Monday, July 20, 2009

On a shelf

Yes, I've been gone for a while. I work at a camp for gifted high school students during the summer. It used to be 2 weeks. But the "blessed" (read: accursed) governor cut the funding state-wide, so no more camps. Ours was the very last in the state of Ohio into the foreseeable future. Makes my fists clench a little.

But anyhow. It was wonderful. Each week changed me. I am thankful it happened, and thankful I was part of it. I'm thankful for the people I've fallen absolutely in love with because of it. I'm sad it's gone. But the glow of it isn't.

So that's one thing we're putting on a shelf.

Another thing is the trying. At least for now.

I don't remember what I posted last, but J's numbers are still low. Directly in IUI territory.
I'm not ovulating. It's CD20 right now and there's no sign of ovulation. And that's late, even for me.
We want me to go to Italy with him when he takes a group in May.

So we're stopping for now. We'll probably gear up in September for IUI starting in October.

I'm both relieved and empty. I've not by any means given up hope. I'm just putting it on a shelf til the fall.

Friday, July 10, 2009

so then

So, J's to be on a regimen of Ibuprofen and antibiotics for the next three weeks to fight whatever it is that's causing the white blood cells.

We're probably planning on starting IUI in September. Time to start working on my turkey baster fetish. Oooh la la.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Data entry

Got the test results back. His numbers have improved - way improved. Yay. His motility percentages have dropped. Un-yay. And the white blood cells are still there.

We'll hear back later today or tomorrow about exactly what that means, but it looks like we're squarely in IUI territory, with some concern about the white blood cells.

Monday, July 6, 2009


We live in a 160-year old farmhouse on what once was the edge of town. The Irish pub across the street was the milkhouse. The house was built in 1848. It has been around through all but a few of our nation's major wars. I wondered this weekend as I sat in the driveway and watched the fireworks what all this house has seen. We don't know much about the history of the people who lived here. Did someone walk out that front door and head off to the War Between the States (how very un-Yankee of me to call it that - but I can't quite bring myself to call it the War of Northern Aggression either)? WWI? WWII? Korea? Vietnam? Hm.

But I learned a bit about my family history.

I sat on the back deck of my parents' home and heard my grandmother talk about her father - how he liked ice cream, how he adored his wife, how he died, how he said to her after some testing that revealed 100% arterial blockage below his waist, "If there's a hell, I've been there and back." How he died the evening after he said that. How certainly that was the closest to hell he ever got, or ever will.

My aunt is the geneologist of the family and I heard about my father's family's history.

What's funny, she said, is that if you follow my father's parents' two lines directly back, you can't get very far at all.

My father's grandfather was a man named Rudolf Otten. He was born in Germany somewhere around 1898 and came over to the States in the 19-teens sometime. We don't know for sure which town he was from. We know nothing about his family. My grandfather doesn't know if he has aunts, uncles, cousins, or even what his grandparents names were. And what with the bombings in Germany - twice - there are no records. So that's where the paternal line stops. My great-grandfather.

My father's grandmother was an Irish woman named Mary Burke (my Irish friend out there -any relation to any Burkes?). Mary Burke was one of three children - Delia, the eldest, Mary, and a little brother. Her father ran off when they were young, and Delia made the trek across the sea when she was in her teens, in the 19-teens sometime. Their mother died, and Mary came over shortly after. Little brother spent some time in London, then went back to Ireland and breathed life back into the family farm. The Burke family is still there. My grandparents have met them a few times.

Delia married some Texan, a "bum" my grandpa says, and lived in New Jersey.

Mary married Rudolf, had six children, and lived in the New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania region. I'm unclear on exactly where. Mary (Mamie) was born first, then Charlie, Edward (my grandfather), Bobby (died as a child), Helen and Kathy.

Incidentally, though I never met Rudolf nor Mary, I have heard their voices. A recording was made when my father was quite young, and in it, you can hear my aunt as a toddler, my father as a young boy, my grandmother before one of her vocal chords was paralyzed, and my great grandparents. Each with their own accents.

I have yet to learn more about the Lees - my grandmother's side. I know my grandmother was the youngest of three - Eva Mae, Chester, and then her. I know her parents names were Charles and Mabel. I knew my great grandmother. I remember her as being scary and old. She was both scary and old, but then she did raise three children during a depression and all.

So there you have it. For now.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009