Wednesday, August 31, 2005
We also talked to the woman in charge of paying for IVF. It appears that they will take the total cost and divide it by 24 months. This puts our payments and an amount Jb and I can afford WITHOUT taking out a student loan (figuring that it costs $10,000). We will also have to pay a "storage" fee for the embryos we need to keep frozen.
I must say that we are a place of total peace with IVF, however, I also have a sense of total trust that the Lord can change our direction and can also bless us with a natural pregnancy as well. I am also at peace with the fact that we aren't going to be able to conceive like everyone else. My friend Sam reminded me last night that our kid will only know how badly they weren't wanted -- so badly that we went to all this trouble.
We are getting excited for Jason & Kathleen coming in this weekend. We also just had homemade pizza at Dave & Lesley's. Jb was on the way to the grocery store when they invited us -- how wonderful to have a good friend like Lesley who cooks so well.
I will try to include more pictures this weekend when Jason & Kathleen are here. We can't wait to have company here in the Polar North!!
Tuesday, August 30, 2005
I have been dealing with an infection that I can't get rid of. So I called Mayo today. I was told that I could receive the antibiotic for this infection just from my call. So I called. The nurse checked my record, asked me a few questions, and then told me that I didn't meet the criteria. Huh? What criteria? She didn't tell me which criteria I didn't meet. She just said, "You don't meet the criteria."
Okay, so now I have to physically go see my family practitioner. This takes 2 hours out of my workday. But I need to do it so I do. And after my doctor sits down, he looks at my complaints and says, "I don't understand why they just didn't fill this over the phone!" Huh? I tell him that the nurse said I didn't fit the criteria. He leaves to go to talk to the nurse. He comes back. "Well, you are on Metformin." Yes, I am. "Well, she thought you were a diabetic." Aaaaaaahhhh!!! I want to scream.
Now I understand that in 99.9999% of cases, Metformin is prescribed for diabetes. I understand that I am a rare specimen! However, she never asked me if I was a diabetic. I would have told her I wasn't a diabetic. Aaaaaaaahhhh!!! He says in the future to make sure I tell people that I am using Metformin for non-diabetic reasons. Diabetics don't fit the criteria.
So he filled the prescription. A prescription that could have been filled over the phone if I wasn't a supposed diabetic. Yikes! Now this doesn't seem like it should be a big deal, and it is for that reason that I have realized that one of my pet-peeves is having my time wasted.
That started me thinking about pet-peeves. What other peeves do I have? Well, here they are in no particular order.
1. Having my time wasted: see above!
2. Hotel sheets not having fitted sheets OR fitted mattress pads: This is a recent development. It saves time and space, and only requires one type of sheets. But I often wonder, am I the only person who wiggles around when they sleep (excessively my husband would add)? I mean, in the morning, I wake up, and the mattress pad is on one side, the bottom sheet on the other, and I am laying on the plain mattress. YUCK!
3. Getting home before I find out that my food order was incorrect: This happened once with my double chocolate and double oreo cookie chocolate blast from Sonic that I used to get JUST once a month when we lived right behind Sonic in Kentucky. I got all the way home only to discover it was reeses peanut butter instead of oreo! The horror! Sarah and Josh were forced to share in this with me. It was very depressing.
4. Being put on hold when there isn't any music or anything else: (am I on hold or did I get cut off?)
5. People who drive in the LEFT hand (FAST hand) lane on the highway: Oh man, this one really "irks" me. After I finally get by them, I pull a "George" and as I drive by I give them a look!
6. People who lick their fingers while serving cake or ice cream or any other food for that matter. I usually have to pass altogether because it just grosses me out. (Okay, yes, as most of you know I am a 'slight' germ-a-phobe, but I am working to improve this everyday. Today I left the public bathroom without using papertowels to hold open the door.)
7. Poor Grammar: Now, not all poor grammar mind you but a few chief irritators which go back into my teaching days. These include saying "suit" when you are talking about a bedroom "suite", mixing up the your/you're words, mixing up the "there/their/they're" words, writing "cause" when you mean "because", and saying "we was" or "she were" or any combination of the sort. Also, anything resembling Kentucky ignorance is difficult for me to stomach including my all-time classic student who wrote "you's" and then told me this mean "used to." Oh my!
8. Minnesotans who claim every winter I've experienced has been mild: Forget the fact that Rochester received the most snow EVER in a 24 hour period this past year, I still have no idea what a real winter is. All winters since I have arrived (never mind when that was) have been so mild and no slow was as thick or white or cold as the one before the year I got here (never mind when that was.) I will also add to this anyone saying "out and about" -- PLEASE don't use that phrase. It reminds me where I live.
9. People who sign things from their pets, give presents to their pets, or expect me to remember their pets birthdays: Now, please don't be offended because I know there are some of you who are reading this who fit into this category. I still love you, and I am sure if you made a top 10 list, I would fit into it somewhere as well. But I think this dumb -- I really do, and it's now time that you just knew it.
Well, that's all I got today. I am watching Karuna every Tuesday night now! I am excited about this ... last year it was every Thursday but that need was eliminated so now I have my Tuesday nites back. JB is currently at our friend Lisa Lightly's house who is a professional massage therapist. Afterwards, the three of us (JB, Karuna, and I) are going upstairs for dinner at Sam's house to celebrate Ajit moving out!
Monday, August 29, 2005
JB is on his OBGYN rotation and today he spoke in detail with one of the doctors on staff there. Basically they determined the following things:
1. I probably do NOT have PCOS. I have no blood work to indicate I have PCOS, no hair growth, and no acne. My testosterone is low. My LH and FSH levels are normal. It wasn't wrong for my RE (reproductive endocrinologist) to treat me like I did have PCOS. It wouldn't have changed any of the treatments we did except for trying the Metformin.
2. In order to manage long-term PCOS, the only thing I will have to do is take some sort of medication every 3-4 months.
3. In order to conceive, we should do IVF (invitro fertilization).
4. The IVF clinic has reopened for those patients who currently have frozen embryos. This mean I should be called to come in with the next month or two.
5. Because it doesn't appear we have any other issues, our chances of conceiving via IVF are very good. The chance of conception is somewhere around 30-40%. This is equal to the chance of a normal woman on any given month. The chance of twins is somewhere around 30-40% as well. These would be fraternal twins (2 different eggs), however, the chance of eggs splitting with IVF is higher than average as well. I did meet a woman who had triplets after only having 2 embryos put into her.
With that being said, JB and I have complete peace. We plan to do IVF when the clinic reopens. The only thing that would change this is if God did a miracle (which we believe He can do at any moment!) or if one of my doctors proposed another medication that was worth the try. We are open to this possibility.
However, we are at complete peace with IVF. We are both at a good place and both prepared for this step. IVF means that, in short, I will be given medications to force me to produce eggs. From there, they will go in surgically and remove these eggs. They will then fertilize these eggs in a laboratory and put 2 of these back in me (while we get to watch!) They will freeze the rest. We do not know how many they will actually be able to retrieve or how many we will choose to fertilize. We will 100% commit to return for every single embryo that we freeze. This is of utmost importance to us.
A possible good result of all this is that if we have frozen embryos, this can be a good reason to make a request of the Air Force to stay in Rochester during residency instead of relocating to another Air Force Base for Residency. Jb spoke to someone "in the know" who indicated that this was a possibility. It doesn't mean they will allow us to stay, but it means, we can make the request. We would like to avoid an extra move if we can, and the ability to stay here with so many good friends instead of relocating to a new city where we know no one all over again.
Thanks everyone. I hope this explained things well. Your continued prayers are so appreciated, but I do want you to know that I am doing very well, and actually feel better than I have felt in quite some time.
Sunday, August 28, 2005
We have been on a sweet fast, but we decided to forego it for one day to experience the Fair in all it's glory. So we tried a lot of the legendary Fair food including FUDGE PUPPIES ON A STICK (thin Belgian waffles dipped in fudge, covered with whip cream and sprinkles). We also tried DEEP FRIED CANDYBARS ON A STICK. This is not something I am kidding about. They take a 3 musketeer bar (or other candy of your choice) and deep fry it. In my personal opinion, they totally ruined a good candybar. These were not horrible, but for 50 cents (instead of $3), you could buy a candybar out of a vending machine and it will taste better. I have never seen so many things deep fat fried (this includes, potatoes and eggs among other things) and so many things on a stick. You can even buy a t-shirt on a stick. Quite interesting!
I am enclosing two pictures. Unfortunately, we did not bring our digital camera and Tara's regular camera pictures won't be ready for awhile so I am enclosing a picture online that actually looks like how crowded this place was after lunchtime. We got there early. From 9-12, it was wonderful, but after lunch, the place became wall-to-wall people! Yikes!
The other picture I am enclosing is a picture of one of the animals we saw while we were there and really got a good laugh about. We saw every variety of horse, cow, sheep, rabbit, and pigeon you could imagine. We saw horses no bigger than Bronte' and horses whose backs were higher than John's head. We also got to see a bee exhibit which JB really enjoyed. I was terrifed for this man in the bee cage, but he didn't seem to be terrified at all as he picked this bees up for us to see!
The animals were wonderful but my allergies took a toll from all that hay. I had a full-on allergy attack! Sneezing, runny nose, inability to breathe without feeling like a feather was stuck up my nose. Not good.
We got home around 4:30 and Jb and I went and sat in the hot tub before I went to bed around 8:00. He watched Independence Day and I have no idea what time he came to bed -- maybe about 10:30.
It is now Sunday morning, and we are being very heathen-like by skipping church. I am just not feeling great and we would like to get a bunch of stuff done around the house. Jason & Kathleen are coming into town on Saturday! This will be tons of fun.
In other news, as I told most of you, my MRI was negative and did not show any pituitary tumor. So, will begin to look into some other possibilities. Your continued prayer is always appreciated.
Tuesday, August 23, 2005
- JB is on Obgyn surgery; so far this hasn't been too bad. Other people had told him it would mean extra long hours but he has only been on for the normal 8-5 days.
- My allergies are really wearing my out. I am sleeping a solid 9 hours a night but am just completely worn down. I am trying a different allergy medication and still can't quite get my energy level up to par. I actually resorted today to a Pepsi. I needed something to make it through the day. Lesley Jones said that her hubby Dave is struggling as well. Do I actually want winter to come?
- Speaking of Lesley Jones, she went with me to my MRI yesterday. It was a real blessing. JB couldn't go with me becaues of his rotation so Lesley, who is on her research rotation, volunteered to go with me. It was wonderful to have her with me and made me a lot less stressed. The MRI wasn't too bad, but I would prefer not to have to do it again.
- Found out this week that Ray & Gabbi and little Grace are coming up the first week of October! I can't wait! We also found out that Gabbi is having a boy. Very exciting. The news of them coming into town means a packed September and October with lots of company but we are excited. Jason & Kathleen are hoping to come for labor day, Kristi and baby Logan two weeks later, then Ray & Gabbi and then Mom and Dad Kit. the week after them.
- Work is going okay but I am ending up working 10 hour days lately. I am trying to work on my days being shorter but they have just ended up getting drawn out.
- We have decided to go to Chicago for Thanksgiving! Yay! Both Josh and Sarah and Jason and Kathleen are going to be with the Huismans this year and also my Uncle Ed and Tante Jan are home from Indonesia so it will be a fun time.
- Speaking of Ed and Janet, my cousin Eddie, their son and his wife Hannah had a son -- Gabriel Edward Kotynski.
Okay, that's all I got right now. I haven't gotten my results for my MRI but will post a new blog as soon as I get the results.
Saturday, August 20, 2005
Well, it is 9:56 on Saturday morning. I would take a picture of myself to show you what I am doing right now, but it might just terrify you! I look pretty rough.
I woke up at about 5:15 again this morning sneezing. I have been waking up early a lot lately and think it is due to my allergies and just having way too much on my mind. I got up, caught my dad in Florida awake (although it was 6:15 there so he didn't need as big of an excuse), and the two of us went for 1 for 2 in spades. I watched my friend Tara Arness' gorgeous slide show of her trip to Peru (let me know if you want to see the show and I can email you the link) and decided that I needed a shower. I took a shower and crawled back into bed about 7:30 just as JB was getting out of bed, and now, a little before 10, I have just woken up again. He left a note that he went to the Farmer's Market -- an outdoor produce market on Saturday mornings. I would have loved to go with him because we can walk there, and the weather is just beautiful here right now, and we always have a nice time supporting the local farmers, but oh well, I missed it for my crazy sleep schedules.
As most of you know already, I did get my blood results yesterday from my recent infertility saga. I won't get into all the details here right, but please be praying for me. Yesterday I felt different than I have on most days of this journey. I often feel sad or angry but yesterday I just felt very emotionally spent and tired of it all. I didn't cry when the doctor gave me the news and didn't really cry when I discussed things with JB when I got home, but my eyes did just keep filling up with tears all night, and then the wave would subside and I would never really cry. I so love all of our dear friends and family and how wonderful they have been for me. I keep telling myself of all the ways that this journey could be worse! How many things I could list (including having to live in Arkansas I believe) that would rank worse than going through infertility treatments, but today, to be told they really don't know what is wrong with me was very disheartening. Do I have PCOS? Not sure. Do I have a tumor on my pituitary? Not sure. Do I have some sort of exercise-induced issue? Not sure. However, whatever my issue is, my endocrinologist feels that it goes deeper than infertility and needs to be figured out to deal with my life-long health, not just my current desire to have a family.
So, alas, I guess I am getting into things right now. Yesterday evening, JB was such a wonderful husband. As he cleaned his new fishtank (which looks great) we talked about where we were at. He told me that he thought I was doing a good job which meant so much to me. He is very honest and will tell me when I need to get myself together, quit crying, move on etc., but yesterday when he asked how I was and I said I was frustrated he laughed and said, "I don't have a clue why," and then he hugged me and said, "Well, you have every reason to be frustrated." And then he said that he thought I was handling the day's events very well and was emotionally ready for the MRI on Monday to check my pituitary.
Speaking of my pituitary, I must digress for a moment. After the doctor told me I needed an MRI on my pituitary, he told me his assistant would call me back to set up a time to do the MRI. She called back within minutes and told me to come in from 9:30-11:30 on Monday and to fast and to not wear anything metal, and then she said, "And we will be doing an MRI of your head and brain." Now, and please don't laugh (because JB laughed very hard), for some reason, I was thinking that my pituitary was in my stomach. I guess because of all this poking and probing of my ovaries and uterus and what-not. I am so relieved that milliseconds before I blurted out, "But I thought the MRI was for my pituitary," I realized the inaccuracies of my thoughts and remembered, somehow, that the pituitary was in your brain and kept my mouth closed. Had I said what I was thinking, I know that my statement would have ended up in that nurse's book someday that she is planning on writing entitled The Stupid things patients say.
Okay, had to interrupt my woe-is-me tale for a bit of humor.
Today, we are taking it easy. We will probably take a long bike ride later. Than we are going to go to church this evening as I am going to work form 8-12 tomorrow fro Mayo to get my boss and I caught up. JB is actually going to come in with me while I work so we can at least hang out together. He has some computer stuff to do anyways.
JB just walked through the door. Perfect timing. He bought me a beautiful vase of flowers from the Farmer's Market for 5$. Now that I can take a picture of. So here is JB with all his produce pickins' and my beautiful flowers!
Tuesday, August 16, 2005
Well, went in for blood test today -- then my physician was out of town today so I didn't get the results. Praying that I can get them pretty quickly tomorrow -- bright and early would be great.
I had an allergy attack today! Not very much fun! Still sneezing like crazy. We also had Christo over for dinner tonite. Melissa and Karuna are in Nebraska where Melissa is from, and we didn't to leave him starving only a few blocks away. JB made him FAMOUS stuffed chicken! It was very good. Maybe I should have taken a picture of that.
So, it seems that my sister-in-law Gabbi and me will get results of our tests ON THE SAME DAY!!! How about that. Speaking of my sister-in-law Gabbi, she and Ray are expecting #2 in December. However, let it be said now, no one will be sweeter and more wonderful than my niece "Doctor Grace"!
The only other news was that when I left my house this morning for my blood test, I honestly thought that I need a light jacket! Oh no! What is happening here?!?!!? Winter Stay Away!
Saturday, August 13, 2005
JB and I decided not to take that long. We took all of 24 hours.
Honestly, we had no thoughts of getting a new bird. However, this morning we went to brunch for Lesley's birthday with both Dave & Lesley and the Philips (Christo, Melissa, and baby Karuna who we found out loves syrup!) We went to Panookeken (sp?) OUR FAVORITE! We had ridden our bikes to breakfast and so we rode over to the pet shop and saw a beautiful hand fed Lutino lovebird! And we bought her! I must say that for once, I actually insisted we spend the money. She was so pretty and we were so sad about Chaucer.
We actually do not know if the new bird is a girl or a boy. We can send his/her feather into a company and find out if it is a boy or girl or we can just let them bond whether they are two boys or opposite sex. We will see.
So we need to name him/her but we need a unisex name. We haven't named him/her yet but have a few thoughts. The finalists are: Gershwin, Dante, Mozart, Rembrandt, and Monet. If you want to post a comment and let us know which you like best we will gladly take suggestions. We want to stay with our "artist" theme as our previous birds have been Chaucer and Twaine (for Geoffrey and Mark).
Also, I am going to attach a picture of JB's fish tank. He has been doing a great job with it and it is basically ready for fish maybe this week.
Also, you will notice that this post is in yellow. It is in honor of our new yellow birdie! YAY!
Friday, August 12, 2005
Today after work, JB and I talked for a few minutes and then he ran out to the pet shop to get some nesting materials for Chaucer (our female bird) and Twainey (male bird). While he was gone, I was cleaning up in the office and noticed Twainey was acting funny. I walked over to the cage and Chaucer was dead!!!! We have had Chaucer for over 5 years. She was our first bird and then we got Twainey to keep her company.
We aren't sure why she died. JB put a nesting box in their cage about a week ago, and they both started acting strange when this happened. Our best guess is, Chaucer refused to leave the nesting box in order to protect her nest which is a very usual thing for female birds to do. However, Twainey didn't help get her food and she became very weak. At this point, either Twainey attacked her or she simply was too sick and died.
I have never had a pet before so I have never had one die. It's not like a dog or anything but both JB and I are pretty sad. The birds were a lot of fun for us. Chaucer hated my guts but she was fun to watch and listen to as she talked a lot for a lovebird saying "Gimme kiss" and "step up". It stinks!
I am attaching a few pictures of the birds. Chaucer is the bird on the left in the two pictures of them on the perch. In the picture where JB is holding them, Chaucer is on the right. I think that when pets die, it really stinks. I also am sad I won't hear my mom call her "Chowser" anymore. Oh well.
We aren't sure if we will get another bird. Lovebirds need a pair or they get ill and will die, but they can be a pair with a member of the family as Chaucer was with JB. Male birds are a lot nicer so we may just keep Twainey, may get him a female partner, or you can even get them a male as they just need a buddy. Oh well. Sad news.
Thursday, August 11, 2005
Today I wanted to post some pictures of my goddaughter in New Mexico, Logan Rae. Most of you know my bud Kristi Hartley Hunt! She and I were roommates, thrown together our first year at WKU in 1995 (HOLY COW 10 YEARS AGO!) Kristi and I were night and day and really had NOTHING in common except for basketball, however, I can honeslty say that 10 years later, she is one of my very dearest friends!
Our third year of college (I think it was third year -- I really can't remember), Kristi met Lee Hunt and they were married a year after JB and I. Last September they had their first daughter, a gorgeous little girl named Logan Rae. I was so blessed to be asked to be Logan's godmother and flew out for her baptism in November.
I am very excited that Kris and baby Logan are coming out to see me NEXT month -- September. I canNOT wait. Kristi keeps me updated via pictures, but I haven't seen Logan since she was 3 months old.
So here are a few pictures of Logan. You will notice a common theme that cracks JB and I up -- the open mouth! How cute!!!
In our lives, work is very busy for me right now so I am a little stressed out. We just got back from Thursday night Christian Medical Association Bible Study. It's a good Bible Study with a good meal every Thursday.
Also, as a P.S. on this, I will NOT be going in for my blood test tomorrow. We have postponed it until next Tuesday. Please continue to pray that my body is doing the right things when we go in for the test.
Tuesday, August 09, 2005
Right now, JB is cooking some meatload and broccoli while Karuna makes deals with him to get up on the couch next to him while he is working on his computer. They are talking back and forth about this, (Karuna mostly says "hi" and they make horsie noises a lot as well) but JB has put up a bunch of pillows to block her. She, however, doesn't seem like this will stop her from trying. The only distractions in favor of JB are some cheerios on the table. He is also tossing the remote from her repeatedly and she is "fetching". This seems to be distracting her as well.
What is going on in our lives right now? Well, JB, as always, continues to be my renaissance man. Here are his current interests:
- Selling items on e-bay. It started with his fish tank as he decided on a fresh water tank instead of salt water but has branched into his old textbooks. So far he has made over $300.
- His new fish tank. He is now doing a freshwater tank. It has water in it now and he assures me this means that the fish are not far behind.
- Breeding the birds. He finally put a breeding box in the birds' cage as Chaucer (female) has been laying eggs all over the place. We haven't actually seen them mating but are pretty sure that they have. The problem with this is, Chaucer gets in the box but won't let Twainey (male) in it. He has responded by not allowing Chaucer to get OUT of the box. Both of their beaks are bloody from this battle.
- Endocrine -- this is his current rotation
- Fixing up our house -- this is more my hope for his renaissance nature instead of his own desire but he is doing a lot of work around the house
- Reading -- as always
- Cooking -- as always
That's the top of the list for right now. My list is always fairly small. I enjoy exercise, internet spades, and emailing. That's about it. I am pretty simple.
Our week is pretty simple. We have Karuna tonite and will go to Bible Study on Thursday nite for a new year of "Out of Eden" the medical school Bible Study.
If you think of it, say a prayer for my blood test on Friday. It is to rule out one other condition the endocrinologist is worried about and to check and see if the Met is working again. Thanks!
Sunday, August 07, 2005
This was a packed weekend but pretty fun. Saturday morning JB and I woke up early as usual. We met the Rays at 9:15 and went and picked Ronnie up from his job at Caribou coffee and then headed back to good ol' Welch village to tube. This is the 3rd time we have been tubing this year. This was also the lowest the river has been. The first time we went with a large group (I am enclosing a picture of our "first time" group here too) it took about 3 hours. The second time, when we took Keith, it took about 4 hours. Yesterday, the river was at 5 hours! We also had to stop a few times and actually walk because the water was too low. I can't include any photos from our time on the water because you can't bring a camera or it will go wet. Everything gets wet. This time we did bring a cooler and rented a tube for it as well which was a good idea. You just ride and tube. Cole was not very comfortable with the whole idea but he looosened up as we went along.
After we were done tubing, JB and I went back, showered, bought some ice cream and went back over to the Rays to watch Miss Congeniality 2. Please don't bother watching that movie. It was terible. It was our last hurrah of summer sweets! We begin our sweet fast today!
This morning we got up, had bacon egg and cheese english muffins for breakfast, greeted at church, came home and napped, and then biked to the county fair. We just spent an hour looking at the animals and then headed home. I played a few games of spades, JB ordered tickets for his parents and us (we are going to D.C. with my work at RLS in November) and now we are doing some work around the house.
Thursday, August 04, 2005
Tunde, who is a first year, and his wife Deola were there. They are from Palm Beach and now, actually, Deola and I both have something else in common. We both work for Dr. K. Last Saturday we attended the Medical School Opening Picnic and I met Deola. Then on Sunday, Dr. K emailed me and told me he was looking for a nanny -- I thought of Deola for some reason and today, Dr. K told me they were hiring her! And now I found out tonite that they are very strong Christians.
JB is getting ready to do an internet chat with his Aerospace Medicine committee. He has an officer in the National Aerospace Medicine Association for students and residents and so they are chatting online tonite. So we are now home and getting ready to kick back for the day.
In other news, I have been wearing a pedometer and I am happy to announce that I hit the goal of 10,000 steps today. I have only hit it one other time so I am happy about this.
I will write again soon and hopefully add some pics. I love you all!
Monday, August 01, 2005
This week, JB has to take his SAR class (Sexual Attitude Readjustment) with the class below him. He was supposed to take this last year but had to be gone for the military in Alabama. So, he will take it this year instead. My boss is out of town at Mayo so I will be at RLS more than usual to make up for the heavy Mayo week I had last week.
Off to another work week!