This was to be my year to take care of a lot of surgery and general health care things that I’ve been putting off for a long time and so far I think I’m doing a pretty good job of staying that course. I decided to start out with the easiest stuff (none of it is easy or I would’ve done it already!) first and work up to my chest surgery as the grand finale for the year. Unfortunately it takes a lot of time to get all the details worked out and go for all of the preliminary appointments to get to the main event so it’s taken me three months to get to my first target. First on my list was having my “wisdom” teeth removed and despite a pretty nasty little snow storm that threatened to delay me I was able to have all four of them removed in my regular dentist’s office last Thursday morning. It was my first time having nitrous oxide, aka “laughing gas”, and I was nervous about it but even with the nerves I felt a calm that surprised me. These teeth have been giving me problems for many years now and my doc has been pleading with me to get them out. When he told me they could do it in their office now and I wouldn’t have to go to a surgeon I was ready to sign up. And I’m glad i did. It’s a little thing but I was elated to finally get that taken care of. The worst part for me is being drugged up on pain meds. I do not like that feeling and I’ve done a lot of sleeping because of it. I’m hoping that today (day 4) I can just take ibuprofen and feel somewhat normal in my head. So far so good.
Next on my list is the hysterectomy. That is scheduled for March 31st. Thanks to my therapist I was able to find a trans friendly ob/gyn who works with trans guys in order to get their lady bits removed without any hassles. I’m stoked for this surgery! I’ve had to endure two uncomfortable and one painful procedures to get here and I still have a few pre-op tests to get through before the 31st but I think the worst is behind me now. I can’t really describe to anyone how much this means to me. I’ve had this irrational (maybe not so irrational?) fear of pregnancy for so long and have experienced so much pain and agony at the hands of my lady parts, and still do even at 53 years old, that the thought of removing that from my life for good is more than words can express for me. I can feel them in there doing their thing and I hate it. I don’t really hate them but, to me, they just never belonged inside me and should have been removed a long time ago.
Hopefully this procedure will go well and will be an out patient type of thing. My doctor is hoping to be able to perform a laparoscopically assisted vaginal hysterectomy which means I should not need to stay overnight in the hospital and can go home later that same day. There won’t be any outward sign to the world that I’ve had this surgery but internally I know that it will make a huge difference in how I feel about my body and my self. I wanted to do this before I had any gender markers changed on insurance or IDs so it would go smoothly and without questions from anyone in authority.
The next big step will be chest surgery. Believe it or not, I’m still struggling mentally with that one, which is part of why I’m saving it for last. I know I want it done. I know I want a male chest. I know I’ll look and feel better without the moobs. But there’s a psychological aspect that I just haven’t quite worked through yet around this subject and until I do I don’t feel right setting up a surgery date. I’m close…I think. Part of the resistance for me is that I think that removal of my breasts is my last vestige of womanhood. Crazy, huh? If I’m a trans guy why do I want to keep that? Everyone will finally see me as the guy I am. That’s my thinking anyway. The truth is that some will and some won’t. I know this intellectually. Emotionally I feel like the removal of the breasts and construction of a male chest is the last piece of my female facade or mask and I will be very vulnerable, naked without them. They help to hide my true self. This is both good and bad, depending on how you look at it. I’m a pretty big wuss when it comes to conflict and I hate being the center of attention so stripping my psyche naked for the whole world to see is kind of scary. Terrifying maybe? I wish I was braver and surer of myself. I think that will come in time when I’m ready emotionally. So, for now, I work on it and keep chipping away at the facade little by little.