I have a week left here in DC before I head up to Philly. One more week at work, a few miscellaneous things to do, and not much else. Really, I'm just tying up some loose ends and waiting for my surgery date. I'm not as freaked out by this as I thought I'd be at this stage. Maybe the reality of it hasn't completely sunk in yet.
I had my last appointment with my therapist, Dr. Payne, until after the surgery. We spent the session mostly just chatting, like we often do when I don't have anything that's really bothering me on my mind. She's genuinely excited for me, and I think a little proud of how far I've come. She said she wasn't expecting to feel so excited. She's made a huge difference in my life, and has helped me through some big changes. This upcoming change seems small compared to all the other stuff, but it carries a lot of weight. She gave me a hug at the end of our session.
I drove Alison to the airport this morning. She's on a plane to Thailand as I write this. I cried a little when I dropped her off, because I'll be a little worried about her (even though she'll be fine) and I won't see her again for a month. When she gets back, we'll both be pretty far along in our recoveries. Our surgery dates are 3 days apart. We can help each other through the rest of the process, whatever it entails (and I still don't want to know, because I scare easily).
I was glad I cried this morning. I guess I found out I'm not an unfeeling robot when denying myself estrogen and progesterone. It's been a week since I took any hormones, and I still don't really feel any of the bad effects from that I'd heard about. I feel okay, just a little less emotionally volatile. Yesterday, I ran from Alison's place to the Capital (3 miles), then around the National Mall and back to her place. A little over 10 miles in all, I think. I felt fine, although it was a little longer than I'd been used to running since the cold weather set in. Maybe lots of exercise helps offset whatever sorts of hormonal hangover symptoms my body was supposed to be feeling. I want to run a lot this week, anyway. I'll be taking probably 5 weeks off from running, and I want my legs to be strong going into that.
Alison and I spent a lot of time together this week, largely for the same reason. I'm gonna miss that crazy girl. But not so much her zombie impersonation, which is a little too convincing and genuinely scares me (plus, she bites!). Okay, it makes me laugh, too, but it is scary -- trust me.
Back to my upcoming surgery, I've been thinking a lot about why I even want to do this. I figure it's a good time to think that through, before I actually go through with it. Part of the reason is definitely for convenience. There are situations (locker rooms, hospitals, jails, having sex, wearing tight jeans) when not having the genitalia expected of your sex can be an uncomfortable or dangerous situation. I don't think that alone is such a great reason to go through with such a painful, difficult and expensive operation, but it can help. A bigger factor is that I can't conceive of a situation where I'd really feel comfortable anymore with the male equipment nature chose to bestow on me. It all works and everything (although I don't produce sperm anymore, I can still produce plenty of erections and orgasms and such), but it doesn't feel at all right. I think I'll feel more comfortable just in general with genitalia that looks female. And then there are the medical reasons, too. I can't go on taking spironalactone (anti-androgen) forever, because it's not good for you long-term. You've got to get rid of the source of testosterone one way or another. This seems like the best option to me for that (there is one other, mind you) and there's no way I'm going back on testosterone.
All in all, then, I don't have any real reservations about this, except for the idea of what I'm about to go through scares the hell out of me. It won't be so bad in the end, and even if it is, I'll get through it and it will have been worth it. Seems funny to me that I'm comfortable with this. Sex reassignment surgery was not something I used to see as something I'd ever want, and that was one of the main reasons I couldn't conceive of transitioning even two years ago. Now, it feels like something I really need to do.
One more week. It's coming up fast. Let it come. I'm ready.
3 weeks ago