29 January 2011

Recipe: Cream Cheese & Spinach Enchiladas

Mmmmmm...enchiladas...


Thought I might take a minute to share with you the very easy recipe for these sinfully good wraps of cheesiness.  My best friend, Christy, and I used to make these when we were in college and took ourselves off the meal plan.  It's inexpensive, they take about 30-40 minutes from start to finish to assemble/bake, and they are one of the few foods I actually crave when they are left over.  The cream cheese offsets the spiciness of the enchilada sauce, and your taste buds are sure to enjoy the explosion of flavors.  We have made this meal with shredded chicken before, but it takes extra time if the meat is not already cooked.  Keep in mind: I don't usually give exact amounts of ingredients because I tend to play with them until we like the final dish.  I encourage you to do the same!

Ingredients needed:

  • wheat tortillas (the medium-sized ones)
  • 1 can of enchilada sauce (red or green)
  • 1-2 packages of softened cream cheese (I use the Neufchatel variety because it has less fat)
  • shredded Mexican blend cheese
  • green onions
  • fresh cilantro
  • large tomato
  • red bell pepper
  • button mushrooms
  • fresh spinach
  • olive oil
  • red pepper flakes (optional)
  • sour cream (also optional)
  • sea salt and freshly-cracked pepper to taste
Materials needed:
  • cookie sheet
  • parchment paper
  • saute pan
  • cutting board
  • sharp knife
  • tongs
  • spatula
  • medium-sized mixing bowl
The fun part:

First, wash the fresh ingredients and set them on dish towels or in a colander to dry.  Preheat your oven to 350 degrees (the can of sauce says so).

Then, put the softened cream cheese into your mixing bowl.  If you want more enchiladas, use 2 packages.  If you are only serving a couple of people, one package will suffice.

Pour a couple of tablespoons of the olive oil into your saute pan and turn the temperature to medium.  While the pan heats, cut the mushrooms and bell pepper into bite-sized pieces.  Add to pan to saute them until they start to brown (or even char).  Use tongs to occasionally toss them while they cook.

Meanwhile, chop the green onions from white to green end.  Add the white ends in the mixing bowl.  Save the green ends for decking the tops of the wraps.

Roughly chop the cilantro and the tomato, discarding woody stems and seedy pulp.  Add these to the mixing bowl.  Give a little mush and stir.  Check on veggies that are sauteing.

When the mushrooms and bell pepper are browned, add handfuls of fresh spinach and a couple of pinches of red pepper flakes.  Allow the spinach to wilt considerably before removing from heat.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss to disperse the flavor.  Add these vegetables to the bowl and mix thoroughly.  If you feel like the mix is a little heavy on the veggies, but you don't want to add another package of cream cheese, throw in a couple of dollops of sour cream.

Grab your tortillas and a large spoon.  If you want thick, hefty enchiladas, spoon the cream cheese mix into the tortillas until they can barely wrap back on themselves.  If you want them a little leaner or want to control your portions better, spoon just enough mix so that you can wrap it up with one end tucked in. Arrange stuffed tortillas folded side down on the cookie sheet that is lined with parchment paper (way better than just greasing your pan with cooking spray).  Once you run out of cream cheese mix/tortillas, pour the enchilada sauce across all of them.  Top with shredded cheese and green onion tops.  I also like to sprinkle more fresh cilantro across the tops.

Bake for 20 minutes.  Serve up using a wide spatula (otherwise, the seams might bust open while you are transferring them to your plate).  Enjoy with a cold beer.


28 January 2011

Hit the Brakes: Here Comes Another Fertility Speed Bump

You think I would be used to them by now: fertility testing speed bumps.

Today, I was slated for my first ultrasound.  No, there's not a bean or a peanut or some other cute name people give their fetuses in my womb for ultrasound detection.  My NP simply wanted me to come in for the test to see if my follicles were responding to the new fertility medications.

Not going to lie--I was a little heartbroken over the idea that my first sonogram would not be one where we would ogle a tiny in-utero human.  But after having endured the same needle-in-the-arm hormone test each month, I figured this differential might render a more accurate diagnosis.  I scheduled the ultrasound for 4:00 today, along with my follow-up pap at 4:30 since the last one they performed turned out abnormal.  I planned to leave school around 3:00 to make it on time.

Speed Bump #1: The original appointment for the pap was supposed to be last week, but was rescheduled to today because the NP had been asked to attend a conference out of town at the last minute.

*sigh*

Silver lining: At least I could knock out two appointments in one day by rescheduling!

Speed Bump #2: The NP called this past Wednesday to request that I come for an earlier appointment because she had to leave the office by 3:30.  She wanted to know if I could be there at 3:15.  The educator in me agreed through gritted teeth.  I would have to leave my students before the end of the school day, taking away precious learning time when we just lost a week due to the snow.

*double sigh*

Silver lining: Both appointments would still happen without rescheduling to another day!

Speed Bump #3: Here's where I came THISCLOSE to losing my cool in a very public way:
[My cell phone rings on the way to the doctor's office AFTER I have left work early and sent my students to other classrooms.]
Me: Hello?
Receptionist: Is this Victoria Wynne?
Me: Sure is.
Receptionist: Mrs. Wynne, we were calling to inform you that our doctor has left for the day due to an emergency C-section.  I know he was supposed to see you for the ultrasound, but he will be unable to perform it.  And since you were supposed to see the NP for a pap, we figured you would just want to reschedule everything and come in next Friday for that, plus the regular progesterone tests you have been receiving.
Me: [taking a breath so deep, only the circumference of my bra could stop my lung expansion]  I'm already on my way.  I had to make special arrangements to leave work early from clear on the other side of Winder to make this appointment.
Receptionist: Just how close are you?
Me: Five minutes.
Receptionist: I guess you'll want to go ahead and have the pap performed then?
Me: Well, I didn't come all this way to merely entertain the idea of swabbing my nether regions.
Receptionist: We will see you in just a few minutes then.
*sigh*
*chew on bottom lip*
*pitch…a…grown…up…fit…in…traffic*

Silver lining: ???

I drove pissed.  I walked into the office and signed in pissed.  I sent a text message to a co-worker pissed.  I read the novel in my purse pissed.  I dared not talk to anyone.  Anyone within earshot was likely to be a victim of the ugly word bombs sitting on the edge of my tongue.  I wasn't mad because the doctor wouldn't be able to perform the ultrasound.  A woman somewhere in Athens was on the edge of giving birth, and he was rushing across town to help bring her bundle into the world.  Bless him for being dedicated to his patients.

It was the idea that not a one of the nurses or technicians he left behind were capable of performing it themselves.  Sure, they could make me undress from the waist down, shine a light where it doesn't normally, and root around for samples.  But there is no one in the office who can run the transducer across my jellied abdomen?  I guess this is where there's a gap in my understanding of medical training…

My anger and frustration began to diffuse when my favorite nurse in the office, Patty, walked me back to the patient room.  She apologized right and left as she set out empty laboratory containers and sterile dressing gowns.  An honest apology will (almost unfailingly) crack my hardened exterior of emotions just enough to start that cool down process.  Sure enough, Patty's words got through.  I wasn't going to die or go bald or spontaneously grow a wart on my butt cheek.  At the worst: I would have to wait until next month to have the ultrasound performed.  Anger sulked out of the room and Acceptance settled in.

So I did what I needed to do in order to get what business could be done: undressed, smothered my bare feet in aloe-scented Germ-X I found on the counter (they were really sweaty from being in my Chucks all day), engaged in pleasant small talk with my NP, endured another test at the doc's, etc.  I even scheduled another appointment for next Friday to have my progesterone levels checked yet again.  Woo-hoo, needles!  :-\

Did I ever find that silver lining?  Of course I did.  Today was not the end of my journey toward parenthood.

25 January 2011

Now the Mail Has Me by the Ovaries

Everyone gets them: catalogues to stores you didn't sign up for.  I'm not talking about the generic "Current Resident" circulars, either.  These are the kind of magazines that have your name clearly printed in large block letters as if you took the time to ask for the tree-killing advertisements, and their merchandise parallels items you normally buy.

Occasionally purchase cute cotton panties from Victoria's Secret?  Mysteriously enough, a Frederick's of Hollywood magazine starts showing up in your mailbox.  Tempted by the wares of Crate and Barrel?  Apparently, the discounted Rachel Ray cookware of the Seventh Avenue catalogue is a better deal.  And when you order all of your children's products from…

[insert screeching record here for me, D.J.]

Hold up.  Children's products?  Someone explain to me how the address-nabbing gnomes deduced that I might desire a One Step Ahead catalogue when I don't even have a bun in my oven.  Out of all the goods and chattels that have been left-clicked-and-Fed-Exed to our humble abode, none have been kid-related.  Not the set of matching lamps in our living room...or the oversized German drinking boot we bought for our friend's 30th birthday...or the bikini I ordered for the beach last summer…  It makes me want to hunt down those gnomes, shake them until their pointy hats drop to the ground, and make them aware that when you have less-than-impressive reproductive organs, magazines like this are grossly insensitive.  It's almost worse than the smiling baby on the OPK boxes.

Don't get me wrong.  Friends getting pregnant, women pushing their babies through Target, stories of miraculous births: these things conjure up a smile and sometimes turn me to a ball of emotional goo.  "Accidental" magazines showing up in your mailbox?  That's the metaphorical carrot dangling in front of the horse's nose.  A carrot that the starving horse has chased for over a year and a half.

With all of that said, don't think I didn't open the magazine of reproductive harassment.  Curiosity usually gets the best of me, and One Step Ahead's cover stated that they made "thoughtfully selected products to help with baby".  I leafed through the glossy pages, making mental note of everything from the must-haves (like baby monitors and car seats) to the that's-so-ridiculous-even-my-future-fetus-would-agree (like the Sno-Baller…Seriously?  Teach your kid to make a dang snowball with his own hands).

All right, moment of ranting is over.  Tomorrow, though, I'm taking up gnome hunting.







PS--My inner hippie was impressed with the storage containers for mommies who make their own baby food.  I can picture it now: picking green beans and carrots from our summer garden, steaming them to mushy perfection, and portioning the concoction into tiny jars.  I can also picture the "L" shape your fingers are gesticulating in front of your foreheads.  :)

23 January 2011

Two Conversations from Last Thursday

Conversation #1: with my NP after school

NP: I was extremely shocked at your progesterone results for this month.  A 2.2?  That shouldn't have happened.

Me: Yeah, that was not at all what I thought would happen.  Of course, I didn't expect to start my cycle 5 days early, either.

NP: Let's skip the fasting insulin test since your progesterone was so low.  We can go ahead and start you on Metformin and increase your Femara.  Now, Metformin isn't usually prescribed for fertility-related issues.

Me: Isn't it typically used for insulin resistance in diabetic patients?

NP: [obviously surprised at my response] Why, yes, that's right!  It was discovered that one of the possible side effects could be ovulation.  You'll have to build a tolerance to it, starting at 500mg a day until you can get up to the recommended 2000mg.  Keep some Pepto handy, just in case.

Me: That, and my handy-dandy Sea-Bands for if I get nauseated.

NP: Can we see you next Friday for an ultrasound to check your follicle development?

Me: I'll be there as soon as the car rider line is clear from our school's parking lot.

NP: Great!  Let me call in that scrip for you.  See you next Friday!

------------------------------------------------

Conversation #2: with a super nice pharmacy technician at Kroger...

Me: I'm here to pick up.  Name's Wynne.

Tech: Ummmm, we have it scheduled to be ready at 7:00pm, but I can bump it to 6:00.  Can you give us half an hour?

Me:  That's fine.  I'll do a little shopping.

Half an hour and four grocery bags later…

Tech: We have it ready, but this says it'll cost $158 dollars.  Did your insurance change since you last filled with us?

Me: [wide-eyed over the rather large number] No, nothing's changed.

Tech: Is there a deductible you have to meet first? [she's double-checking everything on her computer screen for me to make sure she hasn't missed something]

Me: No deductible.  I just have copay on prescriptions.  Is the Metformin really that expensive?

Tech: It's the Femara, actually.  It's showing up at $150 by itself.

Me: Holy crap!  It was only $40 the last time. [kicking myself at how I complained before about it being so expensive compared to the $9 the Clomid cost me the previous two months--was I just going to have to suck it up this time?]

Tech: Well, your doc prescribed 3 months worth.  If it was only a month's worth before, then the cost would go up.

Me: Wait, wait, wait...I'm confused.  On the phone, they said to take it for 5 days this month only, not for the next three.  Could there be a mistake?

Tech: Hold on a sec…I think I just figured it out. [walks over to talk to one of the pharmacists…returns with a confirmation]  They prescribed 15 pills, which would normally be a 3-month supply if a woman was to take only 5 pills a month.  That is, one per day for the 5 days early in her cycle.  Since it sounds like they upped your dosage from last month, it was run through our system as a 3-month supply of 15 pills, not a 1-month supply of 15 pills.

Me: That makes way more sense.

Tech: So if we enter it in as a 1-month supply, that should change everything.  Give me a few minutes to print a new label and ring it up again.  This should take care of the hefty bill!

I stand off to one side so I can get out of the way of other patrons.  My phone keeps me entertained for the entire 3 minutes it takes her to fix the glitch.  She glances up at me while she's entering information to her computer, thinking I'm using the phone to keep an eye on the time.

Tech: It'll just be another minute.  I'm sorry to keep you waiting.

Me: Seriously, you're fine.  My husband works in a pharmacy.  I'm not about to be the angry patron out to ruin your night, especially when you're going out of your way to help me.

Tech: So you have heard stories about life behind the counter…

Me: Oh yes…

Tech: OK, it's ready!  That'll be $58.  That doesn't sound quite so scary, huh?

Me: Thanks for taking care of everything!

It's a little blurry, but the prescription print-out boasts a $281.89 savings through my insurance company.  I'll take it!


18 January 2011

Amazonian Pygmies Attack

I'm 5 days early.  That's right, ladies and other ladies (I figure the male types stay away from menses talk).  5 whole days!  Last go-around, I was 10 days LATE.  Now I'm 5 days early?  While on Femara?  At a higher concentration than the 2 months I was on Clomid?

What the HELL?

Being this early is like having Amazonian pygmy warriors stage a sneak attack on your uterus wearing tribal masks and carrying 5-foot spears.  They are thirsty for blood, having no mercy in their take-no-prisoners assault on your womanly parts.  With their high-pitched war cries and crazy-eyed stares, all you can do is wait for the end of the massacre.

And how did this affect the results of my progesterone levels I had tested only last Friday?

It plummeted… to a flippin' 2.2.  I about had a stroke.

Apparently, the stupid pygmy warriors not only took my uterus hostage, but they laid claim to my pituitary gland, tied it up to a wooden stake, and roasted it over a bonfire next to their sacrificial wild boar.

Time to go throw things…

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16 January 2011

Dear Baby Yet to Be Conceived

Dear Baby Yet to Be Conceived,

In terms of science and molecules and cells, you do not yet exist.  You have no toes for me to count and send piggies all the way home or a belly button to stuff Cheerios into.  There is no hair to comb, nor feverish forehead to temper.  You can't be detected on a sonogram or photographed wearing an embarrassing sailor suit (which, I can guarantee, will be used for blackmail when you hit those awkward teenage years).  You haven't tortured my body with morning sickness, sore boobs, and stretch marks around my mid-section, although I morbidly desire to experience such symptoms.

Yet, in terms of love, life, and creation, you are very real.  You are the topic of dinner conversations and the reason I endure having my inner elbow poked with a needle every month.  You have taught us that there are an infinite number of ways in which you can be created.  You have made us wonder about what kind of loony mommy-and-daddy pair we will be.  You make us quarrel over who you might take after more.

To put it simply: you exist because one day we are damned determined to be your parents.  Whether you are the fruit of my womb, or of a woman who lives halfway around the world, you will be the ???-years-in-the-making baby that comes home with us.

Be aware, though, that once you do come home with us, you're going to have to put up with quite a lot.  First, there will be an entire family who will want to smother you with love (including all 10,000 of your father's first cousins--sorry, I don't have any).  The entire lot is a mixed bag of crazy and cool.  You'll have to figure out on your own, though, which is which.  You'll find out firsthand that your Uncle Erik is actually both.  Oh, and don't be confused when you end up with Indian/Filipino/African/Korean aunties and uncles.  They may not be related by blood, per se, but Auntie Janaki will crochet you hats and Uncle Laurel will teach you tae kwon do.  That means they automatically count as family.

Since I like to take pictures, you'll end up being the subject of roughly 99% of them, and yes, they will end up in Facebook photo albums and this very blog.  My one promise in your many photography sessions is that I won't dress you up like a fruit or vegetable.  No Anne Geddes-esque portraits in our home!

Then there will be the things your father and I yearn to teach you.  He'll teach you to play Chopin on piano, the "right" way to throw a football (yes, even if you're a girl), how to make the perfect scrambled cheese eggs, and which RPGs are the most fun on the Nintendo Wii.  I'll teach you how to build a campfire, what herbs go together in spaghetti sauce, how to stay organized, and how to touch your tongue to the tip of your nose.  Together, we will show you the world through travel, books, gardening, walks with Mojo, and our favorite TV show--Jeopardy!

Your father will be laid back about almost everything.  He's the peace-maker and far from confrontational.  He will play devil's advocate to keep you on your toes.  He will make jokes.  When you fall and scrape your knee, he'll tell you to rub dirt on it.  He will show you how to entertain yourself with one-person activities, like putting together puzzles and solving logic problems.  His charisma will rub off on you.

I will want to be laid back, but I won't be able to help being uptight about certain situations.  I'm skeptical and questioning.  I'll try to make jokes (they'll be dorky and lame, unlike your father's).  When you fall and scrape your knee, I'll run for the Band-Aids and Neosporin.  I'll show you how to make your voice heard and stand up for the things in which you believe.  My stubbornness is sure to rub off on you.

There are things we will have to be prepared for, though, in bringing you into our lives.  First words.  First tooth.  Losing your first tooth (yay, tooth fairy!).  First day of school.  First date.  First broken heart.  Turning 18.  High school graduation.  Piercings and tattoos (which I'm actually fine with…OK, maybe not on your face, but go to town with your ears!).  Your college education.  Discovering your passion.  Starting your career.  Getting married.  Having your own children…

Maybe it's strange to try to gaze into a person's future that does not physically exist, but they're just as important to us as our future hopes of becoming your parents.  And for each and every one of your milestones, I'll cry happy tears and your dad will puff out his chest with pride.

We won't be perfect parents, but such parents aren't real anyway.  What we can promise you, though, is to chase the monsters out from under your bed and let you wear your striped socks with your favorite pair of bright green Chuck Taylor high tops.  We probably won't give you an allowance.  Not because we're mean,  but because having a roof over your head and three squares a day is a luxury in the eyes of some children in this world.  We will try our best to be fair, to be patient when you are seconds away from having a tantrum, and to prepare you for the real world.

Because you will be ours, you will be guaranteed love.  There is nothing greater in this world, and we will spend a lifetime reinforcing that ideal.  Whenever you are ready to become ours, we will be waiting with open arms.

Love,

Your Parents-To-Be


Going Digital Next Month! (If There is a "Next Month")

Thanks to the research and advice of a couple of very intelligent girlfriends who read my blog (Nicole and Lili), I will be going digital next month!  Forget the OPKs with their stupid pink lines.  This OPK will give me a smiley face when I ovulate!  Doesn't get any clearer than that.  Of course, it means I actually have to ovulate in order to get a smiley, but at least I'll have a kit that won't leave any room for interpretation of a line's color saturation.  Hooray for digital!


Dummy-proof OPKS do exist!  Found this one at Target.

PS--I am supposed to find out tomorrow if the Femara increased my progesterone levels.  It's teetered around the 6-7 range, yet it needs to be somewhere around 12.  Think high hormones for me!

13 January 2011

OPKs: Not for the Faint of Heart

I started a second month's worth of an ovulation predictor kit.  I opted for a name brand variety from Target that was slightly cheaper than last month's kit.  Instead of a smiling baby on the box, I got this:

Buy this Ovulation Predictor Kit and get…a free nap with a baby?

Yet another image to mock my less-than-stellar ovaries, but hey, at least this kit came with coupons!

There is still a sense of frustration in using such a kit.  First of all, there's the sheer dedication and timing of urine.  It can't be your first morning urine.  You have to count to 5 while testing.  Yadda yadda...  No one knows the significance of this personal milestone better than my mother.  Every time she took my brother, Erik, and me to the pediatrician for our annual check-up, he could pee in the tiny cup like a champ.  Such doctoral demands had my bladder frozen with fear, leaving me unable to perform even with the promise of a chocolate-dipped ice cream cone from Dairy Queen.  Gritting her teeth, Mom would drive all three of us home: Erik, me, and an empty specimen cup.  My stage fright would cost her an extra trip back to the pediatrician because, apparently, I could only do the task in the comfort of my own bathroom.

Second, not all OPKs come with a protective cap for the testing end of the strip!  Imagine my expression when I realized that the reason why last month's test was more expensive was due to costs for the production of a plastic cover to prevent getting pee all over my hands.  *sigh*

Then, there is the reading of the lines.  Oh, those parallel, enigmatic pink lines.  Just like with some pregnancy tests, OPKs have a control line on the right side of the viewing window that shows up simply because you made a urinary contribution.  It's the variable line that is the tell-all.  If the variable line does not show up on the left side of the window, OR if it's lighter in shade, then your follicles have not been sent on their expedition.

This is what not ovulating looks like.

So for someone like me, I could easily convince myself that the OPK strip below was a positive result.  That line looks darker!  Well, it's darker in, like, one part of the line.  That counts, right?  Maybe it's positive if it's only slightly lighter than the control line?  This kind of conversation with myself is not at all out of the ordinary, but even I had to check the manual to convince my hopeful side that I hadn't ovulated.  It's obvious to all those out there with a keen sense of shade depth and color saturation that it is, in fact, another negative!

Stupid light-pink line.

Based on my frustrations with these derned OPKs, here's what I want to know: Why can't they dummy-proof these suckers like they have with pregnancy tests?  I mean, you can buy those handy-dandy digital pregnancy tests that spell it out for overthinkers like me, as seen below:

No sense of color perception needed.

Maybe OPKs could do the same, simply reading "Ovulated" in the window.  Even better, maybe they can have one that plays Barry White when you ovulate.  That would give you an obvious answer AND mood music!



12 January 2011

Mojo, the Snow Addict

This is Mojo. He protects us from attack squirrels and wolf spiders.  Snow is his version of crack.

Snowpocalypse 2011 came with a quiet intensity.  My inner child couldn't sleep when it arrived late Sunday night.  I had left all of our blinds open and outdoor lights turned on so I could watch its hypnotic delivery on our lawn.  As much as I wanted to stand outside in the swirling flakes and catch them on my tongue, though, I turned my attention to writing on the ol' blog.  At least it's warm by our computer.

Mojo, our mini-shepherd, was lounging in our living room by a dying fire.  Since intense typing is not his idea of canine entertainment, I offered him a rawhide from the entryway cabinet.  I even moved his afghan up to the office next to the desk chair so he could be near me while I typed and he munched.  Mojo turned circles for the rawhide and decided he would rather plant himself in the music room to gnaw away.  His afghan remained empty while I wrote.  He chewed away until that rawhide was merely a memory.

Around 11:00, Mojo came running up the stairs to the office.  He beelined for me, pawed at my knee intently, and then ran to the window.  It was obvious what thoughts were racing through his mind.

"Hey, Human That I Live With, that white stuff is back!"

OK, you're probably thinking, "Is she really anthropomorphizing her pet?  I always knew Vikki had a screw loose…"  Having a dog like Mojo almost makes you want to give him a voice.  He's practically children's book character worthy.  So, I deductively reasoned his thoughts based on: 1) the fact that all dogs have a personality, 2) Mojo is extremely smart and trainable, 3) Mojo stares out of the windows ALL THE TIME, and 4) Mojo loves snow. With all the blinds open and lights on, he must have noticed the extreme change in climate and landscape.  I'm sure he thought I was thick since I didn't immediately gear up to take him out to play in it.  He whimpered by the window while the snow continued to fall all night.  I promised to take him to play in it in the morning.

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09 January 2011

Man Hormones are in Check

Two days after I had my blood drawn in order to run tests on my insulin and testosterone, the lab called me.  I was driving home from Athens.

Lab tech: Hello, Ms. Wynne.  We are calling to inform you of a lab accident that occurred involving your specimen.
Me: What kind of "accident?"
Lab tech: It seems your frozen specimen vial was dropped and broken.  It rendered the specimen unusable.
Me: What does this mean?
Lab tech: Well, your other vial, the unfrozen one, was fine.  The frozen one, though, was to test your insulin levels.  Now we can't do that.
Me: Were there tests run to check my testosterone levels?
Lab tech:  I don't know.  I was just to call to inform you about the accident.  You can come in again for another test.  We won't charge you for it.
Me: (No shit!) I'll call my doc tomorrow and see what she can tell me.  Thanks for letting me know this…uh, news…

I really do try to take things in stride, but after being told I was in the wrong location for the test to begin with on the day of the blood-letting, I couldn't help but throw down my phone on the front seat and scream not-so-nice words to absolutely no one.

Why is it that every time I think things are just going to go smoothly, some stupid bump in the road makes the ride jarring and unpleasant?

My next move was to call my NP at her office.  No one answered, forcing me to leave a message.  I figured they would call before the weekend in order to put my mind at ease or at least offer some extra apologetic words.

No such luck.

A holiday weekend, an Orange Bowl, and two days worth of a toilet-hugging stomach virus went by before I finally heard from the doc office.  They apparently had taken a few days off for the New Year and were playing catch up with their patients.  My message from the previous week had been their first notification of the lab accident.

I spoke with the receptionist as she tried to piece together the information about my sample.  She was confused about news of the accident simply because the lab had sent them test results.  Her thoughts were somewhere in the neighborhood of, "How could they have results if there was no blood to be tested?"  I had to explain that there were two vials drawn and only one of them had broken.  Gaining clarity, she breathed a sigh of relief.

"It seems something is always going wrong with your visits," she exclaimed.  "First, your records go missing when you come for your initial visit.  Then the location of the last test wasn't given to you.  Now this."

Although I hate that things do seem to go wrong [often] even after switching doctor's offices, I was glad to hear someone on their end recognize it.  She told me I would hear from my NP soon to discuss what results they did have.  The conversation ended there.  Since it was already late in the day, I figured I wouldn't hear from the NP until the following day.

She called me around 5:45…way past closing time.  Impressive.  Douchebag Doctor from the last office would never have called his lunch hour.

My NP was glad to give me the news that my testosterone levels are in the normal range (yay!), and she wanted to wait for the results of my next progesterone test to decide if I should even have an insulin test done to make up for the smashed up one.  If my progesterone levels stay low despite the use of Femara, we'll do the [free of charge] insulin test (should there be a problem with my insulin levels, another drug called Metformin could help).  If they fall within normal range because of the Femara, we'll skip it altogether.

So let's put ducks in a row:
Estrogen levels: fine
Progesterone levels: below normal
Testosterone levels: fine
Level of patience: teetering, but I'm working on it

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