Journal

Welcome to my online journal, which I started in December 2002 after several very persuasive hints from friends. Although I obviously don't write about everything that happens in my life here, I hope it'll provide an insight into who I am and what's happening in my life - whether good, bad, happy or sad.

A tragic loss of a sister and friend

Posted by Anna at 01:24 on Thursday, August 28, 2003
This is a very sad day. I've just heard the tragic news that Debbie Fox (one of the girls I met at Trans-MISSION earlier this month) has committed suicide.

I really don't know what to say. Although I only met her once in person I could tell from that meeting and her writings on the two groups we were both members of that she was a warm, caring and understanding person and always did her best to help others.

Her loss is a horrible shock, and I know she'll be terribly missed.

My friend Carol-Nerise wrote this poem in memory of Debbie when I told her the news tonight (which was a lovely gesture considering she didn't know her).

Deep feeling, hurting like hell,
Grief that needs healing,
Tears filled the well.

Lights lit, lifting our prayer,
That she gained light and peace,
She knows we will always care.

The healing thought in all this pain
Is that in that loving light
We will meet again.


Rest in peace Debbie. You're in our prayers, and we won't ever forget you.

A little happier

Posted by Anna at 09:55 on Saturday, August 23, 2003
I'm feeling a lot happier this morning.

Although I'm still dissapointed at the prospect of having to delay my FFS (and the problems with sick leave that could cause) the realisation that my reassignment surgery is now booked (on Wednesday 21st January - only 22 weeks and 4 days from now!) is starting to sink in, and it feels amazing! I wired the deposit across to the clinic yesterday, which will confirm the booking.

Last night was fun. Tessa had arranged to come over earlier in the day so I could have a go at salvaging some data for her, but a few minutes before she arrived Julia rang and said she was just across the road and would I like her to come over? So the evening turned into a fun little gathering, with a couple of bottles of wine to share between us and help the conversation flow.

The next week is going to be hectic. Tonight Tessa and I are off to a Beach Party in Somerset (the roads look awful today, unfortunately - lots of congestion), and then on Tuesday I'm off to Gloucestershire for a party at Carol-Nerise's place. It doesn't end there though, as the following weekend I'm visiting Susie and Amanda in Kent.

I'm not used to having a social life - but it's kinda fun.

A reply from the Suporn Clinic

Posted by Anna at 13:09 on Thursday, August 21, 2003
I've just heard from the Suporn Clinic, and they've changed their recommendations for me a little. Of special interest is that they're now recommending that GRS (Genital Reassignment Surgery) and FFS (Facial Feminisation Surgery) procedures are undertaken on separate visits - so it looks like my trip in January will be a little shorter and cheaper than I planned. I also need to seriously think about their recommendations for FFS, which are more invasive than the procedures originally recommended.

On the plus side, this does mean I can get a date booked for GRS very soon (I've asked for the 21st January).

Here's the message I received:

    Dear Anna-Jayne (Metcalfe),

    Reviewing your photos again, feminising rhinoplasty can give a somewhat smaller and better contoured shape - but for a considerable reduction in size, you would need the reconstructive technique. This involves breaking the nose and resetting it to a smaller shape. You would need to wear a cast for 2 weeks.

    As your chin protrudes rather forward, you would most likely require a sliding genioplasty together with chin reduction.

    Finally, your left ear protrudes more than your right, but this is something (otoplasty) which you could just as easily correct closer to home in the U.K.

    Having recently completed our biannual review of surgery, we have found that our patients are taking increasingly long periods in the operation room for FFS. To reduce the risk of postoperative complications and enhance quicker recovery time, we can now recommend either of the following for your first visit to Thailand:


    (1) Type A SRS = 390,000 THB.

    OR:

    (1) forehead bone contouring/resetting ('compression technique') + forehead lift
    (2) Dermalive to treat furrows (creases) rising above nosebridge
    (3) reconstructive rhinoplasty (osteotomy)
    (4) sliding genioplasty + chin reduction

    Package Cost: 545,000 THB.


    In either case, you could choose any date among: 15 16 20 21 22 23 27 28 29 30. You could return any time from 2 to 3 months afterward for the balance of surgery.

    Ideally, we would recommend doing the SRS first in case you could benefit from a cosmetic 'touch-up' if you were to return later for FFS.

    p.s. For a recent result of FFS:
    http://hometown.aol.co.uk/tiffsmac/surgeryindex.html
I have to say that I feel rather dissapointed (and to be honest, a bit upset) at the prospect of having to delay the FFS work (although I'm sure it's best that I do so), particularly since work commitments are quite likely to prevent me paying a return visit this year.

A friend has suggested that I also look into the possibilities of undergoing FFS with Brian Musgrove in the UK, but I have to say that the lack of publicly available information about his techniques and results really puts me off. There's also the cost issue of course - the UK isn't exactly known for reasonable pricing where private medical care is concerned.

I really don't know at the moment. This should be a happy day for me, so why am I crying?

On top of the world

Posted by Anna at 02:09 on Sunday, August 17, 2003
I feel on top of the world right now. Not only is the next (and biggest!) stage in my journey about to start, but yesterday showed me (as if I needed to be reminded!) just how much people care for and love me. Being invited right into a family is truly special, and the way I feel about the welcome I felt yesterday is something I can't describe in words. Thanks Kaz - I feel like I've found a second family.

Today I've been up to London for laser treatment again - bikini at lunchtime, and face in the afternoon. I arrived in London an hour or so early, so I had time to kill. I ended up in a bar on Waterloo station with a Hoegaarden and a cinnamon sticky-bun-like-thing for company, watching the people go by. I was feeling pretty contented as it was, but the beer helped (and eased the pain of the laser treatment an hour later!), and I found myself reflecting on how far I've come and how wonderful people are towards me now.

I know I keep saying it, but it's a big thing to me - I'd don't remember ever feeling this way in my past life.

Pick a date...

Posted by Anna at 18:43 on Thursday, August 14, 2003
Fantastic news! I've just had an email from the Suporn Clinic and they're now starting to take bookings for surgery next year.

They say they'll be contacting everyone who's made an enquiry indivually soon, so now I've just got to wait for my turn and see what dates they can offer me. All being well, I should have a provisional surgery date in a few days time!!!

Trans-MISSION

Posted by Anna at 22:33 on Sunday, August 03, 2003
Last night turned out to be a lot of fun!

I think altogether there were 11 of us. Jane and I drove down together, meeting Susie and Amanda at the hotel (Citadenes, Barbican) shortly after we arrived. Carolyn turned up (more like sneaked up behind us ) as we were relaxing outside the Firkin pub across the road, and after chilling in the heat for a while we gradually drifted back to the hotel...congregating in the room Jane had booked for a chat, a glass or two of red wine and some munchies).

After getting ready (a black leather mini and a rather revealing matching top with knee high black suede boots for me) we met the others in the hotel reception, and eventually wandered off to an Italian restaurant nearby. As there was a whole bunch of us and we were rather tarted up we did attact a bit of attention from the guys sitting outside the pub across the road (in their dreams...).

The club itself is very close to the hotel, and in fact it was far tamer than I expected...three floors (each with a bar), with a loud disco on the top floor playing very cheesy disco/dance music - just the thing for your average tranny I guess, but not my scene at all. It took me a while (and a large glass of Leffe Blonde which I was surprised to find on sale at the bar) before I loosened up and joined in the dancing. After that (apart from trips to the bar) I didn't stop until closing time...

Afterwards we carried on the party (albeit without the music) back at the hotel until the early hours of the morning. Getting up at 9am was a bit of a shock, but at least I wasn't hungover this weekend!

Although the "scene" isn't truly my thing, I really enjoyed the night out...not only was it a chance to "let my hair down" (and believe me I did, as you'll see when I get round to uploading the photos!) but it was also a safe venue - no worrying about being hit on by guys or "read". It was lots of fun, and I'll definitely do it again...

I am so glad I don`t have to hide...

Posted by Anna at 11:37 on Saturday, August 02, 2003
I had a lovely surprise this morning - a call from an old family friend, who I haven't seen for years. Her daughter (who I went to school with) read my story on Friends Reunited a couple of weeks back and we've been chatting by email ever since. It looks like some more visiting may be in order in the nearish future!

I'm so glad I don't have to hide - stealth may work (or be necessary) for some, but it's not my way and for me being open has paid off amazingly well so far.

Tonight I'm off with a bunch of friends to Trans-MISSION in London for a fun night out. Although the transgender "scene" isn't what I'm in to, I expect it to be a laugh!

We're all booked into a hotel tonight, so I expect tomorrow to be just chilling and trying to recover...I just hope I want feel as hungover as I did last weekend....