Thursday, May 30, 2013

Take your time.

So I'm hoping (if it's not already happening) that other transgenders will be reading this blog. It's my hope that I not only teach my friends who read the blog, but also anyone who gets referred here or even just stumbles upon it. So this is a teaching entry.

Today was my second self-injected shot of testosterone, and my fourth shot overall. Two weeks ago when I did my first self injection, I went too fast. I was excited, and that's expected, but it clouded my vision when it came to the injection process.

First, flex the muscle a bit before injection. My friend suggested it and it seems to help. I have only injected in my leg, but I'm assuming it will help in any other muscle injection sites.

Secondly and seriously, take your time. Push a bit, and pause-take a breath, then keep going. Don't rush it. And make sure you don't hit a vein because it will hurt like a bitch. In Sarah's parent's house, in the bathroom, there's a red heating lamp and I like to use that to check where my veins are, and mentally mark the spot on my leg where I can inject and not hit a vein. I know not everyone has a heating lamp, but do the best you can.

Another hint of advice - pull your skin to the side and then inject, holding the skin while injecting, then remove the needle and let the skin slide back again. This will help if the injection site seems to ooze a bit after injection.

And lastly, don't overdo it. I know this sounds like common sense, but some people just assume that more testosterone, or injecting more often, will cause faster results. This is NOT TRUE. Too much testosterone will not help, it's just a waste. After a certain amount of testosterone is in the female body, it can be changed into estrogen. So more testosterone can actually hurt your efforts in hormone replacement therapy. The point is to become more masculine, and having more estrogen in your body is NOT going to help you.

So always trust your doctor, and seriously listen to them. Trying to cheat and get ahead could hinder you.

This is a huge life decision, and not something to be taken lightly. So the process matters.

Pay attention. Do it right. Make it count.

Monday, May 27, 2013

When people have your back...

My family still has not spoken of the hormones, or my transition, or anything - really. My parents were in Italy for the past week and it was nice to not worry about being home for dinner, or awkward phone conversations, or feeling bad about sitting in my room and watching TV.

But this past weekend was....spectacular. Sarah and I went upstate to spend time with friends, and it was a great stress reliever. These people really support me, use the right name and pronouns, and it's not awkward. It's fun, and boosts my self-confidence, and it's fantastic.

So all in all, I had a great week and an even better weekend.

Just wanted to update from the anger and frustration in my last post.

Carry on.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Yes I have thought about this.

Why does everyone assume that taking hormones is a decision I have made overnight? Like one day I woke up and said, "I'm going to start hormones today" and then did it. As if this is not something that I have been thinking about for years now. As if I have not felt like a male stuck in this body forever. As if I'm acting on a whim. 

News flash. I know what the fuck I'm doing with my life. 

I emailed my grandfather and his lady friend, informing them of what is happening in my life. And of course, they're not supportive. But I think I would have rather them have said something alone the lines of, "we don't support this" and that be the end of it. But of course not, it can't be that easy. 

Please tell me how decisions I make now will affect the rest of my life, as if I don't know that. 
Please tell me that I may be discriminated against, or not welcome. 
Please tell me that I may be the object of "very mean jokes".

I am 23 years old. I am an adult. I have already been living my life. I have been discriminated against. I have been verbally abused, I have almost been physically assaulted because of who I am. Who I have always been. I have been the butt of many jokes that I have heard, and I'm sure multitudes more that I have not. And I have to live with that. I have to live every single day with people staring, judging, glaring at me. Every single day knowing that what people see is not how I feel inside. Every single day knowing that this is not what I want to look like, and almost every single person that I come in contact with will use the wrong pronoun, and the wrong name. 

Every. Single. Day.

So please do not try and tell me that my life will be hard. I think I know better than you do. 

As far as what people think of me: if they don't like me, that's fine. I couldn't care less. Because I have a great support system of friends and extended family members. I honestly do not care how society sees me. 

I will marry Sarah. And we will have children, and I will be "Daddy". I will never be Mommy. We will live wherever we want, have whatever jobs we want, and live happily as husband and wife.

And that is the thought that gets me through every single day of discrimination, jokes, looks, wrong pronouns, and judgement. The thought that I have Sarah. She loves me exactly the way that I am, and supports me in everything that I do. Just as I do for her. Not a day goes by that I don't think about how lucky I am, and grateful, and happy. I have never been so happy. 

That has to mean I'm doing something right, doesn't it?

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Sharing the news: Friends vs Family

I don't know why telling family is harder than telling friends. Maybe it's because friends are of the same generation, and we've grown up with the same influences, and times are a'changin. Maybe it's because sometimes we feel closer to our friends than our family, so sharing something doesn't seem as intimidating because we can guess how our friends will react easier than our parents or family.

I'm sticking with the latter. I feel like I know my friends better than my family. I think it's because I have spent more time around my friends, and honestly communicating with my friends. I wonder if that statement should make me sad, but it doesn't.

Maybe we're a freak family, but we never talk about anything. We don't have real conversations about how our day went, what we think about society, or how we feel since Michael died. We just don't talk.

I'm too aquarius for that. I need to talk through my feelings, or they build up inside of me, and eventually I just break down. It's happened a few times now. I've learned from it.

So I had no idea what was going to happen when I told my family. Especially my parents. My brother and I haven't talked about me, or what's going on in my life. Surprise. (Sarcasm, read above about the lack of communication). My Aunt and I haven't spoken about it either, and who knew that my mother would be more upset than my dad? I was convinced that he was going to be more upset than he's shown. But it seemed to work the other way around. These hormones aren't going to change my personality, I'll still be me. I just hope that they can see that. If they can't, and still refuse to support me, I won't want them in my life.

My friends? Supportive, accepting, loving, non-judgemental, concerned that I'm doing the right thing but overall happy as long as I am, checking in on my progress, asking questions, interested, helping me through this.

My family? Silent.

And yeah, it hurts.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Second Shot and Sharing with Nana

Today was my second shot of hormones, and I did it myself. I am now cleared to start self injecting. It's exciting, and I'm confident that I can handle it. I got a sharps container, and prescriptions for more T and syringes. So we'll see how that goes...

I told my grandma (nana) about Sarah and my relationship, and that I'm trans. She basically told me that she knew about Sarah and I (I mean it's pretty damn obvious) and that I should do what makes me happy and other people will either get over or not. It was good to let her know. She's said multiple times that with all 17 of us cousins, she sometimes feels out of the loop, and I don't want to put her in that position.

She said Sarah and I are always welcome for lunch or tea.

Sarah and I are heading to Colorado next week for my pastry school graduation, and I think it's going to be great. I can't wait to see everyone again and to tell everyone that I started hormones. I miss it there, and I miss everyone calling me Aidan and using male pronouns. Everyone was so accepting, and nonjudgmental, and...awesome. So it's gonna be great to get back there and catch up with the pastry class.

Here's hoping it goes well.