30 June 2010

Fertility is my monster...

20 June 2009 was the last day I swallowed a Yaz tablet. It was written in fine-point Sharpie on our calendar not long after returning home from a week in Ireland. I remember how excited Michael and I were when we made the decision to start trying to get pregnant, imagining what it would be like to have a child with his eyes and my double-jointed elbows. And being the woman, I remember wondering how it would feel to have my belly expand to make room for a growing Wynne. Sure Michael gets to be a daddy, but I get to be the baby-grower.

I have been trying to find an image that succinctly describes how I'm starting to feel, and I happened to find it on the blog of another woman (named Sarah) who is also trying to conceive (her site is here):

Maybe it's lame to use an egg cartoon when fertility is your personal monster, but how can anyone make it without a little humor?

Despite the fact my blood tests back in January proved my hormone levels to be normal, I am calling fertility my monster. This is due to the fact that over the course of this last year, I have only had 5 periods. Today, I started my sixth one after a 63-day lag time. 63 days is a VERY long time to wait considering that each day that goes by, and for every symptom that I have experienced, spurs the thought: "Maybe I'm pregnant!"

And think it, I did. There were 5-day stretches of perpetual nausea. There was unusual back pain. There were even sensations of having reflux and gastrointestinal churning and burning. But I might as well have set fire to the wads of cash I spent on pregnancy tests. No matter how perfectly I counted to 5 while peeing on a stick (including the "Mississippis"), I still ended up with the same blue minus sign every time. Now I have a stash of pregnancy tests in the middle drawer of our bathroom. There are 3 different brands, ready for back-up proofing of the first positive sign that shows up on one of those little guys.

Even though I want to bring up a child with Michael more than anything else, I fear the "next steps" that come with the fertility monster. I would be willing to try homeopathic remedies, oral hormones, or even acupuncture, but I do not want it to get to this point:

Yeah, "nature's little miracle" would cost $15,000 (at the low end) and without a guarantee. Where's the nature in that?

My annual visit is in a week. Maybe my gynecologist will be able to offer up some advice so the fertility monster can be caged for, at least, a little while.

15 June 2010

Spread it on Thick

Back in college, Michael and I went to a gyro restaurant called "The Roly Poly" in downtown Athens. They had the most amazing wraps and gyros in town. Unfortunately, they went out of business and we have to take our appetites elsewhere for similar cuisine.

There was one ingredient on many of their wraps that I remember quite fondly. It is the condiment known as basil mayo. I tend to be more of a Miracle Whip girl than a fan of mayo, but the taste of basil mayo satisfies my palate every time.

And being who I am, I said to myself: "It can't be that hard to make!"

You know what? It's not. Here's what you need:

--as much mayo as you want (we're a Duke's family all the way)
--as much basil as you want (fresh is better)
--a sharp knife
--cutting board
--a storage container (with a lid)
--a spoon for mixing

Cut the fresh basil with your knife. A rough chop will do. Throw the basil into the mayo and stir until well mixed in your storage container. You can serve immediately or store in the fridge for the flavor of the basil to permeate the mayo for serving at a later time. I prefer using boxwood basil, by the way. The leaves are much smaller, making it easy to pluck them off their stems. You don't spend as much time chopping them, and this variety tastes exactly the same as sweet basil. If you don't have fresh basil, dried will work fine. You won't be able to taste the herb, though, unless you leave it in the fridge for an hour or two before serving.

See? Didn't I tell you it would be easy? None of the "2 1/2 tsps of this" or "5 cups of that". They are your taste buds. Experiment with your ingredients until your buds are happy.

Here's a little something I made for lunch using basil mayo. It's a tortilla wrap with a layer of the basil mayo first, then enough lettuce (from our garden, of course), shredded cheese, avocado, tomato, pickled banana peppers, and pepperoni to stuff the shell. It was a challenge to get it to close, but there was no challenge in licking the plate clean!

Go ahead. Try it. And then tell me how much you love it.

Bon aptit!


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