Adventures Part 26: Optimistic…..Maybe…..

August 30, 2010 at 8:02 pm (baby steps, Dilators, doctor's visits, health, relationships, resolutions, sexual dysfunction, Vaginismus) (, , , )

I had gyn visit number two today. I was as nervous as the 1st time and felt really out of place surrounded by girls in their school uniforms who were waiting with their mothers. This just pointed out the wasted years to me yet again.

Anyway, when I told her the progress I’d made with the dilators, she was impressed and I got ready for my examination. This time she was going to use an “instrument”. I knew that wasn’t going to work out for her, but I let her try anyway – it is her job afterall! I did better than I thought I would, but after about 30 seconds I had to tell her to remove it and she finished the examination herself, saying that it was much easier than the last time.

She still thinks that it’s a muscle problem and not anything else, but if I want to, I can have an examination under anaesthetic. I’m going to leave it for another few months anyway, just to see how far I go by myself. I’m not a fan of the surgery option. First of all I’d have to tell my family – there’s no way I could hide a surgical procedure from them, and secondly, yuck…….who knows what she’d do and what kind of pain I’d be in when I’d wake up!  She suggested learning some relaxation techniques and I’m starting pilates to learn how to focus on specific muscle groups.

The best part, which makes me almost feel like a grown up, is that I have an appointment for 6 months time for a smear test!   🙂   I’ve heard about girls who’ve overcome vaginismus feeling happy when they have to buy tampons and condoms and now I feel like that about a smear test! I’m sure I won’t feel like that afterwards, but…..!!!  She said she could have almost done it today, but cos I got so freaked out about the instrument, she didn’t. Now I know what it looks like, I should be better the next time.

I’m not quite sure what I was expecting from the visit, so I can be optimistic I guess.   🙂

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Adventures Part 25: Don’t Stop Believing……

August 29, 2010 at 4:08 pm (baby steps, Dilators, Glee, relationships, resolutions, Vaginismus) (, , , , )

No, I haven’t been hiding under a rock for the last few months, I’ve been purposefully avoiding watching Glee because I watch waaaay too much TV and I knew I’d love it. Unfortunately, last week someone was watching it when I came home and within minutes I was hooked! I’ve just spent the whole weekend watching Season 1-all 22 episodes. I’m now walking around the place singing.

I always love watching series that are set in high school or college because I can still identify with the topic of losing your virginity. How they deal with this topic interests me. I keep waiting for a storyline with vaginismus, but of course there never is one. I’ll be keeping a close eye on Emma just incase it happens to be her story – I doubt it, but you never know.

One thing that sets Glee apart though is it’s use of music, especially the use of Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing”, which is one of my all-time favourite songs. It was playing on the radio when Wonder Boy and I were moving into our house and we play it at every party we have (air guitar and hand reach essential!)

So, I’m going to take the words of the song as inspiration as I get ready for my gyn appointment tomorrow and I might play it every day when I use my dilators to help me focus on the final goal. As there are only 2 weeks left to my birthday, I realise I’m going to have to rename this blog to Adventures of a 30 Year Old Virgin, but I really hope it stops there and that it doesn’t have to be renamed in 12 months time.

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Part 17: A Little Blip!

June 26, 2010 at 1:06 pm (Dilators, Exercise, health, relationships, resolutions, sexual dysfunction, Summer, Things to do before you're 30, Travel, Vaginismus) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

Was there a Sunday in last week??? I’m really not sure! I know there was a Saturday cos I did a lot! I went for a long walk, I did some housework, I sunbathed in the garden and then I went out. An ex-colleague was home for the weekend and we were celebrating her 30th. There was drinking, dancing and……… tequila  🙂   Then Wonder Boy came to rescue me, there was junk food and the next thing it was Sunday evening and I was eating pizza wrapped up in a blanket on the couch! It was a good night, but it’s the reason why I was the designated driver last night when we went to a concert!

So, I missed a day from my schedule – no worries! I had 3 positives with my resolutions this week.

Get fit and toned: To prepare for my total tone class I did exercise on Monday too, so my muscles wouldn’t suffer as much as last week. It worked – only a few aches on Wednesday, but I was able to run up and down the stairs! The weather continues to be nice, so I got a swim in the sea in too, which always helps stretch out muscles.

Visit Italy: Yes!!!!!!!! This one might actually happen!!! It won’t be before my birthday, but a friend of mine there is getting married 5 days after my birthday. That’s close enough, right???? I’m in two minds whether to go or not for a couple of reasons: it’s difficult to get to the location of the ceremony, I’d have to go on my own cos Wonder Boy can’t take any holidays at that time, I don’t know anybody going to the wedding besides the bride and her sister and my Italian is very rusty now seeing as it’s been 6 years since I was last there. Obviously it’d be fantastic to see her again and meet her now fiancé! And it would be a new part of Italy for me to visit. I think I might make the trip my birthday present to me  🙂

Have sex: I realise I need more help. I can go on forever on the 2nd dilator or do something about it. I’m going back to my doctor on Monday to see what the next step is. I also joined an online support group on Facebook moderated by the authors of the book we read, (the book that gave me the ass kicking I needed to do this), Private Pain: It’s About Life, Not Just Sex by Dr Ditza Katz and Dr Ross Lynn Tabisel. They run a therapy centre in NY www.womentc.com and have given me some very helpful information this week. Thanks!!!!

So, all in all, it’s been a good week. We’re making some travel plans YAY!!! But they’re still at the baby stages, so I’m saying nothing for the moment!

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Adventures Part 13: Summer??!!???

May 22, 2010 at 8:58 am (Dilators, Exercise, growing vegetables and herbs, health, Humor, Making the most of your time, relationships, resolutions, Summer, Things to do before you're 30, Vaginismus, Vegetables) (, , , , , , , , , , )

I’m afraid to write it in case it disappears again, but I think it might be summer 🙂   I’ve spent the morning in the garden for the first time this year. I had breakfast outside, the washing drying in the sun and I had to water the vegetables, which are growing like mad! We’ll soon have our own veggies for dinner!!! Yummy! They’re playing summer songs on the radio and I’m planning a looonnnggg walk for later on. Wonder Boy is off running in preparation for the marathon, which is coming up in a couple of weeks. I’ll have to get my pom-poms ready to cheer him over the finish line!

What’s all this positivity you might ask???? Aren’t I usually quite depressing????? The answer might be yes, but this week things are good. My star chart seems to be working. Ticking things off one-by-one and knowing that I’ll have a reward at the end seems to be working. I haven’t noticed any improvement with the dilators, but I have used them everyday for the last 9 days (I’m back to the 2nd one again). I’m just focusing on using it everyday and then, hopefully, one day it’ll be easy.

And the treat I’m looking forward to today??? Well, Wonder Boy’s nephews are coming to stay tonight and we’re going to get pizza and watch football! They might even persuade me to go zip-wiring in the park tomorrow if it’s still sunny. They find it very funny to watch me cling on for dear life while they push me across!

So, I’m ending this entry feeling positive  🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 

Oh, and if anyone has any advice on how to recover coriander or how to grow pepper plants, your comments are very welcome!

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Adventures Part 12: Star Gazing

May 14, 2010 at 6:58 pm (Changing jobs, cholesterol, Dilators, health, Making the most of your time, relationships, resolutions, sexual dysfunction, Things to do before you're 30, Vaginismus) (, , , , , , , , )

Well, let’s see…..where have I got since the last time???? Not very far!

It was Wonder Boy’s birthday recently, so there were a few nights out, dinners and basically a 3-day party! I gave him a telescope and a star to focus on. He hasn’t had much luck since he got it though because it’s been cloudy and the moon is in the wrong phase! I think we need to get away from the lights and into the black countryside to see anything. I fancy a nice midnight picnic and some star gazing  🙂

As for my project, I’ve gone back to childhood! Having tried many different ways of approaching things (all documented here) and with none of them working, I’ve decided to start a star chart. Yes, you did read that correctly – a star chart! It has 5 categories for each day: healthy eating, extra exercise, sit-ups, dilators and housework. For each one I do I get a star – I draw the star, I don’t actually have the little stickers, don’t worry!!!! Because some things aren’t going to be done everyday anyway, I’ve staggered the reward system. If I get between 25-35, I get to splurge 1 day at the weekend. If I get between 20-25, I get to have a treat and between 15-20 is a lie in on Saturday or Sunday!

So, having completed one week, I’m now looking forward to a treat tomorrow and I don’t feel as if I’m under too much pressure during the week to do everything everyday. I can’t believe I had to go back to this method, but I feel much better about things this week than I did last week, so I guess it’s working!

I’ve also had a go at looking for a new job/getting into a field I’m interested in. I emailed everyone I could find connected to adult learning in this city and it might mean volunteering for a year and studying at night while I stay working where I am, but at the end of it I might be able to break into the area I want to.

Unfortunately I’ve suffered a dilator related injury. I got pissed off not seeing any progress on the 2nd one and tried the 3rd………BIG MISTAKE  😦  Now I’ve had to go back to the 1st one. That’ll teach me to walk before I can run!

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Adventures Part 11: And They Saw The Virgin!

April 24, 2010 at 10:29 am (cholesterol, diets, Dilators, EFL, health, relationships, resolutions, Teaching, TEFL, Things to do before you're 30, Vaginismus) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

I need a massive butt kicking. I’m running the risk of letting my 30th, 31st, 32nd, and every birthday after that, passing without doing anything to sort out my life. I’m just plodding along doing bits here and there thinking I’m doing something, but really I’m not.

My food diary has been going well. I can actually look at it and see that my diet is quite healthy – apart from the odd Friday night breakout of Doritos, nacho cheese dip and peanut butter M&Ms (not together!), but that’s allowed, right?!?!?!? The problem comes with my exercise and dilator plan. Going for a walk twice a week and using the dilators 2-3 times a week really isn’t good enough to make a difference.

I’m still on the 2nd dilator but it hurts like Hell. I’m beginning to think there’s something else wrong cos it’s so uncomfortable. I almost want to take it out as soon as it goes in, but I make myself keep it there and then the burning feeling eases after a minute or so. It’s not getting easier like the 1st one. After 2 weeks with the 1st one it was really easy to use. I think that’s why I’m not so keen to use it everyday like I was before. I have to psyche myself up to get over the pain and do it for 20 minutes. Once I breathe it’s ok-ish, but I can’t see it ever being easy and when I look at the 3rd one I freak out!!!!

So, my new plan is to make out a new schedule which includes exercise and dilator practice – not just work and housework!  🙂

Anyway, I’m going to share a funny story from one of my students this week to cover up the fact that I’ve been very inactive and don’t feel so positive. They had to write an essay for me this week on whatever topic they wanted to. One guy from Spain decided to write about miracles in Catholicism and whether or not he believes in them! He wrote about Lourdes and how the children saw “a virgin”! I corrected this to “the Virgin Mary” and gave it back to him. Of course he asked why I had corrected “a” to “the” and I explained it. He laughed and said that it really would be a miracle if children today saw “a virgin”! I smiled! If only he knew he was sitting in front of one!!!  🙂

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Part 10: Tick, Tick, Tick…….!

April 12, 2010 at 7:40 pm (Changing jobs, cholesterol, Dilators, EFL, health, Humor, Making the most of your time, relationships, resolutions, sexual dysfunction, Teaching, TEFL, Things to do before you're 30, Travel, Vaginismus) (, , , , , , , , , )

Aarrghh!!! I’ve less than half a year to go! OMG  🙂  The clock is ticking and my deadline is fast approaching. I’ve just re-read my list and freaked out. What a difference 6 weeks makes. When I wrote it, It felt as if I’d loads of time to get through everything, but now……..

Wonder Boy and I have been busy travelling again (at least that resolution has been completely ticked and ticked and ticked off the list!) We went to Morocco at the end of last month and had a great time. We did a lot of lazing around. It was Wonder Boy’s first visit to North Africa and I didn’t want to scare him off the place as it’s an area I really like and want to go back to! My plan nearly failed though cos as soon as we got into the taxi from the airport, Wonder Boy nearly had a heart attack! The taxi driver paid no attention to the road, lanes or other cars as he welcomed us to his country 🙂

However, once we’d checked into our hotel, eaten a lovely dinner and walked along the beach, things were looking better! We based ourselves in Agadir and then travelled to Taroudannt and Tiout. We spent the first couple of days going between the beach and the pool. Seeing as Wonder Boy’s training for a marathon he had to find suitable running routes and suitable running times! So those few days were the settling in period. Then we started to venture out into the city. Because most of the city was destroyed by an earthquake in 1960, the architecture of what is now the medina is that terrible 1960’s style that could be anywhere. There are no lovely terracotta walls and tiny streets. I did find the most adorable kitten near the mosque though – it was the highlight of the holiday and I wanted to bring it home J We visited the little museum and found the football stadium. We walked everywhere, so we knew the place pretty well by the end of the trip.

The souk is a fine example of what a market should be though. It’s huge – 7 km² if I remember correctly! Of course we were taken off by a guy who had to bring us to his friends’ spice shop cos “he’s only here today. You are lucky!” We drank our tea, had a chat and bought some spices. Then we raced around the rest of it trying to avoid being sold hens (I mean really-what would we do with hens!!), jackets, teapots, tagines……. It was a bit hassled, but at least you see Moroccans going about their daily business. There are plenty of tourist souks near the modern marina, but they’re over-priced!

When we finally got out of the city we got to see some of the typical images of Morocco! Orange and olive trees, goats up trees, little farms, bizarre villages at the side of the road with massive Coca Cola signs and meat hanging up next to tyres and spare mechanical parts! In Taroudannt we found our lovely terracotta walls and wandered around the souk inspecting the traditional jewellery, teapot, fabric and TV/satellite dish shops! Next we went onto Tiout a little further into the mountains. We checked out the Kasbah where Ali Baba was filmed. A local kid, Hamid, insisted on taking us on a donkey ride to the wadi and he filled Wonder Boy in on all the football scores from the previous night while we were there! It was really pretty there with lots of brightly coloured flowers.

And so now we’re back to a much colder and tagine deprived (although that might be a good thing!)  reality! I think I’ve mentally resigned myself to the fact that I’ll still have the same job by the time my birthday comes around. I’m not even looking for anything else anymore and I’m enjoying work much more as a result. Last week the theme of the book was travel and things to do before you die. I put the following up on the board:

1. travel around the world

2. retire by 55

3. do a parachute jump

4. buy a house somewhere sunny and near a beach

5. write a travel book

My class pointed out to me that if I write a best-selling book, all the rest will fall into place. It got me thinking about how I’ve always had ideas in my head for books. Writing this has helped me start writing ideas down, so maybe I can stay teaching and write a best-seller in my spare time! Then I’ll get rich, travel around the world, buy a house somewhere nice and, of course, retire early!!! I like the way my class thinks! 😀

So, the job will be a non-ticked off item, but, let’s face it, it’s only disguising the real reason why I have resolutions. The most important resolution that needs to be carried through is to have sex. I am FINALLY seeing some progress with using the dilators. I’ve continued to start off using the smallest one for a few minutes before moving onto the second one. But, tomorrow I think I can start off with the second one. I realised the other day that using the smallest one now is pointless! How cool is that?!?!?!?!? I was actually lying there thinking “this is silly, I can’t even feel it!” A few months ago a small finger caused me a lot of discomfort and now I’m discarding small dilators! YAY!!! 😀 I imagine Wonder Boy is mentally counting down the days 😉

I won’t bore you anymore – I know this was a long entry, but then again, I hadn’t written for a while! If you’re still reading it, thanks for sticking with it!

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Adventures Part 9: Thirty is the Magic Number

March 20, 2010 at 1:52 pm (Dilators, health, relationships, resolutions, sexual dysfunction, Things to do before you're 30, Vaginismus) (, , , , , , )

I’ve decided to change the words of the famous song to “30 is the magic number!” I’ve officially moved onto dilator number 2! I decided to change the way I was doing it. Using the dilators everyday was essential at the start because I wasn’t used to anything going near me. I had to get used to it and that had to happen gradually. So, I used do 5 minutes a day between getting home from work and having dinner.

This was fine until it started getting easy. Then I started skipping days here and there. My excuses were that I needed to go somewhere, I was tired, I was home late from work, I was too hungry to wait for dinner, it was cold upstairs…….!!!! I’m good at making excuses! I decided that it would be more beneficial to use them less often but for longer. So now I use them for about 30 minutes and it’s working out. I’m getting closer to ticking vag off my list and it’s looking as if 30 will be a fun year 😉

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Part 8: The List!

March 2, 2010 at 7:34 pm (Changing jobs, cholesterol, diets, Dilators, EFL, health, Humor, Making the most of your time, relationships, resolutions, Teaching, TEFL, Things to do before you're 30, Travel, Vaginismus) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , )

It has been pointed out to me that almost 6 months into my year I haven’t actually given you a full list of my resolutions. So, here they are and a few comments on how they’re going!

1: Save some money.

I did put some money in the bank and changed my account so I’m getting a better return. I still need to save more, but for now I can tick that one off the list!

 2: See new places

I can tick that one off too! We’ve been to Barcelona, we’re going to Morocco at the end of the month and I’m sure we’ll plan something for later in the year.

 3: Find a new job

This one isn’t even near to being ticked off. For now I have to be happy that I have a job and one that I like (even if I don’t like the place). There is absolutely nothing else out there at the moment for a person who doesn’t really know what she wants to do!

 4: Get fit and healthy

This one is a work in progress. I’ve started keeping my food diary, started cutting out junk food and I’ve stepped up my exercise programme. I should see an improvement soon, right?!?!?!? However, boxes of chocolates and cold weather make it hard! 🙂

 5: Have sex!

Again, this is another work in progress!!!! I’m doing my dilators regularly and I know there’s a little progress, but I want more! I’m still using the first one, but itching to get onto the second one. I try it every now and then. I tried it today and I got it further in than before, but it hurts…….a lot.

I’m the kind of person who needs to see changes quickly or else I give up! Right now between a health kick, job search and dilators, I’m not seeing enough changes and the idea of giving up is right there. So, this needs a lot more work.

 6: Go back to Italy

This one isn’t a major one and could be done next year too! This is a country that I used to fly backwards and forwards to, where I used to live and work, but I haven’t been there for nearly 7 years. My friends there have all got married and most of them have kids now who I’ve never seen. I’d like to go and visit everyone.

 7: Make travel plans

We’ve discussed and thought about this a lot too. We think we might have a kinda plan, but we’re waiting for confirmation. So, this one is half ticked off!!!

 8: Get a tattoo

I’m waiting until the vaginismus is gone before I get this. I’ve wanted a snake tattoo on my foot since I was about 13. I’ve more-or-less settled on a design. Now all I need is the courage!

 9: Wear a designer dress on my birthday

This one speaks for itself and obviously won’t be ticked off for another 6 months!

 There are the resolutions. Don’t ask me why I stopped at 9 instead of 10 cos I’ve no idea. Looking at them now I can see I’m not doing too badly, but some of the big ones are hard.

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Part 7: A Month of Sundays – Make the Most of Them

March 1, 2010 at 8:55 pm (health, Making the most of your time, relationships, resolutions, Things to do before you're 30) (, , , , , )

“What do you want to do today?” This is usually how Sunday starts off. Then I think about it until after breakfast, and we do something around 3pm for a couple of hours. On Mondays I’m back at work, wishing I could have a day off. I’m not saying we waste every Sunday, but I reckon we waste about 35 of them a year! That’s more than a month of free time wasted. So, a couple of weeks ago we decided to start making plans for Sundays. Last week we went to the beach, had a long walk, watched the surfers and enjoyed the sunset. While having a coffee at a picnic table to heat up, Wonder Boy mentioned how he’d never been on a proper picnic (he’s not counting sandwiches eaten on the beach!)

Seeing as it was still February and cold, it probably wasn’t the best time for a picnic, but anyway….! We decided to go to a national park where we hadn’t been since we were kids and could hardly remember what was there. Off we set bright and early yesterday morning – yes, it was sunny! The picnic was made, the paper was on the back seat and we had great music playing! We arrived before lunch and picked a strenuous but short trek around a lake, through a bit of the forest and up to see a little waterfall. It was all done with only a tiny rain shower, which made a pretty rainbow over the lake. By the time we were finished we were starving a headed back for our picnic in the car! We spent the rest of the afternoon reading the paper looking out at the ocean and even had a little snooze in the sun – bliss! I was ready to go into work today.

I woke up early this morning (an advantage to exercise and a good night’s sleep!) The first thing I heard was the traffic news. There had been an accident on the road I need to take into work at 3am this morning and traffic was backed up. I was up early so I didn’t think it would be a problem, I’d plenty of time. It wasn’t until I was in the car on the way in that I heard that a 21 guy had died in the accident. I heard this about 30 seconds before I passed what was left of his car. Even if I hadn’t heard it, I would have known by looking at the remains that no-one had come out of that alive. I normally don’t look at accidents and especially not bad ones, but the Police had half the road closed off and I had to wait until it was my turn to go. This afternoon, on the way back, I had to slow down at this point again. Not because the Police were there, but this time because the amount of flowers that had been placed there were coming out onto the road.

From now on I’m making the most of my free days, half days and evenings.

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