I went back.

It is official, I start back at the job I left in September for concerns about transphobia next Monday (March 4, 2019) . The straight up reason is I need to make as good a money as I can, I can’t put my husband through this debt if I don’t have to.

Don’t get me wrong, he is completely supportive of my transition and of us taking on the debt. He makes enough to support us without that debt, with the debt is enough to drain our resources that we have stashed away. Within 10 months to a year we wouldn’t be able to make all the payments for 120k in student loans, plus the car, plus the 40k for my face.

We are starting to barrel down at the magic age of 50 in a couple years and I need to get him a place of his own to buy and it won’t happen if I am unemployed.

So I got the offer to go back and I will. They know fully about the transition now, so maybe that will change things for the better. They know I have four surgeries between now and probably October and they said they would work my schedule around that. I can’t say no at this point. I have to give it a try.

It is very possible that I am freaking out about something that may never happen. They may turn out to be decent employers, and at the very least they won’t be able to stab me in the back like the last place I was at. I am expecting problems, so at least I will see it coming.

I have had a whole ton of stuff to write about, but this event has been nagging and stressing me so much that I have shut down. I figure I need to fix that. I have a few days before I start. I will get my shit in order, focus on my husband and enjoy this damn it!!! If its the last thing I do HAHAHAHA!

Besides I get half an office to myself, no one really knows what I do (or at least how I do it) and I am mostly in charge of my own life as long as I meet the needed audits. So maybe this is a good thing and I am freaking out about nothing.

Crossing my fingers.

Anxiety, Unemployment and Job Interviews

I have been quiet the last couple of weeks due to an overabundance of anxiety, projects and money stress. Overall it has been going ok, and only some of my stuff is transition related so I will cover that in a future post.

As we all know, I was laid off 25 minutes after I put in my request for time off for FFS related to my transitioning. It was unexpected although not necessarily unwelcomed. I hated that job anyways, the management I worked with (as part of management) had favorites, targeted specific employees they didn’t like and overall, I disapproved of how they did it. So, my being cut out was fine, especially if it made me eligible for unemployment. Sort of a win-win.

Five weeks later they still were not approving my unemployment (sadly I worked for the people that handle unemployment, so it was a bit awkward signing up for it) and that has caused a massive amount of stress financially.

We can totally get by on what my hubby makes, even if it is super tight budget wise. He is working his ass off, but it crushes me every time I see him having to do what he does, and he does it willingly to help support me and my transition. That is why it was so important I get unemployment so I can take that burden off and smooth our wait for my surgery in April.

Last week I got asked to come in for an interview at the job I had before last. I left that job because of some pretty transphobic coworkers (they didn’t know I was transgender) and so I made a soft exit and went on to what was a cursed job. Now they wanted to interview me again so while I dislike the idea of working there again, I know the job and it pays fairly good, better than my hell job.

I went in to the first interview, part of me really hoping they wouldn’t want me back just so I could actually have some time to be a stress ball about transitioning and surgery. I was clear on the massive amount of time I was going to be requesting off this year due to four surgeries (at least, not counting any revisions or fixes needed). They seemed mildly ok with it.

I got home and the next day I find I am approved for unemployment. Massive amount of pressure taken off both the hubby and I for at least six months. It isn’t a lot of money and it means we will not be paying any of the large debt we are incurring for my face, but it would keep us going.

Not more than three hours later I get an invite to the second interview for that job, a job I don’t want but pays too much for me to justify not taking it. So now there is a little frustration that I got the unemployment but that will probably be going away by the beginning of February IF they hire me (that is still not even close to a definite yet).

So now I have this cognitive dissonance. I am getting unemployment and am happy, but stressed it isn’t more money. I may get a job that pays about double my unemployment but will hate and here I sit spinning my wheels stressed about all of it.

Stress like a rat on a wheel, circling round and round.

I find if I express this it sometimes helps, which is why you get to all read about it. There are some transition things happening that add greatly to this, but like I said those will be their own post.

So here I am stressing out that I might have a better paying job, or that I am not making enough on unemployment. You would think between the two choices I would find myself happy, but I am not. Such is the life of a girl.

Money and Job Worries

I woke up this morning terrified from a dream I can’t remember, anxiety about things coming up, and obviously some self dislike at the least.

As I talked about earlier I am hoping this week to give notice to my current employer. If things work out I might just mic drop and walk out of the job since it will never appear on any sort of linked in, resume, etc. I have only been here 8-10 weeks in the end, so it isn’t something I am going to use for future job growth.

That being said, we can absolutely afford me taking a couple of weeks off before starting my new job, but I woke up anxious about my pay from the new job. I woke up terrified I was screwing us. It isn’t necessarily the wage I am making more than an adequate job to live, but a large drop in what I make now, about $20,000 a year less then my current job. To be honest even with almost $140k in student loans we can make the payments and have a really good life, even if we would rather go back to working at a coffee shop/book store.

The cost of my FFS is what is freaking me out. A very rough estimate is in itself $20,000 for the surgeries I want, plus up to two weeks in a hotel, two flights down to Arizona and back and anything sundry. I am worried I am making my husband work at a job he is not fond of to be our primary support. We both make about the same, but there are multiple other surgeries coming up that makes my work erratic (orchiectomy, breast implants, probably a tummy tuck from my extreme weight loss and even a thing on my neck/chin – close to a face lift). All of these combined is more than my student loan.

Let’s not even combine the fact that I am on the higher end of 40s. Not like I have 40 years to pay this shit off… well hopefully I do but that means retirement sucks.

I logically know we are doing a good thing. The funny thing is, if this was for the hubby I wouldn’t even blink. I would be down for it and insisting he do all the surgeries he needs to be who he was and never feel bad for a single moment. It is because it is for me that I feel that way. Even knowing this logically it makes my stomach hurt and me terrified I am fucking up things for us. Especially that I might be fucking him over.

I realize I am going to have to get over it, there are other more real issues such as dealing with the public now that I am almost to the point I will be public. I just can’t get over shackling my husband with “golden chains” for my needs. He deserves so much more than that. That is what I woke up terrified about, that I was going to hurt my husband.

Dream – The Nod

just got up from my first bad dream that I remember long enough to write about in awhile (I think its the first in our new place). I am still shaking from it as a matter of fact.

There was a large group of us at this older house. It was some people I knew, some I didn’t. It wasn’t a full party, there was a little drinking but nothing big. As a group we all talked, laughed and things went well enough.

The group decided to go to a new house, and they all went out the back door to go over there. I found myself at that time unable to follow them easily, I was at the front of the house (outside) and found myself in crutches with a broken foot. I am sure was reminiscent of last October.

I struggled outside trying to go around the house with a hill with weird steps that had appeared. I eventually got up and over and to the neighbor’s house with a lot of swearing. Once I got there the party had become more serious, a lot of people were drunk or high.

I looked over and saw my mom laying on the floor. At first I thought she had fallen (she was older in the dream) and I ran over to check on her. She was making absolutely no sense. I asked her a few questions and realized she was high as fuck.

Even as I stood over here, yelling at her so she could hear me and pay attention she could only half look at me and tell me its all ok.. while using my brother’s name for me. She was on a huge nod from getting high.

I was so angry, the kind of angry I have been at my parents for getting drunk when I was young. A couple of the others around me quieted down and got serious (I think they noticed my mood had changed) as I rifled through mom’s pockets.

I pulled out a series of fancy labeled vials (it looked professional packing, like you bought it from a store) and kept asking her where she got it. A couple of people nodded to me, they knew the answer and I put the vials in my pocket. She was trying to talk to me, while she was as high as fuck, and I just patted her and told her don’t worry I would find them as I got up and was getting ready to kill something.

I woke up so angry and hurt from this dream. While I am sure the dream came from the homeless guy I gave a buck to yesterday outside Target. He was on a nod with a sign. He needed money though, so I don’t regret it, although I didn’t anticipate this as a result. The weird part is my parents never did heroin, or anything that puts a person on a nod. It was alcohol, with pot and sometimes coke or acid.

Even now I am hurt, angry and missing my mom at the same time. With both parents passing away a couple of years ago I haven’t really dealt with it much. Too much work issues, husband’s transition surgeries and finally I just wasn’t ready. There was too much other stuff in my head to deal.

The anger and hurt reminded me a lot of when I was a teenager, how angry I was when my parents would drink. I was angry all the time and I think that was probably why I was like I was. I suspect all the things are going to start coming to the surface, especially since I never have truly dealt with my parents drug use and alcoholism and how it impacted our family.

I don’t know if its because my headspace is changing with my transition to female, the hormones, or just exhaustion (probably a combination of all three). It has become a lot harder to shove my feelings inside me, and I haven’t figured out the best way to handle how difficult they are to bury.

I guess that will be part of this journey, and sadly I suspect this won’t be the last dream of this kind either.

Facebook and stuff

I am still a little anxious using this as a personal blog, not that I have a problem coming out and showing my life here, but that somehow I am doing something wrong by just being me here. I suspect that has more to do with my issues with myself having to be worked on.

The one thing that is true, you can’t hide from yourself. I am accepting and growing into who I should be, but that means there is a lot of crap I am going to have to deal with that I buried for the last 47 years… oh shit I just realized that its my birthday too. It’s funny how this is all coming up at the same time.

I am going to have to fully come out on facebook. I don’t actually like using it, but a lot of my friends are married to Facebook and won’t try other things, so if I want to maintain social contact I have to stay.

The reason I say I have to come out on Facebook fairly soon is someone who doesn’t know just sent a friends request. I am sure that means she does know, she is smart and she knows us. That means however that my profile must be popping up for other people. So I might as well just be obvious and come out, giving others the option to ask to friend me, or if they want to walk away quietly they can.

This is a little earlier then I planned, but to be honest I don’t think I had a specific deadline so it doesn’t hurt anything either. Things are starting to roll forward, and the hormones are not going to be stopped anyways so let’s just do this!

Oh and I probably will roll my pre-transition stuff over here as I go. You won’t see it pop up in your feed as I am keeping the original dates, but it will start showing up in the archives.

Seattle Gender Odyssey, the Night Before

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.

Early Morning Thoughts

I woke up this morning at 1am to a horrific panic/anxiety attack dreams that I was fucking the husband over. Not the transition, I am sure this is who I am and who I am supposed to be and I know he will still find me attractive, but the impact this decision is going to have on our finances.

panicmeme

Working in a very conservative profession (auditing, accounting, etc) means by transitioning I am very likely stepping down a huge amount. It is a white man’s world to begin with, then when you add in the fact I am transgender that will push me out of most jobs that are well paying.

We have a lot of debt left, which is almost entirely just student loans (cashing out from the DoD should basically pay all other debt). By leaving a job that pays 80k a year, I am hoping to find something that is 40k, but will probably have to settle a little lower (looks like online accounting jobs might work with the transition). That means 34k a year if I am fortunate (although I am not too proud to take minimum wage, that is the level of job I worked until my thirties when I graduated college late).

It isn’t that we need the money to live, we can absolutely live on husband’s wages (he makes less then me at the DoD by quite a bit, but we always budget to live on the smallest wage and use the rest to pay debts). Once all bills are paid we are left with a couple hundred a month (but my loans are in deferment/forbearance when this happens with me being unemployed) But I worry I am cursing him to a life of never getting the student loans paid off.

A lot of this is of course just anxiety about leaving a high paying job. The reality is the job is incredibly toxic, I don’t sleep much and I never feel good about my job (when we are allowed to do it) so there really isn’t a loss here except a higher income.

However I am in my late 40s and I really need to focus on being who I am these last few decades, I don’t think I can afford to “buckle down” for ten years and be close to 60 before I can transition, so I do think the timing is the best I am going to get at this point. 

Overall I know this is the right choice, but I feel incredibly selfish to be casting my husband into a position where our student loans are so high that we aren’t going to be able to get anywhere for a long time.

It went smoothly

It has been a few days since I posted about giving my notice and I just wanted to update that it went incredibly smooth.

The two supervisors I spoke to I was completely honest about transitioning, about the toxicity of the DoD and about my inability to be able to work there. Both of them were incredibly supportive about it. They had wondered if I had lost weight (As of now its 50+ pounds but I hold weight well so it doesn’t look that extreme) and I was awfully happy.

They are both giving me good references (I know they have already talked to one of my options giving me good reviews). I do think however they were understanding of my situation as they are both minorities. One an African American man and the other an Asian woman and they both confirmed the toxicity and discrimination against anyone minority that is becoming obvious in the rank and file civilian workforce.

It seems like everyone is taking the excuse of Trump in office to have no filters and to be as blatant about their racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, even non-Christians.

I am making sure to leave on the best foot possible. You never know if I will be in a pinch and need to work for the feds. I have worked long enough for them that I maintain the right to contact HR in any fed agency to see if they have a job opening that I qualify for. If they do I take preference over any competitive hires (and this is before the job even is announced to the public). I won’t be working there, but you never know if something changes.

I am nervous about this, a lot of changes and I will miss the money, I will miss a couple of the people, but I won’t miss the place. It went smoothly.

Stress Day… Freedom Day?

This morning is going to be big, I am giving my notice to the Department of Defense. I am probably committing career suicide with my changes. Transitioning even at its most successful will reduce my privilege by a lot, and if the transition isn’t as successful as I want then it will impact it even more.

That being said, I can’t work for the toxic Department of Defense. I listen to fellow auditors talk about “guys in dresses”, make fun of Caetlyn Jenner and Chelsea Manning and just talk shit. I am fortunate, they have never talked shit about my husband who is FtM and they knew it, but “he was different then the rest” is how it feels coming from them.

My hubby got harassed a lot by certain members of management. They even sent out an email to there management saying that the hubby was “crazy because he had the lower surgery”. Hubby was brave, he filed a complaint and three weeks later the person in charge of the “investigation” said there was no proof it was harassment. The things that supervisor did would have gotten anyone fired anywhere (and it didn’t help that they were already under investigation for racist harassment of others).

That told me all I needed to know. I have been on hormones for a little over two months, and I can’t be here. If nothing else I need to stay sane, plus I am tired of participating in the production of weapon systems designed to kill others (usually in an unjust war on top of that). 

phobia

So the decision is good. I am going to have my soul reclaimed by doing this. However I will lose my seniority and probably not make that much money again. I am hoping I can earn half that with any jobs up coming (now there have been some frustrations on interviews as well, but that will be a different post).

We are moving to a cheaper apartment, and soon the husband will be the only one working. I am going to cash out my retirement and come close to paying off all our short term debt. If this occurs (the DoD/Fed government takes months to cash you out) it means he can support us, actually he can support us with only part of it paid off with my vacation payout.

I don’t mind being poor, but he is stressed, I am stressed and his car that we still make payments on but doesn’t have a warranty is having problems. I gotta figure something out. Maybe I can work from home if I can’t get hired on somewhere.

Well this is the start of my “Freedom Day”…. maybe? I will report back on how good or bad it went.

So much going on

I have been incredibly quiet, but not because I forgot to post here. There is a lot of things happening and to be honest I haven’t had the time.

Physically I am doing great. I feel so much better then I did before this process started. The hormones don’t seem to have any ill effect except the expected results of testosterone blockers (but nothing overall bad), just caught off guard, this will be a future post.

Bicalutamide
Bicalutamide an antiandrogen or testosterone blocker

I have lost more then 45lbs since March, and not from any specific diet, purely because I stopped eating junk food. I also think this ties into my mental state as well as I have way more energy.

Mentally the transition is also spectacular. I haven’t felt this good since I was a teenager. My depression symptoms have left and I feel better about everything. Don’t get me wrong, there is a lot of stress about quitting my job in three weeks and the fact I will at the minimum lose 30k a year for whatever job I do get (if I get one).

The job loss though I think is also contributing to this better feeling in its own way. The Department of Defense is incredibly toxic in general. The election of Trump and Pence has given informal permission to every bottom dwelling conservative who wants to discriminate a way to speak out about their hates.

I think leaving this job makes me feel better in general, and especially makes me feel better concerning the transition. There are a ton of other reasons I am glad to leave (pretty much everything but money) but that is the biggest one right now.

planhappiness

The other stressor is our move. We already have a place lined up, we should be ok financially to do the move, and if the hubby gets cashed out like he is supposed to it might even pay the car off. We even have it figured he can just break even supporting us both if I am unable to find a job.

It is a cheaper place, but with nice amenities, and close to the hubby’s work. I think it is a good place to start on our journey out of here both DoD wise, and Seattle wise.

There is a lot more going on, but that is enough for one post, will have to post about the other things separately.

Until then, take care.