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Our IVF Journey

It’s been a while since I’ve last written & boy have things changed! The world is still in the midst of a pandemic, Australia and particularly Western Australia have largely been spared the devastating effects of Covid-19. I’m really thankful that things have been relatively stable for us personally and we have jobs and a roof over our head.

As the title suggests, we’re about to embark on our first round of IVF-ICSI. We’ve been actively trying to conceive since around June 2019, but haven’t been successful. My periods aren’t regular, and have never really been but as time drew on, my cycles went anywhere from 27 days to 42 days and it’s pretty much a guessing game when Aunt Flo decides to make an appearance. We know hubby’s sperm wasn’t too flash either, so in a sense we were expecting to go down this route or at least have some help from our GP etcetera.

***I have to make the disclaimer here that this is our personal experience. We are not medical professionals and do not claim to be. We cannot give you advice pertaining to your situation, and this is a journal for our particular circumstances. I’m happy to talk about our experience, but my advice is to speak to your health professional about your particular circumstances and what your options are***

We went to our GP in August 2020 to seek some help. She made the decision to refer us to the Fertility Specialist. We made an appointment with our Fertility Specialist for September 2020. There usually is a waitlist to see the Fertility Specialist, I’ll have to detail more about this in another post.

We finally saw our Fertility Specialist (FS) in September 2020 and he sent us for a bunch of tests to determine our baseline and what treatment we needed. It’s usually 4 to 6 weeks between the first appointment and follow up appointment, to allow for the tests and the results as they are based on your cycle. Plus, our FS was on leave in between our appointments as he was hadn’t had a break in a while due to covid, and was going to Broome for a couple of weeks.

***Was just at this point of the post when we tuned into the news today about the emergency news conference by the Premier about the 5 day lockdown in Perth. It has been quite an eventful few hours for us as we went to the local covid clinc to get tested as Matt was at one of the exposure sites. But that’s another story for the next post. Gosh, there’s just so much to write about recently!***

We met again with the FS in November 2020 and he reviewed our test results and we discussed options. For us, IVF-ICSI was the most appropriate treatment and he talked to us about the timeline and medication protocols. Given that it was near the end of the calendar year and we hadn’t reached our Medicare Safety Net, he gave us the option to commence in the new year to maximise the Safety Net or to go ahead in 2020. We opted to wait till 2021, when it resets and should we need more than the one cycle, it won’t be at the higher cost.

We had our nurse appointment in January 2021 to go through all the paperwork, finance and how to inject myself. We also had the first look at the medication protocol I was being put on. I’m on 137.5iu Gonal-F, combined with Orgalutran when directed, and Pregnyl 10,000iu as the trigger. Also was given Crinone progesterone pessaries after the egg collection.

We decided to collect the medication yesterday, on my birthday as we had just gotten confirmation that Matt was given approval by the ATO to withdraw his superannuation under compassionate reasons. And we’re pretty much waiting on Aunt Flo to arrive and call the clinic to let them know. From my understanding, I will start injections on Day 2 of my cycle and have monitoring blood tests and ultrasounds throughout to keep an eye on what my body is doing under treatment.

Which brings us to today’s announcement. WA is going into 5 days of hard lock down as of 6pm tonight till 6pm Friday 5th February 2021. At this stage Aunt Flo hasn’t shown up yet. Just 3 days ago I was googling how to delay the onset of a period as we were waiting on Matt’s super to be approved for release. Yesterday I was googling how to bring it on, and today I’m reverting to googling how to delay it yet again. Rationally I know old wives’ tales aren’t going to work, but when it comes to the desire to have a child, rationality just goes out the window sometimes. I’ve yet to contact the clinic as I know they’re going to be swamped with the same questions from every person receiving treatment currently, so I’m waiting till they announce something. We’re just trying to stay positive at the moment and wait to hear what is next for us.

I’m hoping to break down our experience in a number of blog posts, detailing each step of the way and our personal experience with this all. I hope it provides comfort to others who might be going through the same thing and have a million questions like I did. Let me know if you have any questions about the process and I’ll be happy to answer them 🙂

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The New Normal

It has been an incredibly long time since I touched this blog and things have certainly changed. The world has been in the midst of the coronavirus crisis (COVID-19) and things are very different. We have new terms, such as social distancing, flatten the curve and the new normal.

It certainly has been a different and difficult time for many. People panic buying toilet paper and food, people losing their jobs and livelihood and usual past times relegated to one side as it isn’t safe. Public transport has been cut to a bare minimum, stores are mostly closed and a lot of people are working from home.

For me, the changes have been quite a mixed bag. We’re doing a week at home, week at the office roster at work to minimise the number of people in the building and spreading ourselves out around the building. I initially liked the working from home, waking up at 7.30am to start work at 8am, getting breakfast and lunch made for me while watching TV during my lunch break. Also I loved working in my PJs and glasses, no need for me to get dressed and be work wear appropriate. The first swing was good, then the 2nd swing I started to get bad cabin fever and my mental health was slowly slipping. We had been doing the right thing and only going out to the shops for essentials and occasional exercise. The exercise bit got put to the back burner as I was so comfortable at home. The dreaded third quarter had struck. The novelty of doing all that had started to wear off and I was now feeling a bit stuck.

Thankfully my next office swing has came round and I was able to get out and drive to work, restoring some sense of normalcy. I then made the mindful decision to go for a walk after work to try to get rid of the cabin fever and work on my mental health. It definitely has made a difference and I’m beginning to feel like my old self, adjusting to the new normal.

To think that things currently look starkly different to what it was like to the beginning of the year, is something that is quite hard to get my head around sometimes. If someone had told me that this is what the new normal would look like in 2020, I wouldn’t have believed them. It is only until you live the reality that it becomes tangible.

I’ve been trying to get back into writing, it has been quite therapeutic to be penning things down and looking back at it. I’ve got so many new ideas swirling in my brain, but have been quite unmotivated to put them into action and explore, but am hoping that this blog post is the start of something that will spark joy with my creativity again. Till next time!

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2019 Goals

Once again a new year has come upon us. 2018 was quite an eventful year, filled with both ups and downs. I would say it was more up, rather than down. We had tried to put our house on the market in 2017, but took it down in 2018 after 9 months of no real offers. Only had a cheeky offer about 20k less than what we’ve expected, so we figured that it wasn’t worth it at this point and it’d probably be a better idea to just wait it out for the market to stabilise while working on lowering the mortgage. Truth be told, I actually quite like the area we’re in, just wanting a bigger place for our family.

 

We also adopted our furchild, Evie, late in 2018. She’s just the best, we’ve definitely struck the dog lotto! She’s slowly adjusting to adopted life and will soon have her 5th birthday on the 4th of January. We’re looking forward to this!

There’s a lot of things that I’ve learned over the past year and have appreciated life’s lessons. In growing older and wiser each year, I think I’m slowly starting to get the concept of doing what I want, when I want. And also that there is no such thing as perfect timing for things. I’m looking forward to starting to work on goals and things that I want to achieve this year.

 

With the work situation still the same and up in the air, we’ve been putting off trying to start a family. But as I’ve talked to a lot of people, there is no such thing as perfect timing to anything and we might look to trying to start a family at some point this year. We’re not growing any younger and I think we’re definitely ready to start the next stage in life.

 

Another thing that I would like to see this year would be to look at following Scott Pape’s Barefoot Investor and looking to get out finances sorted and supercharged. I must admit that I’ve always read his columns and such but haven’t actually taken steps to working on the finances. This year, I’m going to commit to reading his book and trying to implement things into our finances.

 

Speaking of finances, I’ve also recently decided to start a bit of a side hustle with some products that a friend had introduced me to. I’m now an Independent Sales Consultant with Norwex. My webstore is located here: https://kristinevapor.norwexbiz.com.au/. I’m looking to make it as a bit of a side income in preparation for when it is time for maternity leave. I’ve been starting to look at reducing the use of chemicals at home in preparing to be more environmentally responsible, as well as trying to reduce chemicals for health reasons. Contact me if you’re interested in booking a party, I’m happy to have a chat to you about the products in the range.

 

One ongoing goal I’ve had for a number of years is been to declutter the house and decorate it. It’s been achieved in various degrees, we’ve put up some pictures and furniture that is really us. I’m still working on the decluttering part, but I think it won’t end anytime soon! Definitely making some progress on that front, which is what I like. I think it’ll be a long term project though.

 

One last goal I’ve got for this year is to work on my health. Not just in terms of weight, but actual fitness and mental health. 2018 was a year where my mental health had been a bit up and down, and I’m definitely looking to improve this in every which way I can. Implementing small changes each day, I’m hoping to make new habits and changing things.

 

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I’m Back!

How is it already December of 2018? My last post on here was January 2017. So much has happened since then. My blog was out of action for a good part of my unplanned hiatus, since there were issues with hosting etc. Thankfully Matt has fixed it and I’m back.

I haven’t done a 2018 goals post and I don’t think I quite set out things for this year at all. I had a few rough goals in mind but it didn’t quite eventuate and this year hasn’t quite turned out as we would’ve expected.

We tied the knot in June 2017,which has definitely been a highlight of last year. As much as wedding planning was stressful, I would’ve done it again in a heart beat as the day turned out as perfect as can be.

We went our honeymoon at the end of 2017, with visits to Malaysia for my cousin’s wedding, Singapore, Hong Kong and Macau. We hadn’t been travelling in a while and the trip was a great way to recharge & spend some quality time together. We spent Christmas & New Year’s in Hong Kong. It was juts magical. Yes, we did go to Disneyland and bought a truck full of souvenirs!

The day we were setting off on our honeymoon, we got news that my work situation was going to change dramatically due to some changes in government. Definitely wasn’t the greatest way to start a holiday but we managed to put that behind us until we came back home.

We also had put our house on the market and then took it off the market after 9 months as we weren’t getting any realistic offers. We’re still in the midst of making it our home & decluttering things as we go at the moment. It’s only since July 2018 that we’ve had a proper place to call home together as a married couple. Living out of a small selection of clothes while having home opens most weekends was not the most pleasant thing.

Which brings us to present day. I’m still waiting to hear what’s happening with work. I’ve been transferred to work way south of the river, albeit acting in a role I previously have done, so it isn’t a bad thing. I’ll be there till March, and after that I’m not sure as we’re still waiting to hear about what is going on. The not knowing what’s happening is definitely affecting morale at work & is not helping with stress levels. I’ve been keeping an eye out for other potential roles but nothing exciting has popped up so far. Also looking at other avenues for making money & if I’m honest, I’m more excited about the other avenues than I am about my current work industry. I’m not ruling out any opportunities but I’m not locking myself in either.

Thus has been a brief recap of the last 18 or so months. I’m hoping that it’s not going to be that long between posts again!

2017 Goals

So 2016 has come & gone with quite the fan fare. Of note would be all the famous people leaving this world & moving on to the next. I came across quite a few articles of those people that have passed & by golly I actually recognise some names. I guess it’s just the way of the time as we all get older & our time on this earth just gets shorter.
Enough with the macabre tone. 2017 is here & I’m excited! It’s the year we’re getting married (5 months away now, eeek!) & lots of exciting opportunities career wise. I’ve been given the opportunity to cover a role at work which uses my OT degree more & I get higher duties to complete. I’m hoping it’ll work out with the role & it’ll give me something to put on my resume. I also got into the pool for the same role in the Northern suburbs, though slightly different to what I do now.
Looking back on last year’s goals, I must say I’ve not done too shabbily. Yes, I have used pretty much the same terminology but that’s just me! I’ve managed to slowly work my way to getting fitter, I joined the gym late last year and have started small bits of exercise in an effort to get more active. The learning to invest goal was a little more difficult, I didn’t manage to get into that as my first investment turned out pretty terrible 😛

 

I also managed to see more of my friends during the year as well and will be following that goal into this year too. I’ve attended and started learning Auslan through work. Made it through the basic 8 week course and wanting to do the intermediate course, but haven’t yet found the time due to work commitments and the acting role. I’ve also indirectly learned some German through Matt, who is learning German. I’ve picked up the basics and can understand bits of the German music he plays in the car.
For this year, I’m keen to get some other goals into place as well. Not resolutions, but goals. I’m the kind of person who is outcome focussed, so hence the goals. It’s about the destination & not the journey for me. Although the journey is also pleasant, my focus is the destination ☺️

 

I’ve got quite a few goals for this year. I’m hoping to completely achieve at least half of them and make a serious dent into the other half. I like to aim big, at least I know I would’ve tried to do lots of things at once. Go big or die trying right?

 

Declutter

My parents and brother currently live with me in my tiny 3 bedroom place and it is starting to feel a little crowded. They’re moving out soon and Matt will be moving in within the next month or so, whenever their house is finished. All of us tend to accumulate stuff and I know I’m guilty of buying heaps of things that I don’t need and just take up room. I’ve made it my goal this year to seriously declutter, sell or donate my junk or extra stuff as I don’t like living out of my room where everything is just crammed in at the moment. I’m making it a point every day to either chuck stuff, put things into a sell/donate pile and recycling items. Once I’ve gather about a car load of stuff, I’m wanting to go to the local swap meet to sell stuff and donate whatever is leftover so that I don’t collect useless junk.

 

Decorate house

I haven’t been able to decorate my house to my taste since moving in, I’m keen to expand my creative side and to make it look all nice and pretty. I’ve got all the stuff needed, the thing that’s not on my side this year is time. Between travelling to and from work daily, the wedding planning, the wedding and going out to see friends, it’s hard to get time to do much more than keep the house neat and tidy. I’ll have to work smart this year for that.

 

Start my side hustle

I’m not making it public yet, but stuff is in the pipeline. Again, time is again not on my side with the amount of things happening this year. I’m keen to get started as this has been a long time coming and I’m itching to start things and be on my way to being my own boss.

 

Get more active

This is kind of a leftover goal from last year, but it’s good. I’m making small changes each day and and looking forward to being more active and being a healthier version of me for my family.

 

Eat more home cooked lunches

With mum & dad moving out and Matt moving in, I’m itching to stretch my culinary muscles and will be trying to make more of an effort to make lunches. This is a 2 part goal as it is to save money for everything this year and to also be a healthier version of me.

 

Plan and go on our honeymoon

We’re thinking of going on an overseas trip maybe at the end of the year or early next year (possibly 3 countries, so there will be heaps of planning involved). We’ve got a few ideas in mind but nothing set in stone yet as money is tight at the moment and we’re saving everything for the wedding at the moment.

 

Take more photos

Ironic that this post does not have photos, but I want to be able to document our lives and have memories of things. With our new Google Pixels, this has been an absolute dream as we’ve been able to capture quite a lot of moments in absolutely brilliant quality. Plus, unlimited storage through Google cause of the phones really helps with this goal 😉

 

Blog more

This also ties in with the previous goals, I want to be able to have written down memories of things to look back or have our children look back on and to get to know their parents. Plus, writing has always been my passion, life just got in the way. Or rather, mundane adult responsibilities of paying bills, sleeping and watching TV has gotten in the way of writing. I often have quite a lot of thoughts that I wish I could’ve written down about things that are happening in the world, but sitting down in front of the computer after a long day in front of it at work, just does not seem that appealing sometimes. The whole notion of living my life in front of a screen is not what I want to do.

 

Make more of an effort with my appearance

I’ve been wanting to experiment more with makeup that I got previously and haven’t been bothered trying out. I’m wanting to be more bold and look more presentable, even if its just a bit of eyeliner or mascara so I don’t look so washed out.

 

Save for deposit on another property

This one I must admit is a bit of a long term goal. I’m hoping that we’re able to save money to be able to purchase another property and turn one into an investment property for our retirement or something. I’m a bit of a long term planner and want to be able to secure our financial future so that we don’t have to rely on government pensions or things like that which might not be guaranteed in the future. I want to be able to retire on our terms.

 

I think that’s all for this year’s goals. There are quite a few big ones in there, but I’m hopeful I’ll be able to address most of them. One more goal which I would like for us to be able to achieve this year is to have a great wedding and marriage. Here’s to 2017!

Operation Wedding Ready

The countdown to the big day is going pretty quickly. There’s quite a few things left to do & I really need to get moving in terms of getting it all done in time. It has been a pretty busy few months at work and random things around the house too. My brother and parents are preparing to move out once their place gets built and I’m getting ready to move Matt in & clean up my place prior to that happening.

 

Wedding wise, it’s been pretty slack around here. I’ve tested the recipe for our wedding cake, received some RSVPs eventhough I haven’t sent out Save the Dates and our wedding guest list looks to be expanding still. I’m not too stressed about the whole thing as yet, I’m a bit blase about it to be honest. Oh, and the tailor for the bridesmaids dresses has absconded with the money :’P I could be devastated, but I’m not. Thankfully we found out now, so we’ve still got time to fix it all up.

 

2016-10-31-19-01-08 2016-10-31-19-29-14 2016-10-31-19-36-25

 

Did a spot of baking for work’s Melbourne Cup lunch last week. The cake went down a treat, which is great! I really need to get more baking and cooking done, can’t wait to have my kitchen back & get started with practicing my cooking and baking skills.

 

Joined the gym over the weekend, in an effort to get fitter and look better. So far I cancelled out my efforts by eating heaps. The gym really does make my appetite go mental! Will try again this weekend to keep more active and get the sweats on.

 

Been feeling a bit under the weather the past few days, hoping it is just minor bug and will go away soon. I can’t afford to have any more days off. I’ve got some days off in November, will be the first time since I started here a year ago that I’ve had any decent time off. Albeit its only a few days, but it is better than nothing. Work has been pretty busy and I’m trying to keep stress levels to the minimum and get stuff done.

Mid October Blues

I can’t believe it’s just after the middle of October already. Matt told me today that he got an e-mail saying that it’s 67 days till Christmas! *insert OMG emoticon*

 

Where has the year gone?! In just over a month, I would’ve been at my current workplace for a year. It has been a year of ups and downs, lots of changes and lots of lessons learnt. This time last year, I was lamenting on how I needed a new job as my job was paying pretty crap pay & I couldn’t survive on that for very much longer. Today, I’m so thankful I get an automatic salary increase on my anniversary date and another increment in the middle of the year due to the bargaining agreement.

 

Been a bit up and down lately at work, my mood has been pretty stable since I cut out the coffee. I worked out through trial and error that it was giving me anxiety and made my mood quite low. Been a bit stressed but am taking it day by day and hoping to achieve small goals every day to keep me on track. I’m also keeping my side project dream alive by working on little things each day & thinking about the ideas I have for it and documenting it.

 

You might say I’m a bit selfish for having exit plans from work, but to be honest I’m just forward planning. When we start having a family, I don’t want to be driving almost 3 hours a day to get to and from work, I much rather spend the time with my children and husband. I might not make as much money, but it would be doing something I love and will give me flexibility to grow and adapt with my family. I feel that’s important for me at this point in my life.

 

Anyway, a really funny thing happened at work today. I had worked pretty hard on a piece of work, ready for my manager to speak to his manager about. The negotiation for this had been going on for about 2 months with this. I provided my manager a hard copy of the document for the discussion. Fast forward 2 hours later, my manager comes out to me with his hand out. I was procrastinating work and had just finished playing a game on my phone when I turned to look. I was very puzzled to what was going on, I took it as an indication to smack his hand.

 

I asked my manager what was going on. He sheepishly told me that in the rush of him wanting to print a previous version of the document to take to his manager along with the current version, he accidentally hit the copy to draft button, which meant that my current document now looked like my previous document. Those damn buttons are located next to each other in the database, and usually there is a warning before it copies it over completely, but not this time. I was a bit shocked but oh well, accidents happen. I then spent about an hour redoing the document and sending off for quotes to an organisation again, I’ll have to redo the rest of the document tomorrow. Haha if I didn’t laugh at it, I would’ve cried.

The rest of the week looks to be pretty busy, but I end the week with a morning tea with our director general. I’m pretty happy with that to be honest. Now to focus on finishing the week on a high note!