Happy 29th Anniversary My Love

I evidently didn’t hit publish the second time….

I just want to scream from the mountains, trumpet from the clouds, all that jazz, on how much I love my husband. He has meant everything to me through all the years. Both as my spouse and my best friend. While we have been together longer than 29 years, I am grateful to celebrate it with you.

My love forever!!!!

Harassed twice in 15 hours…

It has been a long time since I was out and about in public as often as this last week. I forgot about the dozen microaggressions in each store, and the contrasting supporting smiles I get. This has been the most I have been in public with the new boobs, and the new fat transfer, for over a year and I started out feeling really good about myself… ya over the last two days that sort of ended a little harshly compared to where I started.

On Thursday we decided after work to go to Trader Joes and do a snack run for the weekend. I had a new Henley type top and felt really good. That only lasted about thirty seconds into Trader Joes when I had some old fuck look at me directly and brush across my boobs. Never apologizing and never doing anything but smirking. I have to be honest and say I was shocked at how brazen it was.

It has been awhile since I have been in that situation and honestly I just froze up. All I could do is concentrate on breathing and trying to get back with Wolsey (we had been separated) while avoiding anyone else that might brush up or touch me. The sad part was during the whole time I was angry at myself for not responding angrily at the man, especially when he would stare at me as he walked by with his wife several times in the store. Before the pandemic I would have said something to him, flipped him off or got Wolsey immediately. All I did though was just hope it went away.

By the time we got out of the store the hubby asked me what was wrong and why was I holding my hands in a weird way in front of myself. To be honest I didn’t realize I was doing that, and immediately tried to put my hands away. I wasn’t sure if I should tell him, I didn’t want him to be upset. Eventually he coaxed me into telling him and he was angry and reassuring. Angry at the asshole, reassuring to me and asked if I wanted him to go back, I told him no and that I just wanted to keep going. He completely respected me and we moved on.

We finished shopping at Winco, got some Subway and went home. The hubby was so incredibly nice to me. I am pretty fortunate that he is trans, I know a lot of cis guys were never through this experience and don’t understand (I was like that somewhat before I transitioned). He calmed me down and life was much better.

This is me in the car waiting for hubby (in the window behind me) comes back with Subway! I was feeling pretty rough about it.

Remarkably about 14 hours later (about 8am) we had just gotten out of my brain MRI (good news, I don’t have a brain tumor!) and went to Denny’s before we had to go to other appointments. We entered Denny’s and I felt pretty good about myself, but we were seated next to what I am sure was a MAGA fuck. As we walked over I watched as he took pictures of me (I feel like I looked pretty good, I was a bit exhausted and disheveled from the MRI).

Wolsey saw this and we both looked at each other as we sat down. The guy who was less than 3 feet from us on the connected booth literally plugged his phone in the socket on the area between where Wolsey and him sat and began videoing me. The hubby immediately shifted where he sat and blocked it off mostly, and I shifted so he couldn’t get a good shot. I realize my t-shirt probably showed off my boobs pretty well (not visible below) but I looked tired, crappy and vulnerable. The hubby and I both believe that is what attracts these assholes, the vulnerability is what they can sense.

I was not feeling it with asshole taking my picture.

Wolsey asked if I wanted him to approach the guy. I had considered losing my shit on the guy, I considered having the hubby do it, but to be honest I was fucking tired and just wanted my breakfast. I could tell my social armor is worn down and I haven’t gotten practice with it lately, this happened before the pandemic quite a bit, but I had gotten accustomed to it (no one should have to, but it is a survival mechanism).

If you notice the guy behind Wolsey has just laid his phone down and he was sighing in frustration. He didn’t catch we were blocking it at first.

The funny thing was listening to the guy talk on his phone and tell people he didn’t have their money but he would next Friday… it was hilarious. In addition Wolsey didn’t confront the guy (doing as I asked) but he did make several awesomely world class snide remarks and observations about the guy loud enough the guy could hear it, but when the guy looked over at Wolsey, noticed all of his tats he evidently decided he wasn’t that offended and stopped videoing me. He did take a couple of those awkward angled photos when I came out of the bathroom but by then I was feeling a little better and I think whatever weakness he sensed was fading and he eventually stopped.

There is asshole behind hubby trying to explain why he can’t pay someone he owes money to.

The problem I am having now (and it sucks but it is a good sign that occasionally my boobs fool men for a short time) is that I now get harassed sexually for looking feminine, and for being trans. Sometimes it is for being feminine (especially big boobs) that turns to transphobic when they make the realization

Life is still great, but sometimes it is rougher having to deal with people. Especially people in person. This is the biggest reason I have hesitated in dating (yes we are poly for those that don’t know), I am unfamiliar with how to traverse dating, let alone dating as a woman, and especially with the additional transgender subject.

I am so glad I have my hubby. ❤

Overcoming pre-transition ideas.

I have to admit that I never understood why anyone would put botox or lip filler in before I transitioned. Not that I ever had a problem with it. I always felt a person should do what they want with their body as long as it made them happy, but I never understood it.

Well last month I decided I was tired of all the crinkles/wrinkles around my eyes, and that my lip wasn’t quite as full as I wanted (I wanted to wait and see how it healed for more than a year from the lip feminization surgery, which I love by the way).

I don’t have a great picture to show you the wrinkles/lip, probably because I instinctly avoid those.

So I made an appointment with La Belle Vie Cosmetic Medspa. They are the same overall facility that I got my second FFS surgery, tummy tuck and boob job (and where I will go for my thigh/butt lift after GCS). I wasn’t too sure what to expect, but I was sure that I wasn’t going to be impressed. As it turns out I was wrong.

I got to meet Anne Marie RN, who runs the medspa portion. She was incredibly kind, easy going and answered all my questions. The thing that impressed me more though was that she listened to us about trans concerns, and she questioned us about how other clinics worked. She really appeared at least to want to improve their facility (including possible electrolysis for trans patients).

I learned from her that lip fillers can last up to about a year, which was far longer than I have had other people say. I learned botox and the other various “tox” injections were much easier, less painful and most of all I learned that they do work.

The biggest thing I was impressed with though was that while there is always the normal additional options you can select, she recommended against some of them and instead recommended for under my eyes to get a blepharoplasty to have a better bang for my buck instead of just trying to use filler or botox which both might not be very effective but cost a lot more in the end.

I go in on the 26th of October to get a small dogear left over from my tummy tuck removed and I am going to talk to Dr. Mangubat about a blephoraplasty. I am pretty excited about that possibility.

The procedure itself wasn’t very painful, but immediately my lip for the filler began to swell up like Mike Tyson had punched me. Anne Marie was worried I was having a reaction and the hubby and I both had to reassure her that for whatever reason I swell up a lot, but it goes away super fast.

I also had to reassure her that I bruise easily, but it is normal. I go through this every time I go down to Phoenix to get electrolysis and that in no way is she at fault nor would either of us blame her. I have definitely had a worse reaction to electrolysis.

That being said she continued forward with injections to my forehead, around the outside of my eyes and my chin for botox, and lip filler in both lips. We didn’t touch under my eyes though because it might make my eyes sag worse (which is why I am going to speak to Dr. Mangubat about the Blephoraplasty).

By the end of it I was feeling pretty good and actually pretty surprised at how painless it actually was (needle in lip always hurts but was similar to lidocaine for my electrolysis). My face was looking beat up, and Anne Marie did explain it takes up to two weeks for the effects to be noticeable.

So the hubby and I decided to go by Old Navy to return some leggings while we were out (weirdly enough two different guys circled me while I was waiting for the hubby to try on some clothes, not to be confused by the three guys in Express a couple weeks later).

We then stopped at Aztecha for some Mexican food and then returned home where I took some photos of my lips and my face. Yep Mike Tyson did a number. What I was really surprised by was though as the swelling went down, the effect was good and I like how it looks.

I will be honest, it was expensive, and my face was beat up looking for a few days but I like the effect and to be honest I spent the first 50 years of my life avoiding spending money on what I wanted, how I looked and just for something that was for me. I think I will do this regularly though.

The next few days it all healed up pretty well. I had some bruising and swelling but nothing I would worry about.

The one thing I think that I am really happy about is that the hubby expressed some interest in maybe a bit of botox and blephoraplasty. He doesn’t express when he wants things like that very much and while I think he is fucking gorgeous, I want him to know that I want to spend as much money on whatever he wants just as much as I do mine.

In fact I feel much better about my own stuff if I know he is comfortable expressing if and when he wants something done for himself. Also, I think now a month later I can see the effect and it is really great (I am not sure the pictures will show it clear enough):

Me in mid October, 1+ month since botox/lip filler. Still don’t have a good shot of my lip though.

I am really enjoying how I look and feel in my body. not just gender wise (although that is the biggest portion) but all the other parts. Now that I am 50 I feel like I can make myself comfortable.

365 Project – March 2021

This post is going back to the March 2021 monthly photo/video challenge.

This is licensed under a CC0 1.0 Universal License.

365 Project – February 2021

I totally put off touching a lot of my art/digital/etc due to a downturn in mental health and two different surgeries (thyroidectomy and my abdominal work) and now I am starting to want to get back to it.

This post is going back to the February 2021 monthly photo/video challenge. More are coming, but until then enjoy.

This is licensed under a CC0 1.0 Universal License.

Traditional women’s concerns

I absolutely love the results from my surgeries on my face via FFS. The bone work laid out by Dr. Ley, and the skin/muscle/fat work done by Dr. Mangubat have left me for the first time in 50 years finding I love how I look, and not looking at myself so hatefully.

While I have had over a year to ponder about my face, and while I really love who I am and what I look like, there is still something that bothers me, and probably bothers me far more now than it used to, due to the fact I got rid of most of my dysphoric looks. That would be the wrinkles and lines around my face, and my relatively thin lips.

At the age of 50, I realize I am doing really, I look younger than I am and I know others might be completely satisfied look like this. This is not meant to take away from that at all. I also did know that I am older, and transitioning from a very masculine body. I never cared for my skin, I never made sure to eat, drink or moisturize (although I did stay out of the sun because of allergies).

The hubby and I in 2015, 3 years before my transition and never considerd skin care… me on the right.

I have found though that the wrinkles really do bother me. I couldn’t tell you if it’s partially a reaction that it isn’t until I am 50 that I can be who I was supposed to and maybe I am trying to regain some time I should have had as a woman, or if this is just something I would have felt even if I was female from birth. Either way, that thought is just fluff to outline that I wanted to do something about it. I am fortunate, I have a husband that wants me to be happy and didn’t balk when I brought this up. I am fortunate that at this moment we can afford to do these things, even if it slows down repayment of debts.

I have been gauging what I wanted to do to address this for over a year. The wrinkles bothered me before surgery, but I knew better than to try and address those things before I did the FFS. Someone who gets FFS doesn’t know where they will end up, so trying to fix it before made no sense.

The most important picture, my hubby saying hi while taking me to Mexican after my botox/lip filler. I love him so much.

I also had considered using my electrolysis clinic in Phoenix I go to for face clearing. I didn’t do that not because they aren’t awesome, but because the electrolysis is temporary and eventually I won’t travel down there when the hair doesn’t grow back. I wanted a place I could go to for treatment that wouldn’t require a flight and overnight stay.

So when I went in last Friday, September 10th to Mangubat’s spa I had a good idea of what I wanted, but I was going to let the Nurse who is in charge of this guide me so I could read how much I could trust the spa. I was impressed with how patient and kind she was to me, a trans woman who had never been through this. I realize this is a no-brainer for customer service, but medical clinics often have bad bedside manners, but not here.

Heading out to get it done in this pic.

She was fantastic, in fact, she went out of her way after looking me over to tell me not to get some of the stuff I wanted to be done. She recommended going to Mangubat for blepharoplasty to take care of the bags under my eyes (which I am going to do). I was incredibly pleased though that she didn’t try to make money for something that wouldn’t help, or might even make worse. This is a key factor in wanting to stay with this medical spa. I have talked to others and they recommended a ton of items, but she explained that it might help long term after I had the surgery, but it wouldn’t get the look or the skin in the right shape without far more money than the actual surgery costs

So I ended up with some botox and lip filler (the names elude me, next time I will track the names and let you know). The lip filler I always knew I wanted because I had very masculine lips. Dr. Mangubat definitely feminized them (and they do look cute) but they are still thin. So I went in there and they gave me a single vial and now 10 days later I think it looks great. We went small to avoid having duck lips, but looking at it now I think I will get a little more next time. What did surprise me is that lip filler lasts about a year, I had assumed it would be every 3-4 months like botox.

The botox was even more of a surprise. I grew up and in the 80s/90s the whole botox making you look like a doll situation was going on. I had always doubted it could help you and yet not make you look like you are perpetually surprised. However, I believe in trusting the professional I go to (with the correct amount of skepticism of course). She didn’t lead me wrong. She said it would take about 2 weeks to see the final treatment, but within a few days most of the wrinkles had lessened dramatically and in some areas disappeared around the outside of my eyes.

I am excited about how it looks, and I think next time I will be more easy going with how much she uses. They have already proven they are careful, and to be honest, even if it was too much, none of it is permanent. The lips will lessen and the botox wears off.

No Regrets!

I am definitely going to keep doing this, and I might get a little more experimental. It is really nice though that I can participate in a traditionally feminine thing like this and feel like my being trans really doesn’t impact it. I am also glad I found a good place to go and will keep going for as long as I have the money and it is working.

Oh… (dream)

I always hate it when I sit to write out the specifics and the details area already drifting away like smoke you can’t keep in your hands. I also hate that in order to capture as much of the dream and not change things I need to post it ASAP.

Wolsey and I were in my parent’s living room. I don’t think it was the one that my parents had last for the last twelve years, I think it was our old place I lived at on High Street when I was 18/19 and when Wolsey and I first started dating.

I think I was my current age and I was sitting there talking to someone I wasn’t very familiar with about my nieces and nephews. I can’t remember which of them it was specifically that it was about, but I was telling someone else that they needed to watch over the kids in case something happened to us (me?).

The dream kept flipping to another scene where the hubby and I were walking through a set of alleys and I kept carrying them. I say them because I don’t know if Wolsey looked like a boy or a girl, but it has never mattered. There were some large mud puddles and I carried Wolsey across them and kissing him while walking him and after we got across (not sexy kiss, just the habit I have of kissing him softly, randomly for no reason, I am sure he gets tired of that after multiple a day.

I just remember how light Wolsey was, but I don’t know if that meant Wolsey was still presenting as female and I was as male with how easily I carried him, or if he was sick or something. Although I think it had more to do with him just being much smaller than. me, so maybe it was just a memory of how I used to be much stronger before transition?

I would then be back at my parents living room, with Wolsey sitting beside me just out of sight, Monica my sister in-law (well they never officially married and she and my brother are no longer together), so I am not sure how to reference the mother of two of my nephews/nieces. I get along with her well, she actually has treated me better than my blood sister so maybe I should just refer to her as my sister.

I would be talking to that new person each time it flipped back to the living room. Meanwhile, my father was sitting on one of his old chairs, drinking his coffee and eating one of those powdered and raspberry-filled donuts from Hostess that he loved, while he listened and occasionally made a comment like he would.

It kept flipping back to that alley and for whatever reason I was worried. The last full semblance of the dream was back in the living room, smiling at my dad in frustration because I don’t think the person I was talking to was listening to me and I was getting frustrated.

I woke up and immediately knew that something about the alleyway had been important, but was already disappearing from my memory. I found my head was shoved under my pillow (with Tally up against my back and hubby up against my front, facing away). I laid there for a moment and kept thinking as I tried to do the math that my dad wasn’t really that old, that is until I realized I had miscounted the year and he should have been 73, not 63.

That is when I felt like I got kicked in the gut as I realized he was dead, and had died in his 60s. I then realized that my cheeks were cold and damp, with that tacky feeling. It occurred that the breeze was from the fan on the window, which was also causing the coldness, my tears which had been flowing while asleep were causing the dampness. It was a surrealistic feeling and I didn’t understand what was going on.

I laid there for a moment longer when I realized I was crying. I just let that happen with the pillow over my head, my face sticking out slightly shaking. Eventually I could feel Tally had shifted her weight and a cat paw was resting on my back as she listened and waited. Part of me hopes it was in worry over my silently crying, but the realistic part of me is fairly sure it was waiting to see if I got up because that makes it closer to her feeding time.

Realizing that Wolsey might wake up I got up and came out here to write it. I wish I could remember what kept happening in the alley that the dream kept flipping to, or why I was telling the stranger how to take care of my niece and nephew in case something happened to us.

Now I just have this unease at 2am as I sit here typing, frustrated that the reason for the unease is just drifting off like smoke from a fire already gone out, leaving behind just the ash of me trying to figure out what that was about.

Expectations

It is funny how you can go through the first 50 years of your life and not realize how fucked up things are. Mostly today I am referring to expectations, and especially with expectations, I have placed on myself.

The last couple of weeks or so I realized that most of my life is based on expectations of what I do when I do it and how I do it. The sad part is most of these expectations were not given to me by others in my current life, the expectations started when I was young that were explicit, implicit, and self-made that no one made on me.

I grew up with the expectations to support my family when I was 15. I gave my full paychecks up to my family and sometimes that was the only reason we had food or a place to stay.

Along with that, I grew up in a very toxic masculinity type of environment (1% MC and Vietnam Veterans), Somehow in all that, I had adopted the whole idea and expectation to take care of everyone else around me and do things for them without thinking about myself.

That includes taking my friends out to eat and paying for the whole bill. Refusing when other people offer to pay. The fact that I would give 100% of any effort to a friend, or even an acquaintance if they looked like they needed it (they didn’t even have to actually ask for it).

Sadly I know this probably even comes off as patronizing to some people, my assumption they need to be taken care of isn’t just a habit obtained for martyrdom, it does take away from the agency of others and I realize that as well.

So I decided last week to start removing my own self-placed expectations. I am not going to let myself feel obligated to pick up and drop off people, pay for their food (if they ask of course I will consider it), I will definitely not ride in other people’s cars nor be a taxi when they have one. There are two big things though that were weird to decide not to put before me.

The first is group roleplaying games. For decades I worried about my friends and the gaming group’s opinion of me. I would spend literally 20-40 hours working a week on that game, and I had a whole slew of gamers just sort of blow off the game, or blow off the work I did. I found that I don’t think they deserve that focus. Now I will work on the games when I want, run them for who I want and focus on the story I want to tell (that I want their help to work together of course). I wonder how that is going to work out.

The other expectation on me is my youtube channels. I love doing youtube, I love my Things You Should Know channel and its history (with other bits of stuff). I love my two Video Game LP channels (one for military games, one for everything else). What I found I hated was this self-expectation that I have multiple videos a week going out.

I love making videos, but I would stress if I got behind, or if I saw there might be a dead time. This isn’t ever going to be a “Youtuber” set of channels. I don’t promote myself, I play and record what I want. However I decided I don’t have to abide by two videos a week on TYSK if I don’t have time, and I definitely don’t have to abide by daily videos on my video game channels. My thought in going forward is to just put up what I want, when I want. If it ever picked up I would consider making it more of a job that way, but for now, I think I am going to cool down and just do what I like.

It is weird to say that, just do what I like. I know I am still going to beat myself up for it, but fuck it, I think I am going to do what I want to do. Everyone else can fuck right off.

I guess that is my rant for hte morning, we will see how it pans out. 😉

50

This is it, I turned 50 today and I am not sure what to really talk or consider about it.

The first photo of me in my 50s.

I can tell you I don’t feel bad, I feel really good. I am in a great marriage of 29 years this year. I am happily working my way through the transition to be who I truly am, and we are financially stable (albeit in eternal debt). All of this is far beyond what I pictured at the age of 20.

I do think I look better now than pretty much any other time of my life. Not necessarily just because of my physical looks in general, but because what I see is more closely aligning with what I feel. That plus I have kept my 100+ pound weight loss off for two years now, I am feeling comfortable letting loose a little, I think I found a good set point.

getting ready to head out for breakfast

That is it, no big insights today, just wanted to say I turned 50, my husband spent a wonderful day with me, and I am an incredibly happy woman. Here are some pics of the day of going out to breakfast with my hubby, then getting home and running him a game while our daughter attempted to get his attention for hours 🙂

A tangent about books

I don’t know why, but the last few days I have had an urge to read some of the books I read when I was a teenager. I am sure it is slightly a nostalgic thing, but moreso I am curious how they held up… meaning I doubt most of them do.

One of the books was an action series book about bad ass mercenaries (this was in the 1980s) along with probably the first sex scene I had read in a non-porn specific book. I don’t really recall much of the book or the scene, but every so often I want to read it.

So I am going to do something dumb and start combing through the 1980s military romance novels and see if I can find it, if nothing else I guess I will get a dose of toxic masculinity that the books exude. I am not even counting the misogyny or racism (I suspect transphobia isn’t in them because it is too far removed… I hope).

I am going to start with Phoenix Force, 58 books (all under 200 pages so actually not much at all) and then move on to other series… Unless I get a few chapters in and can’t stomach it.

The worst part about all of this, I know it is going to suck, but I can’t resist it.

After this, there are a lot of other books I only vaguely remember but want to try again. One of them had something vaguely to do with an ocean world (book was probably written late 70s or early 80s). I think I will have to look into that as well. However, for now I guess I am reading a lot of toxic masculinity romance novels.