Thursday morning we had our IUI orientation for infertility. Basically, they shove you in a room with other couples who are in the same boat as you are and explain to you what will happen and how much it will cost. It was a strange feeling to look around and see other people who for some reason, like yourself, cannot conceive naturally. I wasn’t sure exactly what to expect but I didn’t expect such a large variance in people.  Not a single person there “looked” like us.

There was an overweight couple with tattoos, a thin athletic couple, an african american couple and a multirace couple. Then there was us: a small athletic girl and her ‘dadbod’ boyfriend. I assumed everyone would be older but we all seemed to be the same age, which was the weirdest part to me. They told us a lot during this meeting but the thing that stood out to me the most was that they get funding for 400 couples a year and the year starts on april 1st and they usually run out by October. Those are some scary numbers.

When you’re trying to conceive, you see pregnant people everywhere. It seems you are the only person in the world who cannot conceive easily. But when you actually sit down and talk about it, people will tell you about so-and-so that they know that is going through the same process as you or how their friends have tried for 7 years. It’s not so simple, afterall.

Later that night

, I was out walking with my girlfriend and explaining the process to her. Every single step that I will need to take from calling in with my Cycle Day 1 to when we have a final ultrasound to determine if the baby (if it works) is still alive. she said, “that seems so stressful” but I disagree. The process is tedious, yes, but to me knowing as early as Day 18 if the insemination worked is so relieving! The waiting is the hardest part. Waiting to see if I get my period or not is so fucking annoying i can’t wait to just relax after day 18 whether the insemination worked or not.

Last weekend was mother’s day

, and it is one of my most disliked holidays. For one, my own mother passed away from lung cancer 10 years ago and for two, I am not a mother despite trying for years. So I took myself to a spa in Collingwood for the weekend to relax and just get away. I drank rose, I took a million baths, I read a whole book, I went to the Scandinavian Baths and I ate good food. Life is all in what you make of it. I Hope everyone else had a wonderful Mother’s Day and celebrated the way you wanted to!

I decided I wanted to go to Barcelona last year when I started learning Spanish. I had booked the trip and was super excited to indulge in all their seafood and Mediterranean culinary glory when a friend if mine broke my bubble.

“You aren’t going anywhere else in Spain except Barcelona?” She asked me. No, no I am not – I replied. 

“Oh well they speak mainly Catalan there,” she tells me. Crushed – what the heck?? 

Okay, no problema. It’ll still be amazing. The food will be fresh and spectacular I’m sure. As you know or may not, I eat gluten or soy and I’m sick for a week. In the past eating on vacation was a stressful endeavour for me as I would always inevitably get sick. I assumed it was the cheap alcohol (or just alcohol in general) but now that I know how gluten affects me, those past trip issues were resolved. As long as I avoid gluten in Spain, all should be good.

The city itself is beautiful but it is SOOOOOO saturated with tourists it’s unbearable. There are restaurants that line the streets but that made it very hard to pick one. They all seemed to offer the same stuff. I ate paella twice, and fish and grilled vegetables twice. They all seemed to understand that I couldn’t eat gluten but most waiters were incredibly unknowledgeable about the ingredients in their food. 

Now time for wine tips on travelling healthily: 

  1. If you’re going to drink beer and alcohol all day every day then that’s your prerogative but remember that alcohol is high in carbs so avoid eating extra carbs and reach for the protein and fat. There are many good ways to do that, cheese and prosciutto is a plenty here. Jamon, grilled fish and veg – you got this.
  2. Buy and make your own breakfast. I made eggs, avocado and prosciutto daily or Greek yogurt and fruit. 
  3. Try to eat high protein and fat and avoid refined carbs. If you’re here for the deserts, then you’re already committed to not eating healthy so skip along 😉 
  4. You’re going to walk….and walk, and walk. We walked 78301 steps in total while we were here. So if you’re careful, you might LOSE weight on vacation. Now the extra salt and alcohol will dehydrate you and bloat you so be careful. 
  5. The produce is a plenty. Maybe fruit is your lunch, that’s totally fine! It’ll be cheaper to Order salads than full meals so keep that in mind. 
  6. Pack nuts and protein bars such as RXbar in your luggage to keep on you while you’re out and about. (I ate every single bar I brought – they come in handy at airports and planes because finding gluten-free food in Europe airports is a shot in the dark)
  7. Drink lots and lots of water! water keeps you fuller and a lot of people confuse dehydration with hunger so keep those water bottles full

Let’s revisit my meals in Barcelona: 

Breakfasts: I wanted to save money as much as possible and when I wake up I’m usually hungry fairly quickly so I wanted to avoid having to wait for Jason to go and eat breakfast. He usually doesn’t even eat breakfast so to save stress and to make the best of our AirBNB’s, I bought eggs, avocado, prosciutto, greek yogurt, bananas and nuts. 

Lunches are super cheap in Europe (well, cheaper than dinner) so meals such as fish, paellas and salads were easiest to find. We somehow got off schedule with Europe and were eating late lunches such as 2pm and 3pm when everything was usually closed. We had to find places that specified that they served all day. Jason and I were also off schedule, he’d get most of his calories from beer so he didn’t eat much 😉 haha 

Dinners were usually leftovers for me. Jay would eat a burger or something easy. The first night we were there we shared paella. In europe they serve a massive amount of it so I had leftovers for pretty much the whole time we were there. The other times I would eat an appetizer as a meal and splurge on wine.