Posted

It's my first day back to the office after outing myself, and I'm understandably a mite apprehensive.

I've been here almost 45 minutes, and thankfully it's usually very peaceful and calm in the mornings. At least until the management team starts arriving, that is. Then things pick up less-that-subtly.

I did my best to dress nicely, femininely, and modestly. I have a "Hello, my name is" sticker on my dress shirt with my preferred name written in with pink highlighter. I'm even in a pretty darn good mood, all things considered.

I think I'm going to have to pee before long, though. Sheer terror...

Breathe, Erin. Breaaaaaathe...

Author
Categories work, trans

Posted

I'm tapering off of the Celexa after just one week.

Unfortunately, while it did make me feel marginally happier and more energetic for a few days, it also had some side-effects which I'm not capable of ignoring long-term.

Predominantly, it did nothing to alleviate my anxiety. As this was the entire reason I was trying it, there are no bounds to the disappointment I am currently experiencing. It did help with depression a little bit, until I realized how emotionally dead I felt inside. When I realized what the dreadful trade-off was, that short-lived happiness went away as well.

Some of the other issues were sexual in nature (which I'm not going into, but suffice to say were horrific), insomnia (2-4 hours sleep per night would have eventually killed me), and whole-body twitching, jerking, shivering motions which I can't even control. They just happen. Mostly when I'm trying to relax, of course. Lying awake shaking like I'm freezing to death at 02:00 in the morning because I can't sleep and am too tired to get up is unbearable.

At any rate, until I have gotten this rubbish out of my system and can crawl back out of this miasma of dead-eyed depersonalization and yawning emptiness, I'm taking myself offline as best I can. No social media, no text messaging. I've already upset my best friend today by insinuating his advise was unwelcome, which is most certainly not the case. I just don't seem to have any kind of filter when I open my mouth, and as much as that's new and interesting, it is also terrifying and wrong. And I'm ashamed of what I said.

This is the most like I felt before starting HRT since last year, and it's one of the most terrifying feelings I have ever had. Is it any wonder I'm lashing out? I'm scared witless and frightened this will never go away.

Author
Categories mental health, trans

Posted

Someone in a blue, grey, or grey/blue Nissan Sentra (about model year 2010-2015 or so?) passed me on the right on I-5 South today at about a quarter past 14:00.

But that's not even the whole story...

I was about to pass a truck, and glanced in my rear view mirror for a second or two to see if it was clear. I saw a greyish car pop out from behind the large Roto Rooter panel truck behind me in the fast lane, and swerve somewhat gracelessly around them on the right before cutting them off to get back into the fast lane. They didn't appear to be going particularly fast, so I cut over to pass the huge truck.

As I drew abreast of the semi tractor, I glanced in my mirror again, and this guy had not only caught up to me, but was hugging my rear bumper like a crazed person. I knew I needed to get over in front of the truck, but I didn't want to cut it too close, for fear of causing an accident.

Gritting my teeth, I gauged when it was safe, signaled my intent to shift lanes, and started moving over. As a precaution, I stole a glance in my rear view one last time...

The grey car was gone.

I instantly stopped moving over further, and held my tack midway into the right, still partway in the left lane. It wasn't a split second after looking back at the road, that he flew around me. ON THE SHOULDER OF THE HIGHWAY.

I was already holding down my horn at this point, because I knew something was wrong. Of course, the person swerved as if they were having trouble maintaining control once they re-entered their lane from the shoulder.

Wanting very much to have a license plate in case this turned into some kind of huge accident, or legal fiasco I sped up. That's when the grey car sped up as well. They showed their apparent feelings of guilt as they accelerated to keep away from me.

Fortunately they had to slow down because both lanes were blocked ahead. So when I caught them and read the Oregon plate off for my dash cam (OR "tree" plate 172-HZT), they were still struggling to get past. I had zero interest in following them, as they had reached speeds of about 80 miles per hour attempting to elude me, and I was not interested in any of that foolishness. I tucked in behind another semi trailer and waited for them to move on, though I kept my eye on them until they were a few miles ahead. I was more than a little concerned they would cause an accident, and if they had, I wanted to be prepared to stop quickly.

Fortunately the yellow semi truck didn't seem to have suffered any hazard due to the insane maneuvers of this person. And neither did I, aside from likely having some very bad dreams about it later.

Moral? Please do not pass on the right. There's a reason it's against the law. You're putting your and other people's lives in your hands. Fortunately this person was accurate at driving, if not in any way, shape, or form wise.

mp4 format video from dashcam of the altercation

Author
Categories work

Posted

Okay, well, this day has broken expectations and turned out really well.

My car has been making inordinately loud, and obnoxious grinding noises that are obviously somewhat dependent on the engine RPMs. Generally this is a pretty bad sign, in my experience. Because of this, and the fact that the noise has been growing louder each time I drive, I took my dad's car to work today, which was a somewhat stressful way to begin. It's really similar to my car, but me being me, I fishtailed going onto the freeway on ramp, and scared myself a tad. Until I set the cruise control, turned up the stereo, and snickered about it, that is.

I had a doctor's appointment around noon, which was pushed to 13:00. While I had extra time, and nothing immediately pressing, I printed off my "coming out at work email draft". I did this as carefully as I could, mind you. I first went to ensure nothing already printed was going to be waiting, drawing co-workers to the same place I would be. There was one sheet, and I knew who it belonged to, so I took it to him before printing my single page. After that it was a simple matter to go and ask the CEO's wife if she had a moment to talk to me in the conference room. (She's usually extremely busy, so believe me when I say I had been dreading this moment almost more than the coming out itself.)

Of course, my fears all turned out to be irrational and unfounded. She was beyond supportive and caring. She offered to help in any way she could. She complimented my complexion again for something like the third or forth time in two months. She even said she was no good at fashion (not really true from what I've seen!), but would be open to answering questions I had whenever I had them, which was both unexpected and extremely kind.

In the end, she read my note, said it was perfect, and that she would not change a thing. (I cribbed pretty heavily from one I saw on Reddit, I'll be honest (thanks, Kacey!)) She took it to let her husband know about the situation, as well as run the missive past him. That done (and the obligatory CEO-pops-by-to-say-good-luck trivialities were over), she offered to take the note to my direct boss (vice president) and not only alert him to what was going on, but also ensure he didn't have anything he needed to get out of the way before I sent it.

Through all of this I was sweating profusely, shaky, and so shell-shocked I still can't believe even hours later that I managed to actually do this all like a real adult. (I've been dreading it for a long, long time.) While I'm not officially out, at least the ball is rolling. Which honestly is more than I expected when I woke up today.

I had tentatively penned in the "send" date for my company-wide email to before Thankgiving holiday, and the cut-over for new name and pronouns for the Monday after, but it's possible HR will bounce this off the laywer(s) and find out what I already know, that there's little point in holding things up. I'd be just as happy to wait, but sooner would be nicer, still. My boss did come in really unhappy-looking to ask me if I had changed my name legally yet, and was relieved when I said both no, but that I knew he couldn't change anything on the payroll side, and I didn't care about it. (I did say I'd let him know when that changed, though. So now I have a new "scariest thing I still need to do". All these moving targets!)

Anyway, just as the work craziness was wrapping up I had to run partway across town to my doctor's. She agreed to trial me on more anti-anxiety medications with absolutely zero fuss. I had a list of candidates ready when I saw her, and she was completely fine with just starting at the top and working our way down. (With tangential RPG-like side-quests to investigate related drugs if needed along the way.)

This is really good, because the PMHNP (psychiatrist mental health nurse practitioner) I tried to contact still hasn't gotten back to me after over two days, so I'm going to assume she is less likely to do so as further time elapses. I had a second alternative as well, but if my current GP is fine with helping me out, I don't see much reason to worry about it. I mean, unless I want to tackle my phone PTSD issues, or approach my social anxiety in other manners. (Probably a good idea at some point.)

On the way home I stopped at the car dealership and hit up the parts counter for a new AC compressor idler pulley assembly (on the off chance that's what was wrong with my car). Stopped at the pharmacy I frequent for my new scrip, and waited 20 minutes or so while it was counted out. Finally, I headed for home several hours later than I usually would have.

The part turned out not to be what was bad, so I'll probably be springing for something like two grand for a new AC compressor (including friction clutch, condenser, drier, refrigerant and labour. Fun). Dad dropped the AC belt off for now, so I can at least drive without worrying something is going to get hot enough to catch fire, or melt, which is comforting. I think I can live without air conditioning in nearly freezing weather for a while, at least.

I also started my Celexa scrip before dinner, so that's underway also. Exciting and scary, given how blasted awful Lexapro was on my system. (My parents almost took me to Emergency because my blood pressure doubled, I was so shaky I had trouble caring for myself, and I was having such severe anxiety attacks that I spent most of my time laying down, crying. The last one where I collapsed on the dining room floor sobbing so forcefully my parents discussed calling an ambulance was not something I care to repeat, oddly enough.)

Given I've had one of the roughest days since before I started HRT, and used every spoon I'm likely to have for this whole week, I'm in good spirits. Hopefully this is a continuing trend. :3

Author
Categories trans, work

Posted

i've been sitting on a really good match on OKC for over a week because my social anxiety is making it impossible for me to reach out to the person.

every time i open the "send message" dialogue i get queasy and have to close it again almost immediately.

if i hadn't quit drinking i'd say "this is an excellent time for liquid courage", but that's the last thing i am interested in doing here.

i wish it wasn't so bloody impossible to locate a decent psychologist in this forsaken backwoods...

Author
Categories mental health, trans