I envy those of you who had confidence in yourselves from an early age and the bravery to take action to manifest your gender identity early on in life. I think the older you get the more challenging it is to expose yourself to the world around you, and especially to family. Family members of a younger generation than me will doubtless find it less of a task to accept a change of gender, but others have known me as the boy/man I have presented myself as for 43 years, and it’s not so easy to change that long established perception.
After delivering the news to my immediate family, I was genuinely blown away by my mother’s efforts. Being of a different generation and in her 70’s she could be expected to find the adjustment of a son to a second daughter very difficult. While I’m sure she is finding it difficult I found her making a decided effort to understand how the adjustment will fit in to her life by asking practical questions such as how she should refer to her children from now on. Should she tell people she has a son and a daughter, two daughters, or a daughter and a transgender daughter? I suggested for the time being, while I’m not wearing my femininity 24/7/365, it might be easier to tell people that she has a daughter and a transgender daughter, but the question itself showed me that she has taken my news seriously, accepts it (even if she might not be comfortable with it) and understands that she must incorporate it in to her life. We had a number of conversations while she was visiting that reassured me that she accepts my new identity and her questions were all very welcomed.
I wish I didn’t have to shake my family’s world in this way, but unfortunately it is necessary. As I’m only 3-months in to hormone treatment telling them now allows them time to consider everything and get used to things the way they are now before my body changes, as well as consider how things will be in the future. If I were to have allowed my fear of telling them to control me, when I see them next in 6 or 12 months’ time they might be confronted with a much changed me, physically. Without any forewarning I’m sure this would shock and upset them more than I perhaps have now. To not tell them, and let them find out through the physical changes occurring would demonstrate a total lack of respect and love for them. They are an incredibly important part of my life and as such I owed them the courtesy of explaining who I am, what has happened and what will happen, because there’s no way of avoiding it without my no longer being part of their life. Telling them was a defining moment; one which liberated me, but also one where I truly put my mother’s love for me to the test, and she categorically proved that her love is boundless.
Since my estrogen dose was doubled to the maximum at my hospital appointment on 16th December, I think I’m starting to notice some subtle changes. My skin is starting to feel softer, body hair growth is slowing slightly and not only have I had some sensitivity in my breasts this last week but they’re a little more pronounced.
I’ve also been put on to flax seeds as a booster to hormone treatment. I’ve been told that because they contain phytoestrogens (plant estrogens) they can assist the body’s feminization and hormone balance, and are generally a very healthy food with many benefits including with digestion, quality of skin, lowering of cholesterol, and promotion of weight loss. I’m particularly interested in the lowering of cholesterol as well as weight loss assistance. In the New Year I plan to shift my gut so I can be sure the breasts I’m developing aren’t just because I’m too fat!
Happy New Year everyone! My resolutions include starting up on the exercise again, eating more healthily, cutting down on the booze and living my life with much more confidence; something which my recent exposure has already facilitated!