Adventure Time – Brighton day trip

On Thursday I took a pretty huge step, I went to Brighton for the day by train on my own.

I’ve always had anxiety about getting the train places, as I have a fear of getting lost. Which is probably a weird fear but that’s where my anxiety around travelling alone comes from.

I’ve been to Brighton before, with a friend for Pride. This was probably about 11/12 years ago now. I don’t remember much of the journey or even pride itself. It sucks that I don’t really remember this experience but I don’t remember a lot of experiences in my life.

I got my first train just gone 9 am, it was running late but I was feeling pretty relaxed. I had to change trains, which went smoothly and I got on the right one. I did ask the train guard if it was the train to Brighton before getting on, just to ease my anxieties.

Got into Brighton at 12:21 and man it was freezing! I didn’t really have a plan of where I was going or what I was doing. So I just started walking and followed the sign posts.

I hit some shops and the first one that drew me in was a crystal shop! haha I mean of course it was! But there were loads of them! There was so many awesome shops, such bright colours, such a lovely energy. I kinda felt at home, my anxieties disappeared and I just was in awe of the place. I spent the day walking around with my mouth wide open! lol.

I went down to the Pier and walked along it, went in the arcade, had a walk along the beach. I went to Franco Manca for lunch, they do the best sourdough pizza’s. It was nice sitting and having lunch on my own in a new town.

I headed home at 5pm feeling extremely proud of myself, I felt incredible! Like I could conquer anything. Even now a few days later, I’m still feeling really good about myself.

I’ve spent my life waiting on other people, always believing I wasn’t strong enough to do things on my own, or that I needed other people to help me. But I bloody did it, I proved myself wrong and I proved everyone else wrong.

I am strong, I am capable, I can do things! I am good enough.

I had the best day and I definitely intend on going back there. Maybe when its a bit warmer lol. I’m also intending on going to Brighton for this years Trans Pride. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for a while but just haven’t got round to going yet. But this year definitely feels like the year to go.

This is one of many adventures I plan on having this year!

Peace out

Zak

A day in the life of a trans guy – Top Surgery

I’ve not posted anything in a while, I always think I have to be ‘in the right mood’ in order to be able to write a good post, but I realised that was just me being lazy and procrastinating. I decided I just need to get over myself and WRITE! I enjoy writing, it always makes me feel better, so I’m not sure why I stop myself.

A lot has happened in the last 2 months, since my last post. The main big news is that I’ve finally had top surgery! I had it 5 weeks ago 20th August! Everything went really well, my scars and new nipples look amazing! I am beyond happy! I’m still having to wear a compression binder..Urgh! But hopefully another week longer and I’ll be free!

I have a check up on Thursday, as I have a clot of blood sat on my right side of the chest, that they just need to drain and hopefully after that I won’t need to go back again. Wearing the compression binder has been pretty brutal, as I’ve been wearing it for nearly 5 weeks straight. I’ve had a few days where I’ve taken it off and given my chest a break. My skin is a bit sore where the binder has been rubbing on my skin and my ribs on the left are a bit swollen and this is exactly why I didn’t wear a binder in the first place, because its just too painful, uncomfortable and hot.

I have had a handful of good friends who’ve been so great during this time, I was so grateful to have people take me to the hospital before my op, bring me home, friends looking after my fur babies and friends taking me back and forth for check up apps and a couple of people coming over. It was one of the things I was worried about but I got there and back and my fur babies were look after, those were the most important things. So that made things easier.

Recovery has been a bit more difficult, its been pretty lonely and boring. I think week 3 of recovery was when I went out on my own, as I was so bored and I just needed to get out and then I also took the dogs out for the day which was great but man did that put me on my ass for the next few days. I’ve been trying to walk and get out as much as I can to start building myself up again, but still gotta take it easy and there’s still things I’ve got to be careful doing. I can’t reach my arms over my head yet and I can’t lift anything heavy still either.

Just been trying to occupy my time with different things, reading, meditation, gaming, playing inside with the dogs, napping, Netflix, colouring in. I keep I suppose its disassociating and just sitting staring and hours pass by and I haven’t moved or done anything. I also keep getting bouts of really bad anxiety, like anxiety I’ve not experienced before, it’s been so bad that I can’t move, I can’t tolerate noise, I’m just frozen and I felt so exhausted. Some days I was able to push through and make myself get out of the house, even just to walk to dogs, but even that was a massive effort. So things haven’t all been great just because I’ve had surgery, like it doesn’t solve all the issues, that I previously was struggling with. I think loneliness and isolation has really made it worse, as usual. It sucks not being able to volunteer and not having the energy to be out as much as I would like to be. It has had a huge emotional toll and I still haven’t really processed it and I think that’s another reason I’ve put off writing, because it means I don’t have to empty my guts out onto a page and examine what the fucks going on in that crazy brain of mine. I suppose this could be the start of the process but who knows.

So yeah its not been all flowers and rainbows, its been hard. I think the first 2 weeks after surgery, I kept having moments of feeling so blissed out, which was incredible. But then like I said the issues I had already before surgery reared their ugly heads again. But I mean I’m ok, I’m just frustrated, I miss not being in a routine and just doing things, I miss volunteering and seeing people. Kinda feels like a bit of a step back with the isolation… but I mean yeah.. I’m sure that will get better once I can do stuff again.

Above are pictures of my hospital room, me before and after surgery. I’m pretty impressed with how incredibly well my body has healed so far. The body is an amazing thing! I’m so blessed not to have had any major complications and everything has gone relatively well.

Just before surgery I had to have a ultrasound scan of my womb, as I was coming up to two years on testosterone, so its something they do. Results came back to say the lining of my womb is still thick and it shouldn’t be, so gotta go to gynaecologist in Dec, not overly looking forward to that, but its good they are looking into what might be happening.

2 days after surgery was my 2 years on testosterone anniversary 22nd August! I can’t believe it! It’s gone so quickly! I look so different too! In spite of all the mental health stuff I have going on, I do feel better on a more spiritual level, I feel more me, I just feel right now, well getting there, but I do feel more comfortable being me. I’m sure as more time passes the better that will get. I’m so proud of how far I’ve come and I still have a way to go, but I’m finally on the road I want to be.

Well that’s all for now, I hope whoever read this, enjoys it.

Peace out,

Zak

Transition update – Week 37 on T

I’ve had a pretty good week this week, despite money still being tight and the uncertainty of being able to get through financially, I’m feeling fairly calm and quite positive.

The only changes really this week have been my voice is continuing to change which is really cool and still getting hairy everywhere. Tops of my thighs the hair is getting longer and darker and same with my chest and stomach. I’m fairly happy with my transition so far, my next testosterone injection is next Wednesday, so I’m looking forward to that as always.

I had a really good bank holiday weekend, I went to the beach with a friend where I was really brave. I spent the whole time sat in the vest top, binder and my boxers, because it was so hot I had to pretty much strip off, but I felt really confident and comfortable. No one said anything, no one was staring at me. It felt good to just be able to be myself and be comfortable sat out in the sun and enjoying it, rather then feeling anxious and uncomfortable.

So I’m super proud of myself for just accepting my body as it is and being able to just sit in my vest and boxers and being totally comfortable. Its definitely not something I would have done last summer.

I’ve made these steps by just doing them and not thinking to much about it. But I haven’t pushed myself, I’ve done these things like shaving, wearing my binder, wearing a vest top because they felt right and I felt good about it. I’ve not pushed myself at all, which is why I’ve been able to do these things with less stress and anxiety. Its also important to acknowledge these big steps and reward yourself and congratulate yourself. Its important to recognise the positive steps forward, so you have something to look back on when you’re struggling and when the gender dysphoria is bad.

It is possible to feel good about yourself and have gender dysphoria, there is hope!

Week 37 on T

^ This weeks picture

^ This weeks video

Peace out

Zak

Transition update – Week 35 on T

This week has been full of ups and downs but I’ve made some huge steps forward, which feels so awesome! I’m so proud of myself.

I’ll get the non transition stuff out of the way first. Its been a pretty hard week, I’ve had so much stuff to sort out and its been really difficult and overwhelming. Yesterday I wrote out a list of everything I needed to do and just went through it bit by bit sorting through everything. I felt so much better for it, I’ve still got a few things to do but I’ve made a good start. Things are slowly coming together, I’m still in the middle of sorting out my benefits and money is still really tight but hey I’m still here, still fighting.

Transition stuff has been pretty exciting this week and I’m really proud of myself. Last week it was quite hot for a couple of days, usually it makes me really anxious and makes me gender dysphoria really bad. But on this particular day I was feeling pretty good and confident so I wore my shorts out, which is the first time since starting testosterone. I had my hairy legs on show and I did feel a bit anxious while I was out but it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. The next day I went out for the day with friends and we went to the beach, again I wore my shorts but I was feeling a bit self conscious about my chest so I decided to try on my chest binder I bought a year or so ago. Its a high impact sports bra, but since I bought it I’ve lost weight, so it fits much better. After yesterday I was feeling really good and I decided to go out and wear my binder all day. It felt really comfortable and I felt less self conscious. I just felt good, I felt more like myself. I felt really confident, which is really weird for me. So yes big steps and I’m so proud of myself. Pics below are of my hairy legs in shorts and me in my binder.

I got my T shot tomorrow, I’m looking forward to that. Over all just feeling good, despite all the stuff I’ve got going on.

Week 35 on T

^ This weeks picture

^ This weeks video

That’s all for this week!

Peace out

Zak

Food Diary – I’m still trying

I keep seeing a advert on TV for Nana’s magic soup. It’s a tesco advert and I thought I’d give it a go. So yesterday I bought all the ingredients and came home and made it and again to my surprise it was really yum and fairly quick and easy to make as well. I had loads left over which, I’ve frozen so I can have in the week.

https://realfood.tesco.com/recipes/nanas-magic-soup.html

^ that’s the link for the recipe and how to cook it.

IMG_8076

^ Picture of the soup

I am trying really hard to try new food, it’s not very consistent and that’s mainly because of my mood. But yeah I am trying really hard to get on top of this food phobia thing.

Peace out

Batman

Food diary – Another update

Once again I’ve been a bit slack on a few things but I’ve been really struggling with disassociation and binge eating. I’ve been trying so hard to get on top of it all and I’ve been stressing out so much. Stressing out has been making everything worse and I’ve been eating so much until I feel so so sick and my thoughts and memories are so disorganised, disjointed and just strange and unreal.

The last few days I’ve been trying to get back on track with reading and meditating daily and I have felt a little more settled.

I was watching a TV show called This Morning and this lady was on and she was cooking Prawn and Chicken Jambalaya. I was sat thinking that it looked really nice, well apart from prawns as I don’t like them, so I decided that I was going to make it for dinner tonight.

I’ve been doing my food shopping as and when I need things, I was finding I was getting 2 weeks worth of shopping and not eating everything I bought and had a lot of wasted food. Even though shopping as and when takes up more time and energy, its a bit more cost effective as I’m not wasting food.

Today along with the chicken jambalaya, I also tried some green olives and I can safely say that I am not a fan! They were gross, even the dogs didn’t like them lol. But I am pleased I tried them.

So this evening I cooked the chicken jambalaya, it took me a little longer then the lady on TV said it should take lol but it turned out so well and I really really enjoyed it and I was mega surprised as well. Its not usually something I would eat, mainly because its a bit spicy but I am so pleased I just went for it and made it. I even have enough left for 2 more dinners, which is awesome.

This probably isn’t the most well written blogs I’ve ever done because I am struggling to organise my thoughts right now but I’ve tried my best. As usual I’m not going to say if I’ll try something new next week as I think that’s just a bit too much to ask from myself right now. My main goal is to keep on top of the binge eating because if I cannot do it alone I’m probably going to have to seek help because it cannot continue.

Peace out

Batman

Living my life to accommodate an illness I hate

I don’t know even where to start 1 because I am SO tired and 2 because I have scrappy doodles staring at me, which is kinda off putting. He wants to play but I’ve already played fetch since I got home earlier, he’s so damn cute it’s distracting lol!

Anyway since my last post I don’t feel much better but well enough to go out and see people. I hate being stuck in, I get so bored and when I get bored it really effects my mood and makes me feel low.

Friday I was getting extremely bored by around 3 pm, but I felt too tired and weak to go out and do anything. Sometimes when I feel tired I just don’t know what to do with myself and I find it hard to settle down to do anything at all. But I eventually decided on making cheese biscuits, it’s time consuming but has a tasty result. I enjoy it as well, I’ve always loved baking and cooking since I was small.

After I had made my cheese biscuits I then felt much more settled in myself, I was still really tired but less restless I suppose you can say. I then was able to sit down and play Lego Dimensions and I played for hours. I love this game so so much! Cannot get enough of it. I get totally sucked into the game and lose track of everything, it’s such a great distraction and I played all evening. Such a rock and roll Friday night lol!

Saturday was good, L and the boys came over, although it wasn’t such a happy start as Harvey has been extremely naughty! So I had to have words again and boo licked and cheese biscuit and put it back and when I said that was dirty he kicked off at me, so they both went in a naughty spot! Lil sods. But eventually after they had calmed down and done their time outs we went to a kiddies play area.

It was great as this time Albert is older and big enough to do everything by himself, without having to follow him around and help him. So we just relaxed and chatted for most of the time, but to start with I did go in with boo and show him around, he soon went off and played on his own though…well until he came back for a drink and a person walked past in a Lemur costume and he said its a scary bear, he was so nervous and wouldn’t go back in until it had gone. It was so flipping cute though.

Man was it loud in there! Especially as it was a Saturday and there were about 4-5 parties going on as well. It was a bit of sensory overload for me and was a relief when I got out. I find it hard to concentrate and process things properly when I am in a situation where its loud, bright, colourful etc. I was ok but as I wasn’t feeling 100% it almost exaggerates it.

After we all came back to mine, so the boys could have their dinner before heading home. When they left I fell asleep on the sofa for about an hour but I so so needed it.

I tired to eat my child portion microwave meal but I couldn’t eat it all, I’ll come back to the subject of appetite soon. I still felt exhausted, achy and a bit under the weather. So I took the pups for a wee and then got us all snuggled up in bed and I watched the film Legend, which I cannot get enough of. It’s so good and they got paranoid schizophrenic spot on! A must watch.

Woke up feeling a bit better this morning, had a bit of breakfast and just chilled out. Got showered and dressed and took the pups out for a wee. When I got in I had some time to kill before going out to my friends, so I went for a nap for a hour. I definitely needed it, I just can’t get enough sleep right now.

I got myself on the train to my friends house, even though I’ve done this trip before, I felt so anxious. I just don’t like trains, they make me feel trapped and I am always worried about getting lost. This is going down in my Mindout Positive me journal as something that made me proud today 🙂

Had a good afternoon for Ravenoaks birthday, chilled out and chatted with everyone. Had some party food and even got cake!

Got dropped back to the train station and had to wait a bit for the train but that was ok, I’d rather be early then just on time.

The pups went insane when I walked through the door, scrappy cried and both were jumping all over me. Spent some time fussing over them and playing with them for a bit.

I did want to have a nap when I got in but I had other bits to do before chilling out.

So yeah that’s what I’ve been up too since my last post, it’s been good fun. I have struggled to get through it though, not because of my mood as that’s been alright. It’s been because of being sick on Wednesday and I’ve since struggled with my appetite…again.

Its so frustrating, just as I was back on track and eating properly, I get a set back. Some of it is because I am worried about being sick again and some of it is because my stomach is still a bit tender and I feel sick because I’m not eating properly and because I’m not eating properly I am just even more exhausted then I usually am, its such a vicious circle.

I find it so hard just to stop over thinking it and EAT! I have such a awful relationship with food anyway, which goes back to childhood and being forced to eat dinner even though I didn’t like it or wasn’t hungry. I’m not a foody person with a big appetite.

I know this will pass in time, its just such an annoying set back after all the hard work I put into eating better and properly. Its just like I have to work hard to do anything in my life, even simple things like eating. I can’t just eat, or I can’t just do anything without planning, or pacing myself, or whatever.

I just wish things were a bit simpler for me and I wish I didn’t have to live my life accommodating an illness that I just despise having. Having Granulomatosis with Polyangiitis not only causes me all the physical symptoms that I have but it also causes me so much emotional distress. It makes me angry, frustrated, down, depressed..etc but I get no emotional support for it. I got diagnosed at the age of 15 years old with this massive life changing condition and I got no help and I still don’t really and that in itself makes me really angry. Justifiably so as well because as I said I have to basically have to live my life around an illness that I do not want and hasn’t improved since my diagnosis.

Anyway I have eaten more today then I have since Wednesday, which is good and hopefully this will kick start my appetite back up again, as I certainly need a bit more energy.

I’m not looking forward to tomorrow afternoon, as someone is coming over from Diverse abilities to help me start my appeal for PIP, I just know its going to be so stressful and I just want it over with already. I know I can sort this and I will sort this because I am entitled to this money, I’m not a faker. I’m just emotionally, physically and mentally utterly exhausted and this is yet another battle to fight. It’s a pretty unnecessary fight as well because of our government, they are making it impossible for anyone to claim disability benefits, as they simply don’t want anyone on benefits…We won’t go down this road too far or I will just wind myself up even more.

Before this woman comes over, I have to do the housework as right now its a complete pit lol! and hasn’t been cleaned since Thursday. I feel extremely stressed already about tomorrow, definitely lots of mindfulness and relaxation is needed to get through and after I will have to do something nice to de-stress, like take the dogs out or play on the ps3 or have a sleep lol!

Going to wrap this up now as I’m tired and want to get to bed.

So how do I feel right now? I’m emotionally, mentally and physically exhausted. I’m feeling stressed about tomorrow but I know I will get it sorted and win my case. But I do feel ok and that’s ok.

Peace out

Batman