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Mar 31 2015

HRT Update March 31, 2015

At this point, I have been on Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) for five weeks. First, let us look at some numbers.

Current Dosages:

  • Estradiol: 2mg 3x per day, 6mg total (up from 4mg)
  • Spironolactone: 5o mg 2x per day, 100mg total

Hormone Table of Fun

Hormone Baseline Value Target Value Current Value
Testosterone 616 ng/dL 50  55
Estradiol 23.8 pg/mL 150-300 104

Next Medical Appointment for Hormone Level Testing: June 22, 2015.

About week ago, I had hormones tested to see progress and set down some at least semi-final targets with my doctor. Both sets of results are amazingly positive!

My body has metabolized the estrogen much quicker than anticipated. I am already at 104, which is now within female range, although low. It is not as high as we would like, but it is progressing nicely. Estrogen can vary from day to day so our target value had to become a tighter range (150-300) within the normal female range (~100-400) my dosage is increasing for Estradiol from 4mg to 6mg. I will be taking two pills in the morning (which for me is 7:30pm) and one in the night (which for me is 7:30am).

Testosterone results which were delayed a week have finally come back and is amazingly positive. Doc said he wanted to see my testosterone suppressed from 616 down to 50. The result came back at 55. Yippee! There will be no change in dosage of Spironolactone. The fact that the dosage of Spiro I am taking adequately suppressed Testosterone already makes me happier than anything does right now. I felt like it was poisoning me with anger, frustration, etc.

As to some of the things that have been happening recently, I feel like the emotional changes are mostly finished. My emotional range has expanded greatly. I can be happy and stay happy now. My mood overall has been much positive, but I feel like hormones have opened the door and allowed me to be happy, now I have to grow into a happy person the difference is that now I have the physically capable to do that, where I didn’t before. I never thought that physical issues and hormone levels can affect the way a person thinks but it really does. It is interesting to think that there are things about me that control the way I think. I have never really considered that before. I always thought I was in control of my thoughts, emotions, etc. I thought I was the only one that could change my thoughts or emotions. That is why for many years I have struggled in my solitary confinement of my mind to fix things. I have spent from ages 14 to age 29 (15 years) trying to fix this on my own. To think a doctor has now changed the way I think, within a month, is staggering.

Yet I find myself thinking about the past. How I felt at least somewhat part of society in my fake shell. I was filling a role. Now, I have to blaze my own trail, starting from scratch. I find myself wanting to go back simply because it is easier, because I did not have to think about it. Faking my life became second nature… I lived in a world with society around me even if it was not interacting with me. I felt attached and unattached at the same time. Now, I am trying to figure out whom I am. I am trying to rebuild myself. Flowers surround me; it is beautiful. I feel somewhat abandoned by society. It is still interacting with the male me, from a year ago. Will it come back when I am done?

I have struggled my whole life with ideas of Self-Esteem and Self- Confidence. I am finally also able to build those things little by little. When people give me complements, I can finally accept and believe them. I can finally say some of the things I have never been able to say before from my heart. If I have been on stage my entire life the colors of the lighting is starting to change from reds and dark depressing blues to greens yellows and whites. My perspective of myself is changing little by little. I can admit I do have some skills and value, whereas I did not see that before. I can finally say “no” when I know someone is wrong and correct them instead of letting them make the mistake I know is about to be made.

It is starting to become easier, much easier, to think of myself as “she.” Keep in mind I have to deal with 29 years of me being one gender and now switching it… There are so many words that carry gender even in our ‘genderless’ language. I am a sister, not a brother. I am a daughter, not a son. I am a cousin, not a cousin… Oh, wait that one does not apply. Things that belong to me are now “her computer” or “her bracelet.”

The mental games have been challenging over the last couple of months. Trying to convince myself that I was a girl was very hard. I know I am inside but everyone around me saying “he” and certain parts of my body constantly reminded me of my birth into the physical form that did not match my mind or heart. I have felt anger about that, quite a bit in the past and, honestly, it kept up until recently. Recently though, I have been able to think differently about it. I feel like my thinking has changed to someone much younger, and more liberated from the feelings of adults and society. For quite a while, I’ve fallen into a trap of seeing my body as “wrong” It wasn’t really until the hormones let me think differently that I was able to come to this feeling… (from Assigned Male)

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It is going to be a long time before society will see me as I see myself. I cannot let that hold me back. I will embrace the changes as they happen with both arms and a head held high. The winds of change will help me grow.

Hormones have clearly established the mental transition and it is on its way. How is the physical transition going?

The physical transition has started, although primarily with soreness. I am not completely flat chested anymore. Although, there is not nearly enough for anyone to notice yet, “they” does exist. To think I’m starting to grow a physical body part I’ve desired for a long time, after only a month of hormones is also staggering to me. The amount that can happen, the amount that can change in thirty-seven days is amazing. That is the only change attributable to hormones.

My hair has been growing out; I have started wearing lip-gloss. Mom mentioned my voice has been more feminine, even though I have not tried to work on my voice. I have been wearing hair clips and bobby pins to keep my hair out of my eyes. I have been looking overall more feminine. Although still wearing male clothes society is starting to see what I saw late last year.

Mom and I went out for dinner recently. I was looking down at the menu so the waitress could not see my face. She came up to the table and said “good evening ladies” and my heart flew.

However, it was to be short lived. The moment I looked up (although I think I smiled), she looked visibly embarrassed, and avoided gender related words for the rest of the night. Which was quite awkward made me quite sad.

I have left society behind. It refuses to interact with me. It will interact with what I was, until it is comfortable with what I will be. Society does not like this middle ground, because gender is man or woman. It will be confused for the next year or so, but I will be okay with that. Society will make mistakes, and I will giggle and move on. All I can do is keep walking forward and move into the future. One day at a time, Society will eventually catch up; in the meanwhile, I have to ignore people’s flubs and embarrassment.

I will take what happened as a compliment that I am walking the right path and keep faith that the future is how I imagine it. I will keep walking forward, one day, one week, one month, and one year at a time. If you see me dancing down the street know that this is what’s going though my head… Overall this is where I’ve been lately:

About the author

Josie

I’ve never been good at writing about myself. I’ve never been good at ‘talking up my strengths’ but at least I should try…

I am a 30 year old (gasp), woman. To me, it is just that simple. My life is slowly coming together into a form where I can be proud to call it my life.

Who am I? I’m a strong, loving woman that was assigned male at birth and is finally correcting that egregious error by biology. For most women if they have an urge like wearing a sundress, they just do it. For my first 29 years on this planet, that wasn’t a possibility.

I write to heal, then publish to inform. I hope my journey can make the journeys of people that come after me just a little less painful.

I also have a ‘day job’ as a Data Center Technician. I do an incredibly physical job lifting fixing and moving servers. I daily, walk into and then maintain ‘the cloud.’ Servers are still quite a bit larger and heavier than your desktop at home. So much so that I am the only woman on my team of 20 and one of 5 in the entire building of about 75. Technology is without a doubt a male dominated industry. Which makes me quite sad.

I wish I could better express who I am. I don’t feel like I’ve done justice to my history, my life, and my story, but for now, this will have to do. To me the most beautiful thing in the world is understanding and empathy. If we can have only one thing for each other person on this planet, I choose empathy.

2 comments

  1. Dorothy Browning

    I had been wondering how things are going. Thanks for the update. Happy things are moving forward positively and continuing prayers for continuing progress in all phases of the transition both physically and in society. Love you.
    Grandma Browning

  2. Richard Conley

    Wow it’s been five weeks already huh? I’ve been wondering how you were doing. The next time I see you I probably won’t even recognize you!

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