March 29th, 2007

Summer Hat

Using Perl to defeat Microsoft

I just realized that yesterday I wrote a small Perl script for the sole purpose of doing something that should have been simple in Excel and wasn't. I don't know whether this is more a comment on me, Microsoft or Perl.
Summer Hat

Body by Follistim: Part 1

I've been meaning to write about this for a while, but I haven't gotten around to it. Mostly its because I have a lot to say about it, and a lot else going on that I also wanted to write about. Now I realize the thing to do is to break it up into bits and write about it one chunk at a time, so here we go...

Back in December I went for my annual checkup. It was a few months late, but given how many other doctor's appointments I'd been having, my primary care physician was happy I'd bothered to come in at all, much less in the middle of my first IVF cycle. As usual it was a brisk visit. When my doctor asked if I had any other health concerns, I only got as far as, "I've gained a lot of weight..." before she cut me off with, "It's the hormones."

I'm sure it is the hormones. The thing is, I don't think its just the hormones, though the infertility is certainly a large factor. Cycling certainly makes going to the gym problematic. Once I'm on the lupron (two weeks into the supression cycle), I start getting lots of headaches. Excercising with a headache... well, lets just say the last time I got on the treadmill with a lupron headache so mild that I hadn't noticed it in my half-asleep state I ended up dry-heaving in the bathroom eight minutes later. Then I start going in for a wanding and blood draw every other morning, cutting down even further on the gym time. Morning is excercise time for me, and if I'm using that time to see the doctor I am not in the gym. In theory I could excercise after work, if I could find parking at that hour (unlikely) and if I had the energy after a full work day + doctor visit (unlikely), and if I didn't mind it cutting into the time I have to spend with my husband (hah). Of course once we get to retrieval excercise goes to zero because I'm supposed to take it easy after retrieval (something about being knocked out and having big needles poked through me), and after transfer I am under orders not to do any strenuous excercise or heavy lifting, which rules out everything that I do at the gym. That all adds up to six weeks where the amount of excercise I get rapidly declines and then falls to zero of the last 2.5 weeks.

There is also the just the whole dealing with infertility as a cause of weight gain. Aside from the medical effects I've just listed there are the emotional ones. The whole yo-yo cycle of hope and despair does not do much for my willpower. The fact that my body won't do the one thing I want it to do in spite of all the poking and prodding is not exactly inspiring me to treat it better. Of course my doctor initially told me to gain five pounds because estrogen is produced in fatty tissue. I've gained a lot more than that and I'm still not pregnant, but that doesn't mean I don't hear that excuse to indulge my sweet tooth every time I am hungry or bored or depressed. This is not a good thing.

My regular doctor was extremely unconcerned about my weight gain. She had an explanation for it, so it wasn't a concern for her. She also didn't think it was that much, which I suppose is reasonable given the proportion of the population that is carrying around quite a bit more padding than I currently am. The thing is, she's not the one whose clothes are now too tight around the waist. Knowing why doesn't make my clothes fit any better. I like my doctor and I think she's pretty smart, but that doesn't mean I don't question her opinions. She may not be concerned, but that doesn't make me any happier about it. I don't like it, and that means the logical thing to do is to fix it, which I fully intend to do.

... to be continued....