Sunday, March 1, 2015

Coping with change

Warning! This blog post will have more details about changes happening in my transition. If these make you (the reader) uncomfortable, I'll mark the paragraphs that are more PG in nature so that you can avoid them.

Every fall it's the same thing in our house. The kids go back to school and within a few short weeks, the sniffles come into our house. It goes around most of us, and then we are okay. Fine until the seasons change.

My body has been coping with lots of change recently. It affects quite a few things. My energy level in particular. Not good for a person training for two 100 mile races this year. I don't know right now how I'm going to pull it off, but I'll run tomorrow, strengthen every day, eat healthy, stay hydrated, and listen to my body, both the good things and the bad things it's telling me.

It's no different with changes happening in my body right now. For example, the medication "spironolactone" is amazing. It's a diuretic, which I have realized today, is not a laxative. Laxative = poop, diuretic = urine. Basically, it makes me pee a lot, and it lowers my blood pressure. Could be a good thing, but when I run, I'm already dehydrated, and when you combine that with the fact it's hard to drink in the winter because I have to dig trough my clothing and pull down my zipper with cold hands in order to get to it.

Spironolactone also blocks testosterone production. Because it's so low, it means that my estrogen is higher. As I understand it, cellular receptors for hormones accept either estrogen and testosterone. If they accept estrogen, the individual develops secondary female characteristics. If they accept testosterone, the individual develops secondary male characteristics. It's obvious the medication is working, because my testosterone is quite low. My breasts have become very sore. The nipples are erect almost all the time, and my breasts are growing. Quite fast might I add... My Wife and daughter are telling me, they will kill me if I'm bustier than they are. It's probably still okay to shower with the guys, but I'll definitely be getting weird looks. I'm proud to be me, so maybe it's not a big deal. I'm happy with my body so far. Super happy actually! I hope I'm at least a b-cup eventually, but I won't complain with anything. They will be mine.

As for the running part of it, I'll keep training, without giving myself excuses on why I'm allowed to go slower, and less hard then before. I believe everything will work out in the long run. After all, in the end, when you're running 100 miles, it doesn't matter how slow you go, so long as you cross the finish line. (At least, that's the way I see it).

Virginie and I went to a clothes exchange last week at the pride center in Edmonton. There was a LOT of clothes there. I still feel very shy around those people, but they are all very friendly. I'm sure I'll eventually open up. I just need to give myself time. In the end, I got a whole bunch of really cute stuff. Mostly tops. When I wear them, along with my new girls pants, I can see a hourglass figure coming through. It's not a lot, but it's something, and I'm so happy with it!!!

My confidence has gone up as well. I think some of my favorite times are with my new friends at the Fast Trax run club. I have always had a tough time opening up to people, and trusting them. Now that my transgender secret is out, and literally everyone in my run club seems to be fine with it, I trust these people completely. I can talk, laugh, and socialize with a better degree of confidence. This is something I've never had before. Next weekend, I'm running with a couple of girls. I've never ran with them before, but I'm super excited to do so. Seriously, I want a HEN running party. I was never allowed into these conversations. All my life I've never been allowed, even those this is the way I want to socialize. Yesterday, after a challenging interval session, I was at the Second Cup with my pals. One of the gals told a story involving me. It was funny. The really cool part was, she got her pronouns right! She called me Steph, and said "she". Those little things mean so much to me! There is more to it than that though...

When growing up, I always always always heard others telling funny stories, or conversing about shows that I was not interested in. For example, "Kids in the Hall". I thought that show was raunchy!!! I watched it once, and down comes my Dad just as 2 of the guys started to kiss. He looked at me and said "Are these the shows you like to watch Steve?". I hung my head. "No..." I replied sullenly. I immediately turned off the TV, and decided I did not want to be a part of those conversations anyway.

It was always like that though. I would hear people talk, want to get involved, but didn't now the subject, or even the dynamics of holding a conversation. Yet, when this friend told her story about me, and people laughed, along with the right pronouns, and the laughter, I felt so included, and accepted.

We all love in different ways, but regardless of the way, it says "I accept you", "I affirm you", "I enjoy you". You see, I don't have to be anyone else. I don't even have to be a man anymore (not that I knew how to do that in the first place), and I'm still loved by that group. If I miss out on a workout, people are texting me to see where I was. When they say, "We missed you" I actually believe it, because they have proven that already to me.

In stark contrast, there is another couple close to me that won't listen at all. They tell me "You may be happy now, but you won't be happy later, you'll regret it", like they know me better than I know myself. There message to me is "Your too perverted to make a sound decision on this". Guess what? I often think I act the role that I perceive people place on me. If they treat me like a pervert... well... you know. If they treat me like I'm worth their time, and my friendship is valued, it they love me unconditionally, I feel loved. Then how do I act? quite differently actually. I'm more open to listening, feeling and loving myself. When in doubt, act with love and kindness.

One more comment about living with regret. Many a book has been written to tell us how to avoid it, and they are probably all right, and all wrong. What I mean is, we run all information and experiences through our own paradigms. When we do this, we keep some, and discard (often for protection) elsewhere. You know, back into the dark recesses of ones brain so it can be forgotten. The message I feel is, "don't do this so you won't have to deal with the regret". It's suggestions straight from their own paradigms. I don't think anyone can avoid living with regret. Yet, we can all choose to not regret things, or we can do something about regret when it comes. I have no doubt that there is always a way to handle it well, to me, everything is fixable. Just some fixing takes longer than others, but when you are in the process of fixing something, at least you are in control. The process is started!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing this Stephanie. I was so happy to find your new page on facebook today. Sending you so much love. I know you are finding new joy in your life and am so deeply happy for you. Thank you for allowing me to be part of this new journey and time for you and your family. Hugs my friend.