I am starting a new job today (one that knows I am trans and seems to accept it) so last night was filled with hard dreams.
I woke up from a dream this morning, around 2am. It involved me starting a brand new job in an office. It was incredibly regimented, and people were always freaking out. A coworker who sat next to me at another desk was a large black man who reminded me of my previous boss I just left (except she was a she).
He looked over at me and told me that I would have to take breaks at 1130am every day, no exceptions and it is required. I laughed my ass off at him at first and told him that isn’t true. He continued to demand it and I told him I am not “working at fucking mcdonalds” and you aren’t going to regiment me on every little thing I do.
At some point I stood up, told him to fuck himself he wasn’t my boss and we would be stepping up to the next person line of authority. That is where I woke up.
I can tell that relates back to two different people. The first was my previous boss. She wasn’t flexible on my start/end times. It was a silly rule because I couldn’t cover anyone else’s position (I am the only auditor in a group of accountants) and they couldn’t cover mine.
It was the ONLY white collar job I have had since graduating going on 11 years ago that isn’t flexible on start/stop times. The advantage of auditing is there is no customer service, and as long as you are in at a core set of hours (many times 9-2, or 9-3) they don’t care if you come in earlier or stay later then that to make your full day.
She also wouldn’t let me work extra hours on some days to make up for medical appointments on the other. There was a whole ton of other small things, but those are the big one (and I agree not the worst in the world), but my Oppositional Defiance personality has a hard time.
The other boss is from the DoD. He told me to do things that were not what I considered ethical in testing on a DoD Contractor. He didn’t want to deal with the problems I was finding. I told him no, I am pursuing it and he really didn’t have the authority to stop me since that was my actual job.
He kept pushing and pushing and griping. Eventually I told him we could go talk to the station chief to clarify it if he wants. He talked big about we don’t need to bother him, I just needed to listen to the doofus supervisor (himself). I stood up, told him to fuck himself eventually, said we are going into the manager’s office and he could decide.
The shocked look on that person’s face was priceless. We eventually went in (stormed is probably a pretty good word) and I laid out what I had found. The supervisor all of a sudden started backing down in front of our big boss. Big boss agreed with me and that was that.
Now I realize it seems weird I can tell my supervisor no, but that is because I am an auditor. As an auditor I am responsible as a professional to not veer my audit on outside pressure, that includes my supervisor if I feel we are not following “due diligence”. That was what was happening, he didn’t want to find more problems and I told him you can’t just stop looking when you find problems.
There are a lot of other small things like this, but that is why I like auditing. I can pursue problems I see and have upper management usually back me (now, whether they support it because the contractor has lobbyists is a different story, but above my paygrade and not something that was my issue).
There you have it, an anxiety dream taking two different incidents from my last two jobs to make me anxious for my new one.
Well yesterday I made the first step of shedding my old look.
Since the weight loss started in March I have dropped from 300+ lbs down to 217 today in September. I feel good, I think I look a lot better (but I do feel I am not done), and because of this I have a LOT of clothing that I can’t wear.
Most of the clothing is my boy clothing of course, especially my work clothes. I have a ton of clothing that is just hanging out in boxes and bags because it won’t fit me. Yesterday we decided to get rid of the clothing, and not to keep it any longer “just in case”.
We will be giving my boy clothing to my younger brother. He doesn’t have a lot of good clothes anyways and I like being able to help him with what I do have. Combined I am giving away
- 14 T-Shirts
- 1 brand new suit (bought in march)
- 5 belts that are way too long and can’t be cut down.
- 5 long shorts
- 2 gym shorts
- 7 polo shirts
- 4 casual office pants
- 3 jeans
- 8 dress shirts
- 4 dress pants
- 1 pair of fatigues
- 1 sports jacke
This leaves me with a few bits of boy work clothing that are much smaller size (from waist size 46+ to now a 36, same with the shirts in reduction.
The surprising part is now I have to get rid of all my initial girl clothing as well, and that is the clothing that made me feel a tinge of worry and maybe regret. None of the boy clothing did that.
Don’t get me wrong, it is great I went down from that size, but it is still a little sad. Also, I will probably have to shop in plus size most of the time anyways no matter how skinny I get, since I am 6’2″+ tall.
So next month when I go up and see my brother I get to give him a new wardrobe. Both the hubby and I figure even if I gained weight back, I won’t be wearing those types of clothes by the time it happens anyway.
I am still working on my new wardrobe. The hubby is busily buying things for me as he finds them, and we are both surprised at the sizing getting smaller as we go. He says it is the first time in our 26+ year relationship (26 years married on Halloween, then a couple years before that) that I seem to enjoy getting clothes. I think he is right.
Overall the experience of shifting out clothes is distorted by my body changing shape. I have some pictures of me just in underwear from March of 2018 (what I looked like under the suit) vs now in September. However I don’t think I am ready to see that up here yet, it really makes me dysphoric.
The funny part about this is I couldn’t name why I hated myself so much before I decided to transition, but I truly did, and I still struggle a little now. Although it is getting less, and I am starting to like what I look like better. That is probably a whole entry by itself, but not today.
So there it is, I am making my first full step in shedding my old self, by packing up forever my old clothing. It is scary, but also pretty exciting.
Today is my last full day at my job followed by a half day tomorrow (for a total of two having to drive into days), and while I am nervous that I haven’t gotten my offer letter yet, I am also really excited and relieved knowing this was a good choice to leave. There are two reasons for this.
The first is when I told my boss a couple weeks ago I was leaving. She was incredibly supportive, asking how could they change around my schedule for my medical stuff. Then I told her what my medical stuff was for (upcoming orchiectomy, feminizing facial surgery, breast implants) and that didn’t seem to do much to change her, but you could tell.
Well fast forward to yesterday, the HR person comes up to me and double checks that I want to leave. She makes it incredibly clear that HR would give me the necessary time off and I could ask Yolanda to hire a temp up to 6 months, which is renewable for 2 more times. Technically I could be gone 18 months and still have a job. I could actually keep it open while working at my other job to see if that new job works out (ok she doesn’t know that part).
She explained I just need to ask my boss and she has the authority. Our department has a budget for a full time temp worker. Of course it is up to my boss and she has to be willing to do it, but its an option. The problem is my boss never offered that at all. That just shows me she didn’t want me to stay. So that made my decision easier. There was something about her reaction to me that bothered me, she is just pretty good at covering it up.
The second thing, and actually more impactful is how people have changed. When I gave notice I told my boss and asked her to not tell the people about my status. Later that day she sent out an email on my leaving (but not why). I had a couple ladies come over to me and chat for an hour. They evidently like me a lot, and I had a small wavering if I was doing the right thing.
I come in the next workday and about half the office wouldn’t even look at me. I am not joking, I even was kind of a dick about things and would step directly in front of them and they would turn their head away. No chatter about personal things, not even more than monosyllables if they could get away with it. I saw this with Wolsey and I assumed I was prepared for it myself. At the time it annoyed me, and amused me to make them uncomfortable. Now however it does bother me.
The reason I know this is about my transition is because there are still a couple of people who chatter with me. It didn’t seem to phase them. They wished me luck on my future surgeries. They knew what they were for, so I know my boss evidently talks to everyone else (no I am not surprised of that). At that point no one else at the county knew my status, let alone my future plans.
So today is my final long day. I have decided I will be an adult, give them the work they are paying me for and be happy when I leave at 1130am tomorrow morning.
I have never been this anxious about looking for work, and while I did just get a very good paying job I have found a lot of issues dealing with my transition and the job in general.
The new employer had HR present a new Employee Policy Handbook last year. This included recognizing Gender Identity as a protected status. This is expected as it is state law. However, the council voted to NOT adopt it, because “It would send the wrong message”. They didn’t want to bow to pressure to let “men use the women’s bathroom”. I talked about this here in my “Settling In” post so I won’t go further about that specifically.
There is absolutely no flexibility in my position. I am going to have to have a lot of doctors appointments and surgeries coming up. My boss was quite clear that she only wants us working 8-430 in a solid set schedule. This might seem normal to some, but in the last 10 years and 5+ employers I have never seen this. Normally you are given core hours you need to be there (say 9-3) but you could adjust it to come in late or early (6-3, 9-6, etc). This flexibility does not exist here.
The strange part about the flexibility is that my job isn’t done by anyone else and I can’t do any job others do. I am the only auditor/monitor in my area for my group and no one knows the job so they can offer me no coverage, but even more so I can’t cover them, they are accountants and its a totally different job. This means it’s useless to have me there to “cover for others” when I don’t do their job at all.
This follows up to another point about my coworkers. There has been a lot of jokes about “men in skirts”. They don’t address transgender men but I assume that is because those men often can disappear into society easier after transition so people don’t realize they are there. They even joke around this to me when I am married to someone they know is transgender (but a man… right?).
That combined with the fact they want me to fix things, but not really means this job isn’t a fit. It especially isn’t a fit when I get full FFS surgery, breast implants and an orchiectomy and will need to miss a lot of time. I don’t feel safe there, so it isn’t a permanent spot for me.
Fast forward to Tuesday’s appointment. My old boss at a state audit job asked if I would be interested in a supervisor job. I said yes and applied last month. I got called last week and asked to come in for an interview which I did, and I think it did well.
The job has incredibly flexible hours. After my training as supervisor (this is my first fully titled “supervisor” job, but I have ran audits with up to 8 auditors under me so it actually isn’t new) it sounds like I can telework 3 days a week (60%) and more if needed. The hours are what I want them to be daily (of course this has to be reasonable), and I can take off whatever time I need for medical.
It was a very friendly interview with her and two others. So much so that I was upfront about my status. I explained that I now present as male, but that is changing and I am transitioning. There wasn’t even a hesitation, they said they want me and they would protect me. The state is incredibly protective over LGBTQIA so I don’t doubt it.
They said they have to talk about it, and talk with HR to see if they can get close to my salary I had before (they won’t be able to come close at all, probably 65% of it). I reassured them I know the state pays a lot less, but I want to work at a place I feel does a good job for the citizens, for its employees and that will protect me.
I am hopefully going to hear an offer today, but I am quite aware that bringing up my transition status may torpedo the job offer in the end. I figure I would rather not get the job then work for people who have a problem with it. I am already at a job I can hover at for a long time that pays better but treats people like they work at McDonald’s. I can make that work until I start getting surgery if I need to.
As my husband would say, “It has started”, the weird undercutting, insults and insinuations of my new and real life from all aspects of my social circles. This evidently includes people who call me their friend.
Saturday I went out with my husband and my friend to a nice little niche restaurant/bar. I had told our friend earlier in the week via text that I was transitioning and she has been the mandatory supportive person you would expect from someone who says they are a friend. I don’t even doubt she thinks of herself as a friend at that, but it doesn’t change her words or actions, maybe it just makes them worse.
I have known her for over ten years. We got to know each other at my job with the state and while we only worked together for a year and a half or so, we stayed in contact since then via text, email, facebook and lunches.
She has been up to this point a good person, supportive, interested in the hubby’s transition and in general been a friend. I don’t know how we became good friends like that in the beginning, but it was something that kept going.
I had told her via text only because she is on my facebook list and I had posted about coming out there (things were slipping out). Things were great and I was looking forward to seeing her, even if I was a bit anxious socially after being out to her on what she might say.
The lunch went well in the beginning. We talked about things, she was happy I was being myself, it was all good. We even joked about the horrible service we were getting at the restaurant, while the food wasn’t bad, that waitress was pretty horrible.
Things were going great and I was talking about facial feminization surgery and the options/surgery that was involved. That is when she leaned forward and said she wanted to tell me something. So I leaned over in anticipation, smiling at her when she said the words.
“I am glad you are getting FFS because you currently make one ugly woman.”
I knew almost immediately she thought she was joking, but it still hit me pretty hard she said that to me. I know what I look like, I know what I have always felt about my looks to begin with, let alone when I put on makeup and dress like who I am.
I saw the hubby freeze for a moment and I wasn’t sure what he was going to do. He is incredibly protective over me and it would be within possibilities he would pop her in the head (although honestly that would have been more likely when my husband still presented as female). However, I saw the moment pass on him when he took a deep breath.
We both sat back and laughed politely. I didn’t know what to say, or how to feel. I knew logically by looking at her face and the way she laughed after saying it that she thought she was joking, so I pushed it away and thought I would deal with it later and that it shouldn’t be a big deal.
What really bothered me is I have NEVER EVER insulted her or said anything derogatory, she has some mental health and stress issues and I have never wanted to upset her, why she joked like that to me I couldn’t understand.
It is a big deal it turns out. We made our goodbyes a little later and went clothes shopping for hubby. I originally was going to look for some clothes for myself (I have hit 75lbs+ weight loss and don’t have enough currently) but I stepped into the store and couldn’t do it. I didn’t really want to look at myself in the mirror.
The hubby was so pissed, but he was there being supportive of me. He understood I was going to bail on buying myself clothing, but he was so angry. He wanted me to pick out some things I liked and instead of having a good afternoon before seeing our friends later and shopping I was quiet and followed him around.
I do have some follow up stuff (how she has reacted since, how my friends reacted) but this post is already 500 pages long and I will wrap it up here.
Suffice to say, it has begun as hubby says, the insults, insinuations or just callous disregard. I am going to be fine, but this is the one negative of my future.
Friday, the day after we met up with Dr. Meltzer and Dr. Ley, we headed into the one panel I was interested in. It dealt with surgery options for Facial Feminization Surgery, Breast Augmentation and Body Contouring. I realized I would probably know most of the stuff they would say, but I wanted to double check.
The commute into Seattle from Tacoma wasn’t the worst, but I slept poorly from my anxiety of meeting the docs the day before. I am really excited to do this, but it does make me anxious to think about them cutting open my brow and front of my sinus, cutting it into pieces and rearranging it, along with grinding my brow and jaw down and moving my scalp forward.
We arrived at the convention and I will admit I was intimidated. I am very fortunate to know some very awesome trans people, but I had never been around that many. That brought up a whole slew of anxiety that maybe I will talk about later, but this isn’t the time.
When we got there, just a few minutes before the panel, we found our case manager Raeylean… she is fantastic. I had brought her a flower to thank her, and she seemed overjoyed. She is incredibly huggy as a person and we got to talk for a little bit until it was time to go in to the panel.
The panel itself was very informative actually. Some of what I thought was no longer the case for surgical techniques, and even more importantly I found out that before coming to Meltzer’s office, Dr. Ley had been a pediatric craniologist who specialist in working on the skulls of small children… I have a huge head so that means I should be easy for her. Way more reassured I am going to be ok. The panel was worth it just for that.
We left and visited a little more with R, then headed out to pick up our friend straybits. He is as close as any family and we have been friends for decades. He just got back from Southeast Asia/India for the last year and will be going back for a few months. He was heading back up to Bellingham, so we told him we would take him up.
On the drive up we got caught up on everything and just enjoyed being with around each other. It was a nice drive with me, hubby and straybits. We got some food in Everett and 3 hours later were in Bellingham. During this time I came out to him and he just gave me a hug. I am not sure what I was worried about.
In Bellingham we dropped him off. We are really hoping we can see him before he leaves again, but if we don’t we know we will always be there with each other.
We then got to go see my brother. He is doing really well, sober and thinking straight. He seems to be accepting my transition and was very positive. We stayed with him for awhile before we moved on.
By now it was about 7pm, but we wanted to stop by my parents grave (both of them are together) and pay our respects. That only took a few minutes, but I realized we need to clean it up when we come back up in a few weeks.
We then drove the 120 miles home and went to bed. It was a really good day, but a really exhausting day. We are still recovering now, a week later from the trip. It was worth it to see family and get reassurances about my surgery.
I went to my first Gender Odyssey convention and it was emotionally draining. Not that anything went poorly, but the emotional baggage around everything is so huge and it definitely took a lot of spoons.
The event started Thursday night. I got to a hotel to visit with my husband’s GRS surgeons to look at me. Just the week before waiting for the short 15 minute consult I was amped, Thursday got bad, especially at work, so by the time we arrived at 6:30 at night I was just jumpy.
The surgeon’s office has always been good surgeons, there was some bedside manner and after care issues, but I definitely recommend them for their skills. That is why I am going to them.
So they had me come into a hotel room where both surgeons are, along with three staff members. One of the surgeons is getting close to retirement I believe, thus finishing the training and getting ready to pass the practice to the second surgeon. Both are incredibly good though.
They sat me down and I told them what I want. I want FFS, especially hairline, brow, eyes and chin/jaw if possible. They listened for a couple of minutes and then leaned forward and started looking my face over in depth, including the requisite touching my face.
They said my hair is in real good condition. I knew that logically but it was a huge weight off my shoulders hearing a professional say that (yes the husband has always said it was good, but sometimes husbands do that to make you feel better).
They then thought the moving up my brow, with some cranioplasty would definitely give me a more feminine hairline, along with opening my eyes up. That along with the chin/jaw work and with the lip implant they suggested (and they are right, my upper lip is flat as any boy) I think I have a really good chance at this.
I left the meeting feeling both good for myself, and worried of course. What happened if something went wrong, how would I proceed. What if hubby saw me as too feminine and couldn’t handle it. What if I cost us too much money. All of these were thoughts, but were not true, not in the least.
So we went home and got some sleep before going to our single panel we were going on Friday. The day was worth it, but already costly emotionally and mentally. We knew the next day would be worse, as not much sleep to be had along with severe family obligations/pressure. I will cover the Friday in a different post with lots of details.
I figured I would give a physical Update. Since this has started I have now lost 70+ pounds. I weight about 230lbs and it dropped from 300+ at the start since end of March 2018. I usually round down which is why I say 65lbs lost with all the fluctuations.
I have dropped from a Casual Male/DXL 46 inch waist (found it is closer to 48+ since they seem to vanity size) to between a 38 and 40 (40s are becoming too big now). I fit in my tiny husband’s baggy cargo pants now (its a 38). I don’t think I have fit that small since I was 24 or so. I can now fit into shirts and pants at Target, without looking like a sausage. First time in a decade. The weight is still coming off so I am still hopeful for the 180-200lb range. I am thinking maybe by Christmas if I am lucky.
The hormones and t-blockers are going well. They upped me to 300mg of Spirolactane and it seems things are working better. Breast growth has started. Not really noticeable unless you know what to look for, but I can feel it. I hear a lot of complaints about pain, but they just ache occasionally.
I did find out some great news. My insurance changed since it is now through my husband and his job with the state. They will reimburse after six months for electrolysis (I have done it three times now for my face, the laser hair removal part). It means the remaining three times for laser, and the actual electrolysis that follows might be affordable.
Also found out after 1 year (for me I think its April 6 2019) they will cover an orchiotomy and breast augmentation. Definitely the orchie will happen, the breast augmentation will depend on if I am far enough along or if I need the effects of the orchie to help me progress.
The hubby and I have talked about FFS and that is definitely something I want. See if they can pull my scalp forward, some cheek/jaw work and maybe open up my eyes a bit. I don’t think I need a nose job I think, but maybe some lippo under my chin as well. The insurance said its possible it will be allowed next year, but I am not counting on it. As soon as we get hubby’s car paid off I think I am just going to pay it to get it done.
Other than that, I have been super healthy. My depression is at an all time low. I am excited for last three months to just do things, enough so that hubby I am sure is tired by now. Also my hair is getting longer, I am going to get a trim since I have dead ends, but it is longer then it has been since I was 17 and that makes me excited.
Overall my physical and mental condition is great. I will report in on that in another month or two unless something happens.
Stay tuned for more posts though! I have a whole list coming.
It has been a month since the mic-drop and things have been great.
It is true, the move, the new job and settling in is always stressful, but I didn’t realize how stressed out and depressed being at the DoD was. I had already gotten better by stepping out of my egg, but moving down here has been a blessing.
The new city is pretty accepting. We see rainbow flags everywhere. They had an LGBTQIA pride festival (sadly I couldn’t go) and there seems to be a lot of tolerance so far. Don’t get me wrong, there is still a lot of #MAGA stuff here, but I do believe it is a minority.
What I was surprised to find out at my new job is things aren’t as friendly in the LGBTQIA sphere as I had hoped. It isn’t as bad as the DoD but the government I work for had its board shoot down making Gender Identity a protected thing (like sexual orientation). What is weird is that it is a state law for it, so you think they would just take it in stride. However, enough of the council didn’t like it that they torpedoed the entire HR update just so the wording for gender identity didn’t make it.
The other aspect is the people. They are really nice, and nothing bad has occurred. However there are a lot of jokes about men wearing dresses and playing make believe. My supervisor is fairly conservative Christian. She has been nice to me, but she always has this look of confusion and standoffishness when she sees pictures of my husband (I have pre-transition and post-transition pictures). Oh and she is very very confused that in one of the pictures I had coke can red hair. That was also hard for her to understand. She kept asking if it is real.
I am pretty sure I wouldn’t dare come out here. Not that I would be fired or anything, but I am suspecting with the amount of petty things I see with others that I will be the subject of many. Doesn’t mean I am quitting now, and it is still FAR FAR better then the DoD. It does mean I will keep an eye out for other options.
I am hoping at the very least to work enough to pay off the hubby’s new Kia. I think that is a reasonable goal.
I do have a list of things I want to talk about, my goal is to not let a month go by again without chatting at you a lot more.
It is over, my last day at work was last Friday and while part of me is freaking out about possible financial crises that may arise in the future, I have not felt this good since before I worked at the Department of Defense. I was worried I would feel bad as I was escorted off the secure facility, but not at all, I was extremely excited and happy.
I didn’t realize how much stomach acid burning feelings of dislike I had. I don’t have to worry if someone notices my hair growing out (it is much longer now then it was normally), or when I wear nail polish, bracelets, etc.
I am now adopting most of all that as my daily style. This means whatever job picks me up this will be my “normal” look. Until I am officially out (when my hormones and external work get to a point that I appear at least moderately feminine) I will be that “fabulous” gay guy. That is ok too for now.
I didn’t realize how much driving onto a secure facility with checkpoints bothered me, even if the outsourced security (btw the same security company I believe that provides security guards for the mall and my understanding is they rotate) was the biggest joke you would ever see. Seriously, my site ID badge has me 60 pounds heavier with short short hair, I am now way lighter, wearing a lot more casual clothing and my hair is down to my shoulder blades and I look different enough that people that knew me for years don’t recognize me right off the bad. These are new guard so they don’t even know me. That my friends is an example of our security at our “secure” facilities working on classified projects.
Or having defense contract workers glare at us for being auditors, to be fair we glared back because they were privileged asses, so I guess that is a wash. However I won’t miss having to deal with a group of people so out of touch with the rest of the workforce that they assume they are somehow more special. Hmm… I guess I really didn’t like the site did I.
Overall, while my gerbils freak out about illusionary money issues, I haven’t felt this good about my soul in years. I think only part of that is transitioning, the other is not working for the war machine.