Author Topic: Stopping in to say, "Hello".  (Read 527 times)

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Offline SassyCassie

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Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« on: January 02, 2018, 10:50:20 pm »
Hello, everyone. I'm Cassie. I signed up for the forum a while back (late 2015 or early 2016, I think) but never really did anything on here beyond reading some of the posts. I wasn't sure where to begin and had had a lot on my mind at the time.

I'm not sure how detailed I should get here, so I'll just let the words flow and see where I end up.

I'm trans - MTF. I started HRT back in November of 2016 and started seeing a therapist in January who confirmed what I was almost sure of beyond the slight sliver of a doubt - that I hit most of the signs of gender dysphoria.

On the day of that first therapy session, I was terrified. I wasn't terrified that he was going to tell me that I was, in fact, transgender but that he would tell me that I'm not - that all of this was some variant of the garden-variety mid-life crisis, albeit one that didn't involve a Corvette and a girlfriend on the side. Unlike what seemed to me at the time to be the majority of trans folks, I didn't know the truth about myself from an early age. I just grew up with an underlying feeling of "wrongness" - born of which was an underlying depression that would taint nearly every aspect of my life and personality. It was a feeling that for every high point in life, a payment in the form of an exceedingly low moment would inevitably be exacted from me. Not a nice place to spend decades of ones life, as I'm sure many here can relate.

About 20 years ago, I had heard of folks who, at the time, were referred to by the term "transsexual", who were shifting from male to female and living successfully in their new gender. I had had no idea that there were FTM transgender folks until much, much later. The thought crossed my mind about doing that myself but I was unable to conceive of any world in which I could possibly make a life for myself as a woman. That was a sure indicator of the lack of confidence I used to have.

Going forward to the middle of 2016, I was very overweight, which I had been for most of my life - not caring at all about the body I never should have had in the first place. My doctor had been telling me that I needed to lose just over 1/3 of the weight I was carrying around back then. It was around June of 2016 that I started to think seriously about seeking medically-supervised transition. That's what drove me to get up and start walking. At the time, I didn't know whether I truly was going to go forward with everything but even the possibility was a strong enough motivator. I did a lot of walking during my lunch breaks at work. I walked with a backpack slung over my shoulders, containing food, water, and a small gas stove so I could get to where I was going, cook and eat lunch, and walk back. Each day, that walk had a purpose above and beyond just exercise. They were mini-getaways from the drudgery of the workplace. Sometimes, I would have my little cookout in a quiet forest under the shade of the oak canopy. Other days, I'd sit on a bench by the cypress trees and watch the boats pass back and forth on the lake.

Over time, I started to see some improvement - my pace increased, I was no longer running out of breath while walking those miles. Bit by bit, the weight started coming off. After the first 10 pounds I had lost, I started throwing extra things in the backpack to add that weight back on and burn more calories. First, it was my laptop. Next, a full 3-liter water bladder. It started to get ridiculous when I was contemplating throwing in the old brake rotors from my truck. That's where I drew the line, but the whole time I was telling myself, "You can do this, girl, you can do it."

Back then, I wasn't accustomed to thinking of myself with feminine terms, but it did seem comforting in a way. I knew that even if I decided against going forward with the transition process that this exercise and weight loss would still do me a world of good.

During this whole period which lasted about 14 months, I became more and more sure that I was going to transition - that I *could* do this and that I *needed* to do it. My mind was made up and my heart set on its course.

While I was undergoing this self-imposed weight loss program, I started making some subtle changes. I gradually pushed my personal style toward the feminine side, in the way I dressed, what I did with my hair, and the mannerisms I presented to the world. All of that took surprisingly little effort, thus further reinforcing the notion that I had made the right choice.

In the middle of December of 2016, I had made up my mind as to what I needed to do. I held off on coming out to my wife and telling her everything until a few days after the 25th. I knew how a lot of relationships end up when one partner comes out as trans and I was afraid that it might be our last Christmas together. On December 28, 2016, I sat down with her and told her everything. She listened quietly and took it all in, saying only, "Well, if that's who you really are..."

After two days to process it all, she fired back at me with both barrels. I had never, in the over twenty years I knew her, seen her this angry. She said she felt betrayed and like the rug was just pulled out from under her, that she had wanted a husband, not a wife - in hindsight, all perfectly reasonable feelings, given the situation. That was the beginning of the end of our marriage - the prophecy was being fulfilled right before my tear-filled eyes.

In the following weeks, I came out to my closest friends, then the friends with whom I worked. I gave each and every one of them "the chat" as I'd come to call it - usually after a nice lunch when everyone is calm and mellow. My preamble would go something like, "In the last several months, you may have noticed some...differences about me..." So it went, up until the point I thought I was ready to take the next great leap and talk to the managers at my job. I started out with my department's director with whom I had been friends for quite a few years. Oddly enough, things worked out that the day I ended up doing this was on the Transgender Day of Visibility 2017. I thought it apropos since I was setting myself up to be *very* visible at that point. After having spent most of the afternoon up and down in a bucket truck, he and I went to a local pizza place. We sat down at the bar with pints in hand and I poured my heart out to him. I told him my story and that I love my job and the people I work with and wanted to transition on the job.

That evening, we fleshed out the framework of a plan, building upon the hours of research I had done on how best to do this right so that it would make a positive impact on both my future and the future of any other trans folks who might be waiting in the wings for just the right time to begin their own journey. With the plan set in motion, the next stop was the HR Manager's office where I heard some of the scariest words I had ever heard while sitting at a conference table - "Well, it's your meeting," as they looked expectantly in my direction.

A mere 90 days later, I showed up to work for the first time as Cassandra. I finally got to share with my work family, my true self which I had been showing to the outside world for several months. I also finally and for the first time ever, got to be only one person. That day was July 3rd - *my* Independence Day, and one of the happiest days of my life!

Several weeks afterward, I had hit my goal weight, having lost a full 100 pounds since June of the previous year. People who hadn't seen me in a while didn't even recognize me. One woman, our nurse coach, started to introduce herself to me as if I were a new employee which, in a way, was entirely accurate. It was a wonderful time, further magnified by by the new compounds coursing through my body, driving the programmed changes to cells all over, awakening bits that had been dormant for decades and indeed go unused in the body of most people assigned male at birth. Life had its ups and downs but it had become *so many* more ups than downs.

I was finally starting to be at peace with myself and in fact, I really started to like myself, for the first time in longer than I can remember. Everything was going so well, it went beyond my wildest dreams and for the most part, it still is. I'm getting around to starting to celebrate one-year anniversaries for some of these events and I hope to see many more in the future.

I'm glad I stuck around to live in this wondrous, joy-filled future which had never looked brighter than it does today.
Accepted the truth about myself: June 2016
Started HRT: November 2016
Went full-time: July 3, 2017 (My Independence Day)
Name change: TBD
GCS: TBD

Offline Steph2.0

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2018, 11:19:55 pm »
I'm glad I stuck around to live in this wondrous, joy-filled future which had never looked brighter than it does today.

Hi Cassie, and welcome back! I hope being here doesn't eat up too much of your time. For me it has become a bit of an obsession to keep my personal thread updated. It serves as a sort of journal, and I try to make it a warm place for my friends to hang out. It would be cool if you did the same.

Full disclosure: I met Cassie in person back in September, and since then we have become very close friends, to the point where we have pretty much adopted each other as sisters. So I expect you all to treat her as well as you treat me.

Ummm, no... Instead of that, treat her nicely. Especially you, Laurie. I'm watching you, and I still have that hatchet somewhere. I think I left it on top of the fridge.

Stephanie


Assigned male at birth 1958 * Began envying sister 1963 * Knew unquestioningly that I was female 1968 * Acted the male part for 50 years * Meltdown and first therapist session May 2017 * Began HRT 6/21/17 * Out to the world 10/13/17 * Name Change 12/11/2017 * GCS Consultation at Mt. Sinai 3/16/2018

Offline V M

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2018, 11:46:28 pm »
Hi Cassie  :icon_wave:

Welcome to Susan's Place  :)  Glad to have you here, join on in the fun

Here are some links to the site rules and stuff that we offer to all new members to help them along


Things that you should read

Hugs

V M
The main things to remember in life are Love, Kindness, Understanding and Respect - Always make forward progress

Superficial fanny kissing friends are a dime a dozen, a TRUE FRIEND however is PRICELESS

 
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Offline Roll

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2018, 12:03:01 am »
Hiya Cassie!!

A lot of your story resonated strongly with me! Particularly with weight and then weight loss. Still trying desperately to fix that mistake.  :-X
- Ellie

8/30/17 - First Therapy! The road begins in earnest.
10/20/17 - First coming out (to my father)!
12/16/17 - BEGAN HRT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
2/7/18 - Began laser on face!
2/9/18 - Two more down! 99% out to family and friends!

If existence itself had a narrator, I'm pretty sure it would be voiced by Christopher Walken. You know, kind of crazy and terrifying, while also being charming and fun?


Offline Cassi

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2018, 12:05:17 am »
Me too!  Also, want to check my ticker to see if it zeroed out before I go to bed.

Sweet Dreams everyone!

Offline Steph2.0

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2018, 12:08:38 am »
Me too!  Also, want to check my ticker to see if it zeroed out before I go to bed.

And we have liftoff! Congrats, Cali!


Assigned male at birth 1958 * Began envying sister 1963 * Knew unquestioningly that I was female 1968 * Acted the male part for 50 years * Meltdown and first therapist session May 2017 * Began HRT 6/21/17 * Out to the world 10/13/17 * Name Change 12/11/2017 * GCS Consultation at Mt. Sinai 3/16/2018

Offline Cassi

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2018, 08:21:01 am »
 :D

Offline SassyCassie

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #7 on: January 03, 2018, 03:26:44 pm »
Hi Cassie, and welcome back! I hope being here doesn't eat up too much of your time.

Hey Steph! Thanks for the endorsement to the rest of the folks on here. I hope I didn't get too long-winded (long-keyboarded?) with that post.

I may just have to do what you suggested and start up a journal post like yours but with so much to share, I think I'd go a bit beyond eating up too much time. I've read the things you've shared with me and it truly seems like time well spent. I'm getting a bit better at managing what free time I have so I hopefully won't disappoint.

I haven't been an active participant on a forum in many years, so I'll ask everyone to kindly bear with me as I get my forum legs back under me, and I will do my level best to not run afoul of the rules here.
Accepted the truth about myself: June 2016
Started HRT: November 2016
Went full-time: July 3, 2017 (My Independence Day)
Name change: TBD
GCS: TBD

Offline SassyCassie

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2018, 05:25:19 am »
Oh, just as a general question with regard to the aforementioned journal posts - I am already a year into my transition (and a lot has happened in that time), so I can't necessarily offer a periodic update on my progress in realtime - that is until I catch up to realtime.

I do have a number of entries I had been keeping in a journal app on my tablet for most of that period. If permissible, I'd like to post them on this forum. When I wrote those things, they were very private and personal and, most importantly, kept carefully hidden...at first. One or two, I've shared on Facebook but the rest has remained locked away. At this point, I think I'm ready to share them with a wider audience if that is okay.
Accepted the truth about myself: June 2016
Started HRT: November 2016
Went full-time: July 3, 2017 (My Independence Day)
Name change: TBD
GCS: TBD

Offline SassyCassie

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2018, 05:38:52 am »
Hi Cassie  :icon_wave:

Welcome to Susan's Place  :)  Glad to have you here, join on in the fun

Hi VM,

Thank you for the welcome and for the helpful information!
Accepted the truth about myself: June 2016
Started HRT: November 2016
Went full-time: July 3, 2017 (My Independence Day)
Name change: TBD
GCS: TBD

Offline Steph2.0

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2018, 08:51:48 am »
Oh, just as a general question with regard to the aforementioned journal posts - I am already a year into my transition (and a lot has happened in that time), so I can't necessarily offer a periodic update on my progress in realtime - that is until I catch up to realtime.

I do have a number of entries I had been keeping in a journal app on my tablet for most of that period. If permissible, I'd like to post them on this forum. When I wrote those things, they were very private and personal and, most importantly, kept carefully hidden...at first. One or two, I've shared on Facebook but the rest has remained locked away. At this point, I think I'm ready to share them with a wider audience if that is okay.

Cassie,

I say just do it. Go on over to Community Conversation > Transitioning and start a new topic just for yourself. And show the rest of the gang the mean writing skillz I know you have. I know you pretty well now, sister, but heck, we’ve only been hanging out since September. I’m sure there’s dirt you haven’t told me about, and I love the way you write about it anyway.

So... Rhode Island is neither a road or an island. Discuss...


 - Stephanie


Assigned male at birth 1958 * Began envying sister 1963 * Knew unquestioningly that I was female 1968 * Acted the male part for 50 years * Meltdown and first therapist session May 2017 * Began HRT 6/21/17 * Out to the world 10/13/17 * Name Change 12/11/2017 * GCS Consultation at Mt. Sinai 3/16/2018

Offline Laurie

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #11 on: January 08, 2018, 02:52:36 pm »
 Ohhhh You're THAT Cassie!

  I'm Laurie, yes THAT Laurie. You have no doubt heard Stephanie tell a few fibs about. Please don't listen to those because as you have probably guessed as you have gotten to know her she ummm like to stretch the truth and embellish things a bit. I'm sure she has painted a pretty unflattering picture of me.
  Well it would seem you started HRT about the times I discovered this term gender dysphoria and found that it answered the question I had had since I was a kid. What the hell is wrong with me? I started HRT the next month on Dec 4th. So we are pretty close in that aspect.
  From the sound of things I've read in Stephanie's thread she has become quite attached to you and I can only urge caution in your dealings with her. She is prone to wild swings with her thoughts and emotions. Everything from almost normal to drama queen. But then I have found this to be quite normal for us  as the estradiol dosing sets in. But I do think she had a big head start on the aforementioned instability.
  Sorry for the late welcome. I try to read as many posts as I can but I do miss some for various reasons. Mostly due to getting wrapped up feeling sorry for myself. Sorry, my bad. Anywho I am glad you have decided to come out of the shadows to keep an eye on Stephanie. Remember if she get out of hand just use the "Report to moderator" button and we will rein her back in.  Glad you are here, Cassie.

Hugs,
  Laurie
 
Hi, I'm Laurie
“Sit with me, and I'll not be alone. Hold my hand, and I'll not feel alone. Cry with me, and I'll no longer suffer alone.” ― Richelle E. Goodrich,

Dec   4, 2016 Started estradiol and spironolactone
May 18, 2017 started electrolysis
May 20, 2017 doubled estradiol
Jun  26, 2017 Last day in male attire That's full time I guess
Aug 26, 2017 another increase in estradiol




Offline Steph2.0

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #12 on: January 08, 2018, 03:03:07 pm »
I'm Laurie, yes THAT Laurie. You have no doubt heard Stephanie tell a few fibs about. Please don't listen to those because as you have probably guessed as you have gotten to know her she ummm like to stretch the truth and embellish things a bit. I'm sure she has painted a pretty unflattering picture of me.

From the sound of things I've read in Stephanie's thread she has become quite attached to you and I can only urge caution in your dealings with her. She is prone to wild swings with her thoughts and emotions. Everything from almost normal to drama queen. But then I have found this to be quite normal for us  as the estradiol dosing sets in. But I do think she had a big head start on the aforementioned instability.

Anywho I am glad you have decided to come out of the shadows to keep an eye on Stephanie. Remember if she get out of hand just use the "Report to moderator" button and we will rein her back in.  Glad you are here, Cassie.

Hey, I resemble that remark! I only tell vicious truths. Besides, how much damage can I do from up here on the fridge?

YouKnowWho, the Drama Queen


Assigned male at birth 1958 * Began envying sister 1963 * Knew unquestioningly that I was female 1968 * Acted the male part for 50 years * Meltdown and first therapist session May 2017 * Began HRT 6/21/17 * Out to the world 10/13/17 * Name Change 12/11/2017 * GCS Consultation at Mt. Sinai 3/16/2018

Offline Roll

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #13 on: January 08, 2018, 04:06:46 pm »
So... Rhode Island is neither a road or an island. Discuss...

And a peanut is neither a pea nor a nut.








... Oh wait, it is a nut.


(Confession, I blatantly stole that from the Jon Lovitz series The Critic.)
- Ellie

8/30/17 - First Therapy! The road begins in earnest.
10/20/17 - First coming out (to my father)!
12/16/17 - BEGAN HRT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
2/7/18 - Began laser on face!
2/9/18 - Two more down! 99% out to family and friends!

If existence itself had a narrator, I'm pretty sure it would be voiced by Christopher Walken. You know, kind of crazy and terrifying, while also being charming and fun?


Offline SassyCassie

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #14 on: January 08, 2018, 04:11:43 pm »
Ohhhh You're THAT Cassie!

Well, it's been a while since ive been referred to in quite that way.  ;D
I didn't know I had a reputation already.

Well it would seem you started HRT about the times I discovered this term gender dysphoria and found that it answered the question I had had since I was a kid. What the hell is wrong with me? I started HRT the next month on Dec 4th. So we are pretty close in that aspect.
  From the sound of things I've read in Stephanie's thread she has become quite attached to you and I can only urge caution in your dealings with her. She is prone to wild swings with her thoughts and emotions. Everything from almost normal to drama queen. But then I have found this to be quite normal for us  as the estradiol dosing sets in. But I do think she had a big head start on the aforementioned instability.

Yes, we are pretty close in that regard and trust me, I am quite familiar with the mood swings. I'm still getting used to "riding that dragon" but since Steph and I are both experiencing a lot of the same feelings at different times, we've taken to leaning on each other when necessary. It definitely helps.

Belated as it may be, thank you for the welcome!
Accepted the truth about myself: June 2016
Started HRT: November 2016
Went full-time: July 3, 2017 (My Independence Day)
Name change: TBD
GCS: TBD

Offline SassyCassie

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #15 on: January 08, 2018, 04:22:20 pm »
I say just do it. Go on over to Community Conversation > Transitioning and start a new topic just for yourself. And show the rest of the gang the mean writing skillz I know you have. I know you pretty well now, sister, but heck, we’ve only been hanging out since September. I’m sure there’s dirt you haven’t told me about, and I love the way you write about it anyway.

Just do it? Are you encouraging me to post or trying to sell me shoes? :D

You're right, there's quite a bit of stuff in there that I haven't shared. I was reading through my old entries last night to make sure it would be appropriate to share. I will have to remove some of the particulars of my HRT, of course, but I think it's all a good representation of the "more ups than downs" I've experienced over the past year.

As a bonus,I found a SQUEEEE! moment fairly early on, but I'm not gonna tell you - I'm not gonna tell you - I'm not gonna tell you!
Accepted the truth about myself: June 2016
Started HRT: November 2016
Went full-time: July 3, 2017 (My Independence Day)
Name change: TBD
GCS: TBD

Offline Steph2.0

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #16 on: January 08, 2018, 04:26:44 pm »
Aaghh! Tell me tell me tell me!!


Assigned male at birth 1958 * Began envying sister 1963 * Knew unquestioningly that I was female 1968 * Acted the male part for 50 years * Meltdown and first therapist session May 2017 * Began HRT 6/21/17 * Out to the world 10/13/17 * Name Change 12/11/2017 * GCS Consultation at Mt. Sinai 3/16/2018

Offline Laurie

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Re: Stopping in to say, "Hello".
« Reply #17 on: January 08, 2018, 04:47:45 pm »
Just do it? Are you encouraging me to post or trying to sell me shoes? :D

You're right, there's quite a bit of stuff in there that I haven't shared. I was reading through my old entries last night to make sure it would be appropriate to share. I will have to remove some of the particulars of my HRT, of course, but I think it's all a good representation of the "more ups than downs" I've experienced over the past year.

As a bonus,I found a SQUEEEE! moment fairly early on, but I'm not gonna tell you - I'm not gonna tell you - I'm not gonna tell you!

  Hi again Cassie remember me? I'm Laurie. (puts on her mod bonnet) I meant to address your personal thread on my last post. Yes you are welcome to make a thread as some little squirt suggested. (I wonder how she got the idea...) I would suggest you break up your past adventures into short segment rather than  walls of text like some short <expletive deleted> is probe to do. We like and want to hear your story but long post get less attention a lot of times. Remember us working folk here are supposed to read everything posted.
( removes bonnet)

   That said don't believe a thing she tells you about me.

Hugs,
   Laurie
Hi, I'm Laurie
“Sit with me, and I'll not be alone. Hold my hand, and I'll not feel alone. Cry with me, and I'll no longer suffer alone.” ― Richelle E. Goodrich,

Dec   4, 2016 Started estradiol and spironolactone
May 18, 2017 started electrolysis
May 20, 2017 doubled estradiol
Jun  26, 2017 Last day in male attire That's full time I guess
Aug 26, 2017 another increase in estradiol




Offline SassyCassie

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Re: Stopping in to say, &quot;Hello&quot;.
« Reply #18 on: January 10, 2018, 12:38:50 pm »
Yes you are welcome to make a thread as some little squirt suggested. (I wonder how she got the idea...) I would suggest you break up your past adventures into short segment rather than  walls of text...

I did try to structure the posts like that - broken up by days. One of those where I wrote multiple things one evening, they got a lot more wordy than I originally realized. In the future, I'll just break up those longer ones.

   That said don't believe a thing she tells you about me.

No worries, Laurie. Thanks for the follow-up on my question.

Back when I first got my ham radio license, a friend of mine teased me about "eavesdropping on people's conversations". I told him that it's amazing how much you can learn if you just sit quietly and listen.
Accepted the truth about myself: June 2016
Started HRT: November 2016
Went full-time: July 3, 2017 (My Independence Day)
Name change: TBD
GCS: TBD

Offline Jayne01

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Re: Stopping in to say, &quot;Hello&quot;.
« Reply #19 on: January 11, 2018, 10:30:48 pm »
Hi again Cassie. It’s Jayne, I introduced myself to you in your journal thread. I thought I should also say hi in your introduction thread. Steph also inspired me to start my own journal thread. She seems to have that kind of influence, even when she hangs out at the top of a fridge eating Stormchips. Thank you for sharing your story. I for one can say that I relate very closely to much of what you have said so far.

Jayne



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