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Are you excited?!?

Content warning: This one gets kinda real and possibly graphic.

No. Not really. I’m not, actually. Sorry?

At this point, it’s kind of like an open secret. I’m having surgery next week. And because I’m trans, when I say this, people automatically assume it’s THE SURGERY™. Some people get kind of weird like “is…this…like…down there?” In this case, they’re actually right, but it’s such a weird thing to just be like “hey, I’m getting my dick cut off! WOOOOOO!!” Talking about your genitals is kinda weird, ya know? I’m generally a pretty open and candid kind of person, I don’t shy away from talking openly about things, but it’s still kinda awkward. Mostly I just make jokes about it that make everyone around me feel uncomfortable…

“Yeah, I’m getting all kinds of 🔪ed the fuck up.”
“🌭🔪🌮”
“🔪🍆”
“I’m getting my outtie turned into an innie.”
“I’m going to a BYOT party…bring your own taco.”

I don’t know, it’s just too awkward to talk about without jokes, I guess.

Honestly, I didn’t even plan to talk about it all. I wanted to keep this quiet. It’s not really anyone’s business what’s going on with my body and I really didn’t want it to be a thing. Really, I didn’t even think I was ever going to have this surgery until a few weeks before I scheduled my consultation in early October. However, it’s hard to tell people “hey, I’m going to be out of the office for six weeks” or “I won’t be able to run for at least six weeks and I don’t know how to deal with that” and not have them ask why. Or people who are trying to make plans with me and I’m like “yeah, I’ll be stuck on the couch.” Or trying to deal with my current pre-surgery dietary restrictions.

So it just kind of slowly started coming out because I’m not really the kind of person who likes to make up lies or dance around the truth. I’m nothing if not brutally honest and I lived a lie for way too many years to want to be making up more now. Besides, there have been a lot of situations where being secretive about it was more effort than just be like “yup, getting all vagina-ed up!”

When people find out they’re like “OMG ARE YOU EXCITED?!” And, yeah, I get it, what do you say when someone tells you they’re getting a 🌮 installed? But…no, I’m not excited. I’m feeling every damn emotion ever, but excitement is like the least of them. I’m just anxious for this to be over with. I’m ready for all the stress of trying to make this happen to be gone. It’s actually a lot of work to get someone to cut your dick off. You’ve got to deal with:

  • insurance and figuring out how a $20,000 surgery gets paid for
  • getting multiple doctors to talk to each other and share info
  • setting up and going to a bunch of doctors appointments for consultations, pre-surgery, labs, physicals, etc
  • multiple therapists whom you have to convince you’re trans-enough to deserver proper genitals so they can write you letters stating such
  • working out with HR and your manager taking time off of work
  • who is going to feed your cats while you’re in the hospital
  • who will help you during recovery
  • a sorta tough list of dietary restrictions for two weeks prior to surgery
  • getting a prescription filled for Percocet can apparently be difficult?
  • pre-surgery bowl prep 💩
  • NO HORMONES FOR FOUR WEEKS BEFORE SURGERY SO OOPS YOU’RE SLOWLY TURNING BACK INTO A MAN* AND BEING AN EMOTIONAL SMORGASBORD OF BITCHTITUDE TO EVERYONE ANYWHERE IN THE TRI-STATE AREA BECAUSE WHAT EVEN IS HAPPENING TO YOUR MIND AND BODY RIGHT NOW?!

And that’s all stuff to do before you can even have surgery.

Do people get excited for surgery? Is that a thing that happens? It’s certainly not for me. Sure, I’m excited for the improvement to my overall quality of life months down the road, but there’s still a long way to go for that. I’m not exactly going to get to enjoy having a vagina for a while, ya know? Realistically, I’m just trying to deal with the fact that I’ve never had surgery before or been under general anesthesia and it’s kind of a scary thing. And I can’t run for a while so it’s going be full-on CRAZY AMY UP IN HUR!

It just sort of feels like the world is still stuck on this idea that when people transition, surgery is the ultimate goal and that all trans people want this. “Now you’re really a woman.” Not really. Diving into an actual discussion about this is a whole separate topic that many posts could be written about–and much more seriously than this disaster right here. But, quickly, not all trans people want to have surgery. Everyone transitions differently and in a way that feels right for them and is within their economic/life/work/whatever means. And the goal of transition is simply to be able to live life as yourself. Surgery, if part of that at all, is just a step to enable that end.

So yeah, I’m really not excited about it. It’s kind of like having a busted car sitting in your driveway for a long time and then finally having the money to get it fixed. You’re not excited to fork over the money and take it to the mechanic, but it’ll be really nice when you have it back and can go about your life again.

Anyway, this isn’t meant to call anyone out or whatever. I’m not mad at anyone or anything. If you’ve said this to me, it’s cool. We’re cool. I just kinda…have had this on my mind for a while now. And I do appreciate all the great support I’ve gotten and the countless people who have made it really clear they want to be there for me and help in whatever way they can during my recovery. That stuff is super awesome and I love you all.

And now the whole internet knows about my junk ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

* I wasn’t actually a man, ever, so I can’t turn “back into one.”  Trans women have always been women, even before transition. This is just my personal shorthand for “the changes from HRT that make my body and mind feel more in line with who I am are quickly being undone and now my body is growing hair again and my face is starting to look weird and fuck.”

** Also, let me just drop in here this whole thing is based on how I feel and should not be taken as representative of all trans people.

18 Comments

  1. Been following your blog for a year. Yeah major surgery is scary. And bring to correct ANYTHING is scary. Hang in there, in a few months (not much vs a lifetime) and you’ll feel better. Most of my friends who’ve had the surgery felt like you did at one point or another. Good luck, take care of yourself and don’t worry… Cats are VERY self sufficient 🙂

  2. I had figured out what was happening but didn’t feel like congrats was right – I’m glad I went with my gut. I wish you health and happiness, in getting through the pre-surgery, the surgery, and the recovery. I’m just a random internet stranger, but if there’s anything a random internet stranger can do…I’m happy to help!

  3. WOOT! So happy for you, lady! I’m proud of you for doing what you need to achieve peak happy Amelia 😸

  4. Sending you good thoughts and hopes for active recovery.

    I’ve been put under twice and I cried right up until I passed out. And it wasn’t even that serious. Surgery is scary. Hang in there.

  5. I hope that everything goes well with surgery and recovery, sending lots of positive thoughts your way. I know you have lots of support behind you! I’m sure there is an incredible amount of mental energy and effort that goes into preparing for it all, good for you for acknowledging it and keeping it real that it isn’t all rainbows.

  6. I am not sure how I stumbled upon your blog (Other than I am questioning transitioning myself and I like running) but I wanted to thank you for a wonderfully written blog. I have been reading a lot of it and wish you success as you continue your journey.

  7. You will be exactly as much of a lady as you were before, but now it won’t hurt as much if you, like, ride a horse or climb a fence or something, probably. Good luck with the surgery & the not-running, & thanks a lot for making my taco dinner feel real awkward.

  8. Good luck with surgery! It’s definitely a whole roller coaster from happy to sad to terrified. Somewhere around 4-6 weeks post op things start to get much better 🙂

    Don’t stress about how it looks or feels for the first couple months. It kind of slowly goes from fresh wound to new genitals over the course of time and healing.

    I was able to slowly pick up running again right around the 6 week mark.

    • Thanks! I’m at four weeks now and really, really itching to get back to running. Definitely have my fingers crossed that I’ll be able to in two weeks!

  9. Wishing you speedy healing and lots of calming thoughts. I think you explained your emotions really well. No one is excited for surgery ever. You’re excited for all of it to be over so you can go on with your life, sure, but not to actually HAVE surgery. Good luck!

  10. Ya know, when I first read this I expected to be excited for surgery. Three months ago I WAS excited for surgery. Today, I understand completely; I just want it over and done with. That said, your posts on the topic have been invaluable in removing some of the mystery of what to expect and keeping my anxiety about the whole thing at a (mostly) manageable level. Thank you!

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