A date with the dildo-cam

So far 2016 has been going well.  Certainly better than 2015 started!

A few weekends ago we enjoyed a quick break at a country house hotel with a lovely spa.  It was so nice just to get away from it all and be in a relaxing environment and just unwind.  We both enjoyed spending a lazy day by the pool and I enjoyed the chance to lie down somewhere warm and read.  Admittedly, it was a book about IVF and infertility, but it was still a fun, relaxing experience!

We had actually been to this hotel before and had fallen in love with it.  Firstly, it is in an amazing location, being in the middle of the countryside and also right by the sea.  Secondly, the hotel itself and its grounds are BEAUTIFUL.  Thirdly, and most importantly, it has a dog spa.  No, I am not kidding.  An actual dog spa!

Sadly we couldn’t take our dog (Dog) this time as he is very old and very poorly, but the first time we went we took him and let him go to the dog spa (we’re not weirdos; he begged us!).  Ok, so I’d never lose the plot quite so far as to let him actually have a ‘doggy manicure’ or have him ‘perfumed’, but for a few years he has really struggled with poor skin and sometimes his hair can get a little ‘manky’.  I absolutely hate the thought of him being uncomfortable, so we paid for him to have a proper wash by someone who was trained and knew what they were doing, not just me trying to wash him in the bath!  Anyway, he absolutely loved the attention and came back the happiest dog I had ever seen!! I really hope that we can take Dog back there some time, as it was lovely to see him so excited.

We had a brilliant time this time at the hotel, although we did have one domestic about IVF and adoption (I’ll save that one for another time…).

The highlight of the trip was definitely the massages we had just before we left.  It was the best massage I’ve ever had and was so good for helping me calm down and switch off! While the ocean-themed music was playing I even started having thoughts about whether I could re-train as a masseuse (although those thoughts faded as soon as we drove away from the hotel!).  Unfortunately it seems that infertility has also tainted my massage experience.  Now, every time the girl says “Take off your clothes Flatwhite, lie down on this bed and pop this towel over you” I feel as though I’m about to have another gynaecological examination… ho hum.

Anyway, it was a great way to end 2015 and start 2016.  Here are a few photos I stole from the interweb:

Back in the real world, I have been working hard.  I’m just plodding on for now as I can’t decide what, if anything, I should do to change my career.  It’s so hard to plan a potential career change if it looks like we’re about to have to spend thousands and thousands of pounds on IVF cycles.  I’m probably better of staying where I am and saving as much money as I can (BORING).

In IVF news, we’ve had the brakes put on somewhat.  To cut a very long story short, in the UK you pay fairly high rates of tax and some of that tax goes towards paying for the National Health Service (NHS).  The NHS then provides a ‘free’ health service for people in the UK.  Theoretically, if there is something medically wrong with you, you should then be treated for free (except through the taxes you pay (although even people who don’t have jobs or pay taxes are treated) and the price of prescriptions etc).  Unfortunately as resources are scarce, there is not enough money to go round and pay for everything.  A lot of decision making is therefore delegated to individual clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) who decide what they will fund and what they won’t fund for the local area.  It has been controversial over the years, as a ‘postcode lottery’ occurs and people have been denied drugs which may help them with cancer or other serious illnesses, yet people who live a few miles down the road are allowed such drugs.  For IVF, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recommends that each CCG should provide at least three NHS-funded cycles of IVF to patients who meet the relevant criteria (loosely based on age and weight cut offs, the length of time you have been TTC and the requirement that neither of you already have children).  Unfortunately very few CCGs offer three IVF cycles and some don’t even offer a single cycle!

It’s complicated for us because:

  • entitlement to funding is based upon where the female is registered with her GP;
  • I am registered in a place where I would only get 1 NHS-funded IVF cycle but I should be allowed to start that cycle in the next few months.  I am only registered there because it is near to where I work half the week.  We do not live anywhere near this GP or CCG and I would want to have IVF in a different CCG nearer to where we live;
  • BT is registered in an area where we would get 3 NHS-funded cycles.  We used to live in this area until a month ago and BT has worked there for many years and I work there the other half of the week.  Unfortunately the GP receptionists are being total dickheads and are refusing to let me register here even though they originally said I could, TWO doctors told us we could, we paid taxes there for many years, I work there several times a week and BT works between 55 – 100 hours every week saving lives IN THE LOCAL NHS HOSPITAL;
  • we have just moved to an area where I could definitely register as a patient and we would get 2 NHS-funded IVF cycles.  Unfortunately, as we are new to this area (although I did previously live here for 25 years of my life!) we would need to be registered for at least a year before they would allow us to have any NHS-funded IVF cycles.

I am so exhausted by it all.  It was such a nightmare FINALLY being allowed to have the basic tests, then the referral to the Fertility Clinic (which was lost several times!), then getting the consultation, then being told that we’ll probably need IVF in order to conceive.  Once we had that consultation and had the date for the first blood tests (AMH, HIV and other screening tests) in the diary, it looked as though we would be starting IVF before Easter.  This was amazing news!

Instead, because of the problems with registering with a GP, we’ve been told by the clinic that the IVF will have to be put on hold until the issues are resolved.  They were good in that they agreed to do the initial screening tests and internal scan (more on that below) rather than sending us away, but unfortunately they can’t take things any further yet.  They were obviously annoyed by the GP surgery as well, but unfortunately in life it seems like control over the most important things is given to the people who have the least intelligence.  With medical secretaries you can actually often tell that they are enjoying telling you that you can’t do something and getting some power over you.  It’s disgusting.

Anyway, BT and I went in for our blood tests yesterday.  I also had a hot date with the dildo-cam.  I think the worst part is that they put a condom on it! I mean…I get it…obviously…but WHAT THE FUCK?! She didn’t even have the decency to lube up 😉 Ouch!

It turns out that I’ve got a cyst on one of my ovaries.  I don’t know much about this yet, and she said not to worry, but I have to go back into a few weeks for another scan to see what’s happening.  At least things are still happening.

Anyway, that’s where we’re at.  Back to exactly the same place we were before.  I really hope things start progressing soon.

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5 thoughts on “A date with the dildo-cam

  1. Looks like a fantastic getaway. I am so sorry things are delayed. The in between phases where we aren’t moving forward to achieving our dream is really the hardest. Hope it irons out soon. Xo

    Liked by 1 person

  2. 1) Where is this dog spa? I need to know!
    2) Aaaaaaargh to NHS funding problems! I feel your pain! We got denied from the first referral as T hasn’t registered in London and was registered at the parental home (he didn’t want to keep changing the address as was in rented accommodation). Also I find it odd that if we moved to another neighbouring CCG we would not get funding… So odd. (I’d probably just leave the old address on my records.) So frustrating!
    3) You’re not the only ones to argue… We had an actual argument over the blood tests for immune stuff as T isn’t convinced. He’s usually super reasonable but doesn’t want me getting my hopes up and was frustrated that I couldn’t articulate exactly what they were testing for (as it’s something like 10 different things; probably more). Agh! It does rather kill the passion!
    4) I’m so with you on changing career! I wish I could change mine but the money is keeping me going!

    Hope 2016 is our year! X

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha ha. I’m sure Dog (as in your Dog) would love the Dog Spa. It’s bloody brilliant!

      Yes, fertility issues/IVF on the NHS is a total joke. It really annoys me, as I know how much is spent on non-urgent, routine, medical operations which have an even lower success rates than IVF, but they’re deemed “worthwhile” because they may help alleviate a physical symptom for a while. Sadly creating a life isn’t seen as important. Anyway…

      Oh bless you. I’m really sorry to hear that. I think infertility challenges even the very best of couples. Emotions are so high, and we (me and BT; you and T; men and women) naturally have very different ways of dealing with things and sometimes can’t understand the other point of view. I would completely be on your side with the testing. What have you got to lose? Besides money obviously…

      Yes – I really hope 2016 is a good year for both of us 🙂 x

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Hadn’t registered, not hasn’t registered. We are being treated in our CCG now, phew. Annoying that we got denied the first time but actually the second place (our GP appealed and he’s a bigwig in the CCG) is closer and more convenient, so win!

    Liked by 1 person

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