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Its been one of those weeks ….

My specialist gave up on me, I’m allergic to the water supply, family dramas galore and in the tradition of the best songs my best friend’s dog died.

The sad news first: Tuesday morning I received a txt from Miss A. Her beloved Tane had just died.  She was gambolling around the yard then just laid down and died, they think it was a stroke. So a good way to go – she was happy and well-loved.  Miss A is of course as heart-broken as any of us would be.  Tane was the canine that turned a life-long cat person into a dog-person; truly an exceptional personality! And one that will be sorely missed 🙁

On Monday:  We saw my world leading consulting neurologist on Monday to report that the Parnate was a failure. He didn’t believe the side-effects I had while on the drug.  “It’s supposed to be an anti-depressant; it’s not supposed to make you depressed!” and then he prescribed one last course of drugs. A 3-5 day lignocaine infusion.

Unfortunately in Australia, this infusion is only legal for emergency use.  So to be eligible for this I would go into Canberra intentionally place myself to I could get the worse possible migraine triggering, then call an ambulance then convince Canberra’s largest hospital (with chronic bed shortage) that although I have self managed my migraine pain with a cool quiet environment for the last two years, I really now needed to be in a noisy light filled hospital for 3-5 so my specialist can administer this drug.

This drug which has been trialled once in Australia and only gave lasting relief to 4 out of 19 patients. And you want me to talk my way in to an elective procedure via an emergency route. At the busiest time of year. In the busiest hospital in the region.

The specialist said it was up to me to get myself into that hospital bed and to call him in when I was there and there was nothing further he could do for me. This was it. There was no other option. He was out of options. There is nothing further can do for me.  He then walked past both of us out into the waiting room and called the next patients into the office.

To say mum and I were a little stunned was an understatement.  We were shocked.  Shocked and sickened ; at the lack of ethics and we felt cast off; rudderless.

It’s now Friday.  We’ve given it a lot of thought and the one area that Dr Andrews didn’t know anything about was the Implanon in my arm.  A few times I think the different drugs he gave me overrode the implant and I wonder if the implant is playing a role in all of this because there is a link between women 35-45 and migraine and hormones. Dr Andrews knew nothing about artificial hormone regulators or how they affected any of the drugs he put me on.  So we talked all of this through with my GP this week and he gave me the number of a gynecologist in Canberra who specialists in hormone research.  Some gynecologists later (most are only interested in hormonal issues related to fertility it seems and I’m not interested in getting pregnant as a way to relieve the migraine thank you very much) I have an appointment with one in February.

In the meantime I’m thinking I should just get the thing removed and see how things go for the next month anyway.  If it makes no difference I can always get it put back in.

Next issue: Icky.  I’ve been having intermittent without warning explosive diarrhea for a few months.  Lets just say that adult diapers will never be on my fantasy list ever! Euwwwww ….  Anyway it turns out there’s a bug in the local water supply that the locals are used to but I’m not.  So it’s some heavy-duty antibiotics and then bottled water or gin & tonics for at least the next month, preferably two.  The GP recommends the gin & tonics, costs the same as the bottled water but makes Christmas with the relatives easier to bear!  I like my GP 🙂

Which bring us to the last issue: Family.  This one has taken most of the mental energy and time outside of the bathroom this week.  I’ve also been doing a fair amount of Warcraft. Thank you to Stephen for explaining to me years ago how therapeutic pixel-killing really is! Anyway, the house my sister was renting was sold and Kiddo and the kids have to be out by Sunday.  This is unfortunately not the time of year to be looking for a new house to rent, especially in her area.  However as Master 5 is enrolled in the local school to start in February she really wanted to stay local, so finally she found a place in Thursday.

In between trips to the bathroom and the GPs I gave Kiddo lots of packing advice and encouragement and helped mediate family dynamics.  Who knew all those trainer  mediation skills and techniques would work on family members ?!

So this morning mum and I made a heap of sandwiches and a big thermos of tea and mum;s driving that over and bringing the grandkids back here.  Dad’s turning up over there and helping Kiddo and her partner do the actual move. I’m getting dressed shortly, baking a cake for the kids and hiding all the Christmas presents before Master 5 sticks his goddamn nose where it don’t belong.  Hmmm better do that bit first.

So yes – migraine city for me for the weekend, but this way Dad Kiddo and her partner can her stuff moved to the new place without the kids under foot.  And over here, Master 3 and Master 5 can play outside with Grandma while I continue to wonder why we do not spend more time decorating the bathroom.  Surely we need a trompe l’oeil in there.


Well I’m on the top-level of the Deseril now.  I’ve been on the top-level for two weeks now.  Unfortunately the migraine pain is pretty bad now.  Its been bad for a week or so.  I think we pushed it too hard with Dad turning up unexpectedly and then having the nephews over and then dealing with crowds in Floriade with my parents all in the same couple of days.

I initially thought we got through the weekend OK. It hurt  – a lot. It really was a lot more noise and interaction than I was expecting or prepared for but I thought I got through it all OK.  Unfortunately the migraine pain hasn’t settled down at all since they’ve gone home and that was a week ago.

I’m losing my eyesight to stitch again, my short-term memory is shot. I forget tasks half way through doing them.  If I’m chopping vegetables and go for a toilet break, I’ll forgot to walk back into the kitchen.   I made a loaf of bread in mum’s bread maker and forgot to take the instruction booklet out, starting a fire in the unit. Both parents were home at the time and I was the one to smell the smoke so there was no real damage done.  We had artisan-style smokey-flavoured bread.

I don’t think I realised how stressful the weekend was and I think a lot of the above may be stress reactions. So with a little more time, maybe it will all settle down again.

So as an experiment the weekend proved I am so not ready for a normal life yet.


Yes it is now October and the new Chatelaine design range of historical costuming has commenced.  The first pattern is Houppelande.

Chart Cover

Given my love of historical costuming this series was always going to be a MUST for me.  It’s actually quite fortunate Dad is visiting this weekend – it’s the first time he’s seen his cynical, jaded, sarcastic, pessimistic daughter go SQUEEEEE since she was about 10.  OK so Dad and I don’t actually see each other that much and we try to act cool around each other.

So the upshot is, Dad has offered to buy me the kit for Christmas.  Well he had already agreed to fund the kit for Christmas, but now he’s extended the offer to the series.  As long as:

  1. I am unable to return to fulltime work
  2. The kits cost around $100-$120 each (depends on Martina not becoming too extravagant and the Aussie dollar remaining near parity)
  3. I finish stitching each one before he buys the next one

then Dad has offered to buy me each of the kits as they come out for birthdays and Christmas presents. I find these quite reasonable terms.

Now one hopes that I get these damn migraines under control sometime soon and I am back in fulltime work sometime in the next couple of months.  But at least this is something nice to consider as the time drags on and the couple of months stretches out further and further.

Now to stalk the ECC site until the Cindy and Angela upload the kits and cross my fingers that I’ve judged the cost of the kit accurately.

The dress itself is mainly DMC but the sleeves, dress hem, neckline, chemise, hairnet, belt and the brocaded overwork are all done in silks and beads.

The piece is 142 x 187 stitches.  I have a piece of 18 x 28″ Wichelt 32ct Queen Anne’s Lace here that I think might do the job quite nicely.  It’s a pale grey mottled background colour. If I skimp a little I might get both this and the next the design out of the same piece of fabric!

The kit requires:

3 skeins Needlepoint Inc silks
1 skein Caron Waterlillies
1 skein Dinky Dyes silk
1 skein Gloriana silk
2 skeins Gloriana Florimell
2 Skeins Gloriana Princess Perle Petite
3 cards Rainbow Gallery Petite Treasure Braid
1007 assorted Delica beads
a few swarovski crystals

Minus the fabric I estimated that to be around $100-$120 kit.  What does anyone else think?  Am I way off?


Updated 7 October 2011:
The kit is now out and its only $71.10 US!

Stitched on white 28ct Cashel linen using recommended DMC threads.  Chart from an old 1990s Cross Stitch Australia magazine.

This and the First Present need to go to the framer on Friday.

Time to see if I’m optimistic enough to start the fourth present ….


Well I suppose I should write this down somewhere just for my own records and making sure I remember everything I have to do. Feel free to ignore (or let me know if you think of something I’ve forgotten to do). Remember this is just TODAY’S to do list.

* Lease a Post Box at Post office near my work and then arrange a forwarding of all mail to that box – the mail box in front of the new house is quite a way away and cannot be seen from the house. I’ve decided I don;t want the postie dropping off parcels of scrummy fabric and threads where I can;t see them!

* Buy more Trubby food.

* Put Mozart in for framing. I finished him back in February and was going to frame him myself, but then visited early and I couldn;t get time to myself to block and mount, yada yada yada. I’m taking the frame and mount in to the framers and they can do it for me.

* Buy some storage boxes.

Back home:
* Ring the telephone, electricity and internet companies regarding disconnecting and reconnecting, and advising my new postal address.
* Ring car and home insurance agencies and arrange the change in cover and advise new postal address.
* arrange rest of Dad’s care parcel so can be sent as soon as Mozart is ready.
* pack rest of SCA stuff to be sent interstate. Some friends of mine are starting a new shire and I’ve decided they can have my clothing and feasting gear etc etc on permanent loan as part of their new hospitality.
* start de-cluttering and packing the room of death. Start with the filing cabinet.

* relax and stitch.

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