Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Kangaroo Girl

Hope everyone had a great Halloween!

We made it to a few houses before Buggins announced "ALL DONE HALLOWEEN!". When Buggins uses the phrase "all done", one ignores that at one's peril. The rest of the evening she spent standing by the door, waiting for trick or treaters. When the doorbell rang she would scream "BIG KIDS!!!".

Kids are fun.

Here are a coupla pics. (note the master carving)

All Blogged Out

I'm running low on motivation to update my blog. That is probably due to a number of factors, chief among them being that our cycle has not officially started yet (M is on the birth control portion of the program). But in addition to that, I'm really just feeling pretty bummed out by alot of the blogs out there and I've lost the desire to update. Too much bad news. Anyone have any good news? Please?

Plus, it came out in our couples session that M feels like I'm spending too much time reading and writing blogs and not enough time talking with her about OUR cycles. That's pure crap, by the way. But she said it, and she said in front of the THERAPIST which of course made me sound like some kind of a freaky internet weirdo. Trolling for infertiles. Come here, little infertile...want some candy?

I just read Songbird's blog; I haven't checked in on her in a while. I am so sad about her news. I just don't understand all these miscarriages. I mean, WTF? Anyway, her news is a week old, but please go lend some support.

Not much going on here. I've been working in the basement, trying to make it look nice. Installed some drywall for the first time, so that was interesting. The 1st peice I put in looks a whole lot different than the 10th and 15th and 20th. You can literally see how I progressed down the experience curve.

We got our IVF schedule. It's all going down on Thanksgiving week. Retrieval on Tues, Wed, or Thursday (T'Giving Day), with transfer 5 days later. So I guess we're staying home this year? I hope we get the really crappy, second string nurses who have to cover for the good ones while they take time off. It's always fun to see them bumbling around, bumping into eachother, trying to use the u/s maching as a telephone, etc.

Buggins is going as a kangaroo tonight. I'm taking her out on the town. If we stop by your house, and you're not there, then GOD HELP YOU. I'm bringing eggs, shaving cream, and m-80's.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Ooooh ooooh that smell...Can't you smell that smeeeellll

Yesterday was like 3 days long. It was truly a day I'd like to forget. Surely there are worse days, and my bad day in no way can compete with days that include a BFN, or a car accident, or anything of that sort. It was just a bad day.

It all started when we had to meet the "social worker". As part of our treatment, M and I had to sit down with a counselor to talk about all the various IVF related issues and how they affect us. She claimed she was not a gatekeeper in any way, and that she was not an "obstacle" we had to clear prior to beginning our cycle, but I think that was bullcocky. She wanted to make sure we weren't crazy people.

Counseling sessions with couples are really really hard. That was my first experience with it. I did NOT like alot of the things my wife said. Everything really came out into the open. That meeting really put me in a funk. Turns out, we have some serious issues. The social worker pretty much insisted that we go back and see her regularly, like once a week, until we can start to clear some things up. So I've got THAT going for me.

Then, as we were leaving the session, seething and angry at eachother for all the crappy things we said, M's cell phone rang. It was the Buggin's pre-school. Apprarently there was a really foul, unusual odor in the building, and even the fire department did not know what it was. So they had to evacuate, and all the kids needed to be picked up IMMEDIATELY. Well, guess what? M was in BOSTON, with me, and it would take a good hour to get to the school (we had to fit the social worker appt in during the 3 hours Buggins is in school). So it was cold out, Buggins did not have a warm enough jacket or gloves, and she was stuck in the frigging PARKING LOT waiting to be picked up. So M totally lost it. She felt as though her baby needed her, and she wasn't there, instead she was in the city focusing her attention on making another baby that doesn't even exist, and meanwhile her little baby that DOES exist was shivering in a parking lot. So it was clear to me that M could not make the drive from Boston to our town, given that she was sobbing and convulsing. So I drove her most of the way there, until she was calm and composed, and then dropped myself off a train station so that I could get my ass BACK to Boston and to work finally. M picked up the Buggins, who was having fun with her teachers in the parking lot. She was just fine, except her little hands were cold. They never did find out what the smell was. I suspect Buggins just let one fly; she does that from time to time and it really is pretty noxious.

So then, after they were home safe and I was at work, M and I got into a RIP ROARING fight on the phone about stuff that was said to the social worker. She hung up on me, and I called her back. I hung up on her, and she called me back. Yeah. One of THOSE fights.

But, the truth is, after we got through the fight, we were in a pretty good place. We understood eachother alot better than we did before, and I think that fight was good for us. We had a babysitter lined up for last night (it was parent teacher night at pre-school, but noxious gas cancelled it) so we decided to keep the babysitter and go out for a nice dinner. I'm glad we did. We are much better off now than we were before meeting with the social worker, but the journey was BRUUUTAL.

Anyway, it's sunny and it's Friday and things today are pretty good. So I have THAT going for me too.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Things I Think

I've decided that my blog is the perfect receptacle for all my absurd thoughts, half-baked ideas, and ridiculous theories. They are not necessarily good ideas, or intelligent or even well thought out. But they're mine. These are things I think.

1) I think I've grown spoiled by the level of comments on my blog over the last few months. Because I only got about 10 on my last post, and now I'm afraid you all have grown weary of me. Don't feel bad, you all hung around much longer than most of my ex-girlfriends. I think my wife might be growing weary of me too.

2) I think you should have to surrender your drivers license at a certain age, like 75. Now, I know there are plenty of 77 and 80 year olds who are perfectly capable of driving. There are also plenty of 13 and 14 year olds who are capable, but they can't drive. Sorry Grandma. Hand it over.

3) I think it should be a law that the President of the United States should have to populate half of his cabinet-level positions with people from other political parties. Abraham Lincoln had his "Team of Rivals", literally his cabinet was made up of his former political opponents. After he won office, he basically said something along the lines of "I don't feel I have the right to deprive the American public of these people's intellect and leadership" And it was like the most effective cabinet ever. There are NO checks and balances in a room filled with yes men. Abe Lincoln had it right. Too bad about the Ford Theater thing.

4) I think ailments like infertility, as well as cancer and any other type of ailment, cause the sufferer to wake up to the idea that people are, for the most part, totally selfish, self-absorbed, and insensitive. What a horrible discovery that is. I'd much rather not know.

5) I think all humans are constantly one tiny step away from losing all semblance of civility, and running naked in the streets throwing poop at eachother. We're all just animals. Look at how Boston reacted when the Red Sox won the world series. It was mayhem. We can all wear suits and get fancy degrees but we're all just one winning baseball game away from being a bunch of crazy monkeys.

6) I think our society should be like Asia, where they revere the elderly. People don't value experience nearly enough. Old people here are treated like they're crazy. (some ARE crazy). But they were once young, and they have been there. In ancient China or Japan, these people would have been held up like gods. We should pay MUCH more respect to our elderly. (We just should not let them DRIVE)

7) I think prisoners should get a bill after they get out of jail. For room and board.

8) I think the Secretary of Defense should have a military background. Call me crazy.

9) I think it's odd that those Segway scooters never really caught on. I suspect it's because there is no cargo space. Where do you store all your crap? Also, no one wants to be that first guy who buys one, and then everyone stares at as he goes by.

10) I think diamonds are precious just because we have decided that they're precious. It's up to us. Let's decide DIRT is precious. There, look, now everyone is rich.

11) I think electricity will be wireless someday soon. And we'll regale our offspring with stories of how we used to have to "plug things in" and how we had giant wooden poles along the streets holding "wires" that actually had to carry electricity from place to place.

Those are some things I think. What are some things you think? I'd be interested.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Tuesdays Are Pretty Much Worthless

Seriously. What is the point of them. On Monday, you know it's the first day of the week, so you're revved up and ready to go. It's painful, but you're just off a weekend and things are pretty good. Wednesday is "hump day", when you go "wow, middle of the week already, sweet...". Thursday is good because you're almost there, just one more day to go. Plus, you can go out on a Thursday night without guilt because, well, it's Thursday. And Friday, forget it. Everyone pretty much phones it in on Friday. Which leaves Tuesday. The shit day.

Happy Shit Day, everyone.

So M and I have been going back and forth on this "2 week decision" thing. She had a bit of a breakthrough last night when she realized that what she was lacking, and what she desperately needed, was a word of encouragement or a pep talk from someone knowledgeable about her situation (i.e. the Doctor). No one has ever said to her "M, based on your numbers here, I think there is a strong likelihood that you'll get pregnant from IVF. Maybe not the first time, maybe not the second, but chances are pretty good for you overall". She has had a pep talk from NO ONE except me, and I give TERRIBLE pep talks. Here's my pep talk: "Hey, buck up little camper, we'll all be dead in 100 years anyway, so why does it really matter?" Pure sunshine.

Remember when I was so happy that the Dr gave us his e-mail address? Well I dug it up and used it. I sent him a long note telling him the M was paralyzed with fear over a negative IVF, that she felt as though she has no reason to hope, and that she needed a word of encouragement or she was going to bail on the whole thing. He wrote back! He said everyone in that practice was "very optimistic that she would not only respond well, but also be quite successful!". He then went on to say that her only cycle so far was an IUI-IVF conversion, which in his mind "Doesn't even count since IUI and IVF protocols are very different". That was what she needed to hear. If we erase that bad transfer, then actually M has had NO treatment since we started trying for baby #2. All other cycles have been cancelled by either insurance or over/understimulation. That negative IVF really screwed her up, and if we can say "it didn't count", well, then she's in a much better place, isn't she. So it looks like we're going to do the IVF cycle.

Things I realized when I thought we were going to stop treatments:
1) The extra room we were saving to make a bedroom for Buggins #2 would be an excellent walk-in closet and sitting area, and we could break down the wall and make a gigantic master bedroom
2) With one kid we could go on SICK vacations every year with the Buggins. Like "oh, where are the Smiths going on their vacation? Oh, their inlaws in North Carolina? Nice. The Smarshys are going to Venice, and then skiing in the Swiss Alps."
3) Poopy diapers really smell very, very bad
4) Pregnant women fart constantly

These four things were helping me get comfortable with no more kids. So, maybe I'll need to refocus on these 4 things again someday. Or maybe not.

Monday, October 23, 2006

2 Weeks

M and I had a serious conversation this weekend. Actually, it was a series of conversations on a very important and ever present topic: infertility. Treatment for infertility, to be precise.

These conversations, along with the differences in the way M and I process and conduct these kinds of conversations, make me very sleepy. So we had to take breaks to prevent me from falling into a narcoleptic coma on the kitchen floor. To be honest, I'm not sure if this topic itself is what causes this reaction in me, or if it's M's reactions to this topic that do it (smart money is on the latter). Either way, I become one hell of a sedentary, slothful, somnolent son a bitch at the outset of one of these discussions. Just the thought of it makes me want to curl up under my desk and have a little nap. But I have a meeting in 15 minutes, so I'll just nap then.

As I've mentioned before, M is having a very difficult time in the few weeks leading up to the official cycle kick off. CD1 is fast approaching, and then it's back on birth control for a couple weeks. She is literally in knots over whether or not she can ever be put back in the situation of getting a BFN. Just the thought of it sends her into hysterical tears. See, I'm starting to realize something: it's not the treatment that she can't handle. Its the risk. She would really rather give up trying than risk going through another BFN. Having seen her at her last BFN, I can understand why. It was a total and complete breakdown. There are many things I don' know, but I DO know one thing: she can NEVER be in that situation again. I honestly don't know if she would live through it. She is very strong in a number of ways, but not when it comes to this. Now, that doesn't mean necessarily that she can never have treatment again, but it does mean serious steps need to be taken to give her the coping tools necessary to deal with another BFN.

And since we are just a few short weeks away from shots and treatment, we don't know that there's time for her to gain these coping skills. It would literally take years. So we have agreed: 2 weeks. She is going to decide within 2 weeks whether to continue trying for baby #2, or pack it in and get busy living the life we have (which is, admittedly, a pretty good life). We are extremely blessed to be able to contemplate this decision knowing that we already have a baby.

So, 2 weeks. If she still feels like she can't go through with it in 2 weeks, and if she feels that way consistently during this period, then that's it.

I also have 2 weeks. 2 weeks to get myself accustomed to the idea that I may be the father of only 1 child. I was sad after these conversations, and M was afraid I was angry with her. I had to explain that I wasn't angry, but the decision is one in which I obviously have a stake and the possible outcome makes me very sad. I'll need to grieve too.

Honestly, there are moments when I think it would be very nice to put this chapter behind us. We could make plans again, go on nice vacations, we'd have more money, etc. But then Buggins will do something so sweet and innocent and it will occur to me that she's a declining asset. Every sweet phase she goes through will be IT. We won't see it again. There's no backup. When she outgrows her cute clothes, we can't save them for her sibling. And then I feel like we'd be making a big mistake by stopping.

Anyway, that's where we are. This post is kind of serious, but what do you want, it's Monday. I'm sure M and I will go through periods in the next 14 days when we are convinced we should stop, and also that we need to continue.

Wish us luck. I have 5 minutes before my meeting. Going to lie down.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Daddy Try

Thank you all for your comments on my last post. I like it here.

OK, so I thought I would tell a little story that will hopefully help all of us remember why we are going through all this bullshit in the first place. A cute Buggins story will follow, so if you can't deal with that, may I suggest you take this time to peruse some internet porn, which, according to CNN, America is addicted to. I know I was when I was in business school. Now, if we can just combine porn and your weather pixies...now THAT'S an addiction worth having.

How do I segue from porn into a story about my daughter? I can't. But I must.

I think little kids can be so perceptive and amazingly caring and sweet in the most subtle ways. As a bit of background, Buggins has a little pink stuffed elephant. His name is "NuhNight". She loves him more than life itself. Sleeps with him, carries him around, shares her juice and food with him. Loves him.

One of her favorite things to do, particularly around bedtime, is to take NuhNight's incredibly soft, velvety ear, and rub it up against her cheek (think Linus and his blanket). She just rubs her cheek with it, and all is right with the world. GOD HELP YOU if she catches YOU trying to rub YOUR cheek with it, though. Seriously. NuhNight's ears have a special magical quality that she alone is allowed to enjoy.

So yesterday, as some of you may recall, was a bad day for me. I was frustrated, I was pissed, I was tired. I do an excellent job of hiding that from the Buggins, though. We went through the evening routine, "brushyteeth", PJ's, I read her a story on "Bigbed" (AKA the brick) and then I plopped her into her crib. She sat there looking at me for a minute, and started rubbing her cheek with NuhNight's ear. I noticed she was really looking at me. Toddlers aren't known for making continuous eye contact. A moment of silence occurred as each of us looked at the other directly in the eyes. Then she took NuhNight, held his ear out to me, and said "Daddy try?"

I stood there in shock. I took NuhNight, and slowly rubbed his ear up against my cheek. Oh, it was sweet. That ear is magic. As soon as I started rubbing her eyes lit up and she smiled. Then I handed it back to her and said "Thank you." She said "uh huh" and just lay down and went to sleep.

M could not believe the story when I told her. She takes care of the Buggins all day long and SHE never gets to rub NuhNight's ear. I hope she gets a chance someday. I hope you all get a chance someday.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

I Really DON'T Get It

I hate to cannibalize my own posts, I really do. More than one post in a day and you're just stealing readers from your other posts. But I just had to get something off my chest here.

You guys all seem to think I "get" it. That M is "lucky". M might be lucky for other reasons, but let me be brutally honest about something: I DON'T GET IT!

I DON'T understand why M has descended into the far reaches of hell before her cycle has even fucking STARTED yet!! And some of you are right, I didn't win any points for that post, alot about it pissed her off. But I'm not TRYING to win points here. This blog is not designed to be a "points gathering" vehicle. I'm trying to be honest and blog about the fact that I'm PISSED that my wife is such a total freaking basketcase, and that I DON'T understand why she reacts the way she does and that I think a positive attitude every now and then WOULDN'T kill her.

I'm convinced all your husbands feel alot like me. If there is anything I "get", it's how to recognize and articulate my own feelings. But just because your husbands may not be able to find the same tools to describe them, doesn't mean they don't have the same feelings! The husband who says "try to relax, it could still happen on its own" is trying to HELP! It may be clueless, but at least he's not saying "Screw you, go clean yourself up, put something frilly on, and go make my dinner"!!

If you guys are sensing some frustration here, you're right on track. I just had a fight with M over the phone. Not about the blog, or anything like that. It wasn't even a fight. It was M yelling about how she hates doctors and hates her friends and isn't sure she wants to even do this anymore and I'm holding the phone 2 feet away from my head and I can STILL make out every last word she's saying.

You ladies all treat eachother's blogs with such respect and non-judgment. How will you treat this? Maybe I'm hanging out in the wrong room. Maybe I need to find a community of clueless but well meaning guys who want to have conversations like this:

Clueless Guy #1: So what'd your wife do now?
Smarshy: I don't know. Threw some fucking fit about some awful shit she has to do in a couple weeks. It's bad.
Clueless Guy #1: Why'd she throw the fit today then?
Smarshy: I have no fucking idea.
Clueless Guy #1: Huh. Weird.
Clueless Guy #2: Why does she have to do all this bad stuff?
Smarshy: She wants another baby
Clueless guy #2: Oh, so she has elected to do all this stuff? She really wants to do it?
Smarshy: Oh yeah. She's just not sure she wants to do it.
Clueless guy#2: Huh? What? My head hurts
Clueless guy#1: If she's so bent out of shape, why don't you tell her to relax, and that everything will be ok?
Smarshy: I tried that
Clueless guy #1: And?
Smarshy: She punched me and started screaming and ran upstairs
Clueless guy #1: Huh? What? My head hurts
Smarshy: Is there a game on?

When I see you write comments to me about how much I get it and everything, I feel like a fraud. This makes no freaking sense to me. NONE.


It was nice while it lasted, Happy Fun Wife. I really enjoyed seeing you again. Your positive attitude and carefree outlook truly was infectious. We had alot of laughs. Like, remember that time you dressed up as Catwoman and I dressed up like Superman and we went at it for hours on the roof?

You don't? Oh wait, I dreamed that.

But still, you were such a pleasure to be around. We danced in the kitchen, sang ridiculous Ses.same Street songs in the car at the top of our lungs (you have a terrible voice by the way), went for long walks, played in the yard, and just treated life like its a party. Remember? You were throwing down the M.ike's H.ard L.emonade like you were some kind of bar room floozie. Good times. I'll miss you.

I hope to see you again soon. I'm not sure when that might be, since if the next cycle doesn't work, then we're going to do another, and then probably another. AND, if any of these cycles DO work, then you'll be pregnant, and we both know how you love THAT. The puking, the bloating, the constipation. Remember last time, when your ankles disappeared? That was so funny. You looked like a weeble! Again, good times.

And THEN, after pregnancy? It's a brand new baby. Remember that last one? She only slept during the day, but never at night? And she kept crying. And barfing. Oh man, you were so tired, I think you were legally insane! Sorry I didn't help more. I was a little clueless. I promise to do MUCH better, if we are ever lucky enough to be back in that situation again.

So I'm putting the best case scenario at 18 months. I'll probably see you again in a year and a half. Sure, there may be times when you pop in for half an hour here, 15 minutes there. But I won't see you again for an extended period of time for at least 18 months. But don't worry, HFW, I'll still be here waiting for you whenever you decide to come back. I may have a few more grey hairs and a few welts and bruises, but I'll be here. Because I love you. (Could you swing by for a few minutes around the holidays? Buggins and I would really like to see you then.)

HER, on the other hand. The one who visits when your gone? She's bad. I wish I could send her to the "naughty chair" like I send the Buggins when she whips her grilled cheese at my head. I may be paranoid, but I don't think Unhappy Mean Wife likes me very much. One thing is for sure, she HATES doctors. She has to start going to see them again soon. Which is why you're leaving. I understand. I wouldn't want to stick around for that either. Soon I'll have to start sticking UMW with shots. Let me tell you, UMW does not dig on the shots.

In a few weeks, UMW will have to start driving, WITH the Buggins, into the city every day to see doctors. As you know, UMW HATES driving in the city. She's kind a chicken that way. Get's all freaked out. Man. You should see it. But again, I don't blame you for hightailing it out of here.

I get sleepy when you're gone. I nap alot, like sometimes 2 hours on a Saturday. Since you've been visiting, I haven't taken any naps, I've been full of energy. Painting room in the house, yardwork, doing fun family things. I've had boundless energy. But UMW takes it away. I guess I'll be getting used to that new brick bed we bought.

I guess that's all I have to say, HFW. I just wanted to say bye, and to let you know that I understand why you have to leave and I will work very hard to try to make UMW less , well, Unhappy and Mean while you're gone. I'll see you in a little over a year, hopefully sooner. If you could just send me a note before you show up, that would be great. It would give me a chance to neaten up a bit.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Didn't Need To Know

I've got a big post a'brewin'. It's swirling around in my head. I'm going to start writing it now but to be honest, I'm feeling a little lazy and I may call it quits well before I finish. I just painted the Buggins' playroom, and on one wall, I used this awesome chalkboard paint to paint a 6' x 3' chalkboard in the middle of the wall. Once the paint dries, it turns any surface into a chalkboard! Isn't that cool? As it's drying, it really looks like a classroom. I can't wait until she scrawls things on it like "poop" or "fart". Fun.

Anyway, that's not what I want to write about. I will start out by saying that in the past, I've always been kind of an "It is what it is" kind of person. I'm not usually the type that gets jealous when I see babies, or when I see dads with their pregnant wives. I just never really felt as though by being pregnant, they had taken anything from me. Well, let me tell you, last night, that all went out the window. Everything changed.

You see, last night, I couldn't sleep. That mattress I made a big stink out of buying is too damn firm. We refer to it as the "brick". As in "Honey, are you coming to the brick?" We're thinking about returning it. Anyway, I was lying there around midnight and I decided to fire up the laptop to see what was happening with that crazy bastard Kim Jong Il and that other crazy bastard, his US counterpart. I decided to check my e-mail, and lo and behold, there was an e-mail from my ex girlfriend. We'll call her "Pill". I haven't heard from her in about 2 years. You see, we met in Australia when I was just 22, and we dated for 4 years. Age 22 to 26; those are some pretty formative years. We feel like we grew up together. Anyway, we broke up in '97, and remained vaguely friendly for a few years in a "send a Christmas card" and "forward an e-mail joke" kind of way. She and M have even met. But like all ex-relationships, Pill and I drifted away, just like we're supposed to. No bad blood, remembering only good times, have a nice life, etc.

Anyway, this e-mail I got was one of those mass e-mails she sent to about 100 people. Reading the distribution list was like reading a who's who directory of my life in the early 1990's. I knew as soon as I saw the ridiculous title "Announcing...." what this e-mail was about.

Pill had a baby. Another baby. Baby #2.

My face got RED hot when I read the e-mail. She had told me when she had baby #1, because I got the same stupid-ass e-mail that time, too. But that time, I was actually happy for her, because M was pregnant with Buggins at the same time. Now, here we are in infertility hell, and Pill is having ANOTHER baby. It was probably easy for her. She probably doesn't even realize that it's actually hard for some people to have babies. I know she's had an easy time of it in the past...Get this: trying for baby #1, she was 35 and assumed she'd have some problems. So she and her husband tried to get pregnant for TWO months before they made an appointment at an IVF clinic. At their first appointment, they did some testing: She was ALREADY pregnant.

Plus, the very fact that she included me, who she hasn't seen or spoken to in years, in that e-mail shows her insensitivity. And she KNOWS we had alot of trouble making the Buggins. Why the F*$& did I need to know about her baby? What are we, friends?

Now I have to say, by many metrics, my situation in life is better than hers. During those years we were together, we did alot of talking and dreaming about the kind of life we wanted for ourselves. Well, I ACHIEVED that life. I live in the very waterfront town Pill and I dreamed about living in someday. She lives in some crapheap in a truly mediocre town. Her husband is average in every way. I married a beautiful women who I am totally, absolutely nuts about. She married a kind of dorky, weird guy who she didn't love that much, but who worships her. She settled for him because she thought she was running out of time (her drunken words one night when we bumped into eachother at a party, not mine). I make much more money than they could ever hope to make. In almost all superficial respects, and in quite a few meaningful respects, I was WINNING, dammit.

Until now.

I am SO PISSED that Pill had another baby, that she gets to give her first baby a sibling. I am so FURIOUS that that dorky little dickweed gave Pill something I am unable to give my wife, despite the fact that I believe M deserves it 1000 times more than her. And, I am PISSED that she even sent me the stupid e-mail. Because now it was after midnight, I was upset, and I was NEVER going to be able to sleep now, brick or no brick. And I knew that in the morning I was going to be put in a situation of being pissed about something and wondering if bringing it up to my wife was going to upset her.

For you clever folks out there...yes, I must have told M, since I am writing this blog post. She was not nearly as upset as I was, which was a rather nice reversal of the norm.

Plus, Pill named the kid a stupid name. I won't say what. But it's stupid.

Friday, October 13, 2006

At Least I Don't Live In Buffalo

Man, 3 feet of snow? In October? Forget it.

Thanks for your interesting replies to my last post. I think I may have mistakenly given you all the impression that M was not giving me any say in the matter. That could not be further from the truth. I agree with Krista - she was letting me know how she was feeling, and soliciting my feedback. It was more a theoretical exercise than a practical concern of mine. It's just interesting to me that, in situation where the woman DOES say she's through, there's really nothing the husband can do. Each has veto power over the other. But M would never make a unilateral decision like that for a number of reasons, chief among them is that we just depend on eachother's opinions too much. That's such a huge decision, she would never feel comfortable making it on her own. Plus, even is she did feel comfortable making it, she feels like it wouldn't be the right thing to do to not include me in the decision.

Ok. On to the topic of the day: Lupron.

M used to work with a girl who was going through IVF. Let's call this girl "Beth". I never met Beth, but I heard about her every day (sometimes I listened, sometimes I didn't). At the time, M and I knew NOTHING about IVF, not a thing. We had not officially started fertility treatments for #2 yet. When I heard about her, I felt no connection or empathy, because I couldn't relate to her situation. But I did feel bad for her. She had gone through like 3 failed IVF cycles. She was getting in trouble from her boss for leaving work all the time to go to RE appointments, she was all bloated and totally cranky. She was so bloated, she had to wear maternity clothes! That's WHACK.

So anyway, M and Beth reconnected by phone yesterday. I'm happy to report that Beth is pregnant! But now that M is more knowledgeable about IVF and IF in general, they really got into a big discussion about it. It turns out that Beth's main problem from IF (the bloating, etc) was from Lupron. Her FIL is a doctor (not sure what kind) and he had an absolute fit about Lupron. He said it was a very dangerous drug and that no woman should go on it. He said he was sure that in a few decades, there was going to be a huge outbreak of uterine cancer, and they would realize that there was a direct link to Lupron taken during IVF. Apparently, Lupron is manufactured for the treatment of endo, and even the drug manufacturer recommends that it NOT be used for infertility treatments. This guy even called Beth's RE and told him all this, and the RE admitted that while it is a dangerous drug, and even though the manufacturer recommends it not be used with IF, the amounts being used per cycle are so low that they pose no danger to the woman. Dr. FIL replied that may be true, but for those people going through 3,4, 5 IVF cycles, the dosage was no so low anymore.

Anyway, the FIL eventually piped down, Beth went on the Lupron, and now she's pregnant.

I just add this story to the huge pile of evil stories I have heard about Lupron, and Mrs. Smarshy will be going on it soon., which has me quaking in my wingtips.

Has anyone NOT had a bad experience on this stuff, and has anyone else heard about this link to uterine cancer?

Thursday, October 12, 2006


First of all, what's up with blogger today? I haven't been able to get on the site. Anyone else encounter that?

Ok, so I've been writing alot recently about how nice this little IF break has been for me and Mrs. Smarshy. She's been in a good mood, she's feels healthy and energetic, yadda yadda yadda, life is good. I missed her when she was in the midst of infertility hell. Well, I'm not the only one who is really happy to have her back. Not surprisingly, SHE'S quite happy to be her old self again. It's not just that she feels better now because of a break from fertility, either. She is finally free of a whole host of medical issues that I could go into another time. She had major throat surgery in March to fix a blockage in her trachea which made her last pregnancy particularly sucky. Then she spent a series of nights in so much pain that I kept having to take her to the emergency room. That ended with her gall bladder coming out. So she is finally feeling good right now. Better than she's felt in a long, long, time. Because of that, she told me something last night that I was NOT expecting to hear.

Mrs. Smarshy is thinking about packing it in. Closing down the baby factory. Boarding up her uterus.

She says she's been looking at the Buggins alot lately and thinking that life is pretty good the way it is. She feels as though if she goes through with more cycles, she'd be giving up another year and half of her life - either by being in IF treatment hell or by being pregnant and then a mother to a newborn - two experiences she could do without. Let me tell you, Mrs. Smarshy did not dig on being pregnant. It's almost become sacrilegious in our society to admit that, but it shouldn't be. She hated the bloating, and the heartburn, and the nausea, all of it. PLUS the complications from her screwed up trachea. And the first 3 months of the babies life aren't exactly a fun time, that's for sure. It's all a foggy, sleepless dream. It's no fun for the baby either - I mean, why do you think they cry the whole time?

So anyway, there it is. She's thinking about not continuing. Now, I have to be honest, I think she will continue. That's a huge decision to make, and I think she knows that you don't make it based on how you feel in an instant. You need to wait and see how you feel over a longer period of time. And she needs to make sure she won't change her mind 6 months later, after we've already pissed off the Dr. and gotten off the schedule and need to re-apply for insurance. Mrs. Smarshy may look 23, but she ain't. She does not have time to pack it in now and resume in a year or so. If she closes up shop, it's closed. No more shop. In fact, it would probably be razed to make a parking lot.

So this all leads me to ask, do I have any say in this? The truth is, I really don't. I WISH I did, but if a woman decides not to try to get pregnant through IVF any more, the husband really is just kind of left there with his dick in his hands. I mean I guess I have the same power, right? I could say I'm not jerking off into the petri dish any more. What could she do? But then again, that would never happen. No guy would pass up the chance to jerk off.

I think she's kind of "trying this decision on for size", to see how it makes her feel. I have to be honest, I would be incredibly sad not to have a sibling for the Buggins. I never imagined having only one child. But then again, we are incredibly lucky to have her. Maybe that's enough?

I don't know. The next cycles starts in a couple weeks, if she goes through with it. I'm assuming she will. We'll see.

Where do you all stand on this? Would you give your husband a vote if you wanted to cash it in?

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

I met Serenity!

Seriously, I mean it. I met Serenity. No, I didn't get her autograph, and no, I didn't get a picture, but I swear to God, I met her! You have to believe me!!

I really do feel like I met a movie star. She's like the Mack Daddy (um, Mommy) of bloggers. I find her writing to be heartfelt, honest, intelligent, and funny. And to think, Serenity and I actually KNOW eachother now. I even know her REAL name. You want to know it? Ok, it's uiadbv shvhhlfg. Don't tell her I told you.

As it happens, Serenity and I both work in downtown Boston, just a few blocks apart. In fact, when Mrs. Smarshy was still working, only about 6 months ago, they worked in the SAME building. So we decided to meet for lunch, and today was the day. I must admit, I was a bit nervous! Never had, or met, an internet friend before. I mean, what if she was a wacko? Or worse, what is she was a DUDE! And this whole thing was a farce! Or maybe she was with Dateline NBC, running a special about IF bloggers who scheme with eachother to meet up in various downtown locales. I'd go to shake her hand, and Stone Phillips would jump out from behind a plant. Busted.

So we decided to meet in front of her building. She told me what she was wearing, so that I would recognizer her. I got there at the appointed time, and I couldn't remember what she said she was wearing. My wife is right - I don't listen! So I was standing there, awkwardly, realizing that there were 3 or 4 young women within a 15 foot radius, and any one of them could have been her. I was about to go up to a woman and say "I'm Smarshy...Are you Serenity?", but just then I noticed a woman walking towards me and it was like we'd known eachother for months. It was clearly her. For those of you who are wondering, and for those of you who put value on things as superficial as looks, Serenity is beautiful. Confident, funny, charming. Very kind eyes, and a warm smile. Just as you'd expect.

We grabbed a sandwich and sat down to eat, and 90 minutes just flew by. Oh - and get this - she bought ME lunch! I protested, but it was done before I could stop it. And I didn't even have to put out!

As we started talking, I realized how very odd it was that this person, who I literally had JUST met, knew more personal and intimate things about me than friends I've had for decades. And I felt totally comfortable telling her even more. I've never talked about this stuff with anyone, except Mrs. Smarshy. Once it started coming out, there was no stopping it. I'm sure she wanted to get up and leave after 30 minutes, but I just kept talking. Of course we talked about her recent BFN, and I spoke on behalf of the whole blogosphere when I told her how sorry I was. She has a good plan ahead of her, and she and J are going to be great parents someday, that's for sure. Just not sure how or when. But someday soon.

We made plans to do it again soon! She want to hang out with me AGAIN! We are totally friends now.

That's my review of meeting Serenity. Of course, I won't be posting this until she writes in her blog about what it was like meeting me. If she writes that I'm an annoying shit, I'm TOTALLY deleting this and writing bad stuff about her.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Sunday Evening Reflections

Sitting here on the couch, dirty martini on the coaster (M makes me use them), listening to some crazy-ass kid music CD on the stereo. Buggins seems to dig it.

I hope every one had a good weekend. Shout out to RC, an anonymous reader who de-lurked to let me know that there is a guy out there reading my blog. Thanks RC, happy to have you along.

I got a haircut this weekend at Mr. Jim.my's Hai.r Company. Yes, that's the name. It's a barber shop in a strip mall. I'm a pretty classy, important guy. I get Mr. Jimmy himself to do it. Not some half-wit employee.

Anyway, I bring this up because I remember something very annoying that people used to say to us when we were trying to make the Buggins. They'd find out we were trying to get pregnant, and they'd say something extremely douche-baggy like "Ugh, you don't know how lucky you are, to still be childless. You don't know it, but you're in the time of your life right now. Enjoy it". I'm sure many of you have heard that statement too. Ignorance run amock.

Anyway, once you actually have a baby, these types of bullshit comments don't exactly end. They just change. Take Mr. Jimmy, for example.

Mr. Jimmy: "So, you guys going out tonight?"
Me: "No, we have a little buggins. Can't remember the last time we went out."
Mr. Jimmy: "This is the time of your life, when they're that small. You don't know it, but it is"
Me: "Oh, I know it."
Mr. Jimmy: "No, you don't know it. But it really is. The time of your life. You just don't know. But you will someday."
Me: "No, seriously, I know it. It's the time of my life."
Mr. Jimmy: "Oh no, you just don't know. But trust me. Time of your life."
Me: "Listen, you A-hole, I'll tell you what is definitely NOT the time of my life, this STUPID-ASS conversation."

Alright, I may have only thought that last line.

On another subject, I have to give a giant shout out to my extremely awesome wife, Mrs. Smarshy. She is going through a PARTICULARLY awesome phase. And I say awesome with the biggest Boston accent I can muster, given that I'm from Connecticut.

Since we have been forced by insurance to take a couple cycles off, there is not a drop of evil IF-related meds in her system. Her body and her mind are her OWN. And, because we know we are kicking off a new IVF cycle at the end of October, we have a gameplan and a sufficient supply of hope. So there is nothing we're supposed to be doing, charting, watching, poking, or counting. And we don't feel like we're slacking, because we have a good plan, and it's not too far in the future. So it's just time to be us, to enjoy the Buggins, and to be awesome.

I have to tell you, my wife is the happiest I have seen her in at least a year. She is in a good mood, she's silly, energetic, and so much fun. Honestly, I totally forgot how much fun she can be. It's literally like the woman I married just popped in for a visit.

I am so happy to have her back. I recognize I will lose her again, in just a few short weeks. But this brief period has reminded us how close we are, how compatible we are, and how much fun we have together. For those of you who are wondering if you might benefit from some time off, particularly those of you with the time to do it (in your 20's or early 30's), I want you to know that in our case, this time off has recharged us for many cycles in the future. Hopefully we only need 1 more cycle, though.

Other reasons why my wife is so awesome right now:
1) She started drinking again. HALLELUJAH. I just bought her a whole case of Mi.ke's Har.d Lemonade. I have to be honest, I get a little thrill each time I see her reaching for drink #2. It's not because I'm excited that she's catching a buzz, it's because it means she's relaxing. She's typically not a very relaxed person. Plus, after a couple drinks it's much easier to get in her pants. (Wait, was that out loud?)
2) TV season is back in full swing. All her trashy, ridiculous shows, in all their cheesiness, are lighting up our living room on a nightly basis. America's Next Top Model, The Bachelor, Project Runway, Deal or No Deal. Plus, any MTV show about hot 18 year olds. Every wonder who on Earth watches that crap? Yeah. It's Mrs. Smarshy. And it makes her HAPPY.

Lastly, we bought a mattress. We ended up choosing a Tempur-Pedic, one of those memory-foam NASA mattresses. For the price we paid, we could have gone on a fairly nice vacation. But my hope is that the increased comfort will keep my wife in her current state just a little bit longer.

That's all I got -

Friday, October 06, 2006

Is That Mock Blood?

First off, please send good wishes and support to Serenity. A negative test sucks, no matter how you slice it.

Old Business:
Thank you foreign friends, for your interesting answers to my last question. A couple of points I want to respond to: I really believe we DIDN'T elect Bush the first time. We elected Gore. The second time, he was elected more because Kerry is kind of a weenie, and because Bush scared the crap out of us by telling us that Osama was coming for each of us if we voted for Kerry.

One of the problems with this country is the the playing field is not exactly level. Republicans just have much more money than Democrats, and money = power = votes. When Republican are in office, they have double power - the power of the office AND the power of corporate money. Almost unstoppable. It takes the Perfect Candidate to beat that, and the Democrats have yet to serve him/her up.

I am not a Democrat, but I vote democratic on many issues. I vote Republican on probably more issues. But the fact remains that I dislike Bush with red-hot intensity. He embodies all that I hate in this world: ignorance, arrogance, stubborness, greed. If I had my way, he would face prosecution for war crimes after he leaves office.

The FBI and CIA will now be opening a file on me after posting this. Good thing they don't talk to eachother.

Another thing: A few of you mentioned Gun Control. I vote Democratic on this. I don't understand guns. I think it should be illegal to buy or own a device whose sole purpose is to kill humans. And if a hunter wants to buy a gun, I think they should have to go through a rigorous, month long pychological examination at their own expense before taking possession of the gun.

Still, many others think that guns would still fall in the wrong hands if they were illegal. This argument does not hold water with me, and I don't understand why it holds water with anyone.

Ok, on to New Business: **Warning, Buggins is mentioned below...

M had her mock transfer yesterday. Since we have no childcare for the Buggins, M had to drive into the city with her and I left work to take care of Buggins while M was getting "mocked up".

So I get to the hospital at the appointed time, in order to meet up with M and take control of Buggins. As I leave the elevator, turn the corner, and begin walking down the very long hallway, I see the Buggins at the far end of the hallway, playing on the chairs. She is outside of the clinic door that leads to the waiting room, which is open. I begin to wonder as I walk towards her, "Hmmn, that's odd. There's the Buggins. Why is she alone? Where is M? Surely she has not gone into the clinic and left our child out here in the hallway in this giant scary city hospital all by herself."

I start to pick up my pace down the hallway, and Buggins sees me and starts screaming "Hi Daddy! Hi Daddy!" As I almost reach the end of the hallway, and I'm about to scoop up my baby, M comes walking out the door and stands between the Buggins and me. Her face is drenched with tears, her eyes are puffy, and she's holding a bandage around her hand.

My first thought: "Oh, for FUCKS SAKE. What on EARTH has happened now."

M explained that Buggins kept asking for "numanums", which are tiny little tangerine flavored mints that M buys from Star.bucks. Yes, Buggins calls them "numanums". Anyway, these things are tiny, like 1/8 th the size of an altoid. WAY to small to be picked up by Buggins' chubby little sausage fingers. So M got one out and attempted to place it, every so sweetly, on Buggins tongue. Rookie mistake.

Buggins BIT M's finger. But it hard. Bit it long.

Bit it with all her might, as M screamed in agony and had the clinicians running to her aid. They gave her bandages and a tissue to stop the bleeding. Yes, bleeding. If someone asked M if she bled at her mock transfer, she's have to say yes. From the bite of her 2 year old devil child. Even Steve Irwin, God rest his soul, knew better than to stick his finger in a 2 year old's mouth, for Pete's sake.

So I had a serious talk with Buggins and made her apologize, got M situated and calmed down, and then they came out and told M they were ready for her. (We are in the hallway of the hospital, not in the waiting room of the clinic, for obvious reasons). So in she goes, and literally like 15 minutes later, out she comes, saying "all done..."

That was IT? A mock transfer takes 15 minutes? Jeez Louise. And just so you know, you future mock transfer havers, she said it didn't hurt at all. And let me tell you, she's a baby about pain. If it had hurt AT ALL, I would have heard ALL about it.

So that's the story of the Mock T. We'll probably get billed for the bandaid.

** By the way, Buggins isn't really a devil child. I think she didn't let go of the finger right away because when M screamed it scared her, and when some people get scared they clamp down like a vice.

Or, she may be a devil child.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Just a Couple Random Thoughts

My brain has been a bit empty lately. We're in insurance limbo, and our next cycle starts next month, so there isn't much to say on the fertility front. That's why I've been thinking about your weather vixens, and digging through poo, and other non-IF related things.

But I do have a couple of random thoughts to share today.

1) Is it just me, or do you feel like you've passed some hard SAT-like test when you get the word verification jumble correct when leaving a comment? It really makes you question whether what you have to say is worth the trouble. I mean, is it worth it to take this incredibly difficult brain teasing test just to pass on the message "You go girl!" or "((hugs))"? (Incidentally, I have never written those comments on any blog). If I'm going to use up a good 50% of my brain cells on that quiz, I better be breaking some new ground in terms of comment brilliance.

And just so you know, if I have never left a comment on your blog, it's because I keep failing your test.

2) M is having a "mock transfer" today. Should I be sneaking off to the men's room for a "mock collection"? And since it's mock, would I even need to do that in the men's room? Can I do it in my office?

3) Every time the Buggins goes to her pre-school, she brings home with her some new strain of crazy illness that she gets over in about 3 hours while I'm down for the count for days. It's like she's the White Man and I'm an Indian. My immune system can not take this anymore. They should have those radiation hose-down stations at the entrance to her school like thay have at the center for disease control or at nuclear powerplants. She has to step through that thing before coming home. We'd save a bundle on tissues and Ny.quil (we'd probably buy N.yquil anyway, for recreational purposes).

4) M and I need a new mattress. Any suggestions? Thinking about a tempu.rped.ic memory foam one. Anyone have one of those? I can't even seem to figure out how much they cost online. Have to go to a "store" and talk to "people". Yecch.

5) A question for you readers outside the US: What do you think of Americans? Do you think we're all like George Bush? Or do you think that all people everywhere are pretty much the same, but our leaders are a bunch of nutjobs? And in addition to being proud to be from where you are from, are you also, separately, proud to NOT be American? I've always been fascinated by how our "friends from abroad" view us.

I guess that last one got a little serious. Sorry about that.

That's all I got for now, my little blogging babes. And you too, Treggles. The only dude who reads my blog.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

I Have A Confession To Make

Don't worry, this post has nothing to do with poop. Or with anything having to do with my digestive tract, either upper OR lower.

My confession today is much more serious than that. My confession is that I lust after, and am in love with, someone who is not my wife.

Who is it, you ask? I won't hide it. I'll tell you, because I'm proud of it. It's those little animated weather girls on some of your blogs. You know the ones, they are standing there, in sexy clothing, arms playfully behind their backs, eyes raised slightly upward in a "come hither" glance. Left leg kicked out a bit in a subtle sign of rebellion. Maybe showing just a bit of midriff. Right in the middle of the box entitled "Weather in My Corner of the World". Jenny from The Infertility Block has one. So does Hope548. I love Songbird's too. I waste hours of my day staring at them, wishing I could "weird science" them out of the blogosphere and into my home. And it's not just lust, I'll have you know. It's true love. And I know it's reciprocated. I mean, you CAN'T tell me they don't love me too. Just look how they look at me, all pouty and a little naughty. Oh yeah, baby. I know the weather. And the weather is HOT!

And no, this is not the first time I've had sexual feeling towards a cartoon (I prefer to call them "Animated Americans"). I mean, what red blooded American pre-teen didn't have a soft spot (or a hard spot, as it were) for Jessica Rabbit? But it was when I first laid eyes on Josey and The Pussycats that I first knew what it meant to be a man.

I know that society will condemn us, and our love. They are afraid of that which they do not understand. Our love trandscends human understanding. And we will likely not be able to be together in this life. But there is always the afterlife, my loves.

Until then, when you bloggers are reviewing your stats and you see a ton of hits from the Boston area in the middle of the night, be not alarmed. I'm just spending some quality time with my ladies.

Monday, October 02, 2006

You Sickos

I find it interesting and noteworthy that the day I got the most traffic, had the most pageloads, and received the most visitors since I started blogging was the day I wrote a post about poop.

I have written insightful posts about comparing infertility to sci-fi movies.

I have pondered the point at which IF should be cast aside in favor of a happier present.

I have shared pictures of my wife and The Buggins frolicking in the sandy dunes.

But all of those wonderful, intelligent posts COMBINED did not garner the level of attention that my fecal exploits did. And for that, I am truly humbled. The say sex sells. I know what sells more than sex. Poo.

Now, preamble aside, let's get to what you all really want to know. What did I do about the poop.
I did more soul searching regarding this one decision than I did over whether or not to propose to my wife.

I knew in my heart, and in my mind, that clean was clean. And look, dogs EAT their poop, for Christ's sake, and their mouths are cleaner than ours. So for me, it wasn't a decision based on fact. It was a psychological decision. "Will my wife think of it every time she kisses me?" "Will I EVER, TRULY be clean, if one of my teeth has been lodged in poop?" "How the hell will I actually retrieve it without puking?" Much tossing and turning.

I decided to go for it. In part, what prodded me in this direction was the knowledge that M has to get a mouthguard because she grinds her teeth. Insurance doesn't go near it. The price? $500. So the question remained, how could I capture my crown in the least painful way? Susan noted the problem...I could not go in the toilet. There's a little hole in the bottom of the bowl that a little crown could easily get lost in.

So I thought long and hard about this on Sunday. As I mentioned, my digestive system had shut down in terror. It was clear to me that I had at least until Sunday night or Monday morning to make the decision.

I came up with an idea:

The Buggins has this perfectly good Elmo Potty, and God knows SHE'S not using it.

Now, before you split your sides thinking about a 6'5" guy trying to sit on a baby potty, please note the green bucket insert in the middle. I simply took that out, placed in the regular toilet, and did my bid'ness.

I put on the mask I stole from the OR when the Buggins was born. I knew that thing would come in handy some day. I decided that first, before I started slicing and dicing, I would take a cursory look over the entire exterior just to see if maybe, by chance, my crown was visible without me having to dig too much.


There it was.

I quickly extracted it, washed it with soap and water, and put in it a ziploc bag. I popped the bag in my briefcase and bounded up the stairs where I woke up M with the happy news "I GOT IT!" I forgot that it was 5:15am. She was not nearly as excited as I was.

So anyway, I got dressed for work with an extra spring in my step, and headed of to the dentist. When I got there, I handed the hygenist the baggy and proudly exclaimed "I may have swallowed it, but I found it!!".

She had no idea what I was talking about, but her eyes betrayed her. She was totally grossed out. She went on to explain that she was out in Friday, and the good doctor, who I never realized was Jewish, was OUT OF THE OFFICE today. Yom Kippur. You think someone maybe could have mentioned that to me on Friday?

The hygenist did my cleaning, and informed me that the tissue around my missing tooth was very inflamed, and she would not be comfortable putting the crown on without the doctor. She said there was a chance he would have to cut away some of the tissue. Super.

So, I sit here, still missing a molar, which is now residing in the sterilizing machine at my dentist in the city. My instructions to her: "Sterilize this like you've never sterilized anything in your life".

Appt with the doctor scheduled for 7:30am tomorrow. I look forward to this little chapter being over, so I can focus my attention on seeing how many hits I can get by writing about thick cervical mucus and spotting with clots.

A Quick Comment

I have to add a comment here, but I won't divulge my decision regarding the last post yet because it's still up in the air for a variety of reasons that I will explain hopefully today or early tomorrow.

I can understand the psychological issues. I mean, poop is gross.

However, the fact remains that sterilized is sterilized. It means it's CLEAN. The nurse told me on the phone it would be by FAR the cleanest thing in my mouth. It would be the cleanest it's ever been since it was first put in there, about 10 years ago.

But again, poo is poo.

But again, clean is clean.

And $700 (yes, it went up) is a CRAPLOAD of cash for such a stupid thing. Yes, I do have good dental insurance. Without the insurance, it would be $1500.

Anyone change their minds?

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Smarshy's Question Of The Day

Here's a straightforward and compelling question:

If you were told that the next time you took a, um...Bowel Movement, there would be a $500 bill rolled up inside your stool, would you go after it?

I mean, of course it would be able to be cleaned, etc. But the fact remains that you'd have to go in for it. Nay, SEARCH for it. And it was rolled up in a very, very small little ball. You would have to find some way to capture it, separate it, and extract your treasure.

(For those of you totally grossed out right now, I would like to direct you to the subject matter of your OWN blogs....thick cervical mucus, heavy spotting with clots... I mean, that's just NASTY.)

Now, back to the subject matter at hand. Where have I come up with such an insightful, engaging question, you may wonder? Because I currently find myself in this very situation, with a slight twist.

You see, on Friday I had a delicious piece of pizza for lunch. BBQ chicken, if you must know. M and The Buggins gave me their colds, so I wasn't feeling great and I could barely taste the pizza, but what I could taste was magnificent. If you ever get the chance to eat BBQ chicken pizza from my company's cafeteria, I strongly recommend you do so.

Anyway, I've also been struggling a little lately with a loose crown in the back of my mouth. Right side, bottom, all the way back. One of the big ones. A molar. One of the working teeth. The Mack Truck of the dental set. Don't remember when I got this crown, but somehow it got loose. They are NEVER supposed to get loose, by the way. But this one did. For the last 10 days or so, whenever I accidentally chewed with my right side, off it popped. I became an expert in slipping the sucker back on with no one noticing.

Why did I let it go so long? Because I'm not that smart. Also, because I have a dentist appt next week for a cleaning, so I figured I'd have him slap on some crazy glue while I was there. I hate going to the dentist, or any doctor.

Back to the pizza. I was savoring every last bite, while at the same time getting pizza grease all over my mouse as I surfed the web. When I finished, I cleaned my desk and turned to throw out my trash, when my tongue gently brushed up against a rather rocky surface where my nice smooth crown had once been.

I ate the freaking thing.

At least, I assume I ate it. It was there when I started eating my pizza, and it was gone when I was done.

So after I sat there with a stupid look on my face for about 10 minutes, I called the Dentist to ask how serious it would be to go the weekend without the crown. Not serious at all, they said. But then that's not all they said.

"Can you retrieve it?"

"Uh, no. I ate it."

"Yes, I mean when it emerges out the other end, can you retrieve it? We could of course completely sterilize it."

"Lady, there is not enough sterilizing solution in the WORLD..."

"OK, your choice. But if you can find it and bring it with you, it will save you about $500."

Whoa. 500 bucks. That would leave a mark on the checking account. I didn't fully realize that my problem was no longer just that there was no crown for them to put back on, it was that they'd have to make a whole NEW one, and that's not cheap. That was one F'ING expensive piece of pizza.

So I'm sitting here, still sick as a dog, on Sunday night pondering my next, um, move. It would likely show up in the next round, but it seems my digestive system has completely shut down out of sheer terror over what I'm contemplating.

Any suggestions?