Brain Noise

My brain has been pretty noisy lately. I haven’t been able to write much or come to terms with many of my thoughts but I guess I should write before my head explodes. I have been dealing with complication after complication post- phalloplasty so I just have reached the height of my frustration and depression. ¬†Yea that is right, I said it. I am depressed.

I have been dealing with fistulas, which finally seem to be improving but now that I am able to try to pee I have learned that I can’t empty my bladder completely and may have a stricture. My stream has also changed from an actual stream to a spraying mess like a garden hose with a finger over the opening. I am trying my hardest to be able to cope, but it is hard to cope when your usual coping methods are not something you are able to do. I am starting to almost feel like I might be able to do some light workouts but I am feeling nervous about going to the gym with a messed up arm and a catheter… and lets be real my ego is getting in the way of me only being able to lift light. My wrist still has very little mobility so I am not sure how well I would be able to lift, but I think I might be able to use some of the machines.

Surgery aside, I am having some anxiety regarding work which is pretty normal when I am planning to return after surgery. I guess with each surgery I have a small hope I won’t have to return. I always end up having to return.

I am especially frustrated with myself this time because I feel so tired of my job, so burned out and so cynical when it comes to the food industry. It makes me sad when I think that my passion for cooking has died. Maybe there is a chance for it to come back but right now I am just so angry at it. I am tired of being poor, and tired of struggling and I know being trans hand having surgery each year plays a role in that as well but… I feel like if I am going to be poor I want to do something that I am passionate about and worth being poor for. Then of course there is always the hope that somehow, at some point in my life I will make enough money to function like a normal human being. I am so frustrated with where I am at in life some days my brain just shuts down.

I am a strong believer in people having a lot more control over their lives than they might think. If I want my life to be different, I need to take action and put in the work to change it… its just the work that feels so overwhelming to me right now. Surgery has really thrown me for a loop. I don’t know how to function when I don’t have my routine.

Maybe I can still have hope I don’t have a stricture. Maybe one day I will feel back to normal. I just have to keep going, but that is really fucking tough right now.

Brain Noise

4 Weeks

I am officially 4 weeks post-op today and I am not going to lie I expected things to be going a little better at this point in time. I am bleeding from pretty much every hole possible. I think I split a stitch at my vaginectomy site and that is bleeding, I have a fistula that is bleeding, and I had some blood in my urine this morning. Normally I would email my doctor but I have given up caring at this point. I see him thursday so I figure I will give him a break from my emails and i’ll just complain to him in person in a couple of days.

I appreciate my surgeon and his optimism but there comes a point where you just start thinking they are lying. He says I am healing within normal range, that things look good but damn, things downstairs are just not healing up and it is super frustrating to me. I also haven’t peed yet and it is really starting to bum me out. I am trying to be patient but damn. I do have a time limit. I have to be back to work in less than a month and it is starting to make me really anxious I am not going to make it back in time if I keep having complications. Dear God, please just help things move forward.

 

4 Weeks

Never Ending

Surgery can be such a strange bittersweet thing when you are trans. You go into a hopsital feeling healthy but icomplete, then come out in pain yet feeling complete. Of course, the pain is temporary but with this surgery it sure doesn’t feel temporary. This has been the longest recovery I have experienced.

Considering what could go wrong, I guess I feel like I have had a pretty smooth ride so far, but I am having problems with fistulas opening up and leaking/bleeding. I have one stubborn fistula that doesn’t want to close despite Dr.Chen saying it would within a week or two. It has been a week or two.

It is not his fault. Obviously bodies are different and complicated in their own way. This isn’t as much of a routine surgery. There is so much going on and healing really does take time. I am usually a fast healer and kind of thought that maybe it would be the same for this surgery but I was wrong. There is nothing fast about healing when it comes to this surgery and perhaps it is my fault for thinking I would heal as quick as I usually do. I am sure my body is quite confused about what it just went though. So on that note, thank you body for enduring this surgery to fix something that should have been all along.

On top of a few fistulas, one which seems to constantly be bleeding, I noticed I was bleeding a bit from my vaginectomy site last night. It is not a huge bleed but just a little… Dr.Chen said if the bleeding is a constant drip to go to the ER, but if it is not I should hold pressure on it until it stops.

The amount of things that can go wrong even a month post-op is definitely not something I anticipated. I haven’t had any issues with my vaginectomy site as of yet so was feeling pretty grateful that everything was going okay there… BUT well, now I will be keeping tabs on that as well.

I have my next post-op appointment on Thursday so hopefully nothing too serious happens between then and now. I don’t know how much more I can take going wrong in one week. I just want my dick to heal so I can get back to normal life and not lose my job.

This is all happening for a reason, whether I know the reason now or not… but one day I will look back and know why, of course I know it will make me stronger in the end.

 

 

Never Ending

Catching Up

I have not written on here in awhile. Mostly because I have been blogging more publicly on tumblr, and also because I haven’t really been able to type since surgery up until the past couple of days. It feels good to be able to type again and get some thoughts out! I think it is important I keep writing out my thoughts or else things tend to just get bottled up.

So, I had phalloplasty a little over 3 weeks ago now. I’ve had some tough moments where I felt I would never heal or feel normal again but I feel like I might finally be seeing a light at the end of the tunnel. My arm is improving, and so is my pain. I still have my catheter in and haven’t peed out my penis yet but I am supposed to attempt peeing on monday in hopes of getting the catheter out on Thursday. It all depends on if I have any leakage or not.. we will see I suppose!

It has been the hardest not to be able to go to the gym like I am used to. Or drive yet or etc. Things will ge easier as I get more independent. I am slowly healing.

I have been thinking a lot about what I might do now that I have this first major surgery out of the way. I am honestly undecided on whether I will have stage 2 surgery. I still have to have my glansplasty done but I am pretty burned out on surgeries. I guess I will have to recover from this first surgery first to truly decide on that… but I do feel that I can maybe finally start saving for other things other than just another surgery. I can start paying off my bills and saving to move out. That would be nice… to finally be able to afford to live on my own.

I would also like a career change… I deam of working for myself, but I don’t exatly know what that looks like or what I would do. I could do personal training or cooking… but I just don’t know how realistic or sustainable these things could be or maybe I am just scared. It is hard to visualize what my next move is. All I know is that I will need a change at some point. I have a lot of time to think at the moment, but I am also finding it hard to focus.

Part of me is excited to think I could use this time to gain knowledge and study for my personal trainers certificarted, then part of me doesn’t want to think about fitness because I can’t workout right now and it makes me sad. recovery is such a weird fucking process.

However I do feel motivated to make a fitness comback. I’ve lost 10 lbs of muscle already. One month down of absolutely no working out. I’ve never gone this long without working out! When I had top surgery I still did legs, when I had my hysto, I was lifting light again 2 weeks post-op. The more manageable my pain gets the more antsy I get.

 

 

Catching Up

Is It Even Happening?

I have been having some insurance issues.

Two months away from surgery, insurance issues are not something that I want to be having.

Dr. Chen’s office doesn’t submit for pre-approval to your insurance until about 30 days out. They are backlogged and I may not know if I am actually approved until pretty close to my sugery date. This leaves me feeling incredibly anxious.

I can only assume that everything is going to be okay but just in case, I contacted Chens office. The insurance people told me that I needed my primary care physician to send in a more current referral in order for them to submit to my insurance for pre-approval… okay, this would have been good to know and how is it that TWO months before surgery, they need a referral? I already had one but I guess they needed a more current one.

I immediately emailed my doctor to ask for her to send in a referral. She responded pretty quickly and sent in a referral for me but I did notice that the referral just said “General Surgery”. I immediately had my doubts that the referral was done correctly but I didn’t want to question her and just waited it out. Two weeks later and I noticed the referral says closed.

I don’t think my doctors office sent the referral correctly for one, but secondly… why does Chens office need a referral two months out and is this going to delay my approval process?

I am hitting that point in time where I need to talk to my work and let people know that I may be on leave for 12 weeks.

I also emailed Chens office to get a Doctors letter for medical leave.. I am still waiting on that as well.

I am trying to be patient but anxiety makes it really hard. It drives me crazy when there are so many things that are not set in stone. I don’t want to get my hopes up and then have something happen. My hopes are already up so if for some reason I can’t have surgery… this will be devastating.

I am trying not to think about the worst case scenario.

I wish it would all just go smooth for once.

Is It Even Happening?

An Old Friend

I am 64 days out from phalloplasty. I am growing more and more excited. I keep picturing what it is going to feel like to finally look down and see what is supposed to be there. It doesn’t come without sacrafice but it is worth it.

I fear complications of course, but even more so I fear getting my hopes up and having insurance pull some sort of shitty fast one on me when it comes to getting pre-approval. I highly doubt anything like that will happen but I am an anxious person so of course it is in the back of my mind. I tell myself to not worry about that and stop thinking that is going to happen because it is not… but then I think if I stop worrying about it, somehow the world is going to force it to happen because I am not allowed to have something go so smooth without worrying about it first.

My brain works in mysterious ways. My sanity is always in question.

Something happened yesterday that still has me feeling shocked. A friend of mine that I thought I would never see or hear from again texted me out of the clear blue sky.

I was driving home from work and my phone vibrated. I was curious about who might be texting me so I checked, and it was a text from this old friend that said… “Hi” thats it, just…”Hi”. I wondered if she had texted me on accident at first, or if she was drunk… I was hesistant to respond in fear that it was an accident but I just wrote back “Hey whats up” and then she texted “we should reconnect sometime” Still in shock that it was not an accident I said I agreed and that I missed hanging out with her. That was an understatement. I felt really hurt about everything that had happened between us, but I looked up to this person ALOT and had missed her a ton. She was like a big sister to me. My big gay sister.

I am not really sure how to feel about it all still. I can’t forget about the shitty stuff she did, but time has passed and maybe we can start fresh. I would like that at least.. but I guess we will see. I could use a fellow single friend since literally none of my friends are single.

Speaking of being single, I can’t seem to find a relationship that isn’t abusive.

The last person I dated… my friend had to basically slap me in the face and tell me that once again I was in an abusive relationship. Sure it was a much milder case than the previous one but still toxic, and not healthy.

I feel bummed, but deep down I know that now is not a good time to be dating. I have surgery in two months.. I don’t want to start dating someone and then explain what is currently in my pants, and what will potentially be in my pants.

I just hope to meet a girl someday that accepts me for me, is strong, independent, funny, and comfortable in her own skin.

 

 

 

An Old Friend

77 Days

I am 77 days from surgery now. The antcipation surely is the worst.

I am feeling a little less anxious about everything. I have had the house to myself for a week and it has been pretty amazing mentally. I also paid of a credit card and it gave me hope that one day I will be out of debt and able to afford my own place. I am a long way off still but there is a one word mantra that has been playing through my head all week. “Patience.”

Time does pass, things continue to move forward. With a little bit of work and a little bit of patience, eventually we do get to where we want to be. It might not be as fast as we want it to happen but the secret is not giving up no matter how much time it takes. Keep going.

I think there is this sense in the world right now that we need to do everything right away and as fast as possible to get everything we ever wanted in life… but the real truth is that all we can do is put in the work but we might not see the benefits for awhile… but that is OK!

One of the biggest reasons I feel so short on time is because I feel like I lost a lot of my life to fear. I feel like my life started after my first shot of testosterone… and now I have to make up for lost time. It often feels like I am doing 100 meter sprints and trying to catch my breath. I am trying to tell myself it is okay to jog. I am not going to miss anything, I am not going to enjoy life anymore by sprinting.

I have had the house to myself this week and it has really brought me some mental clarity. I wish it wasn’t temporary… one day I will move out of my parents house. I think the hardest thing about living with my parents is that they may appear supportive now but they were not always and it is really hard to just forgive and forget. They are still very religious and not only judge being trans but they judge sex, alcohol consumption , me not going to church… etc.

I carry a lot of shame. It makes me tense and allows anxiety to fill my life.

Dating someone while I am living at home is something I have found to be impossible. I don’t like my parents being involved in my dating life, or asking questions or seeing them after having sex. It is too much for me to currenlty handle. After surgery, my biggest focus needs to be moving out of this house so that I can move on with my life and heal from my past.

My mom will be my caretaker after surgery. After much resistence I finally decided to accept this. My mom was abusive to me as a child so it is really really hard to go back into a state of being dependent on her. It quite honestly scares me but I can only hope that this time around it will be different. It just stirs up a lot of feelings for me and I am trying my best to come to terms with these feelings and learn how to move on from them, or to deal with them at best.

The only way I can really get passed some of the abuse from my mom is to have compassion. I know that inside, she is a broken person and that is why she treated me the way she did… but I still have feelings of anger, sadness, and a deep hole in my heart of feeling unloved and unnurtured. –which I think has also led me into abusive relationships in the past.

One day I will find a healthy relationship. One day after I am able to get passed my childhood, my transition, and being able to completley love and accept myself. This year will not only be dedicated to healing physically but emotionally.

 

 

77 Days