It is hard to believe that 10 years ago, at this moment, I was unconscious on an operating table with Dr. Ousterhout rearranging my face. While it cost a huge chunk of money and took months to fully recover, it was one hell of an investment.
I'm not saying transition would have been any better or worse without it; it just made it different. Almost everyone at work still knew my past, so it's not like they all thought I was a genetic girl. They didn't.
The thing I heard years later, though, was that everyone noticed how much happier I was after transition.
They were right. I was finally me.
I was 33 when I had FFS. I'm 43 now. Since then, I've had a number of girlfriends: E, S, B, and now C. I lost my mom, but I gained another nephew. I've been laid off from my old company after a merger and I now work at one of my former competitors. Some people from my old company work at my new company, so I haven't totally disappeared off the radar. I'm also not sure if any of the stories of where I used to work have made it over to where I work now since I still have many of the same contacts that I had before. Luckily, most people don't seem to care.
I feel older now. Back then, I felt like I still had a lot of my youth, but now I can feel it slowly starting to fade away. I have a lot of gray hair and my wrinkles are starting to become more prominent. I'm told that I look younger than my age, but some of that could be due to a youthful nature or, as my sister would swear, due to the mini-facelift from FFS.
The past 10 years as a woman, in comparison to the first 33 as a man, provide a different perspective. As I watch my two nephews grow up (one is 7 and the other just turned 11), I realize just how much of a boy or man that I wasn't. They play rough and they do silly things that my family says boys do. I don't remember doing many of those things, but maybe it has been so long since I was a kid that I forgot what I did back then. Besides studying my ass off, I seem to remember being more interested in riding my bike and hanging out at the local kickball game than anything else.
I saw an old friend this weekend and mentioned to her that it has been 10 years.
"Has it been that long," she asked.
Time flies. The past 10 years have moved fast when viewed in the grander scale, but slow when viewed on a day by day basis. And, it's funny. I just calculated the cost of my FFS if spread out over 10 years. $11.50. That's no interest, of course, but it's interesting to see the cost spread out as such. It's not so much when spread out like that.
And, there are still lingering affects from FFS. The feeling on top of my head is about 70-80% there. The same with the four front teeth on the bottom. I can feel a few of the screws that held my chin in place and the scar along the bottom of my mouth still feels tight once in a while. (He went in twice...once to fix a bump that I had.) I still have a small bump on my nose, too. I had implants on the hairline to hide the incision, and have been wearing my hair back for a few years.
So, while there are ups and downs, it's still been worth every penny.