyday or will I need to work from home? Will my move go ahead in 2 weeks or will something happen to change that? Because really, should I be staying with my Mum who immunocompromised? How long will this health scare go on for? When will people stop panic buying? Surely you have everything you need by now!

What I do know is that there will be an end to this Covid-19 crisis and life will eventually go back to normal… but what is normal for me now? And will it be normal as a mummy or normal as a wannabemummy?

Green Light.. Maybe!

Wow, what a week! So last week I made the tough decision to postpone my IUI for a while. Living arrangements are needing to be changed and I do not want to start my new life on unsure footing. Of course, having made that decision I get the letter from the clinic saying they would love to help me with my treatment and let’s get going!

Then to cap it all off, this weekend I ended up in hospital! I had an unknown abdominal pain. It was just like years ago when I had Gall Stones, only, I no longer have a gall bladder! Nothing was discovered at the hospital so I am putting it down to stress!

I thought I had found my dream home for me, my kittens and a plus one… only they have let it out. This after my Mum phoned them and said how much I wanted it and could she put the deposit down as I was stuck in hospital. They said no then text today an hour before my rescheduled viewing to say it had gone. Stress levels increasing! So, on an afternoon when I should be relaxing and recovering from my little hospital trip I am ringing around estate agents desperately trying to find somewhere. Out of 20 phone calls I have 3 properties that will allow pets that haven’t already gone. Viewings booked and fingers firmly crossed.

I have decided to go to the clinic on Friday to sign all the consent forms. Let’s just hope one of these houses is the one!

Oh and Slimming World Update: 1 Stone award achieved, total weight loss 1 stone and half a pound!

Birthday party

I have just come back from my brother’s birthday party. I was partly looking forward to it but also dreading it, as I always do when catching up with everyone. Because of our ages pretty much everyone there is settled with kids and I usually come away feeling depressed. I love talking to people about their kids but there is always that emptiness.


Tonight I had a feeling of hope.

Tonight I was able to talk to an expectant mum and not feel overwhelming jealousy.

Tonight, although I couldn’t say it to everyone, I didn’t feel like an outsider! Okay, I’m not married and the man who I will hopefully be having a baby with is not walking into the room with me, but there is now a chance that this time next year I could be the one with the baby bump.

I keep telling myself it might not happen but it’s that feeling again, the one I’m not used to.

Hope.

Tonight it overwhelmed me in a way I wasn’t expecting.

I have had a tough week. I have been an emotional wreck. My mood has been swinging like one of those Newton’s cradles. I have felt quite frankly, like shit. I nearly didn’t go tonight. I had almost talked myself out of it. But both my brothers are so important to me and I couldn’t miss such an important occasion. And I am so glad I went!

Happy birthday big brother, thank you for giving me an amazing evening, just by having a birthday!

Waiting!

I am happy to say I received the report from the counsellor on Saturday! Nice and quick turn around so I was very happy. I was also really happy with her comments. It’s always quite surreal reading someone’s opinion on you but I felt like she had really understood me and my reasons for wanting to do this and do it now. So I wrote her a letter back saying I am happy for her to put this forward to the team. And now the wait.

I feel like the waiting in this is always going to be the hardest thing. First I had to wait to get the blood tests done because I couldn’t have my first appointment without them. Now I have to wait for a group of people to decide whether they want to help me achieve my dream. If they decide to help me I then have to wait for the right point in my cycle to go ahead with the procedure and then… well then we have what is known as the 2 week wait! I suppose it could be worse, it could be longer, but I bet those must be the longest 2 weeks of your life. If you get a negative result and it hasn’t worked you then need to wait to go through it all again. BUT if you have a positive result, you need to wait until around 9 weeks before you can have your first midwife appointment, another 3 weeks for your first scan and when you finally tell everyone your good news. After that it’s another 4 weeks before your next midwife appointment when you might hear the heartbeat!

So, like I said, it’s a whole lot of waiting! But for something worth waiting for! As I said before, I am an impatient person! I can’t help it! If I’m honest, I don’t know where I got it from, maybe it’s being the baby of three siblings! I always wanted to grow up faster to catch up with my brothers! When I got my kittens I found the few weeks I had to wait to bring them home almost intolerable! I know waiting is a good thing but some waits are harder than others! And when you’ve been waiting nearly half your life for something even a few months seems too long!

There is also that weird feeling of not being able to plan. This might sound strange and if I was going down the traditional route I wonder if it would be the same. But not knowing if or when it might happen, do you book a holiday? Do you make plans to go to that concert next year? Do I hand in my teacher training application now?

I did by the way, I made the decision that if I got the place and then became “with child” I will defer for a year. I have to keep making plans or I can pretty much guarantee it won’t happen and I will not move forward in any way!

I will continue to wait, and I will continue to include you in my waiting!

Of course the other wait I have is to lose weight! It is happening, and apparently I am doing better than expected! I have lost 9.5lbs in 2 weeks, I have achieved my half stone award at Slimming World and I need to lose 4.5lbs this week to get my 1 stone award. But I want it gone now! I want to be at a normal BMI! This of course is down to me and I feel writing my weight loss on here will motivate me to keep going!

I am now off to get some sleep, I have 2 post-surgery kittens so fingers crossed for a good night sleep… I need to make the most of them whilst I still can!!!

Shocked

I am going somewhat off topic tonight. But I am still reeling over the news that Caroline Flack has taken her own life. It is so strange when someone in the public eye dies. You have never met them and even though you don’t know them, you feel like you do.

I have always admired Caroline Flack, she was a bright and bubbly personality and it may sound cheesy but she made me smile! But it just shows, you have no idea what is going on behind the smile.

I know this because I have been there. And it still scares me to think I was not far off being in the same position as Caroline. I truly believe the difference for me was I was surrounded by support and I did not have to read or hear negative and slaying comments about me or my personal life.

People have said that if you choose a life where people watch you every day you just have to accept this as part of it. But that is not true. There are those that sit behind their screens and write hideous things about people they know nothing about. And it’s easy because they don’t have to look them in the eye. But words hurt, they can cut through you like a blade.

I had one complaint made about me as a midwife, it was from a couple who had a tough time and their baby had complications. I know I did nothing wrong but they needed a scape goat. I am sympathetic to this. But they said I was uncaring. It was like I had been kicked in the stomach and punched in the face. I can honestly say that no matter what was going on in my head my women and their babies and families ALWAYS came first. The night after I was told about this I went home and cried. Solidly for hours. I didn’t realise it at the time but my mental health had already started to decline and this tipped me over the edge. I would drive around trying to work out in my head how hard I needed to hit a tree to hurt myself but not kill myself. And it was the day I stopped worrying how hard and just wondered which tree would be best I knew I needed help.

I am so relieved to say that I am way out the other side. I am happy. I want to get out of bed in the morning, shower and brush my teeth. I have a purpose and a drive. But I only had one comment. It took one to tip me over the edge and if it just took one for me I cannot imagine what Caroline was going through.

People need to stop using social media as a way to slate people and use it for good. Children get bullied at school but it doesn’t stop when they come home. Social media can be great but it can ruin lives. I don’t know how to police it, I’d be a millionaire if I did. But people need to know their is a consequence to their actions. I would like to think those that trolled Caroline Flack are feeling like shit tonight but the sad truth is they probably don’t think it has anything to do with them. It does.

I hope that Caroline can rest in peace now. I hope her family can find some way to get through this.

Please people, think before you act. You never know what someone is going through and sometimes you might find out too late.

Appointment 2

Wow! Talk about a week of mixed emotions! It’s been a pretty tough week at work, probably the combination of last week before half term and some pretty emotional work with the children! It’s a bizarre thing, working in a school. I know how lucky I am to have the holidays but I will be honest and say out of the jobs I have had, this is the most exhausted I have been.. and I have worked 14 hour shifts, nights shifts, and 9 hours a day 7 days a week for months on end!

Tuesday was my first weigh-in after joining Slimming World and I was over the moon to hear I had lost 4.5 lbs! This never happened the last time I joined so I must be doing something right!

Wednesday was my second appointment at the clinic. This time I was seeing the counsellor. I was pretty chilled about this appointment, until I got there. The first this I was told was that once the session was finished she would write a report and it would go to the multi-disciplinary team who when decide if I could move forward. I must have missed this somewhere along the line because I thought at this point it was a sure thing! I could feel anxiety rising in me but just told myself to see how it went.

By the end I felt so much better! We talked about how I would cope with being a single mum, finances, child care and how it would affect my job. But the two main important things seemed to be my support network and what and when I tell the child. Support network, I have an awesome family! Not just my immediate family but my extended family. It’s one of the reasons I feel a bit bad about not telling them about this yet. But I am still getting my head around it so feel I should sort that out before I tell everyone. I also have an amazing group of friends. A few years ago I had some mental health issues and it was the amazing people around me who got me through. I know that they will be amazing again!

Telling my future child about all this? I had thought about it, I had read other people’s views on this but has no idea when I should do it! This is where the counsellor was invaluable! She showed me a fab book, and advised me that 3 years old is the best time to tell a child about their family. Before they have the memory of finding out, so that the shock doesn’t stay with them, it is just something they have always known. This makes so much sense to me now and I am so glad we talked about it!

So, now I wait! My counsellor will send me her report which I get to read and amend if necessary, I send it back, then I wait for the team to make a decision on my future! I am an impatient person, I do not wait well! Task for the half term holiday…. find distractions!

Late Night Thoughts

I seem to have a lot going on in my head tonight. It’s safe to say that the majority of my time is spent thinking, talking and dreaming about IUI and what will happen. Even down to looking at my 2 gorgeous kittens and thinking, “one day you will have to take a back seat”.

One of the things I am thinking about is my appointment yesterday. It went really well, I have a healthy uterus, it looks like I have a good number of follicles, my bloods were good (I had convinced myself they weren’t) and my superstar consultant was really positive.

But I am a pessimist. I hate to admit it because I want to believe I am an optimist but unfortunately to me the glass is half empty. I keep thinking something is going to go wrong. My AMH test will surely show I actually have a crap egg reserve, or my fallopian tubes are blocked and we don’t know because you can’t see that on a scan.

I have absolutely NO reason to think these things… but I do.

One thing I do know is I am meant to be a Mum. I think I’ve said this before. It’s in my DNA. The women in my family have shown me what good mothers are… not just in my DNA but I have other amazing mother figures in my life, my stepmum for example. So I know I have got this… but what if I don’t! What if I have built myself up to being a good mum and then I fail?

When I decided to do this I knew I would go on an emotional rollercoaster but I never realised the self-analysis I would go through. I spend my days looking after other people’s children and I am damn good at my job. But they are not mine, I am a carer for 6 hours of their day. I cannot wait for someone to depend on me 24/7 but will I be good enough?

I assume women go through this when they conceive in the “normal” way but you are under so much more scrutiny when you make a conscious decision to be a single mum. People question you at every turn. And I guess, rightly so. Except, this is not a decision we single women have taken lightly or jumped to. We have thought about it, ignored it, cried over it so to be questioned over and over again is draining. We love people for caring but what we want is support and love. At the same time we want people to talk to us and not each other. I say we, I probably shouldn’t talk for others but I have heard this from some so am generalising.

What I really want right now is a crystal ball. I want to know what will happen. But then that would take away the excitement. My thoughts are so contradictory. And again I cannot sleep from thinking about it! But I will try! Goodnight all!

Appointment 1

So it has started! My first appointment took place this morning. I am not going to lie, I was shaking! But it was good, in fact it made me feel great. My scan showed a lovely healthy uterus, my ovaries are good and I have enough follicles. My blood tests were all good, just a borderline thyroid result (normal for everyone else but a little high for someone trying to conceive) so repeat this in March. I have had an AMH (anti-mullerian hormone) blood test just to double check my ovarian reserve.

Next step is my counselling session, which is next week. Not really sure what to expect but I am excited to get going now.

I thought I had chosen a donor this week but it turns out I wasn’t the only one and he is out of stock! Fingers crossed he has plans to get to the bank sooner rather than later!!!

Anyway, I now have to get back to normal life.. turns out it’s quite hard to do!!!