Transition experiences: My wife and kids are out of town on a vacation with her family and I’ve taken the opportunity to be myself. I’ve been grocery and clothes shopping, run errands, met up with a friend in town, and been practicing my eye makeup. I’ve been in and out of changing rooms and bathrooms without incident. (Except for Macy’s, where I somehow set off the theft detector, twice, when I didn’t have anything; must have been something in my purse.)
On the whole, it’s been liberating and a bit anticlimactic, to be honest. I do still get the occasional looks, but I get those anyway right now, so that’s not something I’m not already used to.
Mostly, I’ve been using this time as a trial run for transition and exploring my feelings around the experience.
I’m also dealing with my insurance company about pre-approval for a bilateral orchiectomy. My insurance is great, but it’s looking like since this surgery is in the genital region, they’re conflating it with GRS, and wanting all the hoops jumped through for that for this.
Emotional: I have come a long way in a short time. Up until a few months ago, I hadn’t been out as myself since the late 1990’s. Up until a few weeks ago, I hadn’t used the women’s room and had never used the women’s changing rooms at stores when clothes shopping. (That unto itself has saved so much time and frustration, what with not having to buy items on speculation, try them on at home, and then return the rejects.)
I have exhilarating moments of, “I’m actually doing this!” to stressed-out moments of, “I can’t believe I’m doing this!” to moments of, “Am I fooling them or me?”
During the day, I shift around from feeling like this is natural and no big deal to feeling like a fraud. The happy is the relief of not having to hide part of who I am. The unhappy is the crushing reminder that I’m not cis and the increasing body dysphoria I’m feeling.
Now that I’m at the cusp of transition, I’m more acutely aware of my masculine face and body motion, how small my breasts are compared to a cis woman of my size, and the building anxiety of tucking. I’ve never really felt much body dysphoria, but I’m feeling it more now that I have to confront it head-on.
I’m also forced to confront the reality of what I’m leaving behind. While trying to be a guy was exhausting, there was an ease with which I played that role due to how the people I interacted with engaging with me as expected in that role. This is now new territory, and like any explorer, I’m occasionally stepping into swamps and walking into box canyons.
On a different tack, I’m pissed off at the hoop-jumping I’m having to do for insurance coverage, let alone the procedure itself. It’s asinine.
Physical: I’ve lost four pounds in a week – eep! I feel great. I’m only eating when I’m hungry, I’ve been exercising, and my stress level is down. My foot is healed enough for running, and I went for my first run since January(!) the day before yesterday. I feel like I’m starting to get my body back; it’s a good feeling.
Weight: 176 lbs.
Dose: 6 mg/day estradiol
[Looking for detailed information about male to female hormone replacement therapy dosing and effects? Read my Brief Overview of Feminizing Hormones post. You might also be interested in The Transwoman’s Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) Tracking Chart I created.]