Yesterday was one of the most nerve wracking and stressful days of my life! It was also one of the most liberating, eye opening, and happiest times of my life. I can’t wait to see what comes next! I have to thank my wife, first and foremost, for being by my side 24 hours a day 7 days a week. She really is my strength through all of this. I get really anxious and start overthinking everything sometimes and she is always there to ease my mind and calm my nerves.
Second of all, my doctor and the nurses at the trans clinic were the absolute best! They made my first appointment so much easier than I thought it was going to be. I was a mess from the moment I drove up and as soon as my name was called, my mind was put at ease. I owe these people an infinite amount of thank yous!
Okay, I will cut to these chase….I GOT MY FIRST VIAL OF T! And my first shot is scheduled today! But before we get to the good stuff, I’ll walk you through the whole day that led me to this.
Our morning was one for the books, crazy as always, and as stressful as ever. We worked from 10pm the previous night to 6am this morning. After, we drive 45 minutes home, pick up our daughter, then drive her 15 minutes to bus stop. Then turn around, pick up our son, get some breakfast, come home, eat, get dressed. And we’re out the door to my appointment that is over 2 hours away from home.
We stopped to fill up our gas tank. And disaster strikes! That devil is on our asses. I got off the car to start pumping gas, put the nozzle in, and lock it so it keeps pumping on its own. I thought it would be okay to leave the pump and go inside to get drinks, assuming the pump would click off once our tank was full. I was so wrong!
When I come out, Token Lee was standing at the pump in shock! I looked down and around the car and there was gas everywhere! All over the side of our car, on and behind the tire, all over the ground and my poor wife’s shoes! The pump NEVER stopped pumping! Luckily, I had left my door open so my wife could hear the gas pouring out and hitting the ground. If she hadn’t jumped out of the car to stop it, who knows how much gas there would have been. There was so much gas that the store manager had to call the fire department to block off the area and throw sand down so they could get it cleaned up. I spent several minutes trying to clean up our car the best I could because having gasoline all over it was not a good idea. Just another disaster waiting to happen. Needless to say, this set us back a good 30 minutes and made us late to my appointment. Also, we suffered the entire way to S.A. due to the super strong smell of gasoline! Ugh!
1030 am – we arrive at clinic and I am just a mess. I am already stressed out because I’m late and anxious to see what would happen. Well, from the moment I sign in, I am greeted with absolute positivity and genuine acceptance. Everybody knew to call me Brixton, despite what my charts say. They all were very reassuring and tried their hardest to keep my mind at ease. The receptionist was able to give me a small discount on my fees for the visit, which was nice, since costs were one of my biggest worries.
First time back, my wife was not allowed to come with me. I tensed up immediately and even starting tearing up when I went back for my first counseling. After I was put in a room, my nurse tried so hard to keep me calm, she complimented my hair, and kept an easy conversation going to keep my mind off other things. I was so stressed that none of their machines would measure my BP! She ended up having to do it manually and it was, in fact, a little higher than usual. After a series of questions, I was put to watch a video about self injections. Ahh! Needles!
Testing – I was put through one very easy blood test. All they needed was a drop of blood from a small prick in my finger. Not too bad. At this point, I think I’ve asked when my wife was going to be able to come in maybe like 5 times. They finally let her in! And the doctor comes in to talk to us.
First off, the doctor wants to hear my story and how I came to realize I was trans. She also wants to hear my wife’s side of the story and how she feels about everything. We talked about everything under the sun and the doc only had positive things to say. She said things like “this is so healthy,” “you guys have such a healthy relationship.” She was very informative and thorough. Her and my wife talked about how to inject the testosterone. She was happy to know that my wife is a medical assistant and is certified to do injections. I’m terrified of needles so having my wife with me through all my shots will be a huge relief.
We signed out of the clinic and headed straight to the pharmacy. It was little bit of a wait. But a well needed experience.
At the pharmacy, there was a guy who I knew probably had diabetes. I overheard him talk about insulin and syringes. And I also figured this much because when I went to buy a sharps disposal box, he asked if I was diabetic and started giving me advice on how to properly dispose of my needles.
After a short conversation with this man, he was called up to the counter and the pharmacist had some bad news for him. He proceeded to tell him that his insurance dropped one of his medications. Last month he paid $9 for it, but this month he was going to have to pay $700. The poor guy looked devastated. My heart broke for him. I remembered my grandma when she passed away and how the story was all about not having certain meds because she couldn’t afford them. So I felt pretty empathetic to his situation. He asked why the insurance would just drop it out of nowhere after paying for it so long. The pharmacist didn’t know what to say. He just told him to call his insurance. When he was being checked out with only a portion of his much needed meds, he gave his DOB. 12/11/74. My wife’s birth date and my mom’s birth year. I just knew that God was saying to me, “pay attention.”
Then I was called up to the counter. My prescription was $13. I couldn’t help but feel a sense of relief and gratitude, but also guilt. I feel so blessed to be where I am. I am so blessed to have a hard working mom who busted her ass to get to where she is so she is able to afford the absolute best healthcare coverage for me and my siblings. I could never thank her enough. If you’re reading Mom, thank you so much for all that you have done for me and Andrew and Ash. Just know that your hard work and perserverance never goes unnoticed. You are the epitome of courage and faith and strength. I love you, Mommy!
At the end of all this, I can only pray and hope that the man from the pharmacy finds a way to get his medications. God is great and I know he will be by his side. And that goes for everybody. Especially the less fortunate, I hope that God blesses them with good health and if not, I hope he gives them the opportunity for the best healthcare possible. Everybody deserves to be happy and healthy.
I finally got my prescription filled, and then we managed to schedule a quick appointment with a genetic counselor who was going to test me for the “cancer gene.” Something went down with the insurance and I wasn’t able to get tested until my mom gets tested. Anyways! More on that later.
So everything was said and done and we were finally able to meet up with my sister for lunch. We talked and laughed and cried and ate some really good Chinese food. And my wife gave her some GREAT advice. We’re hoping and praying everything plays out okay for you, Ash! We love you!
We finished up with lunch, did a little shopping for a craft project for my stepdaughter and were on our way home.
After a long long day of a million different emotions, we were finally able to relax and just drive home. During the drive I was able to reflect on this day and really soak it all in. I’m finally starting hormone therapy. And I couldn’t be more happier. Scared, yes. But I’m excited for the future and can’t wait to share this beautiful experience with all of you!
I hope that this blog finds you some way some how and brings you a little piece of mind. I hope after you see that being your true self can and will bring you nothing but happiness, you will be motivated to do the same. Chase your wildest dreams and don’t let fear stop you. Sometimes being different is hard. But damn is it beautiful. So don’t be afraid of a little crazy or weird. Maybe crazy is your normal. You are you. You are not somebody else. And somebody else can’t be you. So just do you. You’ll thank yourself for it.