Firstly, another countdown to when I leave to go to Thailand for the next cycle. I have been booked in for awhile but I have wanted to keep it under wraps for a bit because of a ‘time limit’ issue that I have been working through. In short, I have been feeling very pressured because I have constantly had time limits ie. I not only need to lose weight, I need to lose it in a certain time, we need to get ourselves back together financially but also within a certain time. Time limits had previously been a huge motivating factor for me but it seem that the rebellious side of me had been rebelling against them for a bit. Now I am a bit more on track. These few sentences do not convey the pressure that I feel that I am constantly working to a time frame - I have been trying to write a post on it for about a month and I think I am going to have to give up trying to express this and just say 'it's a lot of pressure'.
It has been a very fine balance working out when to next go to Thailand for a cycle. Once again, I will be going without my darlings JourneyMan and JBB but I am hoping that my bestie will be able to make the trip with me – that will be a lot nicer than going on my own! The balance comes where I want to give myself enough time to make a difference to my weight, our financial status, state of mind as well as our house but not too far in advance that I feel that it will never be over. I am not sure if I have said this on the blog before but we have decided our end time. We have decided that if the next frozen cycle does not work, we will have one more fresh cycle (with a new donor) and then try with any embryo’s frozen. I figure that we would be finished by the end of 2013 – which seems pretty far off but at least there is an end date now.
Secondly, I am in need of losing a great deal of weight, so that is the other ticker. I am hoping that this will motivate me towards my goal of weight loss. I had been kidding myself on the last two cycles that my weight didn’t matter and honestly, maybe it doesn’t but I am not willing to go into another cycle with doubt. This is one part that I can control so I am going to help myself out here. I need it for the health reasons anyway. I have surprised myself again by letting my weight get away from me - seriously, am I learning impaired?
Anyway - the weight loss is only one goal that I am going for in the 150 days until I embark on another cycle in Thailand. Here are my overall goals for the next 5 months:
My physical self needs some work. I am still very exhausted though a trip to the naturopath has me taking magnesium, vitamin d and iron which I noticed has helped out a little (it doesn't help with tiredness derived from a little cheeky man getting up at 3am a few days in a row but nevertheless, there has been a little increase in energy). I am focusing on detoxification, losing weight, strengthen my body through exercise, nourishing it with high quality foods and making our lives as chemical free as possible. At the end of the day, when we went to Thailand for the cycle that we got JBB, I felt good about myself - I wasn't in my healthy weight range but I felt healthy and strong and at the end of the day, all of the below goals are to help me to feel healthy and strong for the next cycle (and also for myself, I would definitely like to feel healthy and strong again).
On top of the measures listed below - I also visit an acupuncturist once a week and have the chinese herbs twice a day. I also see a naturopath to ensure that my vitamin and mineral intake is good and I see an osteopath to make sure that my back is behaving (which it hasn't been lately). This makes for a lot of appointments but I am hoping that the osteopath and naturopath will go to a once a month type situation shortly as it will be more maintenance.
- No caffeine as of 16th April (I'm allowing myself 1 coffee a day until 130 days before I go)
- No pain killers / anti inflammatories / medications as of 16th April (I am having trouble with my back and I am hoping it will be alot better by this time)
- Remove chemical cleaners from the house & use natural ones - Kitchen cleaners removed and bathroom cleared of items by the end of Easter
- Use no-chemical make up and personal products - have started this one already
- Eat organic or hormone free, free range foods - have started this already
In the pursuit of being chemical free - I have also got organic cotton pj's and sheets. We have bought an air purifier and have some indoor plants so that we are breathing nice air. I am also working on having a daily homegrown wheatgrass juice and I say working on it because I have all of the stuff but haven't worked out how to do it yet!! I am constantly seeking out ways to eliminate toxins from our lives. I am now looking at only using our stainless steel cookware.
Lose weight / nourishment:
Many of you know that I have a lap band which I have had pretty loose since the pregnancy because I hadn't reconciled myself to have to lose weight. I have finally done that now and I will be utilising the band as a tool to reduce my calorie intake. As usual, it is hugely important to eat exceedingly well to ensure that I am getting enough vitamins and minerals whilst I am restricting my calories - it is not only about weight loss, I am wanting to be as healthy as I can possibly be as well. Here are a few of my goals:
- Eat high quality, nourishing foods
- Take daily vitamins and minerals as prescribed by naturopath
- Track calorie intake through Body Media FIT program
- Take chinese herbs twice daily
I really like how I feel when I am fit and strong and I haven't really been that since we went to Thailand to get JBB. I ran a 10km a couple of months before we made the first trip to Thailand to get JBB so I am aiming to be fit enough to do another 10km before I go in August. My sister in law is going to do the 5km and 10km races that we have picked out - we have run together before and we have a really fun time doing it so that will make it a bit easier!!
- Run 5km - I am aiming for a 5km fun run on 29 April (I have quite a bit of work to do for this one!!)
- Run 10km - I am aiming for a 10km fun run on 15 July
- Yoga daily - I have a 4 week rotating program of 4 moves a day (plus breathing exercises and a relaxation at the end)
- Weights program at the gym 3 times per week - I have my program, I just need to do it to get my strength up
- Walk at lunch times and as much as possible at any other time - it is nice walking with my bestie at work, we get to chat but also have a nice time walking as well!!
As well as stopping chemicals from going in, I want to get rid of as many from my body as possible and to that end, I have a range of activities that I want to do each week to help the detoxification along - here are those that I want to do:
- Skin brushing daily
- Clay bath once a week
- Castor oil pack twice a week
- Clay foot bath once a week
- Naturopath liver detox powder twice daily
Mind / Body Connection:
I really believe that I need to be prepared in the mind and as you may have noticed from my recent posts, I have not been travelling that well mentally. To that end, I am seeing a psychologist every fortnight to work through some issues - it is pretty helpful and certainly the ACT techniques that she has taught me has been really helpful in dealing with the overwhelming emotions that I have running around at the moment. I also have some good books and cd's on creating 'fertile' images in my mind and I have some hypnosis and subliminal recordings that I like very much so I will continue to pursue them.
- See psychologist - fortnightly
- Use ACT techniques to defuse emotions - whenever necessary
- Schedule time in each day / week to relax - I am having a little trouble with this though I do have a bath most days which is generally relaxing (except for when JBB barges in and starts throwing things in the bath - that's not so that relaxing - though it is nice when he comes in to give me a kiss)
- Imaging - I have done a small amount of this but need to get more consistent
- Mind Map - I had one for a variety of things when we went to get JBB, need to get a new one done!
- Subliminals - I just need to transfer these to my new phone (I am a destroyer of iPhones - I have submerged 2 in liquid and last week dropped one onto concrete and shattered the screen - der!!)
- Hypnosis - I have some really nice ones that I use and so I will continue with those (though of course, have to transfer them to the new phone)
- Make myself ready for another baby - this is a big one. I have identified in the two negative cycles last year that I was more focussed on 'getting the whole ivf thing behind us' rather than the chance to have another baby, I hadn't even imagined what it would be like to have another one - I have now - I am really focussed on thinking about the actual reason that I am doing this. JourneyMan recently found a bag of elephant keyrings that we got on one of our trips to Thailand (maybe even the honeymoon!!) that we were supposed to give out to people but hadn't. I have put it on my keyring now and every time I look at it, I think of having another baby - it is very motivating! I have also passed them out to the important people in our lives and have asked them to send positive thoughts for the cycle when they look at it. I like the idea of a river of positive thoughts flowing through till I go to Thailand - I am hoping that the river becomes a flood by then!
- Meditation - I have always rebelled against meditation, I find it very hard to quiet my mind but I am thinking that even if I just start small (like a couple of minutes or so) that I might be able to build up to a bit longer over time.
The past couple of years have been tough on the finances. I had 6 months off with JBB - we wanted to have more time but JourneyMan lost his job and our savings were used up fast. On top of that, we had the fresh cycle with all of us trekking over to Thailand and then another one at Christmas. All of this has left our finances in a pretty shabby state. We have some debt that needs to be sorted out, some tax obligations for the business that I need to get done (it is hard not to keep delaying when I am in 'cycle' mode). I don't know how much this affects my fertility but certainly I feel better and a lot less stressed if everything is sorted out and is all under control. I definitely need some focus in this area. I am also considering working an extra day in order to get out of debt and save more but this will be a wrench as it will be another day away from JBB. Here are some of my goals:
- Bills paid on time each month - I have lost the run of myself with this one, I used to be very good about getting our budget done and bills paid on time so I need to get some focus back here
- Taxes complete and up to date - I have an appointment with the accountant next Wednesday - it is going to be a mad scramble to get things everything ready but I have to do it to get it out to the way
- Debt reducing weekly - I have set up a calendar appointment to get these paid off weekly - we should be able to make a dent in this pretty quickly
- Stay within budget - We have been a bit loose with our budget - we really need to stay within so we can get ourselves back in order
- Save money so that I can have 12 months off work with the new baby
One of the things that I identified that we did before we went to Thailand to get JBB was to get the house ready for a baby. Prior to that, the spare bedroom was basically a dumping ground and just had crap everywhere - no way a baby could go in there. Before Thailand, we made the controversial decision of making it into a nursery and putting baby items in there (that my sister had given us) before we even had a baby to go in there but we really got ready for success. So, one of the things that I realised over the past couple of months is that I didn't really know if we had enough room for a baby in our house (really a 2 bedroom unit) and I thought that I should at least know whether we could fit another baby in the house before we decided to have one!! Anyway, I did a big clean out of JBB's room and it has now become a room that JBB and the new baby can share. We definitely have enough room - we just need to get a bed in there with a new mattress - which I think we will do over Easter. I also feel that we need to get into good cleaning and cooking routines - we have been a bit haphazard with this, I just don't feel it is totally under control.
- Room ready for new baby (almost there, just need the new bed and mattress)
- Bedded down routines for the cleaning (if I do another day of work, we may investigate a cleaner)
- Bedded down routines for the cooking (I'm pretty good with this but always need to have back up food in the freezer of casseroles and things)
As for any parent of a toddler, sleep is at a premium. I definitely am not getting enough sleep at the moment - JBB has been waking up in the middle of the night again (on Saturday night because he had vomited all over his bed poor thing) and the last couple of nights as well. JourneyMan is great because he is very good about getting up and getting him but I find that I always have trouble going back to sleep. Today, I have been up since 3am, though I did sneak in a 15min powernap in the carpark before I got to work. I am not really sure what to do about this because I also find that if I have a nap during the day, I find it hard to get to sleep at night. I am going to have to rethink how I do things to see if I can get some more 'catch up' sleep if I need it - am not really sure how that will happen at this point but I definitely know that I don't want to go to Thailand completely exhausted like I have the last 2 times.
I know that these expectations are very high. There is a lot to do with not much time to do it in (amongst taking care of JBB, cooking, cleaning & working). I am going to try my best and I am also going to not listen to 'Moaning Myrna - the Mean Hearted Beartch' who talks in my head and criticises everything that I do (silly cow). I just want to give us the best chance of having another baby (or babies - would love twins - speaking of being time poor!!). I want to feel like I have done everything possible for this cycle and whilst I may not live up to every minute little detail of this plan, I will feel good if I can get most of the way there to doing it.
Thanks for reading this far if you got there - I know that this was as really long post but I needed to get all of this out.