replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
Today I went to the county supreme courthouse and filed for my name change. It was a stressful day and I still have to arrange for it to be run in a newspaper for four weeks before my court date- which is on June 17.

No idea why I waited so long.
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
Yesterday I saw my Kaiser PCP for the first time. I was worried that I wouldn't get to see him because there's some delay on my insurance coverage decision. Instead I got to name my own copay amount, with the plan that once it got sorted out and they knew what the amount was supposed to be they'd either bill me or issue a refund as needed.

Kaiser is pretty awesome, actually.

Dr. Whitehill was super patient with all my questions and got me the Endo referral I needed, as well as getting me more T right away, and upping my dose to the 'normal' amount. I was taking 100mg/2weeks, now I'll be at 200mg/2weeks. I suppose Dimensions just never got me up to the full dose because I was there for such a brief time before aging out. An Endo up in Sacramento called me an hour or two later and we talked about setting up an appointment once my coverage with Kaiser gets sorted out, and to get my blood labs done at a particular timing with my shot dosage before that appointment, and approving my dose increase and everything.

As soon as I mentioned to the nurse getting my vitals for my appointment that I was there for trans stuff, she asked if I had a preferred name, and wrote it into the chart. Dr. Whitehill came in soon after, using Seth, and both he and the Endo on the phone later seemed very knowledgeable about HRT and trans issues.

So... I'm still a bit nervous about Kaiser's decision insurance-coverage-wise. It seems weird that they haven't made an official decision yet. But I have T to last me at least 4 months at my current dose now, so that, at least, is a huge weight off my shoulders. Worst-case scenario I'm denied and have to pay out of pocket for that doc visit. I already paid for the T out of pocket, though they'll reimburse if/when coverage kicks in.

I took my first shot with a full ml of T earlier this evening. Somehow a full ml is a lot more than 1/2ml. I mean that sounds obvious but when you're shooting it into your leg you become hyper aware of this mass of liquid that you're just sending in there. I hadn't previously felt like there was an awkward liquidy blob in my leg after a shot. I'll get used to it, I'm sure. I'm also hoping the increased dose helps with some energy/motivation/irritability issues I've been feeling lately. Go go hormone imbalances, yeah.

Looking forward to having an endo who will do tests and make sure my levels are right. =I

-----
ps I got my first ever hiv test, which came back negative. Much rejoicing.
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
So, it's February. I guess that means its officially 2011, now, huh? What? No one really counts January, do they?

I've been procrastinating everything for some time now, so today I buckled in and started crunching on it. I actually took some of my adderall to help... I hadn't been taking it because I'm off insurance currently and can't get more. Getting back on insurance, actually, is the main thing I've been working on today, because adhd meds are by far less important than my testosterone, which I'm much much much too close to running out of for my comfort.

Assuming I can gather the last bits of information I need, and can get the first month's premium for the insurance paid, my coverage should begin Feb 15. I have the number for the Kaiser Endocrinologist in Sacramento, but I'll probably need a referral from a kaiser pcp. Though once I have that, they might just make my Endo my pcp, I think. Next thing I need to do, I guess, is make some phone calls there and see what I can go ahead and schedule.

That's just one of the many things on my mind and stressing me out lately. Another is that I have not yet scheduled my top surgery. I need to do some research on medical loans. carecredit.com looked promising but it doesn't appear that dr Brownstein accepts any kind of credit. It looks like the surgical facility and anesthesia departments will accept credit cards, though, so if that's a big chunk of it I can still go that route there. stress stress stress

Legal name change would be awesome but I don't have a few hundred to spare right now. I still need to get money from taxes (Enzo's going to help me with this tonight), and IHSS (making plans to get up and go to IHSS friday morning). However, unless I can find a way to get a medical loan, I'm going to need every cent of that for top surgery.

I need to cancel my gym membership- I haven't gone as much as I thought/hoped I would. I'm getting out to yoga classes at least once a week, but I can probably find a better option up here in Sacramento. I'll try not to look at it as a waste. I could 'park' the membership for a few months for $10/month, and not have to pay the fee again if I want to start going there again, but on the other hand it looks like Sac State (which is basically right behind Enzo's apt) has a gym that also has rock wall stuff, so that's probably worth looking into instead.

There's probably more, but that's the heaviest stuff right now. I'm at a bottleneck in my transition because of this stuff, but once this ball gets rolling I'll be able to put some major transition milestones behind me. And that's going to feel so awesome.
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
It's been a while since I've written much about my transition here. Things have moved past the first initial changes, as of a couple months ago, at least, so updates that more hair was growing, but slowly, were starting to feel redundant.

There are a lot of psychological and preferential changes that are probably very unique to each person who does HRT. For one, I think I fully understand why teenagers... are the way they are. There's a lot going on in my head and in my body right now, most of which I'm not even consciously aware of. It's very exhausting. I sleep, on average, ten hours a night, and feel like I need that much to be able to function properly.

I've been spending my days mostly at home, indoors. There are a number of factors in play, there, but easily the biggest revolves around chest dysphoria. When I first started binding, it was like suddenly I could go out in the world and not have this huge part of my brain be totally centered on the dysphoria.

Lately I've been struggling with the fact that now there is often a lot of dysphoria just from wearing the binder. The constriction around the chest is associated with having the wrong chest. It is probably exacerbated because my shoulders and lats started filling out when I started T and did p90x, so I should probably be using a bigger size binder right now and I don't have one. I usually use the most stretched out binder I have, and it still feels too tight sometimes. I bought new ones right before starting T, and one of those is still brand new in the bag. Derf. I'll find it a good home eventually.

So I spend most of my time at home lately not binding. The problem with that is as soon as I start interacting with people, the anxiety shoots through the roof. I've talked to Edwin about this, and to some extent Dan as well. It's a frustrating place, but it is giving me a lot of motivation to get my top surgery soon.

My goal is about 6 months. I'm waiting until I have 500$ in my paypal for my deposit with Brownstein so I can set a date on my calendar. I'm going to get loans if I have to, but I'm hoping to get a pretty decent tax return, and it's finally time to go harass IHSS to get the money from the last three months I worked for Vanessa -a year ago- (long story), and that should be close to 2 grand, there. So I'm thinking worst case scenario I take out a loan for maybe 4 grand. I'm hoping to stay on unemployment until I've recovered from surgery, then get a good job and work on repaying my debts.

I just honestly feel like this one thing is holding my life back on so many levels. I just want to be able to chill out about it and get on with my life. It's time.
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
Sometimes it's like watching myself from outside myself. I'm annoyed by how inwardly-directed I am. It feels very self-centered. Much more than my inner compass for how I should be. I often feel like my brain is veering wildly out of control. I remember feeling similarly in high school and console myself knowing it will settle out sooner or later.

Until then, I try to be productive, and keep myself busy or entertained when I can't manage that. Always passing time. I remind myself that time is my friend and that I don't have to sprint because it's the marathon that counts.

I sleep a lot. I dream a lot, too, and the style of the dreams has changed. They feel more visually oriented, with much more awareness of the shape of the space around me and details about textures and objects. There is a greater tendency toward slightly disturbing imagery, too.

And I feel like more of an active participant in them. I am a presence, interacting with the dream, rather than a mere observer or passive participant. It speaks volumes to me of being more comfortable with myself.
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
I can feel my voice in the upper part of my chest.

I'm hosting nerd games at my house tuesday (DESCENT) if anyone remotely local wants to come.

Today I want to
work out
time on shamans picture (finish it?)

plan for rest of week
M- Work out, join gym, call around for a place to get blood drawn
T- Work out, prepare and host nerd game
W- Work out, clean up house, group meeting
T- Work out, rock climbing w/ edwin
F- Work out, go to work
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
I haven't posted much about physical changes lately, so here's a few things I've noticed.

I pretty much have to shower daily now. I pretty much have been, since I started working out more or less daily. The past week or two, though, I've skipped occasional workouts and then missed the correlating showers. I used to have no problem getting just two or three showers a week, now I start feeling really gross by late afternnoon without one.

Similarly, I really notice it when I've forgotten deodorant after my shower. Before i'd put it on if I thought about it, but it was rarely actually necessary. Also a couple years ago I decided I liked my hair texture better if I didn't ever wash it. I'd rinse it thoroughly but if I used soap it'd be all poofy and bleh. I recently bought shampoo again because my hair was just getting too greasy without using it ever. I still don't want to wash it daily, though.

My armpit hair got a lot thicker and a little longer and darker just in the past week or two, I'm pretty sure. Similarly with pubes, and they've extended their territory about an inch upward so far. Lower leg hair is slowly getting longer/thicker but not by a ton. There's definitely hair on my knees that didn't used to exist, but I may have mentioned that already. My lower belly and lower upper-legs aren't hairy by any stretch, but the hair follicles have gotten darker and I can see where the hairs shoud be growing in eventually. There are even a few actual hairs under my belly button and I can see light hairs in good lighting.

The peach fuzz on my face is back to about the same as it was before I shaved it a few weeks ago, so I'm thinking it's about time to do that again.

I might be crazy but I think my nose might be a little bigger.

My temperature has gone up. I don't have a thermometer or anything, what I mean is I heat up really quickly and tend to feel warm more often, even when its cool in the room. More likely to kick the blankets off myself at night. Alternately, Eira mentions that she's been cold much more often since starting her hrt about a month ago- kinda fascinating!

Lastly, probably much more related to my working out than directly from the testosterone, but my shoulders look awesome. I'll see if I can't get a decent photo sometime soon. :)
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
So I'm at work. Post-disclosure to S and A. And things are about the same. Which is way better than the way it could have gone. I could wish that A wasn't still using my old name, but it'll come with time and practice. S hasn't used any name for me since I've been back, though from what I heard from our HR person in my meeting with her and my direct supervisor on thursday, S's biggest problem is that she can't pronounce 'Seth' to save her life.

The closest A has come to saying anything about it was yesterday she saw the welcome screen on my computer that asks for the password, and has Seth as my username. Almost immediately she said something to me calling me Miss [oldname], with emphasis on the miss. She was trying to push buttons so I didn't let on that it bothered me at all. Annoying, but if she doesn't get any gratification from using stuff like that against me she probably won't keep it up.

I'd love to be able to talk to her pretty candidly about it, but that'll come with time, I guess. Right now I think the important thing is that she knows about it and -isn't- freaking out. It's just different. Weird. But she's always known I'm pretty weird so I guess it all just fits in with the rest.

disclosure

Aug. 13th, 2010 09:23 pm
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
[To my supervisor, executive director, and HR person]

Okay, again, sorry it's taken me a little while to respond with my thoughts about your plan to tell [S] and [A] about my transition. Some parts of it made me fairly uncomfortable so it took a little while to process it. In particular, I have some discomfort with the idea of telling them that I will 'become' a man at some arbitrary later time. While I do understand why you might want them to think that way about it, I wonder if there's a better way to emphasize that I am the same person they have known all along, despite ongoing and future changes. I know especially with [A]'s past and plan it is a somewhat tricky situation. If necessary, you can explain that my body is still physically female in most ways, though I'm not very comfortable with that being -emphasized- unless they are having a really hard time accepting it. I'd love it if there was a way you could emphasize that as the hormone therapy does its work, and my body slowly changes in little ways, I have been becoming increasingly happy with who I am. This transition is very difficult in a lot of ways, but at the bottom line it is a really, REALLY good thing for me and in general I have been happier both with myself and with the world around me than ever before.

You may already be planning on covering much of this information in the 'What is a sex change and why do some people have them?' bullet point. Is there any chance I can get an idea of what you will be covering in that section, so I might be able to make suggestions or clarifications?

Again, I want to thank you all for being so understanding and willing to take on this task of explaining my situation to [S] and [A]. I know it won't be an easy thing to do and I'm sorry if I've just complicated things. I will be working on my letter to [coworkers] tonight and will send along copies here, as well.

Seth

[They will be meeting with A and S this wednesday, August 18th. I won't be there, but I'm totally nervous about it. I don't think it will be, but worst-case scenario this could be my last weekend working here. That's a little terrifying...]
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
me: ugh
talking with job people about the upcoming disclosure to the job people with cog disabilities. =/
so like
they have a certain way they want to word their explanation
that kind of emphasizes that I'm 'not a man yet'
and I know it's not because that's what they actually think,
me: it's so they can get used to the idea more slowly and hopelfully be more okay with it
but it still feels really shitty.

-------------

Pardon the language. I wrote that earlier this morning when I first got the email and it was fresh in my emotions and roar. Not the most fun way to start the day. I have thought about it a little more and understand that they're just trying to find the way to explain it that will be most likely for A and S to understand and ... you know... want to keep me as their support staff. A in particular, we're pretty sure S will be befuddled but ultimately unbothered by it.

I need to do some serious thinking and maybe bring it to some trans group things as a topic. I said this morning that I'm really glad now that I have that FTM support group to go to tomorrow. I'll probably post some questions about it to the ftm lj comm, too.

It's a tricky situation because I'd really like to keep my job, and that means having them come to understand it in a way that won't alienate them from me. I said I was okay with them having a lot of leeway for a while on the names and pronouns, and I am.

I think what bothers me about it is the way they're tying up 'whether I'm a man' into my physical transition, and in particular, saying that -I'm not, yet.- Though they did explain to me that they personally understand the difference. I really want to be able to stand up for myself and be like, no, I've been a man all along, it's my body that was wrong! D=

There's also the slightly tricky spot where A's ISP states that she will only have female support staff. They are having to write an exception for me (assuming, of course, A is okay with keeping me as a staff once she knows) on the basis that she originally knew me as female.

ROAR

only

Aug. 3rd, 2010 03:17 pm
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
I just remembered that today marks exactly two months on T. Two months, already? ONLY two months?

hairline

Aug. 1st, 2010 07:58 pm
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
Today I pulled back my hair from my face in front of a mirror for the first time in a while. Hadn't thought to keep an eye on my hairline- it's definitely changing. Most notably, twin thinning patches at the top corners of my forehead. I'm not sure whether this is a recent change or an ongoing one I hadn't noticed before.

Not like balding, just a more masculine hairline. It's neat.

Gosh I hope I don't go bald. My pop is thin on top, and his brothers are both more bald than he is. I think my maternal grandfather has a pretty good head of hair- though I didn't think about it applying to me the last time I saw him, so I didn't pay a ton of attention. =/ Does my (maternal) uncle Roy have hair? I mean, it's not something I'm super worried about... but it's there, you know? XD
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
I got a bunch of new weights at Target yesterday. A pair of 10 lbs and a pair of 15 lbs. They were FUN getting home on my bike, I'll tell you that. That's 50 pounds in case anyone doesn't feel like bothering with the math.

I had put off doing my workout until after the Target trip so I could use those new weights, but on the way there I discovered another busted spoke and had to go to two different bike shops to get it fixed (Recycle Bicycle, our normal bikeshop, apparently doesn't do repairs on weekends so I had to go to a different shop). There I learned that apparently the accident a few weeks ago had bent the back wheel, too, enough that it'll probably just keep busting spokes fairly often until I can get the wheel replaced. I have learned a valuable lesson about getting information from people who hit me on my bike so I can hit them up for money for all the repairs. =P

So I didn't get to work out until like 830pm, and when I did I really pushed myself hard with the new weights. Near the end of the workout I started feeling a little dizzy and near-nausea, so I ended up skipping ab ripper even though I actually wanted to do it. I had done a lot of biking, worked really hard in my workout, and probably hadn't gotten enough of the right kinds of things to eat to successfully pull through that last fifteen minutes or so. Frustrating.

I also got a couple new pairs of shorts. Have I mentioned I kill pants? I have to replace them frequently. Back down to 34" waist, had been at 36" most of the summer, and as recently as a month ago tried both sizes and had gone with the 36". Also bought another pair of workout shorts. <3

Also a soccer ball. Edwin and I played around with it a little bit in my room this morning and now I can't wait to take it to the park and kick it back and forth. I miss soccer!

Last in my collection of manly things I bought yesterday is shaving supplies. I skipped the razor that vibrated, but still think that 5 blades might just be overkill... particularly on my peach fuzz. >_< If Edwin's around tomorrow I might get him to help me with that and hopefully keep me from somehow messing it up terribly. Otherwise I'll probably wait until next week.
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
For the past couple weeks I have been reading reading reading. Trying to learn and absorb others' experiences with their transitions, helping where I can, but recognizing that I am a beginning beginner on this path.

Today I printed out copies of a bunch of forms for a court-ordered name and gender change today. I figure it'll be easier to pay my bills when I don't avoid looking at them because I don't like having to see my old name. Hopefully the process will be less complicated than it looks and I'll be able to get on with my life.

I got off-track with my fitness and nutrition stuff while mom was here, but not as badly as I could have. Being slightly lax about my workout routine and now going back to it has tested my discipline and reminded me how much I want this for myself. Eating semi-vegan for a week and a half gave me a good appreciation both for that diet, and also a better appreciation of MEAT. I've learned a lot about protein these two weeks.

I have this nagging concern that once I'm done with this transition stuff, I won't know what to do with myself. If everything in my life has been leading up to this crux of finding myself and making this change, what's next? Particularly since I've been thinking so much on the fact that I don't really want art to be my career anymore. I do want to make art, but I don't want to have to make money on art. I could very well still change my mind about that, but I've never really had a fall back plan and now I feel like I'm floundering a little in that regard.
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
For her last night in town, my mom got tickets for the two of us to see Wicked at the Orpheum in SF.

I had never before had an opportunity to dress up as a guy. The best I had come was the sort of in-between zone of khakis and a collared shirt. Androgynous, at best, even in men's clothing.

So I wanted to get some real clothes to dress up in.

And I am SO glad I had my mom there to help me because when I first got to the store, I looked around and watched as a familiar anxiety rolled up over me. If mom hadn't been there I probably would have given up within five minutes.

Instead, I came out with a pale striped button down, black dickies, and a nice tie.

And I looked awesome in it.
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
I've noticed some overall physique changes over the last week or so. Between regular intense workouts and my first few doses of T, I am gaining muscle mass and losing fat. Losing the fat is painfully slow, especially now that I am paying attention to it. It seems like there is still a lot of it on my limbs and torso and face.

I got weighed thursday when I got my fourth shot. 164. Down more than 5 pounds from four weeks earlier. And I know I've put on muscle, so I must have lost more than that in fat.

If I stop looking at the fat that's still there, I can see that I've definitely lost a lot in the hip area. I still have some love handles, but they don't dominate the shape of my torso anymore.

I took a shower today and looked in the mirror before I put my binder on, though already wearing a tee and undershirt. I realized I still read myself as male moreso than even with a binder two months ago. My shoulders are broader- latissimus dorsi bulking up. My biceps, too, are starting to take some shape, though it's hard to tell without feeling them because the fat on my arms is still softening the visible edges.

This week in particular I also noticed a pretty sharp increase in strength. I can hug Edwin so tightly it starts to hurt. He doesn't complain about the increased backrub strength, though, and I found it particularly enjoyable for myself to work my arm muscles and fingers on his back. The muscles wanted to stretch, to be used, and they loved it, and he loved it and that was good.

raging

Jul. 11th, 2010 03:48 pm
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
I was a grumpy butt all week. Edwin was a trooper and put up with me from tuesday afternoon through friday afternoon when I went to work. Tuesday night he sat me down and we had a long talk about how there's a time and place for punching, but it's not really okay for men to punch their partners. And also that guys going through puberty at some point have to realize they're a lot stronger than they used to be and need to take care not to break things or injure people. I had punched him. At the time I felt like he deserved it, and I also didn't realize there would be so much force behind the punch.

Friday afternoon through late this morning I was at work, and therefore required to be in complete control of my self and my actions. So the tension built up and by the time I left work I wanted a good long visit with a punching bag. Not because work was particularly stressful. I just felt a lot of tension and the need to let it explode out. I thought, I'll get home, and I have a real workout today, so I'll just get some food, wait an hour, and then work out hard.

Upon walking in the door, I was greeted with the cat litter box that had not been cleaned out. Usually I clean it out fridays before taking off. This week I was running late, so Eira said she'd take care of it. So instead of relaxing a bit and then getting started on my workout right away, I first cleaned out the box. My mom's coming this week, so I actually washed the box and thoroughly cleaned out the space where the box sits. And since the box had been full, Rofl had peed on the towels on the floor in the bathroom so the bathroom stank. And the whole time I was cleaning, I was raging at Eira in my head. So much so that when I came back from taking a bunch of garbage to the dumpster, and she tried to greet me with a cat and a smile I totally snapped at her.

I'm not proud of these examples. I'm having to seriously look at myself and take a step back and be like, wait a second, this isn't who I want to be. This isn't who I am. How do I learn to deal with this rage more effectively so it doesn't explode at people?

On the other hand, Edwin was saying he thinks this will be a positive change for me overall. Because before, the same things that caused me to blow up would have had me simmering and resentful for several days, never confronting it, and also never seeing the blame lying at least equally on my shoulders. The fact that right now it is blowing up like that allows it to dissipate immediately afterward, and also forces me to see my own actions and decisions as a major part of the problem. Now all that's left is to find better ways to channel that anger so the problem gets resolved without me being an arse.

Working out helps. The hard muscle lifting and chinups and pushups and ab ripper ones. Last week was the first 'rest' week of the P90x program, so while there were still workouts to do, they weren't the crazy lifting etc ones. I'm suspecting that contributed to my poor mood last week. I just started week 5 and did 'chest, shoulders, and triceps' and ab ripper, and already I'm feeling good enough to blog here again. Past several days I was feeling totally internet antisocial.

dischord

Jul. 6th, 2010 04:08 pm
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
So its been a couple weeks and I'm feeling back to myself and under control now so I guess I can tell you guys what happened a couple weeks ago.

hiding behind a cut because of personal topic fun )

The point I was trying to get to is it made me realize exactly HOW MUCH of my emotions I was suppressing. I didn't trust them to be in line with ME, so I didn't let myself process them. How much of my energy was going into hiding that part of myself from everyone, including and especially myself.

And wondering what will change as I try to get more in tune with my own thoughts.
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
Another weekend. If nothing else, this one is guaranteed to be better than last if only because I get to go home tomorrow at the normal time. I don't have any plans for the fourth- Eira gets off work at about eight and I'd like to see if there's a park or someplace to ride bikes to and chill for a while. Fireworks or not.

-----
Edwin and I have been cooking a lot lately, which is good for our wallets since we aren't going out to eat. Last week he made some Zucchini Potato Soup, and while it was good, it was missing something. So earlier this week I made more, and this time made dumplings to put in the soup and it was perfect. If only they had some nutritional value- flour, salt, sugar, baking soda and powder, butter and buttermilk. Can't eat those all the time they're so heavy.

Thursday night he made some hummus, while I made seasoned asparagus and we collaborated on Grilled Cajun Salmon with Tomato Pineapple Salsa. The cajun/seasoning on the salmon was awesome, I'd probably do that again, though with less salt, the cajun stuff we bought had a lot of salt in it so with added salt in the recipe it was just a tiny bit too much. The tomato pineapple salsa was a bit of a disappointment, though. Edwin had picked out the recipe thinking the weird flavor combos would magically come together, but it was really nothing special and just kind of weird. Oh well. He'd been disappointed with the hummus, too, until I was like, "You know what this needs? Some of this red onion we got for the salsa." Red onion and hummus on pita? Perfect.

I've cut out coffee almost completely. Now I usually drink green tea. I still haven't figured out how to make it not taste burnt. It's a little better now that I've been using water that isn't too hot, but it's still nowhere near as delicious as the tea at Yusan's or Ichiban.

-----
[livejournal.com profile] trashedbat asked, in my previous post, how my energy levels have been since going on T. It's a little hard to say because I started making a lot of changes to my overall health right at the same time. I started exercising on a daily basis, and making a very conscious effort to eat healthy foods almost exclusively. I also added some workout supplements before and after my workouts. All these things have a positive effect on my energy levels. If I had to guess, I'd say the exercise has had the most impact, but the exercise is made possible by the good food and supplements I take in. I WILL say, though, that I have found myself to be both lazier and grumpier in the day or two immediately before a shot, which indicates to me a fairly strong correlation between having low testosterone in my system and having very low energy.

I guess my point is I can't for certain say that the T gives me more energy than I had before starting it, just because I have less energy when it is low in my system. I have had more energy and better moods since starting, but again, exercise and healthy eating probably has a lot more to do with that than T specifically.

-----
I have noticed my Left brain feels like it is becoming more active. That's the math and language hemisphere, as opposed to the creative/abstract right hemisphere. I'm finding it easier to put my thoughts and emotions to words, and therefore to be able to understand them better myself, rather than having all this jumbled up frustration or undefined upset-ness. Now, if I get upset, I can actually identify what is making me upset, and take steps to resolve it, rather than before when I'd just get upset and not know why/not say anything/sit and stew in that frustration.

I probably would be concerned about resultant atrophy in my right hemisphere, but I don't think it's working like that. It feels more like an opportunity for overall growth than a tradeoff. And it feels more like myself, the way I should be, the way I always should have been. Like there was this block between where I was and reaching my full potential, and now I'm starting to chip away at it. It's kind of exciting.

-----
Quick (hopefully) update on Exercise stuff. )
replacementparts: Smiling dragon, optimism, bright (Default)
I just got my #3 T shot a couple hours ago. My mom should be in town for my fourth, so she'll probably get to come in and see the clinic and meet my RN. She was super rushed today, but usually we talk about random nutrition stuff and she'll go on about it forever and it's awesome.

I also realized I haven't talked much about changes from this past two weeks and I guess that's because it's mostly been more subtle than the initial stuff. Not that the initial stuff wasn't subtle, but zero to something is bound to be way more dramatic than something to something a tiny bit more.

Hair growth. It's happening, slowly. There's hair on my upper arms and upper legs now... probably about as much as was on my lower arms before starting T. Which is to say not much, but lots more than nothing. It's all super fine and not really visible unless you're looking for it. My legs are probably close to twice as hairy as a month ago. Still not a lot, but it's fun watching it happen.

Muscles are bulking up a little, probably more from the P90x than from T specifically. There's still a pretty thick layer of fat in most places keeping it from being very visible. The most defined muscles are in my lower legs, though I can ID specific patches of fat layer that have yet to fade.

It's kind of interesting, because unlike a regular puberty, I'm not 'just' developing secondary sex characteristics. I'm simultaneously shedding one set and gaining the other. Human evolution didn't really plan for people retracting secondary sex characteristics, so things like the layer of fat padding are leaving awkwardly. Like, gone in some places, but not in others without much apparent logic.

For example my feet and ankles are basically fat free at this point. I didn't think about there being much fat in my feet until I didn't have it, and there for a week or two my feet were hurting a lot just from walking. Yeah, weird. But then right above my ankles there's this chunk of fat that actually sticks out and makes a very unnatural looking shape before blending back into my calves.

I feel like I've lost some of the curvyness in my hip/butt area. Not a lot yet, but I have high hopes it'll continue.

Acne. A little on my face. A lot on my butt. =l

Looking at my face in the mirror is interesting. I keep not-quite recognizing myself. I don't know what's different, and the hair isn't visible unless you're looking at it really close, so that's not it. Maybe just losing a little fat in my cheeks. I know the bone structure won't change dramatically but there might be some in the jaw area eventually. I've also heard my nose might get bigger.

Oh, and my voice. The other day I was thinking it -felt- a little lower (a little means a little), but decided it was probably in my head. But then I talked to my mom on the phone and she commented that she thought it sounded a little lower, so if it's in my head, it's in hers, too. I mentioned it to Eira and she said she thought it was more like my voice has some resonance to it now that it formerly lacked, which sounds like a fairly accurate description of how it feels. I'm finding it easier to talk in the lower register of my old voice now, where before I had to do it almost consciously. Now that I'm thinking about it, my throat feels a tiny bit sore, which is probably related.

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Seth

February 2013

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