Showing posts with label hormone replacement therapy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label hormone replacement therapy. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Battling Gender Dysphoria

 After  my shower yesterday, I wiped the fog off the mirror and had the courage to look at myself.  In the past even looking at myself has set off waves of worsening gender dysphoria which I will explain later. 


Pre Covid Summer Picture


As always, my mass of hair was it's ultra wavy, curly post washed self. No surprise, I have never had a problem looking at my hair. Along the way too, I glanced at my face. I saw a curiously androgynous face staring back at me. No real surprise there either. I have decided it is mine for better or for worse to live with for the remainder of my life. 

For the first time yesterday, I was brave enough to look down from my face to my breasts. Since my maternal grandmother passed away from breast cancer years ago, I am considered to be at risk for the disease and have been told to self examine for any strange soreness or lumps. Which I have done. 

As I had the courage to do a chest scan of my own, it occurred to me how rare it has been for me to do one. In the past, the process has caused my gender dysphoria to flare up when I focused on a relatively small set of breasts overcome by a large set of shoulders. Finally yesterday, my slightly expansive breasts were able to hold their own with my undeveloped old male shoulders and torso. I even discovered one of my breasts was larger than the other which is common in many cis women. 

To make a long story short, my recent discovery process has led me to look ahead even more to when the weather warms up (and stays) and I can wear my summer fashions.  

Sunday, March 28, 2021

Did Gender Fluidity Nearly Kill Me?

 It seems to me the term "gender fluid" has just become popularized by the younger generation of queer women and men everywhere.  My idea was reinforced recently when I attended  a transgender - crossdresser meeting. Several of the participants were 20 to early 30 somethings  Along  the way, they mentioned the idea of being gender fluid.  Or how they wished somedays they could work as a guy and the next as a girl. 

Oldest known picture


At the time, I wondered  if being gender would have worked for me, or was I at all? 

Then I realized I tried being gender fluid and it led me to a suicide attempt. I was trying to live part time in my old male life while at the same time attempting to learn to live as a transgender woman. 

Hormone replacement therapy came along and forced my hand. If I was going to choose a gender, it would have to be the higher maintenance feminine one. When I started HRT, it seemed all too quickly I was growing breasts, my skin was softening and my hair was becoming long enough to tie it back into a pony tail.

At the time, I wasn't planning on the process happening so fast. So, very quickly any thoughts of being gender fluid left my mind. Even though the term itself was probably a decade away from being used at all.


 

As I proceeded on my journey, it was increasingly evident I was home. I had discovered what deep down I always knew...I was born to be a girl/woman. 

In conclusion,  I wish anyone trying to pursue a gender fluid life the best of luck. It nearly killed me.

Friday, March 26, 2021

Running while Transgender

 In reference to the Cyrsti's Condo post  concerning the attacks on transgender athletes by Republicans around the country At the least, you have to admire the courage of trans athletes everywhere to compete in their chosen sports. Back in the day, I used sports as a way to mask my gender leanings. Fortunately these days, transgender sports fans are not backing away from participation in activities they enjoy. 

Of course too, you have to factor in the influence of hormone replacement therapy on the athlete's body. Which is part of Connie's comment:

Connie at Work


I have to admit that I have mixed feelings on this subject, because it is far from an either/or issue. Fifty years ago, when I was on my boy's high school track team, I was a better 440 yard runner than most boys, but I'm certain that I could have won the race every time, had I run against cis girls (I've checked the record books). Never mind the fact that there were many times when I would return home after track practice or a meet and secretly express my femininity through dress or activities, just as any girl might have. Of course, fifty years ago, I really had no choice but to keep my femininity a secret, and there wasn't even a girls track team at my school. I seriously doubt that, if I had been free to declare my gender identity and there would have been the opportunity to join a girls team, I would have chosen to compete against the girls.


Puberty blockers and HRT would have made a difference in my athletic abilities. I don't know how much difference, but I'm guessing that I might have been among the fastest girls; not necessarily a record-setter, though. Then, again, maybe I wouldn't have had the same interest in competing against anyone - boys or girls - had I not been subjected to the ravages of male puberty. Much of the reason I had for participating in athletics was to hide my feminine identity, anyway.

So, I believe that trans girls should be able to compete against all girls, but not by mere declaration of gender identity alone. Whether it be through suppression or introduction of cross hormone therapies, there should be the requirement that a trans girl must have been under some regimen for a certain period of time before being allowed to compete against other girls.

I know there are people from both sides of the argument who disagree with me. While I can't see the fairness in allowing only a self-declaration of gender identity, I certainly reject the notion that "biological boys" should be disallowed from girls' athletics outright. The thing that gets me is that many of the same people who want to keep trans girls from being on girls' teams because of their hormonal "advantage" are the ones who want to criminalize any hormone therapies for trans girls. But, as Paula said, these people are just trying to erase trans existence altogether."

So true! Thanks for the comment. 

As I have written, HRT has robbed my body of a significant portion of my former male strength. What I will never know is how much of the loss could be attributed to age considerations. 

I do know for sure, the entire idea of boys competing against girls is so wrong. The power of hormones changes all of that. As Paula said, all of this is once again a group of ignorant gender bigots trying to erase our transgender existence.

Monday, March 22, 2021

Gender is NOT a Game

 If you live in the United States, you would have to be living in a cave somewhere to escape the deluge of state legislation against transgender athletes'. 

Of course, reportedly all of this legislation is originating with one ultra conservative organization. Thus these legislative members around the country all have a template (so to speak) to formulate their "own" bills.

More than likely, the vast majority of these legislators have never met a transgender woman or trans man and have no understanding of our lives.  Most certainly too, none of them have taken the time to research the effects of hormone replacement therapy on the body. 

I probably am not the best example of HRT on a person's body because I transitioned later in life during my sixties. When I did transition and my muscle mass began to change, I learned quickly how much of my old male strength had disappeared.  I can only imagine how the process would work for an trans athlete. 

One way or another, perhaps the most ridiculous idea is transgender athletes are transitioning just to compete at an advantage. Missing the entire dilemma changing gender presents to the person going through it. The specter of increased mental illness  all the way to heightened levels of suicide among the transgender community is never taken into consideration.

Gender is definitely not a game to the transgender athletes facing legislative discrimination by people unwilling to see the big picture for what it is. The big picture is the old binary gender rules aren't working anymore.

People need to wrap their narrow minds around the fact transgender athletes as well as the trans community as a whole need understanding, not discrimination.

Friday, March 12, 2021

Attraction?

 Unfortunately, too many transgender women and/or trans men are very lonely. Along the way on our transgender path we face obstacles from family and spouses which causes us to break up relationships. Also, transitioning later in life adds to the pressure of restarting our lives as another gender. So many  transgender women  face the daunting task of overcoming years and years of testosterone poisoning. All of a sudden, the bodies which have served us so well (even though we hated them) are no longer wanted or needed.



I started my search to gender transition in my early sixties after putting myself through an intense process to determine if I really wanted to undertake such a  serious project. I have always believed changing genders is one of the most difficult and/or painful undertakings a human can attempt. 

As I explored the feminine world, the more natural I became and I decided to move forward into what I referred to as the high maintenance gender. More than likely I was fortunate in that I was on the cusp of being able to pass in the world.

After a painful period when I tried to live a dual gender life, which ultimately led me to a suicide attempt, I decided enough was enough and I left my male self behind. Then I jumped off the deep end and started hormone replacement therapy.

All of this brings me back to my attraction topic. As I transitioned, I was very lonely too. Not to mention confused. Was I supposed to reject a lifetime of being attracted to women and switch to men? The answer came quickly for me as I explored several dating sites and continued my routine of going out to non gay venues. Even though I did have several interactions with men, for the most part either stood up by guys or treated as sort of a curiosity. 

On the other hand, I found many more women were attracted to me in my new gender than ever were when I was a man. Ironically, it was two lesbians who helped usher me into the feminine world and another lesbian who I still live with nine years later. 

As I indicated, I was fortunate for  the wrong reasons. For instance, I was so lonely because my wife of twenty five years passed away very suddenly. So I had no disapproving spouse to worry about.  I was on my own.

Over the years, I have been asked how I rebounded to where I am today. The answer is I flooded the dating sites and kept on trying. I had my fair share of trash as I would change my profile from seeking men to seeking women as a transgender person. Finally I hit pay dirt and was rewarded with another relationship I never thought I would be part of again this late in life. (71)

I am also on occasion slightly amused by the transgender women  who are looking for a "good man" not realizing they are in competition with the majority of all cis women in society. 

Indeed, attraction is a fickle beast, especially when it involves transgender humans.   


Friday, February 12, 2021

Wrestle Mania

 First of all, I need to send out an apology to all of you who have commented on previous posts here in Cyrsti's Condo. My excuse is, for once I have been busy in my everyday life with Doctor's appointments, completing taxes and other fun filled things to do. 

So, I am going to try to get to a few comments, including the one featuring WWE wrestler Tyler Reks  coming out as transgender. 

Gabbi Tuft Tyler Reks

The first comment comes from "Sara":

"Tyler Reks as I remember was not a big name wrestler and these guys have dreams of making it big, but all too soon fade away... So I was quite surprised to hear you mention this! I checked his bio and sure enough the 1st sentence mentions her female name and pronouns! unfortunately it also mentions her "dead name" because wrestling ring names are often an attention getting stage name, there are only a few that actually use their real name It's not that I doubted what you reported, but it just sounded too good to be true!"

Thanks for checking Sara. I do the best I can to check sources but most of the time it is very difficult.

The next comment from "Connie":

"How does one wrestle in a wig and wearing silicone breast forms? I have enough trouble just doing yard work; bending over, lifting, and perspiring. More than once, I've had to grab my wig as it's been snagged on a limb, not to mention a breast form that slipped out of my bra because it had gotten so slippery from sweat.


John Lithgow played the part of an ex-NFL tight end who was transitioning mtf in "The World According to Garp." His portrayal was, at that time, far from the weirdest thing in that movie. I would hope that it wouldn't seem to be weird, at all, these days.

Who knows, maybe Tom has a desire to be Marsha Brady. He's tried to deflate his balls, anyway. :-)"

For those of you who don't remember, NFL QB Tom Brady was once accused of using deflated footballs to get a better grip and cheated in the process.

As far as having my breasts slip out of their bra, I still have that sensation every now and then even though my breasts are now attached to my body through the miracle of hormone replacement therapy. Also, in the past when I wore wigs, I had the misfortune one night when I ran out of gas and was walking home to have a low hanging tree snag my wig. 

Finally, I am sure if Gabbi Tuft tries to continue to wrestle, she will soon learn how sensitive the breast area becomes and will have to perhaps learn from other women wrestlers how to protect herself.  Could be the least of her problems!

I really appreciate all of your comments!


Sunday, January 31, 2021

Inspiration is Fleeting

Or is it? Every morning when I wake up, I do a quick self examination of my body to see what hurts the most, or at all. Very quickly I then move on to thinking about the blog and what I have written about in the past. Every now and then, I come up with a former experience from years ago in my past.



Plus every once in a while, I am able to find a picture to aid in the story. An example is this picture from a decade ago in 2010.  Somehow, I was able to come up with my own version of primitive photo shopping on my cell phone. I did it by taking my picture in a mirror so I could see myself as I did it. My goal was to take a picture to add to my profile on the multiple dating sites I was exploring. 

The hair in the photo was a wig of course. Ironically my hair currently is as long and nearly as wavy if I add a liberal amount of mousse after I wash it. 

It's also taken me nearly a decade to grow my own breasts which were comparable to the forms I wore back then. Of course I am fortunate to have been able to undergo hormone replacement therapy at my age.

So, inspiration for a blog post is fleeting when I am well over 6,000 posts written for Cyrsti's Condo.

One good thing about the picture is, it is the one my partner Liz saw and decided to respond to me because I had "sad eyes". At that point in time I did. 

It was taken before I found a circle of accepting friends who helped me transition and gain a whole new level of inspiration.
 

Sunday, January 3, 2021

Once the Genie is Out of the Bottle

I used to equate the adventures I went through as I began my feminine lifestyle as sliding down a very slippery slope towards a very steep cliff. Later on, I began to think of it as letting the Genie out of the bottle.



A few experiences were very positive and reassuring such as being turned away at the door at a transvestite "mixer" because I was a real woman all the way to being laughed at and scorned in a couple different venues I frequented.  Through it all I had a tendency to resolve I was doing the best I could to cross a very difficult gender frontier. As a guy, I did my very best to cover up any feminine tendencies I had. Needless to say, once the Genie was released, the gender dysphoria was unbearable. 



The picture above is with two of my friends who made my journey smoother. They embraced who I was and never interacted with the old male me. You might say they saw the Genie appear and approved.

Even with their help, life was still difficult. I was still recoiling from the loss of my wife and other close friends. My business was gone too and the only reality I thought I could cling to was the fact I wanted to transform myself to a transgender woman. 

Very quickly I found I could and didn't want to go back.  

All of this occurred before I even met Liz which would have been approximately ten years ago. She too, fully embraced me as a woman and I started HRT. (Hormone Replacement Therapy) By this time, the genie was fully out of the bottle and there would be no turning back.











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Wednesday, December 2, 2020

My Cup Runneth Over

 Well, actually it doesn't when it comes to my breasts. 

Following years of not really needing to wear a bra, I decided to try a few of the old bras I have saved from my "falsie" days to see how far I had progressed. The quick answer was, not as far as I had thought. 

To make a long story short, I could fill out a "C" cup bra but fell well short of a "D" cup. While I was slightly disappointed, I still decided to wear what remained of my "C" cup bras to get used to wearing bras.

So far, so good. The extra feeling of restriction hasn't really bothered me as much as I thought it would. I guess I was finally going through a much delayed female rite of passage. A training bra undoubtedly is part of every young girl's path through puberty and on to adulthood. Perhaps you noticed I didn't say womanhood because not every girl makes it to be a fully socialized woman. In other words, the terms women and men are socially related in addition to being gender related. 

I doubt it but I don't expect much change in my breast development with my current increase in my Estradiol prescription. I am well aware, extra synthetic estrogen can only provide so much development.  Plus, during my years on hormone replacement therapy, I have always preferred to stay on the side of caution as far as my dosages went because of my age.

Besides, I really don't have anyone to impress. My partner Liz is quite well endowed in the breast department so she doesn't pay me much attention. Of course too, we are into the colder fall/winter season around here and we don't go anywhere because of covid, no one else see's me either. 

What I am hoping for is the hormones will develop me more over the next six months, so I can enjoy a more feminine figure this Spring and Summer. Since I am not into wearing any "shape wear" of any kind, what the public see's is all me.

Perhaps my cup will run over with more than a cold cocktail when summer rolls around.

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Do I "Pass?"

 You have all seen my pictures and I am sure more than a couple of you have thought Cyrsti has a lot of courage to go out and live a feminine life looking like that. In fact, years ago, a transgender girlfriend of mine told me I passed out of sheer force. 

Along the way though I think I have taken most of the negatives and turned them into positives when it came to living the life I wanted to. In other words, a life as a woman of transgender experience. 

To accomplish my goal. I had to heavily rely on hormone replacement therapy. Relatively quickly my skin softened, I sprouted breasts and my emotions changed for the better. The world softened as my hair grew out faster than my hips and breasts. It all worked together to help my inner feminine self to sync with my outer appearance.

Plus, I can't forget the powerful influences my partner Liz and daughter Andrea had on me. My daughter gave me a gift certificate to her hair salon/spa for my first hair styling which was terrifying yet exciting while Liz completely backed my Mtf transition saying she had never seen any male in me. 

Approximately the same time I was fortunate to find several cis women who happened to accept the authentic me. It all worked together to give me confidence to "pass" as me. All of a sudden, I didn't care what others thought. I embraced my life and began to enjoy it. After all there weren't that many "out" transgender women. 

As always, I have found another thought on the whole "passing process." It comes from Rachell Brindell  and the "Empowered Trans Woman" site:

"By being visibly transgender and not hiding behind the ridiculous gender norms that have been pushed on us for decades I feel I can contribute more to both the LGBTQ community and the cis-normative community as well. After all, if we all passed, who would see us?"

For more follow the link above.



Monday, November 30, 2020

Where Were You Born?

 On occasion I become humored when I read of someone who says they were "born into the wrong body." 

I figure I didn't have a real choice. I had no choice on my parents, where I was born or the gender I was assigned. No matter what I thought, those three "facts" were non negotiable. Of course, as I grew, I learned while the "Big Three" were non negotiable, they could be questioned and even changed. 

Like them or not, my parents will always be my parents. Sure, they had their faults but who doesn't. As far as coming out to them, I tried to come out to my Mom. I was rejected and never tried again. I never tried to come out to my Dad. After all, I was doing my best to live a robust male life, so who cared?

I cared of course. As my gender dysphoria continued and began to take it's own peculiar shape, I learned to suffer silently. Even though I think I came up with every possible question I could over why my gender issues were so prevalent, at no time did I come up with the idea I was born into the wrong body.

What I did come up with was I had a overwhelming desire to change the body I had. The more I was able to feminize it the better I would feel. I was fortunate in that the body I had was healthy enough to undertake hormone replacement therapy at a later age in my sixties. Thanks to HRT, I was able to learn the body which I was given was fluid enough to provide me a male foundation to play football and survive Army basic training all the way to presenting as a woman in public. 

So, I guess I can say, I wasn't born in the wrong body. I took what I had and adapted. 

Saturday, November 21, 2020

Just My Imagination

A couple of days ago, my endocrinologist called me back with the results of my recent laboratory visit to have the vampires check my blood. 

To my surprise she told me my estradiol level had risen from the last time she prescribed me new patches from a low of "40" to "80" currently. 

Since I am very poor in asking relevant questions such as what should my levels be, I went to Google and received this answer:

"For transgender women, the Endocrine Society guidelines define the target range of estradiol as 100–200 pg/mL (367–734 pmol/L)1; as many providers in our practice do not titrate therapy when estradiol levels are above 90 pg/mL (330 pmol/L), the range of 90–200 pg/mL (330–734 pmol/L) was used to define effective"

So, I guess because of those levels, she prescribed me adding one more patch I add to my body twice a week. I am prescribed (by the VA) Alora 1 mg patches. Each of the patches contains 3.1 mg of estradiol which is released over a 3 to 4 day period. I am fortunate I guess in that I haven't had any problems with the patches staying on. Because the next step would be me giving myself injections. I definitely have a problem with needles. 

Actually all these facts and figures are a way for me to understand the advanced gender transition I am going through. If the last time I received permission to increase my dosage is any indication, I can expect more changes again.

Of course the first time I added the extra patch, I imagined I felt an added fullness in my breasts and hip area. Realistically I know changes do occur over a period of time and not the first days. 

Plus I do know the risks of Hormone Replacement Therapy at my age. So does my Endo Doc I guess since wants to check my blood hormone levels in a month.

In the meantime, I will have to try to keep my imagination in check.  

Finally, statistics are showing nearly one in ten transgender individuals are using "underground" or un regulated hormones to aid their transition. Please be careful!

Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Unrealistic Expectations?

 Over the past week or so we have been featuring a few of the gorgeous transgender models who have been successes in the fashion industry.  Regarding the posts, Paula from the UK sent in this comment:

"It's great seeing these girls do so well, in an industry that is hard enough for anyone to break into. I just hope that their high profiles don't give people unreal expectations of the great majority of us ~ especially the fat old ones like me!" 

I agree with your comment and I am sure it resonates with many other transgender women. In fact, I am sure it also does with cis women too. After all, society puts too much pressure on women (transgender or not) to look a certain way. Imagine the multi billion dollar appearance industry without the pressure. 

As far as the trans fashion models go, you have to take into consideration what they had to go through to take a magical picture. Plastic surgeries, breast augmentations, plus not to mention having access to highly skilled makeup artists and photographers all add up to a real success story. As close as I have ever been able to come was a photo shoot I was invited to years ago. They were doing a presentation book on the diversity of women. Even there, I was on my own as far as makeup and hair were concerned. As far as the results went, I wasn't satisfied of course. 

Look, I know I will never be another Andreja Pejic (below), the best I will ever be able to do is try to present the best feminine presentation I can on a daily basis. I have had no surgeries including facial hair removal, so basically I am what you see is what you get. The one powerful help in my feminization process I have used is the hormone replacement therapy I have been on for years. I have felt the results have been amazing.

Even though, as I said, I agree with Paula, I am one of the old fat trans girls too!

Before we go though here is another beautiful transgender model to be envious of:



Thursday, October 22, 2020

Such a Day

 Yesterday was my scheduled appointment with my endocrinologist. It was a virtual visit so I didn't have to drive the 45 minutes to do it, which was nice. It was nice too, to put on a little makeup  for the visit. Little did I know such a small action would result in triggering my gender dysphoria for the entire day. 

First though, my appointment went well and I received refills on my all important hormone replacement therapy meds...spiro and estradiol. She asked all the relevant questions about body feminization, body hair and blood pressure. Spiro can be known to decrease blood pressure too low and cause a person to be dizzy. It is also used to lower testosterone. Mine is very low (15) so I am considering cutting back on my dosage which hopefully will cut back on the dizziness I feel in the morning. I did have to set up another blood test on my hormone levels for her when I go see the laboratory "vampires" in November to make sure my estrogen level isn't too high. I figure I will jump off that bridge when I come to it. 

As far as the gender dysphoria went, if the truth be known, I probably am somewhere between the best look I think I have and the worst look I try to work through. I know too, appearance is but a small part of what works together to make me a transgender woman.

Which means, the worst part of the whole activity is it is a total waste of time and I don't know why I continue to subject myself to it. I can only surmise gender dysphoria will be with me as long as I live and days such as I just went through won't be the last. 

Saturday, October 17, 2020

How the Army Made a Girl out of Me.

 As strange as it may seem, my three year stint in the Army, so long ago did wonders to further my goal of living as my authentic self. It turned out it just took me a while to get here.

First of all my forced enlistment was instrumental in ending a toxic relationship I was in with my first fiancé I was with in college. She knew I was a cross dresser and expected me to use it to stay out of the draft by saying I was gay. Obviously, I didn't.

Then there was basic training where everyone learned how to be an infantryman. Needless to say, there was no room to pursue the true source of my gender dysphoria, What it did do though was to make me mentally tough enough to realize sooner or later I could achieve almost any goal. After all, I was heading to what was deemed an impossible Army job as a radio/television broadcaster. I ended up serving on three continents  in three years.

During the process, as I have written many times, I met the woman who was to present me with the greatest gift of my life, my daughter Andrea. Even though she was to find out later on I was a cross dresser (or transvestite) back in those days, when I summoned up the courage to dress completely as a woman at a Halloween party we went to. I ended up admitting to her and two other friends later on my desire to dress as a woman. This was way back in the days in the Army before the "Don't ask, don't tell" LGBTQ so called protection policy. So I could have found myself in trouble if the wrong people found out my "secret". 

It turned out this experience in the Army set the way for me to work harder on my cross dressing feminine presentation and even to attempt to come out to my Mother. Which turned out to be a failure. Undeterred, I continued to stay in my closet and explore being a girl.

Throughout the middle of my life, regardless of what the Army taught me (or didn't), I became a more accomplished feminine person and increasingly wanted to try out my new found skills in the public's eye. It was about this time as I lost almost everything else in my life, I decided to take advantage of the Veteran's Administration medical benefits which would include access to hormone replacement therapy or HRT. It turned out, the meds resulted in a wonderful feminization process which continues to this day.

So you could say again, the Army was and is - is making a girl out of me. 

  

Sunday, October 11, 2020

Inspiration

 As Cyrsti's Condo is firmly entrenched in it's tenth year of existence and with over 6,000 posts, finding new topics to explore becomes increasingly difficult. It's during this time I aggressively seek outside sources for ideas. 

Recently, I found this quote which describes many of the early experiences I went through as I explored the feminine world as a cross dresser earlier in life. This was before I transitioned into a fully functioning transgender woman.

Every once in a while though, I encounter the occasional novice transgender person who thinks I magically arrived where I am now with very few problems. All of that couldn't be farther from the truth.

Like so many others who encountered gender dysphoria during their life, I seemingly had to go through so many self destructive times which I could write a whole new post about. In other words, I felt the fear and did it anyway...the wrong way. 

I was fortunate though in that I was able to grasp a couple of things which helped to to get by and even succeed.

The first of which was being able to begin HRT (hormone replacement therapy) which at my age wasn't a given. I had to have the good health to do it. Essentially what happened to me outside of the obvious was the feminine pronouns took the male edge off of me. I became easier to get along with. 

The second of which was when I encountered a series of cis women who welcomed me into their circle and I was able to learn more completely how to exist in a feminine world. 

Overall, this phrase became my mantra and I have been able to succeed. I never take it for granted. 


 

Thursday, October 1, 2020

Stuck in the Middle

 Perhaps you remember the "Stealers Wheel" tune...Stuck in the Middle with You."  It seems this could be an appropriate musical anthem to describe a transgender existence. 

Let's take me for instance. This morning when I woke up, I took the time to look in the mirror and promptly said "Boo." It then occurred to me how different my life has been as I tried for years (and failed) to walk the gender divide. As it turned out, all I was doing was misleading myself. I would have been better off to have followed my transgender leanings years or even decades before. I refused to follow what was natural gender wise for me causing great stress and many problems in my life. 

Now though, through the miracle of hormone replacement therapy and the support of people such as my partner Liz along with my daughter Andrea, I have achieved more in my life than I ever thought possible. For every morning when I say "Boo", there are so many other mornings I am amazed by my breasts, the length of my hair and the softness of my skin. 

Even with all of the wonderful changes, it seems I am still stuck in the middle with myself. Perhaps thoughts such as these are what drive transgender women to "go all the way" and undergo genital realignment surgery. Which I have always rejected as an option for myself. I just can't see such a major costly surgery being worth it at my age along with the committed relationship of nine years I am in. 

So I will most likely end my life as I started it. Stuck in the middle with me. 

Friday, September 25, 2020

Gender Bake

 Most of us if we like it or not, are born into strict gender rules. Those of us who are transgender just happen to not fit into those gender norms. Of course, that is where our problems begin. If we are very lucky, we have accepting parents and we are able to communicate what the situation is.  Unfortunately, the vast majority of us transgender women and trans men never had a chance for acceptance until we finally decided to seize the moment later in life. The internet and social media has helped to educate the population but of course serious transgender problems still exist on so many levels of society.  Specifically within the trans women of color community with their extremely high and tragic murder rate. Plus I won't even get into employment issues.

In our own lives, we all decide to choose the path best suited to our needs. Two prime examples would be not being allowed to pursue hormone replacement therapy due to health concerns or deciding not to live a fulltime feminine existence because of a spouse or family. 

Per norm, Connie came up with an expanded comment on the Cyrsti's Condo "Shake and Bake" post:

 "Shake and Bake can mean so many different things. I like to play with words, and I like to play with you, too (word-wise, that is).


Actually, what I meant by "shake" was the acquired male persona that I needed to shake off to reveal my feminine-self. If you're familiar with baking - say, a cake - you know that using the right ingredients in their proper proportions is critical. Then, there is the temperature of the oven and the baking time.

Shaking the male facade was the difficult part for me. I had worked so hard to construct it: athlete, rock drummer, husband, father, grandfather. Over time, the athletic and rock drummer parts became less masculine-identified (although, both require a lot of sweating, which I'm not so fond of anymore). Changing from husband to spouse, and father and grandfather to parent and grandparent was still not without its own sweat.

I always possessed ingredients for a transition to womanhood. I can't say they were all "sugar and spice, and everything nice," but they have always been there. There was some experimentation necessary, in order to come up with the right recipe for me, but trial and error is how any of us must find ourselves. With the climate (temperature) just right, I was able to rise and "bake" into the woman I am today."

Although there are still some physical changes I'd like to see for myself, they would be but icing on the cake at this point. 

Thanks for the comment! In our house though, "Shake and Bake" normally meant chicken. Not a cake. To add insult to injury, my Mom was a high school home economics teacher and she rarely baked.

Sunday, September 20, 2020

Hot Flash?

 If you have never experienced a hormonal hot flash, it's quite the experience. 

I remember vividly my first real "flash" as I was sitting at a favorite sports bar (of course) of mine enjoying a drink and watching the big screen television. All of the sudden, I felt like I was internally combusting. I wondered if the whole world would notice. They didn't seem to and fairly quickly I returned to normal (?) and began to realize I had just experienced my first hot flash. No wonder all the cis woman of middle age I knew talked about their overheating. 

All of a sudden, this morning, I experienced another hot flash and I am not completely sure why. I have not changed any of my HRT meds I have been on for many months now, so meds should not be an issue. Similar to my first case of heat, the whole episode probably only lasted an hour or so. 

I will have to see if it happens again as I have another visit coming up in October with my endocrinologist so I am sure she will check my hormonal levels again anyway. 

As with mammograms, I see hot flashes as a rite of passage into being a more physical transgender woman. I say physical because I feel mentally I have always been trans. Plus, all of this temperature issue leads me to point out the changes I went through in relating to the weather as I hormonally transitioned. I found I became colder quicker and stayed that way.

I also recognize though that hot flashes could be an issue with my HRT meds. An issue I will have to discuss with my Doc if it happens again.

Friday, August 14, 2020

Nailed It?

 For some reason during quarantine my finger nails have decided to grow at a record pace. So, I have decided to let all of them grow, except the one next to the thumbs on both hands I use for any serious jobs I may encounter. 

Before any of you try to cheap shot me about attempting any "serious" jobs, I am the first to point out I am retired and outside of my morning walks, writing a blog and doing the dishes are the only strenuous jobs I do. No more restoring of old houses like I did in my past as a hobby. 

The end goal is to have Liz shape and color/polish my nails and go from there. With my luck though, at that point the nails will decide enough is enough and start to break. Also, the effect of hormone replacement therapy comes into play. For years under a certain dosage of HRT my nails were very fragile. Maybe the higher dosage I am on now has changed all of that. We will see.