Tuesday, 31 March 2009


During a fraught and difficult conversation with B yesterday she mentioned something that my Dad apparently said over the weekend, something along the lines of "I'll remember the of 2 years ago".



Yes, I look different, I use a different name, wear different clothes, maybe have slightly altered mannerisms and speech, but IT IS STILL ME!

Aside from the obvious physical changes that the hormones are causing there is no significant difference between me 2 years ago and me now. Well, okay, that is stretching things a little (a lot) but essentially, most of the things I like, do, think about, enjoy, dislike, know, etc are all 100% identical. I'm still silly, immature, geek, techie, fat (damn hormones), enjoy food, wine, laughing, joking, crying, etc.

I am not a totally different person. I know that may be hard to appreciate and there is ALOT that someone who has known the 'old' me for so long would have to get use to, but the essence is still the same.

I am not going to be with my parents/family to celebrate when my Dad retires (which is today). I won't be there when we drag him out to the pub for a meal/drink. Or when my sister presents him with some silly gift and wacky card. I won't be there to talk about computers with my Dad or plan the super-duper machine he's going to get (eventually) with his pension. I won't be involved in telling silly jokes/stories about how my Dad is planning to be a house husband, or wondering who will buy his old scooter or whether he still needs it.

I can't be seen. I can't be talked about. I can't be acknowledged. I can't have the full support of my family to be who I am.

I can be excluded.

Why I'm in debt ...

This is both a serious a funny post which I just had to do before another depressing topic - sorry, not having a fun time at the moment, hopefully the level of joy in what I write will pick up soon.

Last night I realised that, financially speaking, I'm in serious trouble. Well, I guess I knew this already but it got worse when my plan to get a loan from my bank didn't work - well actually I can get a loan but at an APR of 13.5% which seems ludicrous (though I may still end up going this option bearing in mind that my credit card is about to finish it's 0% and jump to 19.9% APR).

So, the credit cards have now been removed from my purse. I'm going to go see my bank (and some other banks to compare) to ask about sorting my finances out (and hopefully getting a more realistic APR like the "typical 7.9%" that is being advertised.

Why have I got so much debt? Well, alot of it is entirely my own fault: I spent it. Some of it is debt that was moved onto 0% deals from credit cards that I (we) had before the seperation. The fact that more hasn't been paid off or that the current level of payments are such a problem is because I have little money with which to pay them off, I was too optimistic about what I could afford to live on.

What should be waiting to explain all of my problems but this article on The Register: Women's lust for shopping linked to periods - so that's it, it's all down to hormones, not my fault at all!

Sunday, 29 March 2009


This isn't a big rant or problem but a thought just occurred to me that I thought I should share. I'll qualify it by saying that, in fairness, in any split, parents do try and do what they feel is best for their kids and, as I've mentioned previously, there may be some disagreement as to what is the right approach, and this is particularly pronounced, unfortunately when it comes to seperations involving a transgendered partner.

What did strike me is that I can't just see my son. I know I use to travel alot and didn't get to see him for long periods of time but I guess there wasn't a problem because I knew, if I really wanted to I could kick up a fuss and just go back home.

Now I find myself, on a lovely bright, spring (well nearly) day and I can't just decide "lets go out on the bikes", he's just not there, or I'm not there to be more precise to just do things like that. Everything has to be organised and agreed.

I don't think anyone realises just what a priviledge it is to have their child there all the time, or if they do, what it must feel like to have that taken away. Hmmm, I think sometimes it's best not to realise what you have lost, it hurts less that way.

No Joking Matter

There is currently a debate on BBC1 about "should gay jokes be banned". From what I gather there is legislation that is about to be debated that would include make it illegal to joke about gay (and trans) people.

Also I switched channel last night and saw a bit of "Live at the Apollo" where the guy was doing a joke about this saying that it would be good if the government allowed jokes about "the gays and transgendered", the example he cited was "if you take a girl home and find she has a cock you want to be able to have a good laugh about it".

In concert with the recent episode of the ITV show "Moving Wallpaper" which has probably been discussed to death on other blogs, I did feel a bit offended at the stereotype - particularly as both of these propogate stereotypes that are not true for myself or my close friends.

However, I quickly realised that this debate is really about censorship and is ultimately a test of my opinion that there such be universal freedom of speech. I remember reading the notes about a secure internet network that was completely against censorship and it cautioned that you must accept that there may be things on it that you may find offensive and you really had to believe that this is acceptable. It's hard to stick to this view when it's you that is being 'attacked'.

I don't buy the argument in the TV debate that the legislation is about "incitement" and not about jokes. It's very easy for someone offended by a joke to easily argue that it is inciting hatred in others without any absolute measure. Some would argue that a representative jury in such cases would convey the meaning of this that society in general accepts. Not sure this would happen and even if it did you're going to spend lots of money on jury trails for things that shouldn't be an issue.

Another example cited in the programme was a woman who write an opinion about gay couples adopting children; she was phoned by the police and questioned after someone (presumably gay or disagreeing with her point) complained. This shouldn't happen. Just as I want to be free to live my life and hold my opinions without interference I have to say I strongly support the right of others to do the same, even if there are contrary to my views.

Again, the legislation seems to be seeking to prosecute on "thought crime". I don't like being sniggered at or joked about, it hurts. However, I do have the power to joke and snigger at the people that do that to me for being small-minded, low-IQ, bigots. As long as both sides stop at writing/talking then I guess that is just something that has to be tolerated and society needs to mature as a whole.

Everything at the moment seems to be about protecting people from themselves in some ways - what they read, see, hear. At the slightest offence there is the knee-jerk reaction to ban anything that may repeat the same experience. And this is from all groups, it's almost like you are only officially a minority if you can get your own legislation banning hate speech about you.

Enough is enough.

Money, time, and effort would be better spent on tackling people that commit actual crimes that really do hurt people (abuse, violence against LGBT people for example) and on positive education about different lifestyles and tolerance than trying to stop people thinking/saying what is on their mind.

As the saying goes "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me" - stop trying to twist that last bit by saying "Ah, but they can if ... " (insert "they incite hatred" etc after that) and take it literally and move forward.

Saturday, 28 March 2009

The Scottish Play

I went to see MacBeth at the Royal Exchange in Manchester this afternoon, Kim was going along and suggested (since I was not seeing my son this weekend) that I might like to come along. Tickets were for the front row and there were hints from Kim that this might be a risky location given the amount of fake blood involved in the play! Hmmm, wasn't sure about that, sounded like it might be a bit scary.

And it was, but not in a bad way. It was very intense, modern, thought-provoking, and thoroughly enjoyable (that's maybe not the right word given the subject matter). I've never read any Shakespear (didn't do it at school), nor seen it performed before, and I had to admit I found the dialog hard to understand at first but it gradually got easier and didn't really detract from my understanding of what was going on.

The performances were very powerful and it was easy to get totally engrossed in what was going on. All this in a circular area of, essentially, floor - there is no raised stage and the audience sits around the space in which the actors perform with them running on and off, actually past where our seats were. Everyone actually seemed really tall from our vantage point which made it even more intense.

I don't think I have the words to describe how good I thought it all was or to even try and convey what was going on but I'm so glad I went! Gave me lots to think about and would HIGHLY recommend you go see it!

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

Seeing my son ...

... or not at the moment.

There have been lots of ups and downs this week but mainly downs unfortunately. It started when B suggested that I bring our son back from Legoland a day earlier so that he had time to calm down before going back to school the next week. This conversation got a little nasty as I got blamed for being the reason he is so upset and not able to sleep over at friends and generally being quite and unhappy.

Things got much worse when I had another call from B saying that I couldn't see my son this weekend as planned. The reason given is that he is very upset after seeing me for a weekend and overall has been quite and withdrawn and this, according to B is because of the transition that I am going through and how I am presenting to my son, i.e. in female clothes, make-up etc.

I can't deny that how I look and act is probably quite confusing for him but I'm not trying to hide anything from him and always attempt to answer any questions he has as honestly as possible. But I've still not had the long, complicated talk about "daddy is becoming a woman" because I don't think he can understand that properly. I do play as Princess Leia in Star Wars on the Wii though!

I was going to rant on some more about all of this but I've kind of run out of things to say and have had my thoughts derailed further (if that's possible) by a conversation with B just now which was alot more amicable and understanding on both sides. Sorted out the trip to Legoland and hopefully made some progress on other issues as well.

I feel alot happier now and back to my usual naive optimism that it will all work itself out nicely in the end. This is probably just not realistic but I can't let go of the hope that it could happen.

The weekend

Well, better late than never. It's taken me a while to get round to writing about the weekend and I've also got other things queuing up in my head that I want to get written down as well so I'll make this quick!

The weekend was FAB!

That covers it I guess ... okay, maybe a bit more detail:

I drove down to Lucy's on Friday evening, got stuck in lots of traffic but had a great time singing along to the selection of music I'd copied onto CD (I never have any decent things to listen to in the car so made an effort this time). Did get a few funny looks but frankly I prefer to be happily singing/wiggling along to music that sitting stony-faced and seething about the queue!

Had tea at Lucy's (was so nice that her Mum thought of feeding us - always made to feel welcome there) and then into Brum and the usual getting ready to go out routine which I'm actually not that slow at now!

The start of the evening was in one of the apartments that you can rent - think someone said for £70/night - and they are fantastic; two bedrooms, bathroom, lounge/dining room, basically the same as my flat! Anyway, one of Lucy's friends had put on a huge amount of food and drink for everyone which was pretty impressive when you consider that at least 25 people turned up!

[ As an aside, it just goes to show you how many trans people there are if that many turn up for one persons party ]

It was around midnight when we finally moved out of the apartment and onto a bar somewhere. I think by that point I was nicely merry and chatty and really haven't got much of a clue where I was going (not having been out in Brum - well the gay village bit - before). Think we went to the Loft and then on somewhere else.

I talked to lots of people and had a fantastic time. I even recall talking to a girl who was stood, looking rather depressed, waiting for her friend to finish some in-depth heart-to-heart with what seemed to be his current or maybe former partner. Anyway the poor girl looked so down-hearted that I bought her a drink. Turns out her boyfriend didn't want to come out so she was stranded waiting for her friend. I'm sure there are ways to 'pull' a girl in this situation but I have no idea what they are and I'm too nice anyway (this is not necassarily a good thing from my point of view!).

Also got dragged onto the dance floor by a person who shall remain nameless (but thanks anyway, I would never have got up there otherwise) and I don't think I fell over too much (though did feel a little wobbly) but probably still looked like a complete idiot.

Sadly the evening (well morning really, 4am!) did draw to a close and people wandered off and I found myself in bed (still always vaguely unsure of how exactly I get there but still not had any cause to suspect I had a good time in the process unfortunately!). I had a great time and talked to lots of fab people whose names, and maybe even faces I've forgotten (if you were one of them: sorry and thanks for chatting).

Saturday was spent recovering and shuffling round Brum - tried the slightly grungy, trainers-wearing look and really didn't like it at all! Live and learn. Sunday I was more awake and Lucy and I did some shopping - I bought a few watches and suspect I'm going to go mad for collecting these now as I got some really different looking designs and think they are fab!

Anyway lots of other stuff I could bore everyone with but I'll leave it at that. I was so sorry the weekend had to end because it was so much fun ... oh well, not long to the next one!

Sunday, 22 March 2009

".. I'm alright, got a good ole friend here with me tonight, so I guess I'm doing alright"

I've had a fantastic weekend away (more on this later when I'm less tried and more up to rambling) in Birmingham at Lucy's welcome home party and then spending time shopping and chatting and the usual stuff. Quite tired when I was driving home and that might have been one of the reasons why I couldn't keep the tears back while listening to the song that the above quote is taken from, "I'm alright" by Jo Dee Messina.

Hmmm, I did think of really good ways to express what I felt but I've forgotten and can't think of an eloquent way to put it now. So, this will have to suffice:

Thanks for being an amazing friend Lucy!


P.S. I bet you'll hate this (it's sooo NOT your taste in music): Jo Dee Messina, I'm alright

Tuesday, 17 March 2009

Bike Delivery!

I guess I've always been a little odd and unconventional, maybe not in an extreme dye-your-hair-bright-orange but in maybe more subtle ways I've always stood out a bit and seemed a little different.

A minor example of this was when I use to take my son to school on the bike (him in a trailer behind) which kind of made me (and him) stand out a little!

Anyway, I just had another one of those little moments this morning as I had to return my son's bike which he'd been on over the weekend but had left it to be picked up later in the week. Since it's nice weather at the moment B thought he could do with it now. Since I was cycling into work I therefore had to tow the bike (with the Trail Gator I've mentioned before) over to the house.

I must have looked a bit of a strange site with a bright red childs bike behind me, without a child sat in the seat. I kept expecting someone to shout and tell me I'd lost my passenger ... but it was 6am in the morning so not many people around to notice!

It was very strange seeing the house again. And quite emotional. Wish I could have popped in to say hello to my son really, or just spent some time there.

One thing that I was worried about was seeing any of the neighbours since I thought that might be a little awkward. I thought I'd got away with it until I cycled off the estate and spotted one the next-door neighbours walking his dogs along the cycle path towards me - I quickly got off the pavement and passed him on the opposite side of the road. I think he did see me and I probably gave a weak smile back.

So, an interesting morning!

Saturday, 14 March 2009

Click ... off ... gone

Pop quiz: Name the band who wrote the above song and the album it's taken from.

That was just a little distraction. The main point of the post: just deleted my Flickr account!

Really, it was just full of old pictures that don't look anything like me anymore, are quite embarassing, and just generally seem to attract guys with odd fetishes and even odder intentions. Basically a waste of time. So it's gone, and good ridance.

I guess it served it's purpose at the time but now I'm not so inclined to publish how bad I look to the world at large and any pictures that I think are remotely decent either go on Facebook or on here.

Friday, 13 March 2009

Sometimes you just want to cry ...

... because of someone doing or saying something that may be small but means so much!

I guess this is an example of me being a little over-emotional due to the hormones. I should mention as an aside that anyone contemplating transition really, really, should be prepared for a bumpy ride. I know when I started out I thought it would just be "me" but looking a bit different. It's not that simple, there are lots of ups and downs and it really does change who you are and it's quite scary.

Anyway, I won't go into the details of today but it was just so nice when someone helped me out and was just so genuinely nice about it. I'm not really expressing this properly as I'm tired and not that eloquent at the moment.

Just wanted to say "thanks" I guess but the person concerned probably doesn't even read this! (I did say thanks at the time but I don't think it conveyed what I really felt).

Rambling now, time for tea and then bed!

Lesson in humility

I had a hard week for one reason or another and have been a bit all over the place emotionally. Too be honest everyone at work is going through alot of stress as well and so we're all on edge and just not having a fun time.

Anyway, it's very easy to get to feel that your problems are the most important thing in the world and that you are having a hard time. I've always tried to keep cheerful and live by the old adage that "there is always someone worse off than yourself" but sometimes it's easy to forget that, or remember it and still feel bad.

I thought things were tough for me this week and I guess I was feeling a bit sorry for myself. And then I heard about someone on the same project as me having to deal with working long hours and having a partner who is ill and was still staying late to get things finished (and at the time a mistake I made was holding this person up).

At that moment I felt both terribly guilty and also quite humble.

I not sure if there are any universal rules for living a better life to come out of this, the aphorism is rather trite really and, when it comes down to it, sometimes problems do need to be dealt with. I guess, when it comes down to it we're all human and sometimes we just get it wrong and can be self-centred or thoughtless, other times we can be there for someone else. We're just not perfect, and I'm certainly not.

Thursday, 12 March 2009

Hormones and T-count

I had an appointment with my GP (who is absolutely lovely) today mainly to get a prescription for hormone patches as well as to deliver the letter from my specialist and discuss anything in that (which was mainly about the dosage of hormones really).

Anyway I got two very good things out of this appointment: first of all I got a prescription for 6months worth of hormone patches for the bargain price of £14.70 (it's two prescriptions since I need the 100ug/24hour and 50ug/24hour patches). Need to pick these up from the chemist later today.

The second thing is my blood tests. I though I had all the results but apparently not! I mentioned that the T-count wasn't on the print-out that I had before but that was apparently just because the results hadn't come back, it was on this one though: 2.4nmol/L which is well within the genetic female range (for reference my T-count before was 12.4 - bottom end of the male range),

These results where from *before* Dr Curtis increased my estrogen dosage so goodness only knows what they will drop to now that I'm on 1.5x the previous amount. Actually I don't think it will move much now and there are other levels that are a little on the night side and it might be those that drop instead.

One thing appears to be certain though: I am now totally female from a hormonal point of view and just need my body (and mind) to catch up!

Monday, 9 March 2009


I have a few favorite necklaces that I wear either day-to-day or on special occasions but none of these have any real significance apart from the fact that they either look nice or were slighty more expensive than dirt cheap and aren't made of copper (well, they probably are but the silver plate hasn't worn off yet).

But I've always wanted a necklace that has something important about it, like being a gift from family or a partner or something that costs ALOT of money (all donations of Tiffany Heart necklaces are most welcome!) and would survive repeated wearing.

So now, I'm wearing a simple (and admittedly cheap) necklace but with my wedding ring hanging from it. This is something I've thought about, and possibly mentioned here, before and it just seemed like it was the right time to make some effort to achieve it. Essentially I performed some art/diy on a cheap pendant from Primark until such time as I can find a white gold chain.

Next on my list of jewelary items is a blue topaz ring but they are VERY expensive the last time I looked so I think I need to keep an eye out in the sales or maybe that's something I could ask for as a birthday present.

Sunday, 8 March 2009

Boobs and stuff

I just thought the title was fun, I was going to say "Boobs and shit" but thought I'd keep it a bit cleaner. The boobs do, however, make an appearance (not literally) in this post so if you're of a nervous disposition then please look away now.

So, yesterday I went down for my 2nd laser treatment of this course and was running late as usual so forgot to take pain killers which I've used, with some success, before. However, I needn't have worried as they had forgotten to tell me I actually needed another patch test as they have a new machine now! I guess it all worked out okay but it does mean I need to go down again which is a bit of a pain!

Anyway, the new machine doesn't give the characteristic pain that the previous one did - often described as like being flicked with an elastic band. Instead this one is meant to be "pain-free" (it's isn't but it's close) and actually they move the wand/gun with the laser in over the area of face in about 5 quick sweeps, kind of gradually building up heat in the hairs. I did feel some tiny prickles which I guess must have been the hairs, but the main sensation, all over the area they tested, was of heat. At one point it actually felt very hot and I moved away which is a bad thing apparently (must remember not to do that again).

I was told that the heat is a bit like having a hot stone massage which I've never experienced before but always suspected would not feel a nice comfortable warmth but actually rather too hot to feel safe. I think this new laser is the same: any redness (and there was plenty) quickly faded with no obvious marking, so it must have been safe, but it really didn't feel it at the time! I'll write more after Tuesday when I have my actual treatment.

After that, I went into Manchester city Centre to do a bit of shopping - wanted to just get some more things from Primark as well as execute the plan I had regarding my boobs, or more precisely the bras I wear.

Since going fulltime I have worn 38B bras, obviously with breast forms since there was nothing else to fill the space! I've never been measured properly but had found that 36/38 seemed to be an okay fit and had erred on the side of caution and also tried to stick to something sensible. I know there can be a tendancy to go for ridiculously large breast but that it not something I ever wanted: realistic and normal was what I've always aimed at and in some ways smaller is better (assuming I can lose enough weight from the rest of me!).

There have been two problems with the original arrangements now that my breasts have started to develop 1) squising the "girls" with forms is rather uncomfy and (I know this sounds silly) I don't really want to hold them back by doing this, 2) what was, what I believed to be a 'normal' chest-area look, has obviously increased in size - 38C now seems to be more suitable bra size and that is too big for me.

So, I've now ditched the forms and am wearing (admittedly quite well padded) 36A bra's which actually do fit quite well but are proving to be more comfortable than the alternative. I had planned to get these from Primark since I, possibly naively, hope that I'll be able to move onto a bigger cup-size eventually but sadly B is the smallest they do. So if anyone else is in the same position as me, save yourself some time looking around and simply head to Marks & Spencer.

Anyway, I do look noticeable smaller now but at least I'm more real :)

The day was rounded off by seeing a performance at Contact Theatre by Polarbear called "If I cover my nose you can't see me". This was a spoken word performance and essentially consisted of the guy, Polarbear, standing up and reciting the story that he had written. Think of it as a more adult version of Jackanory done from memory and without the aid of autocues!

I should really dignify this with it's own blog entry but I doubt I could really do it justice as I'm new to all this culture stuff and it was pretty hard to follow - Polarbear talks fast and I'm more use to movies which I can rewind or books where I can flick back a few pages if I think I've missed something. Also the sort of thing I usually watch/read doesn't require so much thought and understanding, little is left to the imagination so I was struggling to keep up.

But it was enjoyable and did make me think as well as being a very relaxed atmosphere. Certainly something I would be interested in going to see again and would recommend to others too.

Anyway, drove back late at night singing to the Mamma Mia soundtrack (my brain had to revert to something easier to grasp, it can't be intellectual ALL the time) and am now spending Sunday tidying up and eventually trying on all the clothes I bought from Primark yesterday :D

Friday, 6 March 2009

Gaining followers!

As a few people pointed out, the sudden drop in the list of people following my blog was likely down to a technical glitch with Google/Blogger as they also experienced the same sort of thing.

Now I seem to be up to 19 poor, mis-guided, souls following my inane ramblings! Wonder if I can break the 20 barrier? :D

Hmmm, yes, a slow news day as you can tell, nothing much else to report except I'm thinking more about all the things from the 70s/80s/90s that we could do with bringing back to cheer us all up during the current economic 'fun'. Definitely think we need something like Spitting Image and similar satirical programmes since the current crop of politians desperately need to be ridiculed!

Looks like other people have the same idea as well: Fame is coming back and, on the news this morning, Michael Jackson is going to be performing in London. Not a fan at all, but it's clearly got some people excited! Hmmm, wonder who else could make a come back (well attempt one), answers on a postcard :)

Thursday, 5 March 2009

The Eagle has Landed

I'm sure there are some bizarre (and also literary) conatations of that phrase, but in this case I'm referring to Lucy, she's back in the UK after flying in from Thailand today! YAY!!!!

Welcome back hunni bunni xxx

Bring back Kenny Everett!

I made a chance remark about knowing lots of people who's name begins with K - there was a whole column of them on my messenger list - and Kate mentioned "Kaptain Kremen".

I had know idea who that was so had a quick google and it turned up Kenny Everett!


For those who don't really know what I'm taking about, have a look at the Kenny Everett page on Wikipedia.

I don't think I appreciated him when I was young, in fact I've only just realised the significance of the character "Miss Cupid Stunt" (D'OH! how thick am I!), but now I think he was probably one of the funniest guys ever and just had something about him that was so alive!

That is what we need now. We don't need crusty politicians or stupid bankers we need someone anarchic, someone with more energy than can be contained within one body. We don't need politically correct and sanatised comedy, we need to someone to just go wild. We've had enough of the 'grey' people!

So, this weekend, just say "Fuck it" and have some fun!

(yes, this is the wine talking but FFS people, think of all the fab people that have gone before, they are probably rotating in their eternal resting places with the state the world is in with all the nay-sayers and fucking stupid rules and restrictions on our liberty!)

For goodness sake we need a change and, from a political point of view, lets get rid of boring Brown and Wacky Jaqui for a start along with the rest of the grey suits! Can we have Ben Elton back as well please, Spitting Image, and all the other satire. The world is desperately crying out to have the piss taken out of it, we've become too boring and too grey!

Bits and pieces

I've been very busy with work this week and, while I have had a myriad of ideas for blog posts I've never really got round to writing anything down so now all I have is some rather incoherent ideas and snippets to ramble on about.

One of the things that I have been thinking about recently is how much I miss the life I had before. I know I have gone on about this before and in some ways I sound like a broken record, but I don't think it's possible to appreciate the enormity of the loss.

In fact that brings me, maybe too rapidly, to something else that I've been considering. Essentially I believe I'm holding back an awful lot inside my head and really not letting any of it show. I know that sounds glib and I can't really find the words to unlock how I feel because I'm just not letting myself feel. I actually wanted to add the song "Happy Go Lucky" by Steps (stop laughing about my musical taste) to my blog because, listening to it today, it seemed to strike a chord.

Blah, blah, misery, pain, anguish ... sorry to be trite but I've had a bit to drink and only had 3hrs sleep (was working late last night) and 3 glasses of wine so not with it ... just found something way more fun to blog about!

Sunday, 1 March 2009

Scrambled eggs

I had to post this as I was so proud I got it right! I don't normally have eggs (apart from as am ingredient in cakes etc) but my son loves them for breakfast, so this is his scrammy eggs, cheese, toast and dip-dip! If ate it all up too!