Sunday, September 23, 2012

Bipolar ...

No, not me (although I do wonder sometimes)

I began writing this on Thursday after my therapy appointment.


I had the most wonderful visit with my counselor today :-)

I decided to wear one of my wife's top ... A tank top that's a bit frilly with a design.  I figured it would be safe to wear to my session, because even though there are several therapists that use the office I am always in the waiting room alone.  There may be a passing glance between me and the person leaving, but otherwise there is minimum public exposure.

Well ... today a mother and daughter came into the room as I'm waiting.  I didn't know how to act, felt self conscious and uncomfortable ... until I realized they weren't staring at me.  They didn't even seem to care I was there or how I was dressed.  After I relaxed I thoroughly enjoyed watching the little girl play and how she interacted with her mom.

So I finally get called into the office ...

Because it had been so long since I saw my counselor I gave her a recap of the past several weeks, including my conversation with my wife.  The conversations are paraphrased and a bit abridged:

Me - "Pam and I finally had a more in depth talk ... After a bit she asked if I wanted to grow boobs.  I started to redirect the conversation because I was uncomfortable but then took advantage of the situation.  She asked if I would be happy just using fake boobs, but then said that she would stay with me no matter what."

Catherine - "I am so happy for you.  You are very blessed to have someone like that."

Me: - "Yes ... Very much so.  She says it's a lot to absorb so I'm not pushing it."  I gestured at the top I was wearing.  "By the way, this is outside my normal comfort zone."

Catherine - "Why?"

Me - "I wear these at home, but generally not in public.  It figures today there would be someone else in the waiting room."  I laughed.  "I just don't feel it fits the way I look, my beard is too obvious."

Catherine - "But you survived.  These are necessary steps.  I think you're doing fine."

The conversation wandered a bit, then we started talking about hormones ...

Catherine - "So when do you see yourself starting hormones?"

Me - "A big part of me wants to start tomorrow.  The realistic part of me knows it will be at least a few months before it would be feasible.  I need to get my blood pressure and weight under control."

Catherine - "What will hormones do for you.  I mean, I'm sure you've researched it, what do you expect from hormones."

Me - "Well, I likely go to an endocrinologist who will put me on a testosterone blocker and estrogen.  I'm sure the hormone levels will be monitored.  The skin starts to soften, the body hair grows fine or diminishes.  Some people see a fuller head of hair or lessening of thinning hair.  After several months the breasts start to develop."

Now I know these things, so I'm pretty sure this was just a check to ensure I have realistic expectations.

The conversation weaved around through many topics, politics, fashion, shoes and more importantly boots, hair and accessories, kids ... at one point it closely resembled "girl talk."

At one point I said, "You should see me running around in the morning trying to choose my earrings."

And she replied, "Well, you're a girl.  Hello."

That simple comment made my day.

Before I left I showed her my virtual makeover.  She looked at it for a moment and said, You're beautiful.  And the hair color really works for you."

Now she is my counselor, and part of her job is to encourage me so I didn't expect her to say much different than that.  She couldn't be completely honest and say, "Well, the beard shadow does show a little.  And your masculine features make it a bit hard to make you look completely female ..."

When I left I was very happy.

Unfortunately my good mood did not last long.  Shortly after I got home by my family planning a Thanksgiving family get together.


Nothing exciting ... Sloooow, but that is good.

I had a chance to talk to my manager.  Her partner is dying a slow painful death from liver failure.  She is one of the most amazing women I have ever met.

Anyway ... She and I had a chance to talk for the first time in a long time.  We had a couple laughs, brightened my day.


My wife and volunteer to drive about 250 miles round trip through 100 degree heat to pick up my sister so she could save about $60 on a train ticket and take her daughter home.  The drive wasn't too bad, but my wife and I shelled out $50 to pay for fuel.  Now granted, we were using our niece's car, but it was our $50.

What did we get for out efforts?

Not money to repay us.  Not a thank you for coming to get her.  Not a thank you for all the effort that my wife has made to ensure our niece was taken care of ... in fact, we got nothing.

I will miss my niece.  She was fun to have around and very open minded about many things.  I hope in her time back home she gets well and finds her balance again.  She always has a room here if she needs it.

On the other hand another niece wants to go to a local beauty school and wants to stay here for a short period until she can find an apartment.  I truly do not see this happening, but it would be nice get free manicures and hair care for a while :-)