Finn & Rebecca

Finn & Rebecca

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Asia Sky Lightning Claw

Our little furbaby, my consolation prize in case my first IVF attempt failed. It did and he is.

Asia Sky is his official pedigree name - a Bengal cat descendant of Asian Leopard Cats of note. He has grown so very much but won't sit still long enough for me to take a new picture. Here he is as a 3 month old kitten, drinking water from the tap (only way he will drink water!) and killing his "Leppy" (toy leopard) and now as a teen lying on my lap. He is on top teen form with rebellious antics, mock fighting, pushing the boundaries and all that teen sort of behaviour one would expect from a human child.

What a cutie. What a character. The addition to his name, "lightning claw" came from bad behaviour at a very young age. When he arrived, he could fit into the palm of my hand and at only 8 weeks old his hunting instincts were extremely well established! His eyes would literally narrow, take on a red mist of aggression and he would launch into attack mode. Demon kitten. He would lash out with unfurled claw at the very hand he fit into so perfectly. At the hand that fed him!

Now, a teen, he is slightly less interested in killing my hand. But DH gets mauled more often. Still, little Asia does seem to hang out with him more - boys with boys I suppose.

I am seriously thinking about getting him a sister, another Bengal and I will call her Persia. (Pur-sia). But I will wait until my next IVF and she can be my next consolation prize if it doesn't work out. It better work soon though or I may land up being called the "cat lady"!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Like the way it looks

Okay, alright, I like being a bit thinner. I resigned myself to loving myself fat but I now admit I like the feeling of toned limbs and smooth contours. Well, they are as yet still emerging after a long season of cocooning flab and we have some way to go, my limbs and I. But I quite like the way I feel breathless and warm after working out and I quite like looking at my ass in the mirror without wanting to hide it. So yes, I like the way it looks.

7 Kg down... and at least 7 kg to go! Progress slowed down on my post Mexican trip plateau but hopefully it will speed up again. As I type there is a big pot of yummy veggie soup on the go, and while my mind is wandering to hot apple pie and cream, my resolve is strong.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Mother's Day Memories

I realised today that I have been pregnant on Mother's Day for two years in a row. Both times, the brilliant news turned to the shattering reality that they were ectopic.

In 2007, having set off merrily on a Nambian adventure (after my gynae advised that going away for 3 weeks should be fine as we would scan when I got back) I was blasted into pain and fear with a ruptured ectopic at 7am while in a tent in Etosha National Park one morning just after Mother's Day. I still remember that incredible pain. I couldn't stand or walk or talk as stabs of cutting, tearing, red pain racked through my body. It took an incredible effort to crawl into the car, belongings left behind and drive as fast as we could to the nearest town. We arrived in Tsumeb, where the hospital was no more than a community clinic. There was no scanning machine, bewildered staff did what they could. An egyptian doctor finally realised this was way out of their scope and recommended we get to Windhoek and fast. All I can say is thank god for medical aid.

An airlift was quickly organised and what little I remember includes a blurry view from the private jet window of the desert below me. On arriving at a Netcare Hospital in Windhoek, in a drugged daze, I waited for the specialist to arrive. They sent me for a scan. I could hardly walk to the bed, it felt like I had water rushing around inside me and I was shaking badly. I almost lost consciousness while leaning against the wall waiting for my turn. A nurse saw me and helped me to a chair. I was finally scanned and I was told by the radiologist that I had what looked like a perfectly normal 7 week pregnancy! And I saw its heart beating so strongly, I saw it and I wept and wept. WHAT!!!! Was it my appendix? What was going on?

The specialist arrived, a dear old doctor (who later told me he has delivered more than 2000 babies in his time as an ob-gyn) and examined me. He was equally puzzled by the scan result. Then he pushed down on my abdomen and released his hand quickly. I cried out in pain and smacked his hand away. He looked at me and said, you have massive internal bleeding, we need to operate now. My husband in the meantime had had to go back to Etosha, pack up everything and drive to Windhoek which was 4 1/2 hours away. I was rushed to surgery where they found it was indeed a ruptured ectopic with more than 1 1/2 litres of internal bleeding. He later told my husband that had they waited any longer, I could have died.

But the mystery of the scan had not yet been solved. When I woke up, I was told that there still may be a viable pregnancy in the uterus and maybe this had been a twin. But....I would have to wait for Monday before I could have another scan to see. So I lay in hope all weekend, in pain, in hope, in pain. And Monday came. And we held each other. And there was no twin, there was nothing. He summised that what the radiographer had seen was the fetus holding onto a piece of the tube against the dark pool of blood in my abdomen which looked just like the shape of a uterus, misleading the radiographer. When he looked at the printout, it really fooled him too. WHY? WHY? What the hell was that all about? I saw the heartbeat hanging on for dear life. A life that was not meant to be.

I wanted to leave the hospital immediately. I was shattered. I couldn't stop crying and I begged the dr to let me go. He agreed if I promised I would go straight to bed. What I didn't realise is that for this type of surgery you have a 6 week recovery period. Well, after 3 days, we were back on the road and I was up and walking, well hobbling about. We had to wait in Swakopmund to get my staples removed but then we continued on our journey in a tent. I think those incredible nights in Spitzkoppe, the Nauklaft Park and Soussousvlei helped us to resolve our pain. This is a picture of me 10 days after the surgery on a dune at Soussesvlei and one of Spitkoppe where we spent 4 days camping while I recovered.

In 2008, exactly one year later I conceived again. And I dared hope. I so badly wanted it to be my miracle. Strong betas gave me hope. Stabbing pain one morning made everything come crashing down. No sac. Another ectopic. The cold admission into the hospital to remove another life that wasn't meant to be. Shattered doesn't even come close.

Now in 2009, same time. But I am not pregnant on Mother's Day this year. I would have been 7 months pregnant had I not miscarried after my first IVF in October. But I am not.

I send a blessing to these little lost lives that never were.

I am sad, but I bounce back and I will have hope again.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

No swines on Isla Mejeres

We made two day trips to Isla Mejeres (Island of Women) while in Cancun. Once when we first arrived and stayed in Cancun for two nights and again when we returned to Cancun for a stop-over night before flying back to Miami. The second trip was because we had had such a wonderful day the first time around, and we wanted to get out of Cancun - which is really just a glorified commercial Mexican experience - excluding the sea and the beaches, which are glorious. The first picture is from our room at the hotel in Cancun - see what I mean about the sea? The other pics are from our first day on Isla Mejeres. You get there on a ferry which takes about 20 minutes across the most intensely blue water you have ever seen before. If you narrow your eyes and look to the horizon, you can almost imagine being a pirate...a bit of a stretch of the imagination but still possible especially if you warp the Mexican banter around you to calls of "ahoy" and "land ahead".

We rented scooters from a small shop called "angel hire" which we thought was a good start, and ambled around the island, stopping off to snorkel, see the ruins, eat enchiladas, drink XX local beer and explore the village where there is too much to photograph but see the pic of the wall with the black cat mural.

We had the most delicious supper of freshly caught red snapper on the beach with gigantic margharitas just after the sun had set. Earlier in the day we visited some ruins of a hacienda that a retired pirate had built for a local Mayan girl he was obsessed with. She never could see past his sordid pirate reputation and married a respectable villageman instead. The mortified pirate died lonely with revenge in his heart.

The brown pelicans are adorable in their scraggly wet feathers - I love pelicans and watching them dive bomb into the turquoise waves in front of the hotel and hanging about for fish offcuts on Isla Mejeres was the perfect entertainment. We certainly didn't need the false glam of Monsier Frogs or Mango Bango nightclub in Cancun!

More Mexican tales to follow...

Friday, May 1, 2009

To flu or not to flu

Hard to believe that we have just returned from the source of the latest health mayhem, those poor swines. And, missed it! With an incubation period of 7-10 days before noticing symptoms, I am pleased to report that we are absolutely fine. No flu at all. Viva Mexico. Am sending love and healing light to all the people in the rural areas who are most at risk.

My tan is fading. Winter has arrived. It is snuggly weather and I feel like eating! Am craving hot apple pie and cream. But no! Still have at least 7kg to lose by then end of June. Must focus. The silly scale at the gym is messing with my mind, it has had the same reading for the past two weeks - really irritating! It is just not right.

Am busy eating a small bowl of chilli tomato pasta with sprouts - hopefully this will fill the hole which seems vast on this grey day.

Thinking back to the Mexico trip...We did visit the Temple of Ix-chel, the Mayan goddess of fertility on Isla Cozumel and I stood in the same place as all the Mayan women before me, who make it their pilgrimage at least once in their lives. And I asked for her blessing with an offering of a red hibiscus flower, a yellow leaf and a seed pod. This is the picture.