Sick of Hospitals

After my last post I was very sick for approximately three weeks. I think I may have got food poisoning and because I have IBS the symptoms were prolonged for a few weeks. I was so fed up of going to the toilet, feeling nauseous and just tired all the time. I think some of the meds may have aggravated the symptoms too. Not pleasant. It got so bad that I could barely get out of bed and on one Thursday afternoon I went to my GP. After explaining my symptoms and the pain I was physically feeling in my abdomen she sent me to A&E.

This was a very long night. My sister came over to watch the kids as Sean was working late and I headed off. The waiting room didn’t look too bad on first appearance and I thought I would be seen to quickly, but I was so wrong. I got there around 5:30 and left a 2pm none the wiser as to why I was so sick. I sat in the waiting room for most of that time while 8 people were seen ahead of me. I was starting to wilt as I hadn’t eaten of drank anything all day and I was exhausted. I think they must have forgotten about my chart because after the eight person was called ahead of me and the ninth person was told he was next I had to say something.

Speaking to the lady at reception I was starting to get upset. Soon after I was called into triage again and this time the nurse took my bloods. An hour later a doctor called me. She brought me through the dark, overcrowded hallways to find a room she could talk to me in. She asked me to describe my pains and my symptoms and she looked at my chart. I had told the nurse in triage that I suffered from IBS in the past and when the doctor looked at my file and saw this her mind was made up. She didn’t want to know anything else and just dismissed all my concerns. No tests were ordered except for my bloods and she proceeded to discharge me. Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t want to stay but I didn’t make the decision to go over there lightly and I was going home in the same state I came in. She left to write me up a prescription and came back approximately an hour later to let me go and then had to send a nurse back to remove my cannula. Needless to say, I crawled into bed when I got home.

The previous day I had been to the early pregnancy unit in Portlaoise to have follicle tracking done. The first on in a long time and I was nervous. It was my left side that was active that month and there were two follicles, a 16mm and an 18mm. I was thrilled and scheduled to come back on the Friday for a repeat scan.

On Friday I was wrecked after being in the hospital all night. I got up and went into work as we were so busy I couldn’t afford to be out sick. I arranged for the boys to be picked up from School and I went straight to the hospital after work. While waiting I was excited to see how much the follicles had grown and today’s scan would give me an indication of when I need to give myself the HCG injection. I didn’t have to wait too long, and my Gynaecologist appeared to do the scan. We went into the room and had a quick chat about the last scan and the last few months.

I was lying on the bed with my legs open in a vulnerable position, watching the monitor with bated hope that I was going to get good news. This time it was going to be different. To my disappointment there was no change. The follicles had not grown in size and looked hazy on the monitor. I hadn’t ovulated. I had no mucus this month which was a clear indicator that my hormone levels were not right starting this cycle, I should have known by this indicator alone. I was heartbroken and as she continued to talk to me I felt myself disappearing into my thoughts. It was hard to concentrate. Then she asked what I wanted to do next and had I considered IVF. I couldn’t take it all in.

The lady who scanned me the last day came into the room and I just shuck my head at her. She gave me a sympathetic look and I tried to hold it together. I then thought of being so sick and could this have impacted it. They both said that it was likely, and the Doctor ordered a stool sample to be analysed for me. I left soon afterwards, trying not to engage in more serious conversations.

I didn’t get to take the HCG on my peak day or day 14 as there was no point. But three days later I started the cyclogest, femtab and the HCG trigger shots on days 3, 5 and 7 after peak. I made an appointment to get my bloods done a week later and was hoping that these results would be good.  I called on the Tuesday to get the results and I nearly fell out of the chair when the nurse gave them to me. My Oestrogen was 804 and my Progesterone was 199.5. I couldn’t believe it, my progesterone was the highest it’s ever been. I asked her to re-check the result of the progesterone as it was so high. I called the clinic in Dublin and they reduced my hormones at the beginning of the next cycle and said that it was a good month. I was glad the blood results reflected the change in the medication as it meant my body was finally reacting to them. It also meant I was starting the next cycle with good results and this would be beneficial to trying and retaining a pregnancy. December would be my month………

To be continued

Twin Territory

Since my last post I was back up to see my consultant in Neo Fertility and I am back on hormones and medication. The meeting in Neo Fertility went really well. I was so nervous and wasn’t sure how I would take to the new consultant as I found the last one very cold and not invested, she made me feel like I was just a number and I felt rushed at every appointment. For the cost of the appointment and the importance of the information being discussed I would at the very least expected to feel heard and receive some compassion.

I met with Dr. Boyle and he went through my charting, what happened over the summer and my recent HSG scan. I explained that I came off medication for the summer as I believed my tubes were blocked and there was no point. He was very kind and understanding and full of encouragement. He asked how I was coping with the process mentally and I thought this was a nice touch. He discussed timelines to stick to the plan and went through different methods I could use to decrease or break down my adhesions and scar tissue, which might be beneficial.

Then it was down to the serious business, the medication. After reviewing my charts, he said that I wasn’t reacting to the lower dose of medication. This was not surprising to me as I felt all along that my doses needed to be increased. I only had one good month after an increase from 10 letrozole to 14. Taking this into consideration my dose was increased to 21, which was 7 tablets on days 3, 4 and 5 of my cycle. This was putting me into twin territory, a small chance but a chance all the same.

He also increased my HCG/pregnol injection on day 14 from 10,000 units to 15,000 units. My doses on days 3, 5 and 7, after my peak day, were also increased from 2,500 units to 5,000 units per day. The letrozole is to encourage the growth of a large follicle, being on this high dose may produce two large follicles, hence the chance of twins. The HCG on day 14 is to help rupture the follicle and release the egg. On peak plus 3, 5 and 7 the same injection is used to increase progesterone levels, which need to be at a certain level for the fertilised egg to attach itself to the womb and to not miscarry.

I am also taking cyclogest from peak plus 3 for 10 days and oestrogen for the same days. Throughout each cycle I have to take metformin, folate, vitamin D and also thybon. The Thybon is new and he prescribed it to me as I felt with all the exercise and trying to eat healthy I wasn’t getting anywhere. He asked if I cold all the time and if I felt hard done by with my efforts and said that my metabolism was probably very low and this would help give it a kick start. I was very excited about this, it’s so frustrating putting all the effort in and feeling like you’re not getting anywhere.

I left feeling hopeful and excited about trying for a baby again. In the past I got so worked up and consumed with the mechanical and scientific side of things I forgot about all the fun that can be had in the meantime. I was inconsolable every month when my periods came, and it took me days to recover. This time, after speaking with Dr. Boyle, I am going to use the time until we get pregnant to enjoy the baby making process and to become closer with Sean. If we take the stress out of the situation it might help our bodies relax.

I filled my prescription in the days that followed. I started on the metformin, folate, vitamin D and thybon straight away and waited for my periods to come to take the letrozole. A week into taking the meds I felt great and thought my body adjusted well. The metformin upset my tummy in the past, so I was relieved it didn’t happen this time. However, my relief was short lived and after taking the hormones my tummy turned. I don’t know if it was the hormones or a bug, but I was sick with diarrhoea for days. My mood also changed but I can’t really describe how I felt. I wasn’t bouncing around, I wasn’t sad, I wasn’t grumpy, I was just mwah!!! Like the emoji.

In the coming days I have to go for follicle tracking and this should give me an indication of how the medication is preforming. I will know after this scan how many eggs are going to rupture and what sizes they are, if there are more than one.

I mentioned in my last post about not knowing how I felt about IVF and not knowing if it was something I was willing to consider. I don’t want this statement to be taken out of context or to seem harsh in anyway. It was merely meant that I have been through nearly three years of trying, both naturally and with the aid of hormones. I am lucky to already have two beautiful boys and I am sure that if I had no children when I started this process I would have jumped at the chance, but now, having been through the mental and emotional strain of this process, I would not be in the right frame of mind to make the leap to IVF. I suffered really badly with post-natal depression, which manifested into anxiety and OCD. Not being able to control things has been a huge issue for me. Making a commitment to IVF would be a huge step with no guarantee and it’s not a decision I could make lightly.

I understand the overwhelming urge to have children, and I understand the need your body as a woman feels to carry a child and to be a mother. It is not fair when you are faced with difficulties trying to conceive, when you know that you would love that child with every ounce of your being. Just know that you are an amazing person and through whatever means you decide to try, you are doing what’s right for you. I wish you every happiness and hope that you and I will both get what we desire in the end. Keep your head up and your heart filled with love……………………….

To be continued

 

Third Time’s the Charm

So just a quick update on our infertility journey. Yesterday we attended the hospital again for a repeat HSG scan. After waiting 2 hours to see our consultant we finally got called into the X-ray room. I got up on the table and had prepared myself for the worst……………………….

The past week has been really difficult and honestly, I didn’t realise how bad I was feeling until Sunday night. I had myself convinced that we were looking down the route of IVF if we ever waited to conceive again. And I wasn’t sure that I was ready to pursue this avenue now or at all. Sunday was so hard. I was on the verge of tears all day and I was snapping at Sean because he was in work all weekend and I needed him. But instead of saying that, I gave out because he wasn’t there to help we with the boys or the house work.  I am well capable of handling all of the housework and anything those little monkeys throw at me but this weekend was an exception.

I must have got 3 or 4 hours sleep Sunday night. I watched loads of TV and played loads of games on my phone until my body gave in. Monday morning was all picture and no sound apart from the occasional rush I put on everyone to get ready in time. The boys had their school pictures and had to wear their full uniform, which didn’t go down too well. Out the door we scurried, a kiss at the school gates and we were on our way.

We checked in and I asked the girl had they got the new catheters? Of course, she didn’t know as she was only on reception. There was a lovely gentleman there that worked in X-ray and he kept us informed during our wait and later helped the consultant during the procedure. Nearly every second person that walked by knew Sean, I think working in Supervalu and being so friendly he gets to know so many people and they all said hello as they went about the hospital. Two nurses also approached us as we were waiting so long to make sure we hadn’t been overlooked.

It was a long wait and I was exhausted, nearly falling asleep on Sean’s shoulder on more than one occasion. He turned to me at one stage and mentioned that I was in much better form the last day and asked was I ok. Nope, I was not. Since the 30th of June my head has been all over the place and not to mention my heart. I just needed to know, one way or the other. Are my tubes blocked or not? I needed to move on with my life and plan for the next stage. Living in Limbo is not good for anyone’s mental health. As my youngest would say, “Mammy, you and I were not born with patience”. Well to get through the last few months you would need patience of a saint.

Sean turned to me and whispered – “It’s showtime”. She’s arrived. My belly started to flutter and my heart began to race. The lovely gentleman called us in to get ready and I climbed up onto the bed. He raised the bed up high, while the doctor busied herself getting all the instruments ready again. “Knee’s Up” she instructed and she inserted the speculum. This first part is always so uncomfortable but this time was the worst. Maybe because I was so tense but it was so painful. The catheter was inserted and the screen was pulled over my tummy. I could see what was happening on the monitor beside me. The liquid was inserted and my womb began to fill, but no spillage.

She removed the tube and inserted another, using the speculum again. This time wasn’t as bad. The liquid was inserted again and the still no spillage. Both the consultant and the gentleman attending her looked eagerly at the monitor waiting for spillage. But nothing. She mentioned that my womb was filling nicely and she was going to give it one more go. She started to insert more liquid and then the cramps started. I gasped with the pain and she cheered “Yes!!!!”, in a none sadistic way. She apologised and told me to breathe through the pain. She said it was not so good for me but she was thrilled to get a reaction. Cramps meant spillage and low and behold a tiny vein of die appeared on both sides and there was large spillage into my abdomen. I was elated and in shock. Trying to breathe through the pain as she said and also looking at the screen to be sure. The consultant told me that she had to put a lot of pressure behind the liquid to get this result and that there was probably a kink in my tubes, but this was amazing news, hope had been restored. Sean kissed me on the forehead out of relief.

The consultant helped me to a sitting position and I went to the bathroom to dress myself. While I was in there Sean asked if they could show him on the monitor what he was supposed to be looking at. Fallopian tubes are so small it’s hard to make out. The consultant said how brave I was and Sean told her of the relief I was feeling. When I came out of the bathroom she was rushing off but said that today’s result was great and to ring her secretary to make an appointment to see her in her private rooms.

The relief was unbelievable, my shoulders felt light again, the knots I have been carrying around all summer instantly disappeared and I felt like I was floating on clouds. My head was racing again but now it was full of hope. I know it’s not going to happen overnight and the problems that we had been experiencing the last few years have not gone away, but there is HOPE……………………..

To be continued

Wrong Hospital Equipment

On Wednesday, I had an appointment with my Gynaecologist in the hospital for a repeat HSG scan. If you have read my earlier blogs you will know that I had this test in November. Thankfully back then, my tubes were patent, which means no blockages, so I had something to work towards. However, something has happened in the meantime to block them, as during my laparoscopy there was no spillage of die into my abdomen. My doctor later told me where she would normally use 10ml of die, but she used 50ml on me and no luck.

I have been living for Wednesday’s appointment all summer. I tried to relax and take my mind off things and just enjoy the summer, which was harder than it sounds. I haven’t slept a night since my procedure on the 30th of June. I have noticed my anxiety going through the roof and my moods along with it. I have tried to keep on top of it but somethings trigger anxiety and there is no quick solution of reversing it. I have spent the summer convincing myself that two children is plenty. Going through all the negatives of having another baby and really trying to convince my head to be practical. But the heart wants, what the heart wants.

Sean and I made our way to the hospital Wednesday morning, trying to laugh and joke in the car. Either way I was going to find out for sure one way or the other, so I thought! We checked in at the X-ray Department and waited for my doctor to come down to me. About 40 minutes later I was brought into the changing room and told to put the gown on, that my doctor was on her way down. I got up onto the bed and waited nervously. She bustled into the room from ICU up to 90 and she started to prepare for the procedure. I knew what to expect. It wasn’t going to be pleasant.

It took her a few minutes to remember who I was and then she was in full patient mode and trying to explain what was to come and that she would need to have a think about what to do next depending on the results. I just wanted to get it over with. Up my legs went and she inserted the catheter into my womb. The die was then injected into the catheter and the cramping came and went. I could see the screen and my womb filled with die. She seemed to be getting frustrated and said that she was going to have to try the whole thing again.

There was no spillage from the first attempt and I can remember from the last scan clearly seeing the die spilling out from my womb into my tubes and into my abdomen. She blamed the catheter and asked the girl attending to see if there were any other ones that she could use. They had recently changed their equipment and these were not up to her standard. The process started again and the die was injected into the catheter for a second time.

Again, no spillage. I feared this outcome but it wasn’t the end. She asked me to come back again next cycle for the same procedure, giving them time to get the right equipment. She said that she thought there may have been some small spillage from the left side but she couldn’t be sure. Sean took this optimistically and firmly believes that there is a chance it’s just the equipment. Me, not so much. I understand that she was not happy with the catheter but I saw the die so in my womb, I felt it come out of me afterwards. So why didn’t it spill. The worst part of it is the torture of another month of waiting. Another month of anxiety, another month of tears and no sleep.

I want to believe that the outcome will be positive, I want to believe that I will hold my baby someday. I pray and believe that everything happens for a reason. I know that God has a plan for all of us and we just don’t know what the plans are yet but it’s just hard day to day to stay positive and put my trust in the higher powers.

A very good friend sent me this to me a few weeks ago and I am going to try concentrate on accomplishing this over the next few weeks and forever. Family is the most important thing and life is too short. So hopefully with the love and support from my family and from my faith I will find a way to manage my anxiety and pain and just enjoy what I have and the life that Sean and I have built. I know it sounds cliché but in these times of crisis and pain I have really seen our marriage go from strength to strength and I can truly say that I am with the love of my life and who I am meant to be with for the rest of my days……………………………..

index

A gentle reminder from Pope Francis to slow down and just embrace your life.

This life will go by fast.

Don’t fight with people, don’t criticize your body so much, don’t complain so much.

Don’t lose sleep over your bills. Look for the person that makes you happy. If you make a mistake, let it go and keep seeking your happiness.

Never stop being a good parent. Don’t worry so much about buying luxuries and comforts for your home, and don’t kill yourself trying to leave an inheritance for your family. Those benefits should be earned by each person, so don’t dedicate yourself to accumulating money.

Enjoy, travel, enjoy your journeys, see new places, give yourself the pleasures you deserve. Allow dogs to get closer. Don’t put away the fine glassware. Utilize the new dinnerware; don’t save your favourite perfume, use it to go out with yourself; wear out your favourite sport shoes; repeat your favourite clothes.

So, what? That’s not bad. Why not now? Why not pray now instead of waiting until before you sleep? Why not call now? Why not forgive now? We wait so long for Christmas; for Friday; for Reunions; for another year; for when I have money; for love to come; when everything is perfect…look…

Everything perfect doesn’t exist. Human beings can’t accomplish this because it simply was not intended to be completed here. Here is an opportunity to learn.

So, take this challenge that is life and do it now…love more, forgive more, embrace more, love more intensely and leave the rest in God’s hands. Amen.

To be continued

Just the Four of Us

Today, yesterday and the last few weeks have been a struggle. But today more so than anything. No particular reason, I am sure it’s just a build-up of everything. Isn’t it awful when life knocks you down and makes you feel like giving up.

As you have read over the last few months I have been struggling with fertility. I have mentioned the big dark cloud that looms as things keep getting progressively worse with disappointment after disappointment. Well this is different. I can’t even describe how I am feeling, I am fine one minute and then angry, upset, inconsolable, or just plain crazy the next. My need to control things has increased and my anxiety is through the roof.

This is not a call for sympathy or I am not trying to dwell on things to be a martyr, it is just a lot to digest and I feel like I am mourning. I am mourning the life that I thought I was going to have and the baby that I was going to love with all my heart.

I have received conflicting reports from Doctors, all helping to mess with my head even further. When we met with my Gynaecologist, who did the procedure, on the day my stitches were being removed, she gave us hope. It was more the delivery of the news than the words themselves as she delivered them with a smile and optimism. Sean came out of the meeting with a sigh of relief and said that wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be. To which my reaction was – “Were we in the same room?”.

She explained that during the hysteroscopy there would have been an element of fluid and there was no spillage from my tubes. The D and C went ok and she was happy enough with her findings and she even showed us pictures of my womb and tubes. From these pictures, she was able to show me the opening to my tubes which were in fact open and not in spasm. However, during the laparoscopy instead of using 10ml of fluid she used 50ml and there was no spill into my abdomen. She explained that during the procedure my tubes might go into spasm but that it was unlikely that this would happen for the length of time that she was doing her investigations. She then explained that my left tube had attached itself to the wall of my bowel with adhesions and that surgery to remove it and free it up may not be successful.

There was so much to take in and she was very understanding and kind, but also said that with the art of making babies anything goes, that although things don’t look or sound great that miracles happen and people have proved her wrong in the past. I am not feeling miracles at the moment. I don’t want to give myself anymore false hope. The last few months have been all about the science and through no fault of my own miracles have not helped. I have done everything I could. I have pumped my body with so many hormones and drugs. I have put my life on hold and I have been borderline insane at times. But no miracles.

I want to believe that everything will be ok and that things are the way they are meant to be, but am I really meant to be this unhappy and this broken. Am I really meant to feel guilty that it’s all my fault that I can’t give Sean another child or my children another sibling. I understand that things happen in life to make you stronger and that you will see down the road why it happened or the greater good that has come from this experience. But this is going on for nearly three years, I would rather just know why I feel like I am being tortured.

My consultant in the fertility clinic in Dublin told me that my tubes are more than likely fine and that they were just in spasm. It was very blasé on the phone and there was no consideration of my feelings. He hadn’t seen the scans, he hadn’t done the procedure, he was just giving me the numbers. He told me he would see me for my next appointment (which was meant to be this week and we would talk about it then). He said to arrange to get another HSG scan done, which I had. This would hopefully show that my tubes were ok and if not, I would have to consider more surgery or IVF. I postponed my appointment with him. What was the point in paying out 200.00 when I had no more information for him. I need to wait to have the next HSG scan done and also be back on treatment to have some blood results to review.

I am afraid to even try for a baby at the moment because I am at risk of ectopic pregnancy and losing my tubes altogether. If I was to fall pregnant I would need an early scan to rule it out. Imagine finding out your pregnant and feeling the excitement that it has finally happened and then living with the worry for a few weeks that it may be ectopic and not viable.

I brought Nathan, my oldest boy to an appointment last night with a craniosacral therapist last night, which is another day’s work. But this woman was able to read me, and not in a physic sort of way. She asked me if I was ok, she said that she could feel that I was holding a lot of upset on my chest. I told her that I was grand and she said that “Mammy’s always are, for the sake of their kids”. Am I that transparent, besides that fact that I am spilling my guts to all of you. But can I not even put on a fake smile and pretend to be ok in public anymore?

Another way of looking at it is why should I have to pretend to be ok? Why can’t I just be a mess all the time? I haven’t slept since the 30th of June, I am exhausted, both mentally and physically, I am trying to put on a brave face for my kids all the time and I am just tired. On the rare occasion that they find me upset I just tell them that I have banged my toe or have a pain in my belly. They have asked a few times in the last few weeks when Holy God is going to give us a baby and I have had to try hold my SHIT together and tell them that there will be no baby for a while and that we are happy, just the four of us……………………………..

To be continued

The Lights Went Out

It’s with a broken heart that I write this post. And while you are reading it, I am sitting with the Doctor waiting for her to say out loud what I already know in my gut to my true.

Friday morning, I went to hospital early, nervous but full of hope. We checked in and made our way to the Day Ward. After meeting my nurse and being shown to my bed I waited patiently to be called for my turn to go to theatre. The nurse went through questions with me, took my weight and then the Doctor came to insert the cannula and take some bloods. I was told that a section had gone in first and I would be next. This wasn’t the case and I was waiting around until 12 to be called.

The anesthetist came around to go through a few things and then I was asked to get into my gown. It was time to go. I had butterflies in my stomach and as Sean kissed me good bye I knew I needed to be strong and just get through the next few hours alone. I was wheeled down to theatre on the bed as I was on a drip to keep my fluids up. I was waiting in the corridor outside of theatre to be called in. My theatre nurse was the same one I had when I was having Jacob. It was familiar space but this time I wasn’t getting the baby I desired so much.

The doctor came out to me before surgery and said that she was going to do the laparoscopy and that if she needed to do any work while inside that I would have to stay overnight. It was time, I was wheeled in and helped from my bed to the operating table. Bright lights and the sterile smell and soon I was under after breathing in gas through the mask.

I woke up nearly three hours later in recovery with the theatre nurse calling my name. I was tired and didn’t want to wake up. There were nurses coming in and out and then my nurse from the day ward arrived. Then in walked my Doctor/Surgeon. I wasn’t fully coherent but I remember everything she said. She told me that she did not do any work during the laparoscopy. She told me I had a lot of adhesions and that my tubes were blocked, especially my left. She told me that she pumped me with blue dye and that it kept pouring out of me and not to be alarmed if there was blue appearing for the next few days. She said that she was checking for endometriosis and I didn’t have it. She said that I wasn’t to go back to work for a while and she gave me a prescription for pain relief. She also mentioned that she needed to check my scans from November as my tubed were not blocked then. She told me to come to see her on Thursday to get my stitches out and to go through the operation. Then she left and my nurse followed her. She was gone about ten or fifteen minutes and I spent that time yapping to the nurses. Coming out of the anaesthetic made me hyper and I couldn’t stop talking.

When my nurse returned, her and the theatre nurse wheeled me back to my room. We met Sean coming out of the theatre doors and he said he had been pacing for an hour and a half. Poor Sean he must have been beside himself with worry. When we got back to the room I asked Sean to dress me, the gown is horrible and sweaty and I was feeling disgusting after the surgery. Poor Sean saw some things that I am sure he wishes he could un-see but he was a trouper. He was an amazing help all day and looked after me the best he could. The nurse told him to go to the car and have a snooze to let me rest and to come back in an hour or so. I couldn’t sleep, I had the urge to pee and eventually called the nurse to help me to the bathroom. My nurse was gone to do another job so there was another lady with me. She was lovely and heavily pregnant with only 10 weeks left.

I was very unsteady on my feet and she propped me up on the way to the bathroom. I got myself onto the toilet and ten minutes later nothing was happening. I had to call out to reassure the nurse I was ok. I eventually squeezed out the tiniest drop and got back into bed. Sean came back soon after that and kept me company. I was so naive and just so delighted to finally know why I wasn’t getting pregnant. I thought that now we knew we could fix it and just unblock my tubes.

It was nearly time to go home and the nurse was in with me checking my wound. It was oozing a bit but nothing to be worried about. She took out my cannula and was talking to me about how attentive Sean had been all day and how we were an amazing couple. Then she started to get upset. The conversation moved on to whether I could remember what the Doctor had said to me earlier as she didn’t want me to get upset on Thursday if I was hearing it for the first time, that my tubes were blocked. She asked me if we had thought of any other options like IVF or adoption and I think she knew by my face that we hadn’t. None of this conversation registered with me as being strange until the next day and I just continued as my happy little self, glad to be finally getting out of hospital.

I got home and my sister had Jacob, I came in and put my feet up waiting for Jacob to get some cuddles. I face-timed Nathan to reassure him I was home and ok and had a quick chat with my sister when she called over, then It was off to bed. That night Jacob slept with me and although it was lovely to have him there, I was in a lot of pain. Sean had to work the next day so Jacob and I got up around 8:30 and I made him some brekkie. Soon afterwards alarm bells started going off.

I remembered that my tubes weren’t blocked in November and this was one of the first things to be checked in the fertility process. Then I thought it was strange that if there were adhesions there and she was already working on me why she hadn’t dissected them. Then the nurse came to mind and how she got upset and asked me had I thought of any other options. It was time to use Dr Google. It was confirmed, blocked tubes are nearly impossible to unblock if there are adhesions and scar tissue. I would never conceive naturally again. My whole world crumbled and my heart began to race. I lay on the couch barely able to move, screaming with the physical pain of heart break. How could this be happening. Months of torture all for nothing. I didn’t mind doing it as there was light at the end of the tunnel. Now the lights had gone out.

I text my fertility advisor to call me when she was free. I needed to hear it from a professional. The rest of the day was a blur. I told my Mam but she didn’t want to believe it and told me to wait until Thursday when I met my Doctor. I told Sean and my sister and each time my heart broke a little more. Saying it out loud made it real. My dreams were crushed. And I know a few of you might be saying – but you have two beautiful boys. Although I cherish them and love them with every ounce of me, when you long for a baby and then find out that your body has failed you, it’s heart breaking beyond belief. I feel like I am in mourning, I feel guilty as it’s my body that has failed and I am denying Sean anymore children, I feel so angry that this has happened and I am sure there will be no real explanation as to why. Why is the big question? Why me? ………..

To be continued

Welcome Distractions

It was the week leading up to the procedure and I was distracted with Birthday parties, football matches, training and other kids related stuff. The weekend started with Jacob graduating from Montessori on Thursday. It was an emotional day and both Sean and I were bursting with pride, our baby was finally finished creche and ready for big school. On Friday, after school Nathan attended a joint party for two of his friends and of course Jacob tagged along and then after that they had a match and I had dinner with a friend. The next morning was a breakfast birthday party at 10am, which they both attended and we were meant to go back that afternoon for the older brother’s party but poor Jacob was wrecked and fell asleep. He was all partied out.

I spent Saturday afternoon scrubbing the house trying to get on top of the house work for the following weekend as I knew I would be out of action. In between scrubbing and cooking I went outside to chat to one of the neighbour’s. It was an overcast day with a lovely breeze but still warm. I didn’t see the sun pop out at all that day but Mr Sun definitely saw me. I got the worst burn of my life all over my chest and down my arms as far as the inside of my elbows. And course I had a shiny Rudolf nose. I didn’t notice it till that evening until it started to get sore and turn purple. I am usually so careful wearing factor 50 to avoid these situations. I was so annoyed with myself but at the same time confused as it wasn’t overly sunny.

Saturday night in all my shinny sun burnt glory I had a ladies’ night organized out the back. We put up a gazebo and we all had our blankets to snuggle as the night went on. It was a well needed escape from the stress that I was facing with the impending operation. We laughed until the early hours of the morning and I enjoyed a jug on Pimm’s. Of course, I over stocked for the night, preparing freshly cut orange, lemon and lime slices, sliced strawberries and some mint to spice up the drinks. There were jars of sweets, pringles, doritos and pretzels a plenty. I thoroughly enjoyed the release and the company and of course paid for it the next morning.

Sunday was a quiet day by all accounts, we took turns getting some sleep and about 4pm I got the bright idea to go to Portlaoise. I wanted to get some leggings and a loose top for the hospital as it was a day procedure and a jammies wasn’t necessary. Much to everyone’s dismay we all headed to Portlaoise. It was a quick visit, in and out of Shaws sorted the clothes and I ran into Boots with ten minutes to spare to get some Aloe Vera for my burns. Boys got a cheeky McDonalds and everyone was happy going home. I packed my bag that night and everyone got into our bed at eight o’clock to watch some America’s Got Talent.

Like the weekend, the week was as busy. Monday Nathan got his school report and to treat him and celebrate I brought him to the cinema. We were like the CIA trying to get out of the house without telling Jacob. Nathan was dying to get his hair cut so we went there first. Blade 3, a comb over and two lines shaved in his head later we were on route to Portlaoise. Much to his disappointment I stopped in Shaws first. I wanted to see if I could get a soft wireless sports bra that I could wear under my clothes at night-time and specifically for the hospital. I wanted something that separates the to footballs attached to my chest but without any wires. Such a thing doesn’t exist and after trying on a few Granny bra’s we bolted.

A quick feed in SuperMacs and then off to the cinema to see “The Diary of a Whimpy kid – The Long Haul”. I booked the tickets online and luckily got them for half price with the June offer. We had a great time and it was nice to have Nathan to myself. Jacob is two years younger but still considers himself a baby at times. He monopolizes me and poor Nathan doesn’t get a look in. I think he does it to get a rise out of Nathan most of the time and then I have to explain that there is plenty of me to share. Nathan enjoyed himself and that’s what mattered. I was so proud of his good report.

Tuesday was one of the neighbour’s birthdays. When I got home from work they were already there and I happened to get an appointment with the nail technician to fix my nails. The top coat on a few of them had cracked and I was embarrassed about going to hospital with them that way. Sean was off early on Tuesday so it worked out well and he was able to pick them up from the party and I followed home.

Wednesday night was training in the rain, I had to wet boys jump into the car afterwards. Home for a bath and some super and then bed. Sean was working late both Wednesday and Thursday night so he could be off Friday so I was running around after the monkeys by myself. I left Thursday night free so I could get myself ready.

I took a long time to settle the boys to bed Thursday night. I had to explain to them that I may not be there when they woke the next morning as I was leaving early to go to the hospital. Their childminder was coming over to get them out of bed and ready. It was Nathan’s last day of school and he was going for a sleepover in a friend’s after school so I didn’t need to worry about him the next day.

However, that night he was very unsettled. He kept getting out of bed and I had so much to do. At first, I was getting annoyed with him and telling him to go back to bed. But then I realised he just needed some reassurance. I realised this when I was having a shower and a tiny person appeared and frightened the life out of me. I followed him back into his room when I was dressed and gave him loads of cuddles. I explained that I was going to hospital in the morning to get my tummy checked to make sure it was ok and that I would be home the same day. He was going to have his iPad with him in his friends and at any time all he had to do was Face Time Daddy to check on me. He seemed happy with that and turned out to go asleep. As I was walking out of the room he called me back and asked, as he always does, “When is Holy God going to give us a baby Mammy?” And I replied as I always do, “Soon baby, very soon”.

Or so I thought………………………………………

To be continued

Internal Combustion

To all my wonderful followers, sorry I have disappeared for a while. When you are exposing yourself, and sharing your inner thoughts and feelings it can be very draining. Don’t get me wrong I am really enjoying it and find it very therapeutic, but at the same time it’s very hard to be so vulnerable.

During my last post, I talked about waiting for my blood results. I received the phone call from the GP and they said that my progesterone was not tested, however my oestrogen levels were at 871. A huge jump from my highest ever reading. However, I was gutted that my progesterone had not come back, this was the tell all result that I needed and it wasn’t good enough. I called back to the doctor’s and happened to get the lady on the phone who took my bloods. She said that she definitely requested for progesterone and said that the results were in fact back. I asked her to get the GP to phone me back.

Shock to the system! My progesterone had reached 116. I couldn’t believe it. I was so thrilled. This had to be it. I called the clinic and they said that they were happy with the results and no change to treatment. I also spoke to my fertility advisor and told all my nearest and dearest. We were all so optimistic and praying that it had eventually worked. I was feeling sick, tired, and suffering terrible with indigestion. My breasts were really tender and I was delighted. All signs that I was pregnant.

My periods were late by not one, but two days. This was it. I was so excited. I even looked up my due date. I was due on my birthday. All the signs were pointing in the right direction and I was thrilled. Day three late and I got out of bed. I knew before I even went to the toilet, my dreams were crushed. My periods came and were heavier than ever. Probably due to my progesterone levels, meaning my lining was thicker. It was now the 1st of June and I had a choice to make.

I was devastated to say the least. I think what made it worse was that my results were where they needed to be. I was finally reacting to the medication and I was so optimistic that it had finally started to work. It was not a good day but as I said decisions had to be made. I called the clinic and told them. They said that because I was getting the procedure done at the end of June that I should stay off all medication for June and try avoiding fertile days. That’s it I was on holidays.

Officially I couldn’t try this month. If I did by some miracle conceive, it would be too early to tell when I was going for my procedure and I could potentially, accidentally abort the baby. I couldn’t take the chance so the chastity belt went on 😊. Nathan had his school tour the next day so it was easy to focus on his excitement. I also had to pack for our holidays as we were heading off early on Saturday morning. That evening I had a hair appointment. I hadn’t got my hair done in ages and fancied a change. Probably not the right day to go, being so hormonal. I sat down for my consultation and said I wanted to go back blonde and I wanted to cut it. I have been dying it brown for a year or two now and it doesn’t last very long. My own natural tones are so warm that cool tones won’t stick. Blonde it was.

I sat in the chair with all the packets in my hair thinking what have I done, am I brave enough for this huge change. Will I like it? I am very attached to my hair and when it doesn’t work out how I envisage it I get very upset. I didn’t need any more upset today, why did I do this to myself. Suck it up, Dawn. It will be grand, I kept telling myself. It was the hormones. I was like a crazy lady in my head, talking to myself 😊. I had planned on get waxed but my periods ruined that too so I decided to get my eyebrows and eyelashes tinted. The beauty therapist told me that she could help me fill out my brows if I give her a few months. This was music to my ears as I often look like I have no eyebrows, they are so light and so thin. With all this going on you can only imagine was I looked like. The tint was put in and the packets removed. A treatment was put in my hair and I was left to return to my seat. Once I sat down I got an awful fright. The state of me. My eyebrows were so bushy and my hair slicked off my face. I looked like a man. That’s it, there was internal combustion going on. I had exploded inside. Nobody approach me, nobody even look at me, I needed to pull myself together. Help! Crazy person trying to escape.

I thought they would never remove me from in front of the mirror, oh good god, hide my reflection. The treatment was removed and my brows were waxed, the excess tint was removed and the two hairy-mollies across my forehead were reduced to slightly thicker darker brows than I had before. Phew, I could look in the mirror again without repulsing. My hair was still wet though and I wasn’t sure how I was going to react. Oh, the torture. Hurry up and cut it, I have no patience. The inner dialogue was on over drive tonight. Luckily my hair was ok, it was a shock to the system and was going to take some getting used to but I didn’t hate it. What made my day was when I went to pay, Mammy had gotten there before me. I was delighted, such a kind and generous gesture. It was now time for bed, woah! I was tired, time to switch off the brain.

Nathan loved his school tour on the Friday and as I waved him off that morning I decided that June was going to be all about the kids, about me and about Sean. We had our holidays to look forward to, a concert in Cork, I had planned dinner with an old friend and a cocktail night with my neighbours. Sometimes I think we spend so much time in our heads, overthinking and worrying that sometimes we feel like we are going to explode. I know that this is true for me and I need to remember that I have loads to look forward to and so much to be thankful for………………………………………….

To be continued

Back to Square One

As I sit here today, sick to my stomach, waiting on my blood results I look back over the last six weeks and I honestly don’t know what end of me is up. I feel like giving up and over the last week or two have decided on an end date. It’s not set in stone, but something has to give. Feeling sick, not sleeping, nauseous with worry, having anxiety attacks; it’s no way to live. It’s not fair on my heart or my head, or my poor stomach.

After Nathan got better in April I was coming up to ovulation. My mucus started to appear and I had a perfect score for April. I was optimistic and excited because last month’s results were so good, with progesterone of 50. I took all my meds and injection as I was supposed to and went for my bloods on peak plus 7. Two days later I got my results. My oestrogen was fine at 500+ but my progesterone had plummeted to 25. This means I didn’t ovulated and thinking about it more, I am on progesterone top ups every month so therefore my real result would have been much lower than this again. I felt like I was back at square one and that the last couple of months taking medication was for nothing.

What more can I do, how much more of me can I give. My whole life is consumed by infertility. I can’t get away from it. Sometimes I have outer body experiences and look down at my tired broken self and wonder is it worth it. Every month when I get bad news something dies inside of me. I can’t forget about it, I can’t just try and relax or enjoy myself as I am constantly tracking each day of my cycle. My stomach is always bloated, my moods swing all month with the hormones. I am trying to remain grounded and keep my crazy for Sean but that doesn’t always work. I just keep asking myself – WHY ME, WHY NOW??

I got the results in work on a Wednesday afternoon at the end of April and to say I was broken is an understatement. I was in the office on my own thank god, as I broke down. I thought the day would never be over. I had to pull myself together in work but once I got in the car, I broke down again. I cried all the way home, big elephant size tears, I was drowned, my sunglasses kept sliding off my face. I had to pick the kids up from the childminder and I looked terrible. I tried to disguise my upset but when she asked me if I had a headache I broke down again.

The rest of the day was a blur and I took to the bed, typical Irish person, but sometimes its essential. I had no choice, I couldn’t be social able or pleasant, I just needed to process. When I get upset or anxious I have to keep occupied, I can’t sit because my thoughts consume me. So, for the days to follow I started to paint, I painted all the new fences out the back, all three coats. I power hosed and planted up a storm. Then I moved onto the front of the house and started painting all my flower boxes and arranged to have the house painted. I had to put my energy into something other than me.

I got my periods the May Bank Holiday weekend, I knew they were coming so on the Saturday night I enjoyed a few glasses of wine in my parents’ house for my sisters going away party. She moved to London to start her career and I couldn’t be prouder of her. She had an early start on the Sunday morning so it was early home for everyone. When I got home, Sean was going next door to watch a fight, so I grabbed one of the girls and we had a few drinks and a chat while the fight was on.  It was well needed and I enjoyed relaxing for a few hours. The next day was a write off. Sean was very understanding, I wasn’t hungover, I was exhausted. My bones couldn’t hold me. I got up for breakfast and went back to bed. The boys had a birthday party so Sean brought them and left me alone for the day. I got up while they were gone and cleaned up and did some washing, but it was straight back to bed for me. It was a day of rest I needed and when I got up on Monday morning my periods came.

I made a conscious effort to eat healthily, when I could. I went to see a dietician for meal ideas but I honestly didn’t find it any good. The suggestions were a lot of food I didn’t like, I know you are meant to try new things but I am 32 and I know what tastes I enjoy. I felt the meeting was more geared to exercise and he told me that I needed to be active 7 days a week. I explained that I have two kids and that this is an un-realistic expectation, but I felt like he was patronising me telling me that if I really wanted to I would and that I need to set myself an exercise goal and that should motivate me. I wasn’t there for exercise advise and nor was I really interested. The whole idea was to get suggestion of foods and meals so that I could avoid mainly dairy and wheat as they have been found to be fertility blockers. I was really disappointed with the meeting and felt it was €80.00 wasted. To top it off the meeting was Friday morning and he didn’t send me my meal plans until late Sunday night. I’m sure all of you who have young children know the stress of bringing them to the supermarket. I try avoiding it at all costs, so my window of getting to the shops that week was gone.

I decided to buy loads of the Paleo Ireland meals and cut carbs out completely, bar rice. I don’t know whether it was stress or the change of diet but my stomach got very sick. I had chronic diarrhoea for days and the pains in my stomach got so bad that I thought it was appendicitis. At this stage, it was time for me to take sight of the situation and deal with what had happened – how I was feeling and to breath for 5 minutes. It’s when you stop for a minute your brain kicks back in and what your avoiding comes to the surface.

I called the Gynaecologists office and requested follicle tracking for this month. I needed to know what was happening in my body and which side was active this month. I strongly believe that it was my left side in April and that’s why I didn’t ovulate. I also called the hospital to find out when I was scheduled in for a DandC and Laparoscopy. I had to take action. Follicle tracking was organised for Day 9 of my cycle, unfortunately my right side could not be seen due to having a distended bowel. This was as a result of being so sick. There were 2 x 11mm follicles in my left ovary and on day 12 this increased to 4 x 11mm and 1 x 9mm. Between Days 9 and 12 was when I made the decision to put a date on it. Not an exact date but a month. I had to create a finish line for my sanity.

On Day 12 my right ovary could barely be made out, after what seemed like half an hour of searching, a shadowed sight appeared and I had a follicle of approximately 18mm. It could have been bigger but with the restricted view, we couldn’t be sure. I also had a positive LH surge on my ovulation kit that morning.

I phoned the clinic with the results and they suggested that I take the HCG injection the following night. Following their orders, I did just that. I arranged with my fertility advisor to administer the injection and I was back to hoping again. This month my progesterone intake was increased. As well as the pessary’s. I also had to take three extra injections of HCG at a lower dose on Peak +3, 5 and 7. I didn’t want to impose on my fertility advisor on all of these days so I asked my sister to give them to me. She seemed way to happy to inflict pain (only kidding), she was happy to help.

On Peak +3 we were both standing in my kitchen, I knew how to mix the liquid with the powder and get the needle ready for her, but there was no way in hell I was doing it to myself. I gave her the needle and I knew she was nervous too. I told her what she needed to do and when she approached me with the needle I reversed. Instinct 😊!!! Eventually we pulled ourselves together and the injection was administered. It was fine. It doesn’t hurt going in but it stings when the liquid is pushed in and I think it has something to do with applying pressure to the needle as you push it in. All over and Peak plus 5 and 7 to look forward to.

I was given a date at the end of June for my procedure, which means I will have another full cycle before then. My understanding with a DandC I will have to wait a month or two to try again as I will have no lining on my womb. With no lining, an embryo would not be able to implant and if it did, there is risk of miscarrying. So, in my head, July and August are out.  I made the decision to enjoy my summer with the boys and Sean. No point investing my energy into a lost cause – once I have given it two cycles we can try again. Giving us time to reflect on what’s important and all the emotional torture we have been through for the last two and a half years.

On a plus note the house is looking great. I have put so much energy into getting it looking good we are nearly there …………………………………

To be continued

Kids Come First

April was a new month; my positivity was oozing. I was so excited. Then reality hits and these things that consume you don’t seem so important anymore when your child gets sick. Easter was approaching and the kids were bursting with excitement. The thoughts of all those Easter eggs. On the Thursday before the Easter holidays I collected Nathan from my Mam’s as normal. He was complaining of a headache and was very sheepish when I picked him up. In the ten minutes, it took me to drive home he couldn’t open his eyes as the light was hurting him. I told him to go straight upstairs when we got home and go to bed.

Nathan is not a child to give in easily, there is always a row in the evenings when it is time for him to come in off the road and get ready for bed so for him to get out of the car that evening, go straight upstairs, close his shutters and get into bed was so unusual. He got into bed fully clothed with his shoes on and by the time I had unloaded the car and got into the house his temperature had soared and he was shaking in the bed. I helped take his shoes off and gave him some calpol to try get his temperature down. All the while he was crying cause the door was slightly ajar so I could see what I was doing. He fell asleep soon afterwards and I checked on him occasionally.

Sean came home at 6ish and I filled him in, I had an appointment in Portlaoise so I rushed off, keeping in contact with him over the phone to get updates on Nathan. My appointment lasted an hour or so and when I got back to the car I saw a missed called from Sean. Nathan had woken up and got sick and he was still very hot. I knew in my gut when I saw the call that Nathan had been sick, I could just feel it. I was home soon after that and checked on him. As Sean was filling me in we could hear someone up and Nathan had stumbled into the bathroom and was crying because of the light, trying to go to the toilet. He was very disorientated and wobbly on his feet. I helped him get back into bed and gave him some Neurofen to help with his temperature.

After I settled him I called the VHI 24-hour nurse-line. I went through all his symptoms and she stopped me and said, “Mammy you need to bring him straight to A&E”. I knew I would have to, but sometimes you need a professional’s opinion to let you know you’re not overreacting. Poor Nathan, I had to get him out of bed and into the car, trying to keep his eyes covered at all times. The drive to Portlaoise in the dark must have helped him or the medicine must have kicked in because when we got to Portlaoise he had cooled down and cheered up a bit. It’s always the way when you bring your kids to the doctors they make a liar out of you. I remember as a child myself being very sick and lying in Mammy’s bed. It was late at night and before the Midoc and out of hours Doctor’s services that are available these days. Mam called our doctor at the time as she must have been worried about me and he came out to the house. When he was gone, I can remember her giving out, messing, that all I did was smile when the doctor was there and made her feel like a liar. Ooops!

Anyway, back to Nathan, we had to check in downstairs and I swear the receptionist thought I was a hypochondriac. She let us in and we made our way upstairs. It was 10ish and there were two babies ahead of us. Nathan was wrecked so he fell asleep on the couch, thank god, he did as we were waiting hours before we even got seen. I couldn’t understand the wait with only two ahead. While we were waiting a couple with a seven-week-old baby came in. Baby was crying and Mam was too, on and off. Baby had been crying all day and they were worried about him. They had forgotten to bring any bottles with them, probably not knowing how long you can be held up as it was their first. A nurse went to get them a bottle to feed him to see if that would help with the crying. As she was gone to get it, Mam was getting very frustrated and started to cry again. I really felt for her, as I know how it feels not knowing what to do to help your baby and then the guilt of feeling that you are doing something wrong.

The nurse came with the bottle and baby started to drink it. However, the teeth were too big and he was gulping. I was sitting there and I could hear him filling with wind as he gulped and his poor tummy was rumbling. I was toying with the idea of saying something, will I, won’t I. Well I did. He was crying as he drank and it was obviously so uncomfortable for him. I had to interrupt and I just explained that he was filling with air and that he was going to be in a lot of pain, the teeth were too big. She agreed and decided to fly home to get him his own bottle. I think she needed the break.

While she was gone, I offered to take the baby from her husband, I really just wanted a cuddle for myself 😊 He was so cute and tiny. Poor pet had colic and was full of air. As I held him in my arms and rubbed his back he got up loads of wind. He eventually settled and drifted off to sleep. As he was quite I was talking to the dad and subtly tried to tell him to keep an eye on his wife as she seemed to be struggling. I knew her pain, I suffered through it, and getting on top of it early and getting support and help from your loved ones is so important. He seemed like a really nice and genuine guy and was all about his wife, which was lovely to see. But something he said shocked me. I mentioned Post Natal Depression and that I had suffered with it after my boys and he said that people are talking about it too much, its everywhere. He said that people are too quick to jump to it and that in his case his wife just needed her Mam and she would be ok. He didn’t have an attitude, he was just matter of fact and that’s what he thought. It threw me really, as the whole problem is women don’t talk about it as much as they should and they suffer in silence until the problem consumes them. It needs to be more acceptable to talk about and to ask for help.

Besides that, he was a lovely guy and was asking me all about Nathan and was very kind and polite. When his wife came back, the Doctor happened to call me at the same time. Nathan was still asleep so I told them to go ahead first, they were worried and distraught and Nathan’s symptoms had subsided to an extent. They happily took the offer and we were called soon afterwards.

I went through all of Nathan’s symptoms with the doctor and he felt it was important to get a sample of Nathan’s blood to test. Poor Nathan doesn’t do pain, bit like his Daddy. I had to restrain him while they inserted the cannula. He is so dramatic at the best of times and was sweating and screaming at the thoughts of the inserting the needle. He also needs to know exactly what is happening at all time and needs to watch so that didn’t help matters. I remember about a year ago he got a splinter in his finger. It was hurting him and he wanted it out. That day will be engrained into my memory forever. I sat him on the kitchen counter and although he wanted it out, he didn’t want me to look at it, let alone touch it. That was proving to be difficult because without super powers I wasn’t going to be able to get it out. He screamed and shouting and sweated for a solid hour. He jumped down off the counter so many times and pulled his hand out of mine every time I was close to getting it out. Two people called to the door that evening to what I am sure they thought was a torture house. I was shouting at him to stay still, he was shouting at me to take it out, don’t touch, stop, ouch it hurts and then Sean was there trying to calm us both down. It was like a comedy show on TV.

So, you can only imagine what he was like when they were trying to put the cannula in. They got it in eventually. He is allergic to the numbing cream so they used a spray, but even that wasn’t welcomed. They took a sample of his blood and told us to wait in the waiting room until the results came in. At this stage I was getting tired and so was he. I thought they were going to send us home as he wasn’t symptomatic anymore. The couple with the baby came out while we were waiting and they were given the all clear with baby. He had colic and that’s why he was screaming all day. I suggested they get him tested for intolerance to dairy and also look for some alternative remedies that might help him. As they left the doctor approached me and took me by surprise. He told me Nathan’s white blood cell count was alarmingly high and they were admitting him. They were worried about Meningitis and wanted to get him on very strong antibiotics asap.

I called Sean to tell him and asked that he get some clothes ready for us. Then I called Daddy to see if he would bring them over. I felt terrible as it was 3am before we got admitted so he had to get out of bed. Sean fell back to sleep, the big dope 😊 I had to ring him again to wake him up. Once Dad had gone I was able to lie down on the extra comfortable chair bed and close my eyes for a while. On the rounds the next morning the doctors explained that they were worried about meningitis and that they wanted to send bloods to Temple Street and run their own bloods cultures. They also wanted to do a lumbar puncture – I said no, not unless it was completely necessary and wanted to wait for the blood results first. Nathan was spiking a temperature for a few hours but it was soon controlled with medication and the nurses were in every few hours to administer antibiotics into his cannula.

Its gas, kids are so funny. Nathan was upset as he was missing his last day of school – seriously! It was more like missing out on the party in school. He had loads of visitors that day and was delighted with all the match attacks he got, spoilt rotten. The boredom was starting to set in and he was in isolation so couldn’t leave his room. Either could I as he didn’t want to let me out of his sight. When Dad came over late I ran out when he was going to get something to eat and left Nathan with Sean. When I got back he was asleep and I followed soon afterwards. The next morning when he woke up he was as bright as a button and that was heightened when Nanny arrived with the white and grey united kit. He was made up. Had to get dressed straight away. He was running around the room and dancing. After Nanny left for work we got some breakfast and he wolfed it down. All we needed now was the doctors to come around to discharge us, we had cabin fever.

The night before we got the all clear for meningitis. I had to chase them for the results as no one told us. With those results and the fact that Nathan hadn’t spiked a temperature since the day before and he was in flying form, I wanted to go home and keep an eye on him myself. He didn’t need round the clock medical attention anymore. The doctor came in and he was lovely. He got Nathan to do some jumps and tests and Nathan was loving the attention. He had young kids himself and was chatting football with Nathan as he was all kitted out. I asked for him to be discharged and eventually got around him. They wanted us to stay for the week, but I had Jacob to think of, my job and also Nathan’s sanity. He wasn’t feeling sick anymore, if he was I would be the first to stay. They let us home on the condition that we came back daily for IV antibiotics and therefore the cannula had to stay in. It was a compromise we could accept.

Nathan was delighted to get out and he strolled out on top of the world. He insisted on going straight to the barbers to get his hair cut. He’s gas. Dad met us there with Jacob and he was thrilled to see us both. It was a beautiful day and Nathan was glad to get home to his own house and see his friends outside. He sat on the bench first talking to them and he even snuck in some football.

The next few days we went back to the hospital each day for IV antibiotics. After a few days though his fingers were very cold and his arm too. He was uncomfortable and had pins and needles. I called the hospital and they said they would probably have to redo the cannula in the order hand when he came in the next day. That was not the case. They removed it completely and he was reassessed. The doctor had a team of student doctors with him and nurses and on review of Nathan’s file wanted to re-admit him. I refused, he was only covering himself I think and we negotiated to get oral antibiotics instead. We were free, Nathan was thrilled. He had to get repeat bloods the following week but besides that he could start enjoying his Easter holidays.

We never found out exactly what was wrong with him but was glad it didn’t manifest into something serious. With all this going on you can only imagine I completely forgot about myself. I didn’t get a chance to arrange follicle tracking and I sure wasn’t thinking about ovulation. Luckily I was only at the beginning of my cycle and didn’t miss any of the important days…………………………….

To be continued