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10 things I hate about pregnancy….

1) boob pain. Don’t listen to pregnancy books that say it gets better in second trimester. They’ve been feeling like TDH used them as punching bags since the 3rd week. I’m at 18 now. 

2) I’m going blonde. My natural colour is indecisive and I had been looking forward to my hair turning darker during pregnancy like my mums did. It’s not. It’s turning lighter. Even my precious dark eyebrows are lighter. I hate how soft it makes me look. I’m really disappointed!

3) Having to work on the ED while pregnant. Irregular shifts, messed up sleep, chaos, and when do I get to eat??

4) I feel like an anonymous wall flower with my ash blond hair and lack of style. Everything fits oddly, I feel like it’s hardly worth investing in cool stuff for a few months and none of my old clothes fit. I really don’t feel pretty at all. 

5) I am bigger than I have ever been in my life. I don’t feel comfortable in my pregnant body and can’t wait to get my body back. And I still have over half of the pregnancy left.  Yes, it’s special to grow a tiny human inside me,  but at some point it’s also great to do stuff like sleep on your back and bend over comfortably. 

6) Heartburn. Especially when you find yourself on the sofa in the living room at 5 in the morning, trying to sleep upright after 5 Rennies didn’t work…. Listening to the traffic, the central heating and your helpful pet rat. 

7) That thing where my head is even less functional than normally. I’m barely functioning. I had a brilliant point to add to this 5 minutes ago…

8) I changed my mind about being happy about a winter pregnancy. Give me summer! I half expected to be warmer than usual because many pregnant women are. Not me. Still freezing just as much! And staying warm is a challenge if you don’t fit anything!

9) fatigue. Nope. Not exactly bouncing with energy here and I need a lot of sleep. I struggle to function on the amount of sleep I normally need!

10) Waiting. Waiting for the ultrasound, waiting for progress, waiting for baby to arrive. Hurry up, little one!


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I know I’ve been a bit MIA lately. 

In short: 

I had a car accident (got hit by a guy who failed to notice my massive Micra and then decided to cut the corner)

I’m pregnant. More about that later.

I also have a cold right now. 

Otherwise everything is fine!

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Posted by on August 10, 2015 in Uncategorized


Dear mozzie 

Please don’t bite me, ok? I’m not that tasty, really, and my blood is fairly cold for a human. Literally, not figuratively because I make up it in that department. That’s of no use to you though. 

I understand that you just love the taste of human blood but I don’t love to be your source.


I just slapped a mosquito with my bare hand on my thigh. That’s either a first or a second in a lifetime!

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Posted by on June 27, 2015 in Uncategorized


Seasonal change

It started out as a brilliant idea to create order in chaos in my wardrobe. Two years on, it has become a ritual, to be performed every time the clock needs to be set ahead.

I had the week off last week, to recharge, and I used part of it for the wardrobe switch. I’m pretty sure by now everything would fit in there in one go if I really tried, but I like having the overview and… turns out I spend less money on clothes this way because by the time 6 months are almost over I am looking forward to wearing the other clothes. It almost feels like having a full new wardrobe every 6 months, but then with the familiarity of stuff being mine.

My ‘other season’ stuff fits in a suitcase. That was summer, now winter is in the suitcase (OK, due to the bulkiness of some of the knits, the boots don’t fit in the suitcase. Summer did fit in there). And I have a bunch of year-round favourites.

I organised my shoes, cleaned all of them and gave them some protective spray because the weather looks like this:

(yes, that’s actual spring, or something like it. It’s pretty much freezing, but it’s almost like my wardrobe change reminded Mother Nature she should be springing spring, because well, sometimes the sun is out but I’m still wearing a winter jacket)

Also, I went shopping. And while shopping, I discovered I’ve almost walked a hole in my tekkies, so time to replace those then too. (The black Timberlands are more for the almost year round winter we have here, the temperature is still in the range where I need gloves and warm shoes in order to maintain the blood supply to my fingers and toes). I didn’t need too much this time, basically I kept on thinking ‘when am I going to wear that?’.

I did find one thing I was very excited about. A sports bikini! Haven’t seen one of these in… years. I used to be a competitive swimmer, and swimming still is a great way to get fit and stay fit with a terrific input-output pay off… but I’d never want to just swim again. Too many other fun activities. I am tall and I am the sometimes proud owner of a generous bust for my frame, which makes finding bathing suits a bit tricky. I get to choose between the discomfort of a wedgie or the discomfort of my boobies flapping around. The two bathing suits I had worked a bit for a short period of time, but both are really old and I was contemplating wearing sports bras underneath them. Until I randomly found a sports bikini at Marks and Spencers.

So off to the pool it is, for me! Given my pathetic level of fitness combined with my injury proneness and seasonal allergies (another one of the downsides of living in Holland…I go from freezing to sneezing and wheezing to being in a permanent jet lag right to the point where I start freezing again)…. swimming seems like a great idea to get fit

Now I just need to find a pool where I can go for a swim.

And here is another sign that spring has sprung, just for good spirits. Isn’t he adorable?

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Posted by on April 12, 2015 in Uncategorized


My first car!!!

TDH and I brought home my/our car today. A 2003 Micra which I -bouncing with excitement- already dubbed ‘Padda’. Padda is the Afrikaans word for frog. Because it has ‘frog eyes’, let’s just hope it doesn’t start jumping. 

I feel like a kid on Christmas morning, and at the same time I feel like I should be a grown up now. A car is a responsibility!

I have a driver’s license for automatic transmission only, due to a very long story which may (probably is) ADHD related. I live in a country where most people drive manual transmission. I am perfectly happy with automatic transmission and don’t get people who think it’s strange that I chose to have this type of license. Why on earth would I go through more hassle to get a licence that allows me to drive with more hassle? Manual is fun outside of the city, but in one of Europe’s most densely populated countries automatic transmission is a blessing. Traffic jam? I just have to move my foot. 

I tried driving automatic during my lessons, and immediately decided that I would buy an automatic transmission car regardless of what my license says. 

Finding one was a bit of a challenge because most people prefer manual, especially in the small cheap segment I was looking in. 

I changed my mind about what type of car I wanted halfway through looking at a few. Started out test driving a Corsa, which was fine, except TDH wasn’t convinced about the easytronic gear box. I didn’t mind too much but had no use for it. Went to look at a few small ones (Chev Matiz), argued with a salesman about having issues with it’s 0,8L engine. I still think driving a lawn mower on the highway sounds a bit ish. 

The point being more than anything else: I sat in the tiny ones (old Suzuki alto, the Matiz) and knew this wouldn’t work. 

I know this Micra isn’t much bigger. But it is a bit bigger and that is enough. 

It also has a small engine but not a lawn mower size engine. 

I also tested the ultimate gerontomobile: Suzuki Wagon R. Seriously great fun in the city. Perhaps not so much on a windy highway. It’s a pretend lorry! My dad loved it tehnically. 

TDH insisted we try a few more, my dad and I were about to impulsively buy either the mint green Corsa or the bright blue gerontomobile. 

I was impatient because I’ve been waiting so long for that moment when I’d buy my first car. Seriously. I’ve been looking forward to it for 10 years. 

TDH has a different style of decision making. He dove into comparisons and reviews and phoned his mum, who -surprisingly- knew something about cars. 

I refreshed my search a few times, found a place (far away because they didn’t have any automatic cars nearby!) with 3 to choose from and asked my dad to go with us again. Then, last Thursday, Padda popped up on my search results. 

I took the two most important men in my life with me to check out the cars. Tested a crap Corsa, then went to check out Padda. 

Padda would do, didn’t need much time to think about it. I didn’t have much time either, he was in demand. Said the man who also sold my sisters their cars two years ago. 

I signed, went home to take care of the  payment and the insurance and we went to pick up Padda today. 

TDH drove home, because I haven’t driven much since getting my license 3 years ago. Both of those men in my life are very reluctant to let me drive. 

Fine. I will practice a bit with TDH first. 

But I am so excited!

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Posted by on March 3, 2015 in Uncategorized



All in all, I’ve been tired for the most of the past two years. I’ve also never been sick as often as in the past two to two and a half years. I’m unfit

Yes, all things work and school related are going a lot smoother. Yes, living together is a stress-reliever (well, the net effect of it is, when TDH is yelling at me because there’s a stain on a chair and because of that I broke the chair…. not so much)(on the other hand: the fact that he discovered said stain while cleaning helps very much).

Still, my life is out of balance. While I’m in a better place than I was half a year ago, I’m still perpetually fatigued, I still feel like I have too little time for things outside of work and basically I feel like I’m missing out on life.

I go back and forth between wanting to do something great, and wanting to lead a simple life.

The only thing is, every sacrifice I make for this ‘career’ of mine seems too much. I feel like I’ve given up too much. Not sure what to do with that feeling.

I suppose it’s some version of the well-known ‘doctors with burn out problems’ story. Yes, we know exactly what to do about it, but we don’t get around to it because, well, we’re doctors.

It’s not really ‘worth it’, at least, not to me. The job itself deserves to be done by people who are mentally fitter, and in order for that to happen I think we need a structural change in health culture and in medical culture.

Since that’s not happening yet, I have to resolve to not let it eat away at me.

I want to live, rather than be lived by my own choices.

I have no clue what ‘burn out’ would be, to be honest, and I don’t even care. I don’t want or need a diagnosis. I just… need to try my own medicine.

My plan is to give special attention to (re)gaining my balance in the next few weeks to months, and to use this blog as an aid.

My plan is to:

  1. Get fit again. Simply, exercise, in such a way that I can build some strength and cardio fitness again. Because, well, 10 000 reasons.
  2. Install some healthier eating habits. Small changes. Example: snack on nuts rather than cookies more often, or make sure I get one serving of fruit daily (somehow veg is easier), exchange more carbs for protein/veg.
  3. Every week I should have one social thing, one creative thing and one exercise thing.
  4. Get a car. I know this sounds like the exact opposite of my goals, but it’s a way to cut my commute in half on a good day and not having one is a big source of ‘minor stress’ for me. Getting anywhere is a hassle. I find myself not going to church as often, for example, because I hate cycling through bad weather (and between me moving and the church moving, it’s 35 minutes if I go fast)… and I hate public transport.
  5. Get at least 7h of sleep on most nights. All nights is not realistic, especially with being on call and so forth, but most nights.
  6. Find a way to efficiently do my ‘homework’, it’s still a hassle.
  7. Rest.

Up till now:

I spent a lot of time trying to find a car. Test drove two. Changed my mind about what I wanted. The idea was to get a small car, you know, one of those European mini things because they’re cheap to drive and to keep, and I don’t want a complicated car as my first. I did actually sit in a Chev Matiz and felt uncomfortable, then I freaked out about the 0.8 engine. I also sat in a Suzuki Alto before finally deciding the tiny thing is not for me. One size up, please. I drove an Opel Corsa and a Suzuki Wagon R. Don’t laugh. I would’ve bought either, but TDH needs to think. I’m frustrated because I’ve waited for so long.

I downloaded RunKeeper, and went for a 2,2k ‘run’ in just under 20 mins (when I was fit, I was aiming for a 5k in 25 mins)… I did 20 mins of yoga too today. I can feel my muscles, but in a good way. And it’s kind of embarrassing too.

I’ve been spending time sticking in photos from holidays as a creative thing.

I am going to bed NOW.

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Posted by on February 22, 2015 in Uncategorized



Remember this?

Well, it’s back. And I am not amused.

My labyrinth is having an -itis again. Again.

Started having a cold last Saturday. I was frustrated because I was finally feeling full of energy again. Oh well. After the weekend I started sniffling a bit, and by Wednesday I was sure any possible actual and imaginary cavity I have in my head was filled with snot. Including my ears. I was on call, and Thursday morning I finally got myself some Otrivin. Still really not sick enough to call in sick at all, but my patients were feeling sorry for me.

Friday morning I had a hard time getting to work, but I figured it’s just my body wanting more sleep.

I started feeling worse and worse, couldn’t figure out why. Just felt really hazy.

Then I started feeling nauseous after taking the turn on the stairs,

And I had noticed that the fairies have started running their diesel engines in my right ear again, but I figured it had something to do with all the snot in there. I’ve been intermittently having some minor hearing loss in the past few days, thanks to snot EVERYWHERE., so it made sense.

By noon I told my preceptor I didn’t know how I was going to make it through the afternoon, and that I was nauseous. I left my bike at the practice and took the bus, grateful that I don’t own a car yet because I’m in no way able to drive right now.

I planted myself on the sofa and remained there, dead tired and dizzy.

Slept for 11h, and today my world still has a tendency to tilt towards the left. Sometimes I actually tilt towards the left, one time the stairs were a bit too close for comfort. But I’m sort of fine. I get around through spotting, you know, like dancers do. I use visual cues. All in all, for a case of vertigo it’s pretty mild.

As long as I keep still and have my head supported I can sit and do stuff. Problem is that I forget, then get up and start floating towards the left again. It’s a bit nauseating.

I think I’m also missing part of my hearing in the lower ranges in my right ear, like I did last time. It got better over time though.

If I close my eyes while sitting up, it feels like I’m slowly falling towards the left.

The whole thing has lost it’s amusement value by now.

And strangely, our primary care guidelines doesn’t mention ‘ labyrinthitis’ , just vestibular neuritis… the difference being the hearing part. According to our guidelines it’s Meniere’s… except I’m too young, it’s too mild and there’s a very direct association with a virus here.

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Posted by on January 31, 2015 in Uncategorized