Circling round-again

We are off to japan for Christmas! Just before we left there were a lot of stories on TV about the ten year anniversary of the Boxing Day tsunami.  I hadn’t known how many people from Australia were involved, because I lived in Japan at the time.

Ten years ago, it was my last Christmas in Japan.  I traveled to Shikoku by myself.  It’s the smallest of the four main islands, and it’s haunted.  Until the 1990s the only way to reach it was by boat- no bridges or tunnels.  Historically it was an island that people fled to when they fell out of favour politically.  It is also famous for the pilgrimage circuit – 88 temples to visit.  I can remember my mother calling me to see if I was affected by the tsunami (japan was not at all) and that was the first I heard about it.  But the hotel I remember being in for that call was one I stayed in several days after the tsunami.  Not sure why it took so long, or if my memory is faulty. That holiday was one I really enjoyed, even though I was traveling by myself.  So I am circling back to a country and time I remember happily, even though it is an anniversary of a traumatic event for many.

The last time my husband and I spent Christmas in Japan was three years ago, 2011. It was the Christmas before we started ivf- the decision had been made, we knew we would be kicking it off once we returned.  So it is a little bittersweet to be going back three years later with nothing to show for that effort. That was also a happy holiday.  Very different from Christmas in Australia. 

So we are returning, hoping for a nice relaxing holiday.  Again, we know we will be doing a new IVF cycle in the new year, this time with donor eggs.  So looking towards the unknown again.  The thing about circling round is you do know some of the pitfalls, and some of the sweet spots.  I have a better idea of what next year may bring, both the good and the bad.

microblog Monday: counting down

Looking forward to our end of year trip. Only three more working days, then two and half weeks of Japan. We rotate our Christmases- one year with G’s family up north, one year with my family in Brisbane and one year away.  This is an away year.

I am glad we are taking this trip. I need a distraction from the fact that the last cycle was a fizzle.  I need a break. As does my husband.

So we are making plans, sorting clothes to take. Planning what gear goes, eying up different activities (a tour of the imperial palace, trying printmaking) and contemplating relaxing.

Oddly, going away makes it easier to connect with family for end of year- we make more of an effort to catch up before we leave.

Still having moments when it is all too much, so having something else to focus on is very good.

And the cultural expectations of Christmas and new year are not the same in Japan, which means that some things that can be upsetting are less likely.

Not sure what #MicroblogMondays is? Read the inaugural post which explains the idea and how you can participate too.


bad day

Many many swear words.

I got the call about the embryos this morning.  Fortunately my office was very empty this morning (one other person in the office and sits at the other end and another person running a training course, so not at her desk) so I cried a little and then used document review to distract me.

My work at the moment is quiet so I knew i didn’t have anything pressing.  I had a dentist appointment in the early afternoon, so G thought we could go home after that.  My manager was at a course in the morning with another co worker.  I emailed her to see if I could take the rest of the afternoon off.   She is having issues at the moment with people using a lot of different excuses to leave early/”work from home”. I was not specific about how bad the embryo news was, just that it was bad and I wasn’t functioning so well.  The training girl finished her session at midday and went home to her sick cat.  

Just as I was leaving my manager came back, I met her in the hall ( so not inside the private office) and I said that I had sent an email about this afternoon and to let me know if there was an issue.  She wasn’t very happy and was asking me why I wanted to take the afternoon off, was it an emergency? So I lost my temper a little, ” if training co worker can take the day off for dead cat(which she has said she will if that is the vet outcome) I think I can take an afternoon off for dead babies”. Manager was not expecting that.  It’s the second time I have basically burst into tears in front of her.  Essentially if I am not answering questions in more than one syllable answers, it’s because I am trying not to cry, and pushing will result in tears.

Dentist.  Annual check up and concerns.  Sigh. I knew there was a problem, he confirmed it.  Two fillings today plus a crown and another filling in the new year.

My dentist is pretty good.  He knows we are trying, long story, but I need to use super fluoridated tooth paste to help my teeth which is not good for pregnancy.  So I have the toothpaste, but haven’t been using it.   I need to start doing so again.

Upper mouth numb from fillings. The dentist has a TV above the chair.  Today it was playing friends.  The wedding episode where Rachel is pregnant.  Not a great distraction.

 Bonus issue.  I got my period today, which was and is a good thing- it means I won’t get it on our trip, and we have a chance to try naturally (hmmm). But it’s just one more thing that is irritating me.  I am hoping it will be lighter, less time to accrue lining.

the mathematics of IVF

Not a happy post.

Next time someone says “just try IVF, it always works” send them here.

19 eggs

12 mature (we had to use ICSI, so only mature eggs could be used).

9 fertilised (so far so good)

All 9 were tootling along until day 4 (again that is so far so good)

Then they found a wall, or a cliff or a gaping hole in the space time continuum.

As of this morning (day 5) there is one left that is developing, and it isn’t far enough along to biopsy.

1.  And it’s unlikely to progress.

I think that this is the end of trying to use my eggs.



Pollyanna thoughts- well, that’s an extra $4k I don’t need to think about finding. That means more money for the donor egg cycle next year.  And the donor egg cycle is on track to be sometime in January or February.  

I also feel way less guilty about the cost of the Christmas trip. At least I am going to get something for all that money.


status updates

I don’t use Facebook much.  It isn’t a place where I am happy, so I stay away.  So things that passed through my mind in the past 24 hours.

We turned a couple of kilos of apples into spicy Apple chutney.  Not as spicy as I was planning, but maybe a couple of weeks of sitting may mature the flavours.

Monday mornings are my weighing mornings.  For reasons I am not 100% sure of, I weigh less on Mondays.  And monday to monday, the number is slowly going down.

An attempt to get to work early was thwarted by a couple of illegally parked cars, an unfortunate truck driver trying to get to work and a one way street.  Where I work is on a one way street.  Half the street is ok to park on; the other part, which includes in front of my work, is not and is marked as such.  However, people often gamble on the idea that it is a quiet area (at night or on the weekend) or they are overseas visitors and don’t realise that yellow line = no parking.  This is highly irritating. Because it is a road leading onto a major road, where the nearest other access has a height limit, trucks use it.  But where people park illegally, it is narrow, and the other side of the road is a train line embankment.  So cars get scraped, trucks get stuck.

a major government paper on the financial industry came out on Sunday, so today involved a bit of reading, and also reading between the lines in media releases.

Another storm rolled in today.  It was rainy most of the day, but it bucketed  down in the late afternoon. These photos were taken 10 minutes apart.

And lastly, more progress on my trees.


  Not sure what #MicroblogMondays is? Read the inaugural post which explains the idea and how you can participate too.

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