Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Saturday night meeting

I just called Dr. K, an RE at the IVF center. I told him briefly of our concerns after our 7 failed embryo transfers and that I would sending him an email to look at.

I forwarded him some of the articles I have been reading on genetic/immune testing for us and for our embryos. He told me he would respond to my email and that we should come in and meet him Saturday night to discuss things.

So, thats where we're at now.

Again not sure what tests are available here to me, but i would think hope at least maybe some are. The doctor who runs this clinic was educated, licensed and practised in the UK from what I understand. They seem to be technologically up to speed and they should be continually progressing in this field. Let's hope so. Their success rates are great, lets hope we can add our ourselves to their statistics as a success as well.

Honestly, we can not afford to go back to the USA and do any of this. I wish we could, but the fact is- we cannot. Although it is extremely affordable here in comparison to the States, we have still spent a ton of money.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Thank you

Thanks to all of you who left comments on my post below. I agree some testing is in order. I will see if they do this testing here, i sure hope so, and we'll go from there.

Please keep Super S's older brother in your thoughts.... he is battling cancer and it's not looking good. He is not strong enough to take chemo, so we are not sure what the next step will be.

He has just two brothers now, Super S is now the youngest, after losing his youngest brother this year and his oldest a few years back. A very sad time for the family.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Any opinions my fellow RE's in training?

Who better to ask for an opinion than someone who has went through the same thing as you have, right? While we are not doctors, (although some of us I bet are just as educated now in infertility issues) it helps to read and share our experiences with IF, heck isn't that why alot of starting blogging?

* I don't want to be too graphic, but a few things I must say if any of you can shed any light on them. Dad, you should skip this post, really nothing here you'd be intrested in. You'd thank me, believe me.

Ok here's the deal....

I have two major issues I want to solve before our next try at IVF next month, God Willing. Of course I will discuss these with my RE but wanted to throw them out there to you, as you may be able to suggest what I should be asking in addition to what questions I will form after doing research online with Dr. Google.

One is my cervix is low, i mean quite low. It comes and goes, meaning its lower sometimes more than others but definitely a new thing to have happen to me. I mean I can actually feel it, like dropping or just being there but low, if you will, when i bend down, while going to the bathroom etc. I have also noticed in my last two periods, when my flow gets lighter the blood seems to be a darker, brownish color and streaky, like it is flowing from my cervix that way? Could there be blood somewhere there is not suppose to be? I only noticed AFTER i had my last fallopian tube ligated by the way. Not sure there is any connection though.

The other issue is the failure of the seven (7) embryo replacements, the 3 IVF trials, we did over the past 4 years. I have read that pre-embryo genetic testing can be done. I also read that there are a host of immune disorder tests that cane be done, but  that if someone, like me, who has had several failed IVF's is not recommended to do these tests as it will not change treatment??? Huh?

So my internet lovelies, any thoughts? Is there anything you are sure I should bring up with my doctor?

I will start my research and try to formulate some questions in addition to the obvious "why haven't any of these transfers worked? What can we do, if anything, before this next IVF trial?"

Low cervix and mutiple failed IVF cycles, what should I be sure to ask? If any of you did specific tests after a failed IVF cycle, what were they? 

I know, i know you are not giving medical advice, and I am not seeking it ok. (Damn, should I have even said that? Nope, think not). I mean we blog about TTC, infertility, surgeries- we discuss so many treatments and protocols, we know we are not RE's right? (laughing)

Love you all and a big thanks in advance cause you guys always come through!!!  xoxoxoxoxoxo

Baby Cory dancing to Beyounce

Just saw this on CNN International, Anderson Cooper 360. Made my early Saturday morning. That babys got some moves. It looks real, not edited, just a mom (or someone) catching their baby getting down to Beyounce, too cute!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

It better be imported

Before Super S and i moved to Cairo we had a few friends from Cairo visit us in the States. A big portion of all their visits was shopping. They bought clothes mostly, including shoes, but make-up, knick knacks and a few other items as well.

I witnessed the same thing happening on each shopping trip. They would pick up an item, look at the tag if it was clothing or turn it over and look at bottom of item it if wasn't. What in the hell are looking for? I knew it wasn't the size as they had picked up the right one, then on non-clothes items looking at bottoms of items, at back of boxes, wtf where they doing?

They were looking to see where that item was made. I was like "um, why?" I never fully understood why it mattered to them where something was made. Super S and I said to each other at the time, we could not remember a time we ever looked at an items origin before we bought it. We saw something we liked, we checked it out good, we bought it.

Ha, ha, ha. But now, now my friends WE look at EVERYTHING's origin. Whether its food, a shirt, electronics, lotion you name we MUST know where it was made. Why you ask?

Well see my friends because we live in Egypt. And here unfortunately, so unfortunately I add, Egyptian made products tend to suck. Bad.

Funny thing is many of my Victorias Secret underwear say "made in Egypt". I have awesome 450tc sheets that say "made in Egypt". I also have to die for fluffly 100% Egyptian cotton bath sheets that also read "made in Egypt." So where are these high quality excellent made Egyptian made products you ask? Not available for us to buy, HERE IN EGYPT!!! I know. Insane.

It seems all the good quality things are made here and then exported. Its sad as heck because in Cairo they import SO MUCH goods to sell locally, while they produce so much for export. Leaving Egyptian made goods of a very low quality available locally. Makes no sense at all.

We just got it actually. Well I'd say the second year we were living here. We went shopping for some home items with friends and everything I picked up, my friend looked to see where it was made. There she goes again. I asked her, "why does it matter..." She then told me Egyptian mde products were not good qaulity and do not last, sad but indeed true.

Now not everything made here is shit, but electronics, many (not all) clothes and shoes (ALL) available locally and made in Egypt all suck. Sorry.

It is a tragedy in so many ways. The better quality items that are imported and sold here are alot more expensive for people and many cannot afford to buy them.

So i ask myself, why is it that Egyptian companies that work in producing items to export cannot do the same for their country and make available here? Is it because the US and foreign companies pay for the better quality/materials for them and they themselves could not afford to do it for local availablity? It shouldn't be. Once they spend that money and make a good quallity product people will buy. They will buy for sure.

Its a fact that the population here is very poor. With a small number if people holding most of the wealth. The upper middle class is growing but there are so many people who live on just a few dollars a day. They will never be able to afford imported items and they have to settle for lesser quality goods no doubt.

How important is it to be able to buy imported goods is not my point. But I just wish some of the export quality was available to us locally. I mean I go to the States to buy good Egyptian cotton sheets, how cRaZy is that????

Just search e.bay, there is are so many items "imported from Egypt" and they are selling. Yes because they are good quality.

I remember a customer of ours said to me before we left "send me some good egyptian cotton sheets...
 Sure I said. She's still waiting.

*** DISCLAIMER***  I am NOT knocking Egypt at all. I love it here, its my home now. But this part of it fdrives me nuts and I just can't figure out why they do this. If you visit here you'll be sure to find some good quality Egyptian made items at tourist bazaars though, why of course.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Our five babies

First welcome ICLW for September 2009. I just love this week of commenting as I find so many new awesome blogs.

So welcome to you and hope you will visit this fun-filled blog of mine again, not just today. It really is fun-filled, really. If you want to read about our struggle to have our baby after 13 years of marriage and 11 years of TTC, (3 IVF trials that included 7 embryo transfers, IVF #4 just around the corner, October 2009) if you like reading about cats, if life in Cairo Egypt fascinates you then you'll want to be sure to bookmark or follow me, LOL. What an inticing invite huh?

So its been a while since I shared our babies with you. As some of you know Fiona had 4 kittens, there are only 3 now, Amelia has been gone a month. We HOPE that someone took her and is caring for her as good as we would, but we just don't know?

Charlie has grown into such a loving, kind boy, he is my favorite and I just love him! He is the biggest of all the babies and the nicest too. He could easily kick all their butts but doesn't it, it seems when they play fight he goes easy knowing he is bigger. He loves to cuddle and is very loving.

Naranja is Super S's favorite! We thought he was a boy, but are thinking maybe a girl? We should know soon... but it is looking like maybe a girl? I thought this color was always a boy no? He/she is very selfish. He eats the most, growls and is a bully. He is the smallest of all, but really irresistible with his cute temperment.

Now ET is a girl and she is a fighter! She is very tough and a great hunter! She loves moths, is a great climber and is very fast. She always catches her moth and the occasional black beetle looking insect then eats them, LOL. She is fast with her hands and can hold her own. Doesn't she look like a gremlin? She is the only one with the exact coloring of her mommy.

Fiona is such a good mommy, she takes such good care of her babies. She absolutely loves us too now and is no longer 

And of course, Florenzo our original baby... who is not at all interested in his kittens nor Fiona anymore LOL.  I snapped this of him, looks like he's waiting for take-off.....

Monday, September 21, 2009

Baby can you hear me

If you don't want to shed any tears right now, DO NOT watch this video.

It really hits home, brings mad tears and is so so so super true.

Beautiful news, the person that made this video had a baby this year... so let us not ever give up hope ladies.

I will not watch it again, once was enough.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

The Lost Symbol

I'm listening to the audiobook The Lost Symbol , Dan Brown's latest thriller now.

I have to say I am enjoying it very much so far. I am not usually a fan of this type of genre, I love thrillers, but not sure I would get into this one.

I saw Dan Brown on CNN and its selling like crazy now, so i decided to give it a try. Glad I did....

I saw the Davinci Code but not Angels and Demons. He said this one is currently in production for a movie.

Back pain treatment Cairo style

Super S has suffered with sciatic back pain on and off for years. It hasn't been around for a few years then all of sudden Super S decides to pull up some monster tree roots and of course it came back.

His self-treatment is usually leg exercises, his laying on a rolled up towel (suggested my chiropractor years ago, and it works) but for past week its gotten so bad he decided he had to go to the doctor.

So Thursday was his first session at a physical therapist/chiropractor. The doctor, a nice young guy, did a combination of TENS ( Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation), Ultrasonic Sound Wave treatment and chiropratic adjustments.

While he had Super S on the TENS unit, he put an ultraviolet red light I think it was, above his back and over the TENS pads on his back and butt. I was in the room with Super S as well and the doctor warned me, while pointing at the light "harmful to the eyes, do not look at it." Poor Super S looked like he was baking, i took pic with his mobile but I dare not post it, LOL.

Anyway, so after the doctor started the TENS session he yelled out to his nurse "bring the ultra sonic gel and a vibrator..." We died. We.really.died. I'm not sure what he meant by vibrator, but one never came, thank God.

He admitted later in Arabic to Super S that his English was not strong and that he was surprised he could understand me as I talked very slow and clear and that was helpful.

I understood what he was saying to Super S so I answered him I do that on purpose so I am easier to understand. I so wanted to tell him not to use the word vibrator as in English it is understood to be something I am so sure he was not asking for. Of course I didn't.

So his second session was Friday and the doctor wrote a prescription for an injection (anti-inflammatory  and pain relief) and and after Super S took it he is alot better. He will go for an MRI on Wednesday. The cost 1,600LE, approximately $291.00. I found out too that they do digital mammography, cost is 1,000LE, about $182.00. Gotta love cash prices without insurance company inflation interference.

Eid Mubarak, Kol am wentu bekheyr, Shana Tova and Happy Holidays to all of you celebrating them now.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

CrAzY week in Cairo

Its been a week of ups and downs. Emotionally torturing I will admit. Why? Not sure really. Well maybe its seeing all the parents and their children get ready for Eid al Fitr. This time of year the kids get new clothes and toys and fun treats and presents (think Christmas).

Maybe too it was holding so many cute little babies and seeing precious little ones everywhere. When we visit, when we have guests, at the market, walking, kids are just everwhere. I know I have mentioned before that Cairo is an especially kid-oriented place and so many things are focused around this these lucky little people. It doesn't always make me sad, its not like I am down and cry everytime I see a child, not at all. On the contrary, it makes me happy to see children. But I think with fasting, and trying my best to be especially spiritual this month I am more emotional than usual maybe?

So today Super S tells me his sister called. She had a client who is an RE, so she called Super S and put him the phone with this doctor. They talked for awhile, the doctor asked Super S what type of treatments of we have tried, how long etc, etc. His practise is like an hour and a half outside Cairo but said if we wanted to try a new doctor or center for IVF he would recommend and guide us. He said he even makes trips to Cairo to work in some IVF centers.

The same sister called our home later, Super S was not home. She told me after the doctor got off the phone with Super S, he said to her "Is he a doctor? He is the most imformed patient I have ever talked to!" Thats my boy!

See here, it seems people are not so informed when it comes to their health. I mean they leave EVERYTHING in the hands of the doctor and don't question much. (I am sure not everyone, but many people it seems are this way). Of course, Super S and I are so.not.this.way. Dr. Google is a part of the family and we research everything and always have tons of questions.

So Super S wants to try again. I want to try again. I am so scared and am not prepared yet to be let down again. I will get there, I always do, but must get my butt in gear if we are going to try another cycle. No stock pile on ice, will start from scratch.

Here's the dilema.....

We have had 3 IVF cycles that included 7 failed transfers, all done at the same center, with same RE. Its convenient for us, not too far (remember Cairo traffic is beyond words) and I like all the doctors and this center too.

We talked about switching to a new doctor, but the centers that we would consider are far away and a hell of a drive. And you know how often we have to go in during a cycle.

Are we crazy for thinking of convenience? I mean shouldn't we be willing to go to the ends of the earth for this?

We are willing, but we both agreed that the doctors and center we have been with are darn good and have a fabulous success rate. No matter how many things we try to question, did they do this right, could they have done it this way... it is ultimately in the Hands of God no matter what RE or center we go to. This we are sure of and this is what keeps us hopeful when it feels like you can't have any hope at all.

After we meet with my RE and discuss maybe a different approach/protocol if any needed, we both feel good with this and will try again, same place I think.

I'll let you know when the fun begins, again.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Cairo 2am... cooking!

Hey, i'm cooking again. I know you  are so tired of hearing about this, sorry. But thats most of what this month is about. Well not most, but a big part.

Tomorrows head count- 2 adults and one college aged girl, i dig that number.

Anyway i promise to write late this week about something other than cooking.

Miss you all and will catch up soon. xoxoxoxo

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Wonderful evening

Well it was lovely. I so could not do this everyday though.

Hectic and by the time I sat to eat I couldn't really. Happens to me everytime. You know when you are preparing and cooking you just can't relax and eat that much, and I am always making sure everyone has everything they need, but all in all it went wonderfully. The food came out amazing and was delicious I must say. They all enjoyed it.

The kids let me tell you, they are a handful! Sweet as ever but extremely, extremely active and mischievious.

Anyway another guest tomorrow for iftar but just one man, (thank God) Super S's friend. Then Friday and Saturday we will attend invitations, so I am looking forward to that. But next week I will do this all over again, Super S's two sisters, one brother and their children and their kids....

Have a great Thursday guys.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Dinner for 10 plus

Tomorrow, well later today actually (its almost 3am here) we are having a house full for dinner. Its all Super S's family so it will be fun!

This is the first time in a long time that we will have so many people over to eat at once. We do it every once in awhile, but prefer to invite Super S's HUGE family each on their own day. What makes the family so huge in addition to his now only two remaining brothers and three sisters are their children and their kids.  Anyway its fun and I love doing it. I am making mostly Egyptian food with a few twists.

They call a big dinner/gathering like this during Ramadan an "ozuma". So i got a big ozuma tomorrow man!

I made a few of the dishes tonight as they taste better when they sit and will make the rest and the meats and chicken tomorrow.

Here's the menu, what do you think? Enough, LOL!!!

- Roast baby chickens with vegetables
- Okra tomatoe stew with meat (really its awesome, i never thought I'd eat okra!)
- Beef with mushroom sauce
- Traditional roast beef
- Goulash (baked filo dough with ground beef center)
- Sauteed fresh green beans
- Jasmine Rice
- Moulekheya (green chopped vegetable- garlicy soup like dish, its very Egyptian)
- Lesan Asfoor Soup (orzo pasta browned and cooked in beef or chicken broth)
- Green mixed salad
- Various small plates of mezza (salads) Tahina, Hommos, Yogurt, pickles etc.

Pray for me..... kidding. It'll be fine and fun.

What could be better for me than seeing so many super adorable crazy little kids....I'm sure I'll tear up after they leave, but tears of happiness for them and their wonderful families and tears for me for wanting so much a family with kids too. I always do this, its positive though really. I feel so happy to be around Super S's family and all the kids.

Its a trip cause Super S's nieces are so young, well younger than me and some have 3 kids or more. God Bless em man. Anyway I am off and will let you know how it goes.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Happy Thursday, September 3rd, 2009

No special reason for wishing you a happy Thursday, September 3rd, 2009, just wanted to!

I saw another set of twins today while at the bank. Identical, girls and about 11 years old, sound familiar?

Maybe seeing identical twin girls twice this week is a sign for me to get going and open the magic IVF box again. Next month, God Willing.

Have a great rest of your Thursday!