Episode #25: Pandemic Legacy and the Books of Zoe Archer

This week, LC gets her geek on over two of her favorite things: board gaming and romance novels. It’s all about Pandemic: Legacy and the works of Zoe Archer, including:

  • Board games with plot: What makes Pandemic: Legacy different than vanilla Pandemic
  • How a board game can evolve with its players
  • Adventure romance, competency porn, and why Archer’s heroines are so appealing
  • Where to start with Archer’s backlog.

Intro and Outro music: “Snow World Under the White Moon“, EeL

If you’d like to leave us a comment, question, or maybe just some good old-fashioned hatemail, send us an email at info (at) hjcast [dot] com.

So here’s the scoop…

Many of you have asked after my health over the past several weeks, for which I can’t begin to express my gratitude. I’ve had a hard few months, and your messages of love and support have really picked me up on some dark days. Which is why I finally feel it’s safe to share with you the reason I’ve been feeling so crummy.

I’m pregnant again.

I had an incredibly difficult first pregnancy, which as you know I’ve talked about on the show here and there. Essentially, I was diagnosed with “hyperemesis gravidarum”, which is basically just fancy Latin for “a pregnant woman who throws up too much”.  The moment I hit six weeks, I threw up pretty much non-stop, as much as 30 times a day, and my midwife put me a cocktail of anti-nauseal meds that caused their own bevy of delightful side effects, including constant gastrointestinal distress and daily panic attacks. I ended up having to take the meds all pregnancy. The nausea never went away completely. Labor (all sixty hours of it) was a relief by comparison.

They say that your second go-around is supposed to be easier than your first.

They lie.

I didn’t think anything could be worse than that last pregnancy, but, ever the opportunist, my body has invented its own fresh hell. I found out I was pregnant the weekend of my best friend’s funeral. Ever since then, I’ve been in and out of the hospital for dehydration and, due to motion sickness, basically unable to get off the couch or even on the computer for the past six weeks or so. Basically all the symptoms I had last time, just ten times more intense. Of course my continuing grief over my friend’s loss hasn’t made dealing with this any easier.

As acute as this hyperemesis has been, however, there is one silver lining: It hasn’t been as long lasting. (Or, at least, so I keep hoping.) Already the nausea has started to ease a little, and I can eat more foods, things with calories and nutrition in them! There was also a great worry about miscarriage for this pregnancy as well (the Reader’s Digest version is that I’m prone to miscarriage, and I only found out that I was pregnant because it looked like I was miscarrying again), but since I’ve passed the 12 week mark with no further issues, I can breathe a little easier about that too.

Still, I’ve missed out on a lot of things in the past several weeks, from dance performances to the wedding of two dear friends to my son’s first steps — and, of course, in doing this podcast. (It’s hard to sit down at a computer when the mere sight of a screen makes you nauseated!) It’s demoralizing and depressing to feel so isolated when you already feel crappy, and that you’re letting everyone down by not being able to participate.

I hate to ask for your continued patience, but things may remain a little dicey for the next few weeks as I ease into the second trimester. But before you or I know it, I’ll be back on my feet — or, at least, propping my feet up so I can complain about the swelling. 🙂

Thanks again, as always, for being such wonderful listeners and for being so understanding. You make this show worth doing, and you’re what keep me coming back. I don’t have the words for how much I appreciate each and every one of you.