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Posts Tagged ‘my feelings

She strode confidently to the front of the room and set her traveler’s mug of coffee and a chestnut satchel on the table by the lectern; exactly like a person who hadn’t mysteriously disappeared without a word months ago.  She drew a fat notebook from the briefcase and placed it on the lectern, then flipped it open to today’s lecture.

“Okay, let’s get started, everyone.” Finding her place, noting the surprised murmurs, afraid to look up at the class to see who had stayed.

She looked up.  Most had.  Good.


See that thing up there?  That purple date?  That’s when I’m scheduled to have Gender Reassignment Surgery (GRS*) with Dr. Pierre Brassard and Dr. Maud Bélanger in Montreal…that’s in Canadia, you guys, our frozen, but warm-hearted neighbor to the north!  I just made the appointment a few days ago after weeks and weeks of scurrying around like a secretive, paperwork-collecting little mouse.

I started scurrying in mid-April after discovering that I could borrow most of the money from my retirement account.  The place I work has a program where you can loan yourself the money and then pay yourself back over time at a low interest rate (it’s just over 2.5% right now).  When I started looking into it, I saw that I could take out a loan for around $15,000, which is most of the cost of surgery these days.

Finding out I could get the money was major big thing.  Like, I had always planned on having surgery at some point in the murky, distant future, but the cost made it seem like it was effectively out of reach, especially while I’m still in graduate school and paying off a car loan.  Which was unfortunate because after one boyfriend, I decided I’d had quite enough of pre-op intimacy, thank-you very much.  And I love intimacy!  I had resigned myself to an unhappy/bitchy chastity, so, believe me when I say I was really excited about the money thing.

I emailed the two most well-known surgeons in North America (Dr. Marci Bowers and Dr. Pierre Brassard) and asked about their fees and wahtnot.  Dr. Bowers’ rate is $22,500 and Dr. Brassard charges $18,040 (Canadian).  Honestly, I chose Dr. Brassard for his lower price, but he has an excellent reputation as a caring and experienced surgeon.  There are more affordable options in Thailand and in the United States, but the choice, for me, was always (and only) between those two.

Along with the price quote, Dr. Brassard’s office sent a welcome packet which contained his list of requirements for scheduling a surgery date.  Basically, I had to submit a letter of recommendation from two different therapists and one from my endocrinologist (who’s also my GP and primary care physician) and a health history questionnaire.  I already had one therapist and we had discussed her crafting a surgery letter for me from the start of our sessions together.  While she worked on my letter, she referred me to another therapist for the second letter.

Seeing the second therapist sucked.  A lot.  It had been a long time since I’d discussed anything major with my primary therapist (and I rarely see her), but I had to resurrect everything for the new therapist over one, 90-minute session.  I’m generally happy with where I’m at in my life right now, but that session made it seem like things were mucho shitty-o up until a few years ago.  And they were!  But I guess my powers of repression and survivor’s optimism are terrible and mighty; it’s always been easier for me to look forward.  I wasn’t raped or molested or raised in an oppressive religious environment, but I’ve had very little real stability in my life (combined with some epically bad parenting) and it’s always been easier for me to burn bridges and reinvent myself…for lots of reasons.

With that ordeal out of the way, I collected my GP’s letter and emailed the whole shebang up to faraway Montreal on June 30th.  And then I waited. Ugh. I fucking hate waiting, you guys!  I mean, I guess most people do, but I’m pretty sure I hate it the most…or I’m at least in the top ten.  Probably.

Moving on…I received my first date offer two weeks later.  November 20th, 2011.  Holy crap, I thought, that’s in 4 months!  (I was expecting something in the next 12-18 months). And then I thought some more.  That’s in the middle of Thanksgiving week, about three weeks away from the end of my school semester and two months away from the end of  this year-long major work leadership thing I’ve been on (oh yeah, I guess we haven’t talked about that). I’ll need to take about six weeks off of work, and twelve of those days will be spent in Montreal.  I rejected that date the next day; there wasn’t any way to make it fit.  Also, my sister said she wanted to be there with me (aww!), so I tried to think of a date that worked for both of us.  As it turns out, her school has the weirdest schedule, and there was literally only one acceptable week between now and December 2012, and they’re “on standby” that week, whatever that means.  So I picked the next best week: May 9th, 2012.

I think it’s a good date.  I’ll be out of school for the summer and I should be able to work from home for the last of the six weeks (give or take) I plan on taking off.  My sister won’t be there with me the entire time, but that’s ok; I’m hoping my mother will be there for the rest.

It seems like a long way off, but it’s not even a year and I think it will go by fast.  There’s still a lot to do, but I think I’ll have time to get my passport, lose weight/exercise more, and finish all the 1,001 other things I have to do without feeling harried.

Now that that’s all done, I’m feeling all of the feelings, you guys.  Like,  I’m happy that I can close out that last part of transition, but I’m also worried about almost everything.  Surgery is dangerous and it may not “fix” anything.  Recovery will take a long time and there’s still so much left to do.  Oh, and let’s not forget about the money!  THE MONEY!  I’m guessing those are the reasons that I’m feeling like there’s a green cloud of creeping dread that’s slowly choking the life out of me right now.  I’m sure it will pass, but so far, not cool, brain.  Do you think all that’s a good enough reason to get a Valium prescription until then?  How awesome would that be?  THE ANSWER IS SO AWESOME!

Anyway, consider yourself updated, old blog.  I’ll post more here or on tumblr when something else exciting happens.  Until then, please distract me or buy me some ice cream or something, ok?


*a.k.a. Genital Reconstruction Surgery, Sex Reassignment Surgery (SRS), gender confirmation surgery, sex change, vaginoplasty, etc.

Mood: All stuffed up with nowhere to go
Music: Hüsker Dü-Standing in the Rain

Goddamn you, weird, Internet formatting! Ugh, I am positively plagued by strange formatting issues when I try to post things on the Internet and I am sick of it.  Like, if you read my posts with a reader or on Facebook, I’m sure the last post looked like an experiment in unreadable text art.  I tried to make it look like an actual script (they have very specific formatting guidelines, you know) but it came out looking like mental illness.  I’m sorry if it looks wonky, but I don’t feel like spending hours trying to fix it…or trying to do it right the first time.

If you’ll permit me a quick, manifesto-y aside…I also realize that I’m not doing myself any favors in the “building a brand” department.  Look, I know I’m chasing readers away with a pitchfork every time I put up some weird mix of music or comedy or diary posts.  It would be nice if I had an audience that followed my blog and paid me oodles of compliments and dollars (American), but I’ve never been one for wedging myself into some niche…I’m too big, uppity.

Then again, maybe I should, once and for all, devote myself to a single topic, like…

-what it’s like to be transsexual in the big, bad world, or

-my personal quest to transform simple words into comedy magic, or

-sharing my moment to moment feelings and inner monologue (lol, dialogue’s more like it).

I’ve actually given all of this quite a bit of thought.  Should I narrow my scope, give up, and try to build a long-tail audience?

No, I don’t think so.

I love accolades and money as much as the next, greedy, attention-starved girl, but I think I’m going to keep doing it like this for now.  I’ve never written for you (the collective you, you’re great) and I don’t intend to start.  I write for myself and the people I love.  Hopefully, one day, the rest of the world will figure out how awesome and interesting I am.  But, if they never do and you’re still reading, then it’s worth it.

So anyway, I was looking for how to format scripts this morning and I ran across this little nugget.  Like the rest of the Internet, I’m a tortured, wannabe artist/critic.  I even tried writing a screenplay once.  I got through the first scene and then quit, as you do.  I’d still kind of like to write a screenplay, or, you know, finish something, anything, but I doubt I’d finish this one.  Somehow, a story about two friends working their way through college as armed, downtown bus station security guards doesn’t seem as relevant to me now as it once did.  For what it’s worth…

My Never-To-Be-Finished, Untitled Movie


Doug and Charles are checking bags.



MEXICAN MAN shuffles forward.


Good morning, sir and welcome to Denver.  Do you have any knives, handguns, explosives, syringes, scissors,  bazookas, or live animals?




Uh, I don’t think he speaks English.  Have fun.


No hable Ingles?

(MEXICAN MAN stares at him blankly)

Tiene usted alguna cuchillos, armas de fuego, explosivos, jeringas, tijeras, bazucas, ni con animales vivos?


Nope, just this bag of beef jerky.


Gracias Senòr, please move along.  Next in line please.


(Clutching a worn, dirty paper bag, stuttering)

E-evening, Officer


Good morning, sir.  Do you have any knives, handguns, explosives, syringes, scissors, bazookas, or live animals?


Ha!  Live animals…that’s funny.  Nope, no live animals.


I’m glad you enjoyed it, sir.  Would you happen to be carrying any of the other items I just mentioned?


Wha-what do you mean?


I mean, do you have anything on your person or in your bag that might be considered dangerous or illegal?


Dangerous or illegal?  Ummm…no.

(nervously looks around)


(a little too loud)

No!  I don’t.


Would you mind opening your bag, sir?


You want to look in my bag?  This bag?


Yes sir, (under his breath) very badly.



(NERVOUS MAN sets the bag down and pushes it towards CHARLES)


(Charles opens the paper bag and pulls out a large black dildo and furry, pink handcuffs.  He holds them out so everyone in line can see them)

Do these belong to you sir?



Those are…wow…um…




Alright, fine!


Yes, of course they’re mine!

(turns to the group)

That’s right, everyone, you got me!  I’m the one.  I’m the big, freaky, weirdo with the big, black dildo and the furry, pink handcuffs and the value sized jar of industrial lube and the handmade photo retrospective of Jennifer Love Hewitt.   Lock up your children!

(An older woman is seen tightly embracing her granddaughter and shielding her eyes)

(turns back to CHARLES)

What?  Are these against the law now too…Mr. Thought Police?


Depends.  Where ya headed?


Uh…Los Angeles…it’s in California.


LA, hunh?

(Charles hesitates to build NERVOUS MAN’s suspense, hypnotically slapping the dildo against his left hand)

Nope, you should be fine.

(Charles drops the items back in the bag and pushes it towards the man)




During the credits, Charles walks into the bus station bathroom to pee.  He is at the extreme right urinal.  Pan left to see a very old man all the way at the other end of the row of urinals…like 8 or 10…just finishing up.  The old man zips up and starts walking, drunkenly toward Charles and the exit.  The problem is, he walks so slowly and close to the urinals, that he trips the IR sensor on every one of them.  He only alters his course when he gets uncomfortably close to Charles…who is having trouble starting and hangs his head in shame and disgust.

an introduction

Hi, I'm Anna and I love cheese!

This blog is a chronicle of my life and a catalog of happy ephemera. The About page has a little bit more information, but, remember, none of this is really's just a supplement, a thumbnail sketch, a mostly anonymous Intarwebs placeholder. I'm way better/less wordy in person. :-)

Oh, and if I wrote something about you and you thought it was mean or hurtful, I'm sorry. It's how I felt at the time, but probably isn't how I feel now. Chances are, I love you and I think you're awesome.


All content on Blog, Sweet Blog is copyrighted by me, Anna Hell. Unless otherwise noted, all photos, words, and content on this site are mine, created by me, and should not be used without my permission (or at least attributed and linked back). I try to embed links or quote original source material if I use another person's work.

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December 2021