Author Topic: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021  (Read 4318 times)

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Offline Jane.Shannon

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #20 on: February 01, 2021, 06:47:39 am »
Sarah,
It feels me with joy to hear you are bored!  Some people in life really need long, boring days.  Emergency room nurses, tow truck drivers, police officers, and patients recovering from surgery to name a few.  Please keep us updated.
Jane
June 2021: Orchiectomy
July 2020: Full Time
Aug 2019: Started HRT
Dec 2019: Hair Feminization Surgery

Offline sarahc

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #21 on: February 01, 2021, 07:27:29 am »
Things are going to be more exciting these next two days. A gaggle of residents came in this morning and took off my wound vac. A few minutes later, the surgeon came in and she said everything looked good. Definitely some strange feelings when the surgeon was poking around with her fingers down there! Later on, the nurse remarked that swelling was minimal.

Later today, the catheter comes out, and I have to pee a couple of times on my own. Then tomorrow: unpacking, first dilation, and discharge. Hopefully the streets in New York will be cleared by then. The mayor just banned traffic in New York for all day today because of the blizzard...my normally nice view of the East River from the hospital room is now a white blur.

Feeling pretty good today. Pain is minimal, stomach feels less queasy. Things are on track.

Sarah
----
48 years young.
Known that I am trans since...forever.
First therapy session / decided to transition / hair removal: October 2018
HRT: January 2019 (journal https://www.susans.org/forums/index.phpVF/topic,244009.0.html)
VFS: September 2019; three-month report here
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FFS: August 2020
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Offline Megan.

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #22 on: February 01, 2021, 07:45:48 am »


Things are going to be more exciting these next two days. A gaggle of residents came in this morning and took off my wound vac. A few minutes later, the surgeon came in and she said everything looked good. Definitely some strange feelings when the surgeon was poking around with her fingers down there! Later on, the nurse remarked that swelling was minimal.

Later today, the catheter comes out, and I have to pee a couple of times on my own. Then tomorrow: unpacking, first dilation, and discharge. Hopefully the streets in New York will be cleared by then. The mayor just banned traffic in New York for all day today because of the blizzard...my normally nice view of the East River from the hospital room is now a white blur.

Feeling pretty good today. Pain is minimal, stomach feels less queasy. Things are on track.

Sarah

Everything sounds good. If the doctor and nurse are happy you can relax.

My catheter removal was a nothing event tbh, I hope yours is too.

That first dilation is an interesting event, just follow the nurses advice, and ask any questions or for help if you need. X

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"Life is a travelling to the edge of knowledge, then a leap taken." - D. H. Lawrence

Offline Devlyn

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #23 on: February 01, 2021, 07:55:14 am »
Glad it's going well, Sarah!

Hugs, Devlyn
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Offline Rakel

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #24 on: February 01, 2021, 07:29:08 pm »
Sarahc,

Thank you for your positive report. Your surgeons did their part. Now, the rest is up to you. Keep this area clean and dilate religiously.  ;)

You will be glad you did.  :-*





_______________________________________________________________

Retired Pharmacist with over 40 years experience in Hospital and Retail Pharmacies.
I still keep my professional licence active and in good standing.


Offline sarahc

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #25 on: February 02, 2021, 12:39:57 pm »
Discharge Day! Busy morning with unpacking and first dilation. It appears that the surgical outcome is going to be very good. Swelling appears to be relatively low. Although early, I like the aesthetics. And I achieved very good width and depth this morning during my supervised dilations. I’ll likely lose a bit of that in the coming days, but it will still be a very good baseline from which to work. Pain when lying down is minimal.

In addition, I was very happy with the nursing care at NYU-Langone. The nurses were all very well trained in supporting transgender patients. The only black mark I had against the care was the food.

I’m now back at the Airbnb and still digesting what took place. But life has definitely changed.

Sarah
----
48 years young.
Known that I am trans since...forever.
First therapy session / decided to transition / hair removal: October 2018
HRT: January 2019 (journal https://www.susans.org/forums/index.phpVF/topic,244009.0.html)
VFS: September 2019; three-month report here
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Offline Megan.

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #26 on: February 02, 2021, 12:51:58 pm »
Discharge Day! Busy morning with unpacking and first dilation. It appears that the surgical outcome is going to be very good. Swelling appears to be relatively low. Although early, I like the aesthetics. And I achieved very good width and depth this morning during my supervised dilations. I’ll likely lose a bit of that in the coming days, but it will still be a very good baseline from which to work. Pain when lying down is minimal.

In addition, I was very happy with the nursing care at NYU-Langone. The nurses were all very well trained in supporting transgender patients. The only black mark I had against the care was the food.

I’m now back at the Airbnb and still digesting what took place. But life has definitely changed.

Sarah
Yay! That's a big step, give yourself a big hug. X

Rest, rest, rest... and dilate... and move regularly.... and stay hydrated.... and get good nutrition.

Happy healing. X

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"Life is a travelling to the edge of knowledge, then a leap taken." - D. H. Lawrence

Offline mm

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #27 on: February 02, 2021, 01:39:38 pm »
good to hear you are doing well, rest and dilate as you have been instructed.

Offline sarahc

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #28 on: February 04, 2021, 02:23:19 pm »
THE ROAD TO 168 BEGINS!

I’ve been home from the hospital for two days now, and so far, so good. Obviously it’s a huge relief just to be out of the hospital, even if I’m not yet back home. No annoying blood pressure checks at 2am in the morning, etc.

Dr. Bluebond-Langner’s dilation regimen is in the more rigorous side. It’s 4x per day for the first six weeks, then dropping to 3x per day for the next six weeks. If you add all those up, that’s almost 300 dilations over the next 12 weeks.

That’s too daunting an interim goal for me to fathom. So I’m instead going to focus on getting through the next six weeks, making dilation priority #1 in my life for these next few weeks. So that’s 168 dilations over 42 days. Still a big number but it feels more reachable as a goal.

As of right now I have completed 8 dilations on my own, and so far everything is going smoothly. I know that things are likely to get more difficult in the coming weeks, not less so, as stitches stick out, granulation happens, things just get more raw down there, and other common complications appear. Things will be made more challenging given that I live a 3-hour train ride from New York, so I will not be able to hop over to my surgeon’s office right away to get sore spots treated quickly.

I will benefit from the fact that I have been provided an amazing baseline by the surgeon in terms of depth and width. I want to fiercely hold on to every bit of that that I can, even I have been told that I may end up losing up to an inch of depth (which isn’t a problem in my case).

So I am mentally consumed by dilation....8 down, 160 to go.

Sarah




« Last Edit: February 04, 2021, 09:42:02 pm by sarahc »
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Online Northern Star Girl

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #29 on: February 04, 2021, 02:36:54 pm »
@sarahc
Dear Sarah:
This big step of GCS is not a quick and easy task. I am certain that you already knew that.
It is a lot of time commitment, hard work, and following your doctor's orders....

....but all of that effort is going to be well worth it when you can finally wear your clothes
without embarassing bulges and you can freely change and shower in a women's locker room.

Thank you for sharing and posting.
I am wishing you well as you continue on!!!
HUGS   
Danielle
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Offline Megan.

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #30 on: February 04, 2021, 02:44:58 pm »
You've set a goal and have good expectations. Sounds like you're in the right place to succeed. We're all here rootin' for you. X

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"Life is a travelling to the edge of knowledge, then a leap taken." - D. H. Lawrence

Offline sarahc

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #31 on: February 06, 2021, 12:54:17 pm »
16 DOWN, 150 TO GO

So far, everything going smooth on the dilation regimen. Getting pretty close to full depth on the green consistently. It is starting to feel just a tad tighter at the opening than it was a couple of days ago, so I’m really focusing on the breathing tips to help me get through that initial stage.

In addition I’m really trying to keep maintaining depth at the tip of the dilator. Every five minutes into the dilation, I’ll concentrate and really try to push to make sure that I’m getting every last cm. I have a very good idea how far I need to go to the dilator to get to full depth, so I can tell by just feeling the dilator’s position if the dilator is slipping from its full-depth position.

Mentally, I’m still not “in the zone” of the routine, but it’s getting done.

I’m quickly getting stronger on the walking. Able to walk just about 1 mile before things start getting too irritated down there. Fatigue is not a problem...I’ve been eating well, and my energy levels are quickly rebuilding.

I’m not getting a lot of blood and other yucky stuff anymore on my maxi pad, so I may downsize to a regular pad and see if that’s sufficient.

My vagina still feels really foreign to me, and it feels weird exploring it. How long before it becomes one with your mind?

Sarah
----
48 years young.
Known that I am trans since...forever.
First therapy session / decided to transition / hair removal: October 2018
HRT: January 2019 (journal https://www.susans.org/forums/index.phpVF/topic,244009.0.html)
VFS: September 2019; three-month report here
Full-time: April 2020
FFS: August 2020
SRS: January 2021

Offline Megan.

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #32 on: February 06, 2021, 01:01:20 pm »
You're doing great!

"Feeling natural", came in stages for me, but at nearly 3 months, it certainly feels more like 'me' than a set of old bits anymore.

I spent a lot of time just gently massaging/stroking the area (Mons, inner thighs, etc...) for relaxation, blood flow - for healing, and to help my mind accept that's the right layout and location now.

Keep it up :-). X

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"Life is a travelling to the edge of knowledge, then a leap taken." - D. H. Lawrence

Offline sarahc

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #33 on: February 08, 2021, 06:50:16 pm »
25 DOWN, 143 TO GO

No updates on dilation. I continue to consistently achieve full depth with the green dilator. It is starting to feel just a little tighter towards the opening, but once I get past that spot it usually slides in most of the rest of the way fairly smoothly. I am concentrating a lot to maintain as much depth as possible.

In addition to follow up consultations with the surgeons, NYU-Langone also recommends a few physical therapy sessions to help with training your pelvic muscles. I had my first session today, and I found it moderately helpful. I’m going to do a couple more sessions more my departure from New York next week.

During my PT session, the therapist did take a look at the surgical site and felt that things were healing well.

Tomorrow, I have my first post-op appointment with the surgeons themselves. Given the relatively straightforward recovery process so far, I’m not expecting any drama from the appointment. The only question I will ask about is the direction of my urine stream. Other than that, everything seems to be going well.

Sarah
----
48 years young.
Known that I am trans since...forever.
First therapy session / decided to transition / hair removal: October 2018
HRT: January 2019 (journal https://www.susans.org/forums/index.phpVF/topic,244009.0.html)
VFS: September 2019; three-month report here
Full-time: April 2020
FFS: August 2020
SRS: January 2021

Offline sarahc

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #34 on: February 10, 2021, 06:16:36 am »
30 DOWN, 138 TO GO

I had my first follow-up appointment with the surgeon yesterday (Dr. Zhao). The surgeon said everything looked really good. We discussed a few issues:
* Frequent urination: I have been going to the bathroom about 8-9 times per day, including 2-3 times in the middle of the night. The surgeon said that because the bladder is moved as part of the surgery, the bladder can get too active for some patients. The symptoms should die down over the coming months.
* Direction of urine stream: My urine stream is essentially going too far backwards and it’s spraying my butt cheeks. Surgeon said that this is likely do to swelling. He did recommend that I do some massages of the surgical area to help with swelling. (The physical therapist had recommended the same thing.)
* Minor chafing: The surgeon did see some minor chafing around the vaginal opening and recommended a treatment to minimize that going forward.

Otherwise, no other issues on either his or my end.

Dilation continues to go well on the green dilator. It’s getting a little more difficult at the entrance but still pretty smooth going once the dilator is past the entrance.

Sarah
----
48 years young.
Known that I am trans since...forever.
First therapy session / decided to transition / hair removal: October 2018
HRT: January 2019 (journal https://www.susans.org/forums/index.phpVF/topic,244009.0.html)
VFS: September 2019; three-month report here
Full-time: April 2020
FFS: August 2020
SRS: January 2021

Offline KateR

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GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #35 on: February 10, 2021, 11:04:00 am »
Hi Sarah

Thanks for your updates.   It helps my spouse & I to know what I can expect this coming October.

I have a question about the dilation.

I've read that it's most difficult at the opening of the vagina.  Do the doctors allow the use of a lubricant, or is it plastic on swollen skin?


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Kate

Offline sarahc

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #36 on: February 10, 2021, 12:14:26 pm »
Not only is a lubricant allowed, it is mandated by the doctors. It must be a water-based lubricant. In my research, the two most popular lubricants used for dilation are Surgilube and Slippery Stuff. I have tried both and prefer Surgilube because it tends to dry out less once the dilator is in there, making extraction easier.

Sarah

Hi Sarah

Thanks for your updates.   It helps my spouse & I to know what I can expect this coming October.

I have a question about the dilation.

I've read that it's most difficult at the opening of the vagina.  Do the doctors allow the use of a lubricant, or is it plastic on swollen skin?


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----
48 years young.
Known that I am trans since...forever.
First therapy session / decided to transition / hair removal: October 2018
HRT: January 2019 (journal https://www.susans.org/forums/index.phpVF/topic,244009.0.html)
VFS: September 2019; three-month report here
Full-time: April 2020
FFS: August 2020
SRS: January 2021

Offline sarahc

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #37 on: February 12, 2021, 06:57:52 pm »
42 DOWN, 126 TO GO (25% Complete)

It’s been a week and a half since discharge, and I’ve mostly gotten into a rhythm with dilation. What hasn’t yet developed is getting into a rhythm with non-dilation time. From beginning to prep to cleaning up, it’s taking about 40 minutes to get through a dilation session start to finish, so that’s 2 hours and 40 minutes per day that’s sucked up from dilation. Add in 2-3 hours for doing daily chores and errands and that doesn’t leave a lot of time for trying to do productive things.

To which I’m sure you’re saying...”You are only two weeks post-surgery, and you need to be focused on healing.” I know, I know...

But I feel like I’m recovering faster than usual and should be able to get more productive work done. The reality is that between healing and not sleeping well at night because of the need to go to the bathroom 3 times at night, I’m not getting great rest. And hence I am mentally fatigued.

I’m getting used to the dilation routine. But I haven’t embraced the need to rest yet, even though my body is telling me that I need to focus on resting. Impatient me isn’t happy.

Sarah
----
48 years young.
Known that I am trans since...forever.
First therapy session / decided to transition / hair removal: October 2018
HRT: January 2019 (journal https://www.susans.org/forums/index.phpVF/topic,244009.0.html)
VFS: September 2019; three-month report here
Full-time: April 2020
FFS: August 2020
SRS: January 2021

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #38 on: February 12, 2021, 07:36:25 pm »
@sarahc
Dear Sarah:
I can fully understand your eagerness to get to your dilation goals....   
....in endeavors such as you are involved in, certainly some patience and pacing yourself may be in order.

The  "I want it all and I want it now"  mindset is going to be very tough on your body as it is desperately trying to heal from your surgery.
   
Please be careful and take care of yourself.
Keep sharing your updates as you feel comfortable doing.

HUGS and best wishes,
Danielle



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Things change re: ALASKAN DANIELLE
Positive Mindset... put away negativity

Started HRT:   March 2015
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Offline KateR

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Re: GCS, Bluebond-Langner / Zhao, January 2021
« Reply #39 on: February 12, 2021, 09:45:45 pm »
Hi Sarah:

First of all, I can empathize, sort of, with the disruption to your life that you’re working through.  My GSC with Dr. RBL and Dr. Zhao isn’t until October.  However, last May (after a Covid delay - Grrrr...), I did have an orchiectomy.  For a couple of weeks afterwards, I did have urinary issues.  You’ve got dilation on top of it.

So again, thank you for sharing.

I’m sharing your posts with my partner so we both know what to expect.

Thanks again!!!


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Kate

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