Thursday, 23 February 2012

Red Tape

I feel that for every step I take forwards there are another two back.  To be fair in life there will be many processes that shall be irritating, time consuming and laborious.  I haven't bought a house, but if I do I am sure there will be enough surprises on trying to complete.

Right now with the NHS I feel like I am having my very own cat and mouse game going on.

This morning my new NHS card arrived, which thankfully had the correct name of Mr Leng Montgomery on it.

It also informs me who my new surgery have placed me with.  As the rather snotty receptionist in there made it very clear that I would be assigned a person and that I couldn't choose a doctor. She also didn't move once off her chair and moved around like the Flintsones do in their modes of transportation. That receptionist was rude and unhelpful to quite a large degree and right now if I didn't need to be at a surgery so badly I would have told her where to stick her attitude.

Still the inner voice in me told me to be polite, not to rise to someone being such an obnoxious %^*! and remain patient.

Patience...that old chestnut.

I tried calling the surgery for an appointment and although checking that there opening times are correct, it keeps saying that they are closed and that there is an out of hours contact number to use.  I phoned that and this isn't working either. Now since phoning and writing this the timings state now that it is actually closed.

Which yes I am aware this is small and trivial but over the past 4 months I have had to put up with having the wrong name assigned to me, being struck off one GP place due to moving but I hadn't switched because of the name issue which the GP advised me to remain at that surgery until this was corrected.  There still has been no answer as to why my name was changed into a name that has never existed.

The new surgery has the rudest receptionist on the planet.

I miss my old surgery.

I am in the middle of getting some important referrals and need to make an appointment and nothing in place there will let me, bar breaking down the door and demanding one.

I am still agitated that with Charing Cross they need everything in writing and have a really snotty person on the phone there as well.

I also feel under the weather and just want things to be simple.  I get very irritated when I do all of the things I am supposed to do and its other infrastructures and systems working against this.  It isn't right and it's stressful when a load of paper shufflers get to play God as to what happens next transition wise for me.

I feel run down and under the weather right now and haven't slept properly for 4 days now. SO that too isn't helping.

Since taking T I have put some weight on which has prompted me to feel quite anxious and insecure about how I look but have started dieting a little, exercising and in a month or so the benefits should start to show.

Taking T does come with a side effect of some weight gain so I suppose it's about being extra strict and the people who have bodies I desire to have are constantly exercising so I suppose that this is what I have to be doing if I want to have the right body shape that is comfortable with me.

In 2009 I lost weight and continued to lose weight and that changed the shape of my body and was used to feeling super trim.  Then I started taking T which started making parts of me become broader and more solid bit changed how my fat started distributing itself.

This literally did feed a bit of some of the body dysmorphic feelings I already have. I feel like I have turned into a beached whale and again have started disliking my reflection in the mirror.  I know that to get to where I want to be it will require a lot of discipline and work.

The stricter I am with myself will yield the results I desire. I know rationally I have to remind myself that gaining weight doesn't mean I am a failure or that I have ruined anything because I haven't. But at the same time anyone who has embarked on serious weight management or has had a bad body image associated to being overweight (where they aren't comfortable with it) might too share similar feelings.

I feel a bit lost within my whole body and being right now. I feel positive and confident that I can make changes though and with the latest load of annoyances I know that I just need to focus and to plough that energy into making something positive come of it.

I refuse to freeze or sit still with this. If I do that then I won't make any progress and this will leave me feeling unhappy which I don't want to give into.

Life isn't always easy or straightforward nor is it going to be.

I just want to feel a bit less stressed.

Work wise I have a few things that are in progress and I know that the changes can come well from all of that. They will come like that, I just have to shake off a bit of the negativity that I am currently experiencing right now .

In the meantime there are other things I am working on as well so I am not sitting idle.

Today is just a day whereby I feel a little bit agitated by everything, but at least the sun is shining so a nice walk soon might be in order.

Monday, 20 February 2012

Ready For The Fall...

It's almost 2 weeks since I last had a T-Shot and so far I am feeling really ropey. I went from feeling exhausted to a state of feeling slightly wired.

I don't feel comfortable in my skin. I feel overly sensitive, I feel that no-one cares about me, and I feel ugly and like a giant whale.  It's like having PMT without tears or a craving for chocolate. I just feel wrong.

It's also a feeling that reminds me of being a teenager all over again, whereby I feel the world isn't fair and that things don't feel right.  But I know this will pass. I am aware that rationally many things aren't bad at all and that I am just feeling sensitive on account of the hormones. 

Which I understand but then feel irritated by it.

I just have to ride it out and in the meantime I have to up my exercise as that will help make me feel more virile, handsome, lean and strong.  Today I have already bought food for my consumption in the day which consists of a lot of fruit and salad. So that is a good first start and a mini detox is always good for the body.

Apart from that I just have to ride this out and think as positively as I can.  Nothing is the end of the world and it's just the bit of the cycle where things can feel a bit delicate.

In other news I have been writing lots, took some photos the other night and have been progressing well on some thoughts and goals for the next few months.  All of that is in hand. I now have to just complete those and lose a stone in weight and all should be well again.

As long as I remind myself that it can happen and that I want it to happen then all shall work out.

One good thing about the surge is it gives me fidgety energy which means tonight a work out might be a good plan as well as find ways to physically exhaust myself when my mind starts to become listless.

It's just the waiting part that feels like forever which is really irritating right now but at the same time it's all part of the process and when on a hormone cycle there are days whereby everything feels wonderful and others where energy levels feel like they are falling at a massive rate.

The more I get used to it the easier it shall become.  Compared to my first couple of shots, these feelings are becoming more familiar which is helping a lot. I know in a few more months I will be not feeling this so acutely as I do the cycle more.

It's just all about being patient, waiting and just letting it all do it's thing.

Tuesday, 14 February 2012


I have been having a moment whereby I feel like I am a caterpillar, wrapped in a cocoon waiting to become a butterfly.

I am currently waiting for an NHS card, and once I have that I can send that to Charing Cross and they can commence with writing my referral to my GP for a surgeon suggestion and then we can continue that back and forth and see what the PCT has to say about that.  I have started saving for my surgery regardless so that at some point this year I can have my chest surgery.

I have to do it this year, I can't go three years in a binder and I just want to move on from having breasts. I have every positivity but at the same time there is a part of me that is doubting if things will really work or will there be more hurdles.

I am feeling really tired right now as I have many things whirring around in my head. Work/Transition/Love/Friendships/Relationships are all moving around in a merry go 'round. I sometimes just dream of being far away from everything familiar so that I have time to myself and space to think.  Luckily this is something that won't be going on for too long and I know that this is reactive from just feeling a bit in limbo right now. As well as slightly fried.

I want things to work and plough on so that I can be at my next point and feel that I am making a new movement with my transition and not just feeling like I am waiting for the future. I don't like that at all.
I had an injection last week and I don't know why but for some reason it feels a bit like when I had my very first one whereby it took a while to feel that it was doing anything as I feel tired all the time and would happily sleep all the time if I had the time to do so.

Still I will have a surge soon enough and once that happens I will have a load more energy and impetus to do a lot more than what I am doing right now.

There are things happening, I just feel like I am in limbo. I also want to feel more content and for that to happen it means waiting on a few other things to change as well. There is a slight lonely feeling had within this but then this too is another thing that comes with differing stages of transition. Also to do with time of the year, this stage things feel embryonic, slow and sometimes depressing.

I'm not depressed or have anything like that, just have an urge to hibernate and crave more sunlight in the day which is starting to happen.  I just want to feel more energized rather than energy zapped.
Still it's a phase that is happening and there is the awareness on that front so that is good I suppose.

In the meantime whilst the hormones take effect I feel like I am in an adolescent spiral. Again it's something that will pass but it feels strange.  The exhausted feeling, curiosity about life and the questioning about what 'The Next Step' is and waiting for it to happen.

Only this time around I pay rent and I have credit cards and can go out whenever I like...yet really value having chill time inside.

This is what makes me happy aside being in the company of lovely people.

I have phases where I feel a bit more like a hermit, but then I don't see the point in going out for the sake of being out. With my friend K it's nice going to the pub with a scrabble board in tow.  Or I might opt for a quiet drink, brunch or something that isn't massive night out clubbing...not because I am against clubbing but there aren't many clubs that interest me anymore.

Still it's a sign that certain tastes change.

The clubs I like tend to be in other cities, such as Berlin but I go to them once or twice a year and that actually is a nice thing as it makes it more special.

In the meantime there are plenty of other things to keep me busy and the feeling of catching up on lost sleep.

Sunday, 12 February 2012


I've been on testosterone for 6 months now and there are some side effects I am getting from it that I really can't stand.

I have recently discovered that I have put on 5kg and I hate it.  I feel like a balloon.
The cold weather is really getting to me as it makes me feel hungrier.
I don't feel very strong (physically) right now
I have painful acne on my back
I need a haircut urgently
I had a T shot and am now entering a phase whereby I feel a bit delicate

I just feel really whingy and irritable today and reminiscent that I am a teenager again...oh yes hormonal load wise I actually am!

I kind of feel like I am a too big for my skin so am wriggling around in a slightly uncomfortable way. It's not the end of the world, I know rationally nothing is the end of the world, I just feel really 'meh' right now if I was to pin-point a mood.

There is lots to smile and be happy about, to which I do, but the past couple of days I am experiencing a near floaty- like state and I don't know what to do with myself.

Starting Monday I think heavy duty new diet and exercise regime needs kick starting and I think every time I want to eat I should try something radical like having a glass of water beforehand.

I know that some of the reason I have slipped is because I have deviated slightly from how I was eating for a while which was being super strict and the rest of the time making sure I ate f*ck all.  That is the key to being thin.

Still skinnier than what I am right now is what I want to be, not because of society putting any pressure on me but because medically I want to get smaller on my BMI as currently I am 2.5 points over what I should be and with my body type I have to be super strict otherwise I end up piling weight back on.

In the run up prep for surgery I need to be super lean and trim.  I should work more on my abs, as when I haven't got binders to wear any longer I don't want to be showing off having a spare tyre.

I have managed to lose 3 stone before so I think losing 1 stone right now isn't going to kill me and is perfectly possible - I just need to be really strict for a while and learn to say no to things more. I can do this and I will do this as I refuse to feel horrible about something I have the power to put right.

I will, as right now I don't want to add to my already body dismorphic thoughts and feelings so need some discipline and a kick up the bum and all shall be well once again.

Thursday, 9 February 2012


My ongoing to and fro with the health authority is starting to get a bit tense right now.  It seems with one hand I am given something and then slapped with the other.

It appears that they have apparently changed my name back to that of Leng Montgomery.  This is good news.  In doing that they took me off the books at my lovely GP.  The thing is I was in process of moving GP, but on following his advice he said to wait until they changed my name to the correct one, gave me a new NHS number that reflects my trans identity and that he had the time to resend my referral for a surgeon before I moved to a new GP given that with him was where he started all my transition things with the health service.

The authority has thought otherwise.

Firstly they change my name to 'Miss Leng Leng' which never existed in the first place, and I had given the practice (on two occasions) copies of documentation that were evidence of what my previous name was and what it is now.  This was all when I was living in the correct catchment area and when I was still at my previous address.

To suddenly change my name some 6 months later to a name that never existed is beyond me. It also screwed up some of my prescriptions along the way and due to the name being incorrect it made having a few referrals difficult as well.

Removing me from my surgery whilst trying to get a surgeon referral I kind of get why due to where I live. 

The thing in this that I am sure some people will disagree with me on, but I would have liked to have been consulted.

When they chose to give me a rather embarrassing and false name (even though there was no cause to do so) there was no discussion.

Same with just removing me from my GP practice, there was no discussion.

As a tax payer there is a side of me that feels irritated that I pay into a service that doesn't seem to provide that very thing.  On a global scale, it is good that we have a health service, but on a another scale I would prefer it if they actually did provide a better service - especially where medication and identity is concerned.

I have since registered with a new surgery, so hopefully my new doctor details will come ASAP so that the gender clinic can sort out referral there. I'm also hoping that the doctors there are friendlier than the dragon that works the reception desk as I found her unhelpful, and quite rude. This is the surgery E is registered at and apparently her doctor is a nice one.

Still I am in the process of complaining officially about the health authority calling me 'Miss Leng Leng' so perhaps I should add that rude receptionist to it as well.

To address me or get anything she propelled herself around on her office chair on wheels and was reluctant to want to be vaguely helpful. 

I literally asked if Doctor West was taking patients and she was very snappy and grumpy in telling me that I don't get to choose my own doctor and that one is assigned to me. I remained cordial and polite and asked if I could register with the practice. 

To which she was very quick to point out that I needed proof of identity and address, so I did have both things to hand which seemed to p*ss her off no end as my interpretation was that she didn't get to do anything that would make me go away.  In fact being a new patient meant that she might have to move from that chair that she had grown roots to and do a bit of work.

People like that infuriate me. If you don't like people then don't have a service based job where people may have queries and might need to ask you questions. If she is as rude and unhelpful as she was the other day then I am definitely making a complaint.

I'm not expecting her to be my best friend, but I can't stand people in positions like that continually giving off attitude.

I have a health check tomorrow so that should be good.

In the meantime a bit more waiting to be had until I find out who my GP is so I can inform Charing Cross and them my referral for a surgeon can move forward.

I did have my T shot yesterday, which went well and am no longer in any discomfort.  But my friend who did my shot was lovely and made me a really nice breakfast so I had plenty to smile about.

Today I have a dental appointment which should be a lot better as they have the right name for me there and so far have been lovely.

All of this stuff will be ok, I just have to grit my teeth a bit and just get on with it. 

Tuesday, 7 February 2012


I have chosen this as a title as it's one of my favorite songs by Radiohead that I have been listening to a lot recently.

I feel as if I am on the crest of a wave that is about to splash everywhere.

My life is going to get very busy from now on until I don't know anymore.  Not just with work and stuff regarding the website but with life. Hitting 28 has made a few thoughts a lot louder and certain things are starting to resonate in a way they didn't before.

My main priorities now are to sort out my Gender Reassignment Certificate. So that I can get a new birth certificate and means I can do things such as marry if I wanted to.  But before I can do that I have to make sure my name is correct on my medical documents.  I also need the new NHS number too.  As Charing Cross have approved me to have a referral to one of their surgeons but I can't do any of this without having correct details and being in the correct PCT to where I live. 

Because of where I live now I technically can't have the same GP any more.  Only until I have a new NHS number it will be a pain in the backside to do my moving to a new doctor.  Especially given I am in the middle of a hormone cycle and dialogue with Charing Cross and my current GP is only just starting to become established.

I was very lucky to have a GP that was so thoughtful and persistent in making sure I got what I needed in terms of support for my transition. I do feel nervous about who I will end up with next as some GP's aren't massively supportive or willing to be as helpful as perhaps they could be.  It's not like writing a referral for physio for example.

Still, I won't assume the worst in the medical profession as so far I have found I have been pleasantly surprised, and although I don't believe in being complacent, I think it's good to have a realistic interpretation of things.

I know that every step of the way I have a to push a bit more in some areas and just let time take it's course. Hormones wise I feel I am getting used to the cycle a bit more. I can feel when I am surging and when I am running low. I am starting to identify a bit better with my moods as to what is hormone induced and what is me being a pr*ck.

One thing that is lovely about my feelings since I did start taking hormones and that is it gave me the little lift that I needed.  I pass better and don't have too many people mistaking me for a woman anymore.

It's still a bit uncomfortable when I see myself naked as I see things that shouldn't be there and since my hormone levels dropped I started thinking I was a super curvy woman in shape again.  But also I know I have put a bit of weight on again.

Once I start exercising good and proper again that will be fine.

I also need to change what I am eating as T makes me hungrier than I used to be.  But these are things that can easily be remedied.

If I want to eat like a bastard then I need to exercise like one.  It's also good for body and mind.

I also need to start doing prep for fact that towards end of the year it is looking likely that surgery is going to happen.  Yet I don't want to raise my hope, but is good to start getting prepared. Especially as I have to start working on creating a flatter stomach, and that shall also entail doing exercises for the abs which aren't really my thing.

Although after going to a spin class recently, this opened my eyes to something that is a good first step in abdominal exercise that I actually enjoyed. I just need to focus, apply myself, and in a few months time I will have a better looking body.

When I am exercising more I feel happier and less stressed about what I eat and how I am looking, so really I should follow that formula a bit more. As well as incorporate other elements into what makes me happy.

We only get one life, and I feel it should be spent trying to do positive things (I don't mean that in a happy-clappy sense) as being miserable takes up too much time and energy.

I say this as someone who does have clinical depression. 

I feel there have been times in my life whereby I have wasted entire chunks because I caved in to certain feelings and patterns of behaviour.

Now I am learning how to keep out of some habits and although I feel that I am a bit more set apart from people at least I know that every day I am free. As I am not weighed down under the pressure of trying to be something or someone I am not.

Who I am right now, might well be likened to marmite, but I can honestly say that I can sleep every night with a clear conscience and that I don't push others down to be where I am now.

The only people that I am bothered about liking me are people that I respect. If I don't respect them then I find it easier not to give a sh*t.

Friday, 3 February 2012


I seem to be thinking in number right now, but then certain milestones are attached to having a number.

As I write this I am sat in a hotel room in Verona, trying to get my feet to defrost as well as my fingers.  I brought E and I here to celebrate our two year anniversary.  Luckily with being at the two year stage means that there is a comfortable distance to be had where you can be sat in the same room not saying a word whilst there is space to read or write contently.

The first bit of this trip also hasn't been overly blissful.

Forget falling hearts and cheesy music following us around everywhere. I nearly made us miss a flight by screwing up what time we were leaving. Although we met separately it was my f*ck up that was nearly a big screw up. I also had a nightmare journey too and circumstances that only seem to happen when you're late already and it feels like everything in conspiring to make anything you do as difficult as possible.  I arrived at Gatwick and managed to get the bag in just as the cut off was happening.  It also appears that I may have misplaced E's boarding card and in not realising how easy it was to get a new one I strolled through security and she had a few problems on her side. But luckily managed to get through in the end and by the end of it was wanting to wring my neck. Then we arrive here and the whole hotel booking system screws up and everyone is waiting.  In this time its also approaching the time that we were meant to be going out to the restaurant I had booked but we still had luggage and no room.

Still we managed to get there on time, and had a wonderful meal. With that we relaxed.  Things felt more anniversary-like there were smiles, there was laughter and a lifting in what was a very stressful day.

We woke up cuddled, felt relaxed as we have both been really tired.  Then another bombshell occured.  In the midst of the chaos of yesterday I ended up losing E's anniversary card.  She had a lovely one with flamingos on and I had lost my one I had for her.

After some period of discomfort things soon settled.

Didn't help there being a major feeling of failure on my part.  As for the most part I consider myself to be an organized and dependable type of person.  I very rarely have scatty moments and have never missed a flight or had any silliness attached to traveling anywhere. 

When it comes to cards I have always remembered them for the most part (never forgotten an anniversary/Birthday of a partner) and generally feel that there are some things I am good at.

But the last 24 hours has felt like a complete fail in some areas and the gutting thing in this has been that I wanted it to be special and really nice.  Still following anything associated to yesterday everything has been nice (despite the sub zero) temperatures and we haven't killed one another.

So within that, there are some saving graces.

We also still love each other and won't be coming home on separate flights!

Oh and amongst what was happening last night I realized that my testosterone levels appear to be dipping a lot as well.  As I had a bit of spotting - like a period was spoiling to come which I found odd. It did freak me out as I haven't had anything like that since the end of September so this jolt back to what felt like womanhood was a bit alien.

Even now I am convinced that I have had some fat going back to my thighs and hips which might be the case of may be slightly psycho-sematic given the circumstances.  The faux period also seems to have disaapeared for now but might make me want to discuss my dosages of T.  Such as is it possible to go 10 weekly rather than 12 weekly?

I will sort these things out soon enough, such as the nagging the authorities to remove the name of 'Miss Leng Leng' from my documents and sort out physio for my arms as right now my fingers get numb a lot and it looks likely that some form of RSI is emerging from computer usage, but as it stands Mr Leng Montgomery needs a referral and not Miss Leng Leng.

Also the website I have been working on 'Pull The Other One' has entered it's soft launch stage and have been awaiting feedback from our first batch of testers. The last week for final prep for that has been really stressful.  I have found myself laying awake in the middle of the night pondering if it will work/how to make it better/will it be well received and a million and one other thoughts.

The added extra of working with family on this project I think acts as a blessing and a curse. It's great that there is a security in knowing one another, loving each other and really being able to understand one another.

On the other side feeling the pressure of letting someone down to you that is related to you really sucks.  As not always understanding work colleagues is one thing but if it's family then this can be a bit odd. 

Still thankfully there hasn't been anything too scary, but just had a few feelings that I wasn't expecting to have.  But then this is something to be expected when trying something for the first time. If it isn't known then you don't always know how it is going to pan out or how you will end up feeling.

Now it's in testing mode there can be more focus on when we hard launch.

The project has taught me many things every day and I feel I am gaining a greater understanding of working with other people as well as working on my own and in different environments.  I am also glad to be doing something which does relate vaguely to my degree, as so many people that graduated at the same time as me have had to deviate from what they wanted to do because of the recession and the job market right now.

So for whatever grumble or strange thought I remember this and it grounds me. 

I still feel a burning pressure in me but then I think that will always be there.  I should also remember my age in comparison to some of my peers who are older than me and therefore have been around longer to have clearly defined and carved out career plans.

I am 28 and with that leave me a bit of time in which to get myself planted on the course that I want to take in life. I am getting there slowly, but surely.  I know I want to achieve certain things but I don't feel so worried about them happening at certain intervals.

I always said I wanted to be married by the time I am 30.  I still want marriage one day but am happy to wait a bit before that happens, as I would prefer to feel I have met someone and spent a lot of time with them and experienced whatever life can throw at us and come through the other side. That is as important as having a fancy day and some jewellery on my finger.

I also want to have had my chest surgery and swam in the sea and be curled up with them feeling that I am the new me rather than the old me.

The old me I walk further and further from, so within that I have to be certain that it is Leng and not the remnants of my previous self and identity.  As right now whilst I am in flux I am aware that this is the risk that I take.

On a positive note, when E and I first met each other I was 6 months into my transition, I wasn't taking hormones and now I sit as someone who is and our relationship is still close.  We have had a couple of ups and downs as most relationships go through.  Had people be a bit naughty around us, but any bullshit or manipulations haven't worked, nor have any people's nonsense caused ripples in our relationship.

This has mostly been down to the fact that we discuss and talk about things very clearly and openly.  This has felt like one of the purest relationships I have had whereby there haven't been too many hidden agenda's, emotional immaturity and also very good chemistry.

In some relationships certain people are great as individuals but together they have atrocious energy - or some couples literally bring out the worst aspects of one another.

I would say that E and I bring out the evolving sides of each other.  If ever either of us pisses the other one off or starts displaying unsavory behaviour we both have a bit of a frown, or even a growl but then that is addressed and we work on stuff either alone or together.

Since being with her I feel I communicate a lot better than I used to, because she is good at being quite bold in how she operates.

Since being with me I would say that E listens a bit more to people and has become less bossy...but actually I think her new job is to praise in that one as she has lots of people to boss around every day and by the time she comes home she has let it all out of her system.

I am amazed that two years has passed so quickly but at the same time it feels sometimes like it was only yesterday we met then at other times its like we met years ago.  It is a strange feeling.

One thing is for sure, given the times we kept bumping into each other and the massive magnetism we had instantly, I am glad that this is still the case now.