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.

New hormones, please!

Posted by Anna at 13:07 on Saturday, July 31, 2004
After over a year on Yasmin, I've finally switched to a safer (and more easily measurable) alternative. Although Yasmin has done wonders for my body (as anyone who's seen my figure will be able to confirm! ), it does its magic through a synthetic oestrogen called ethinylestradiol. By comparison with other oestrogens, it's very effective, but also places a much greater strain on the liver and carries an elevated risk of DVT. It's certainly not recommended for long-term use.

I've been on Yasmin since September 2002 (prior to that I was on Ovran - another combined pill containing ethinylestradiol), but with me now being 9 months post-op, it really is time for a change. Today I start a course of the much safer Progynova (6mg per day), and in a couple of weeks or so I'll also start taking a progestin called Duphaston (10mg per day).

Hopefully in a month or so I'll know whether this combination suits my body. Everything I've learnt suggests it should be just fine.

When I'm this quiet, it's because I'm kinda busy...

Posted by Anna at 23:25 on Friday, July 30, 2004
Wow...it's 9 days since I've written anything! I guess that's an indication of how busy my life is at the moment!

So what have I been up to? Mostly, I've been working, or driving between here and the my beloved...living 50 miles away from your beloved is one sure way to push up your fuel bills...

Last Thursday Beth and I went to see Spiderman 2, and if you like action movies with an emotional touch I can definitely recommend it. One scene sticks on my mind - the one where Spiderman is unmasked and trying to stop a runaway subway train. The compassionate way he was treated by the other passengers when he's given everything he could brought a real lump to my throat.

Forget all the macho-shit Batman style crap - Spiderman 2 is definitely one for the girls....

Finally, last night I visited my friends Mark and Debs in their new home (well done guys!) and this weekend Beth and I are going to visit my friend Susie in Kent. By Monday, I'm sure I'll be knackered again...

FFS 6 months on

Posted by Anna at 22:07 on Wednesday, July 21, 2004
It's hard to believe, but six months ago this morning I was lying on a table in Operating Room 2 at Aikchol Hospital undergoing Facial Feminisation Surgery. So much has happened since then, and now seems like a good time to look back at what I had done, and how it's worked out so far.

Wannee and I outside Aikchol Hospital the day before my FFS. Going gothic that day seemed oddly appropriate...

Fai, myself and Aey shortly before I left Chonburi to fly home. I was struggling to hold back the tears.

Aoi and I, again just before I left Chonburi.

To recap, I underwent the following procedures:

  • Type II Forehead Compression and Brow Lift

  • Dermalive Injections to treat "furrows" at the bridge of the nose and across the forehead

  • Reconstructive Rhinoplasty
  • Chin Reduction with Sliding Genioplasty

  • Jaw Reduction
Although everything is still settling down I'm pretty happy with the results:

    Forehead
    My forehead has healed nicely. The deep furrows I had previously have not recurred (yet!), although there are faint traces of them which I assume is to be expected given their previous depth and my age.

    Although the top of my head is still fairly numb, The nerves are gradually waking up, which makes things feel a little odd at times. I often get itchiness there, and it's an itch that can't be scratched. Rather annoying, but a good sign I think.

    Similarly, touching the skin on or around my forehead can cause quite painful (although very localised) "prickly" feelings, and plucking my eyebrows is very painful. In time, I'm sure that will cease.

    Nose
    My nose was apparently the most difficult part of my FFS, and took Dr. Suporn 2 1/2 hours. Given the difficulty he experienced, its not surprising that its the one thing I feel could be further improved.

    There are two things I feel need to be addressed:

    1. My nostrils are still constricted in size, and there is some minor scarring adjacent to the left hand one. The constriction is the more serious, as it can cause me to become out of breath at times. This usually happens when I'm eating - presumably because I can't breath through the mouth and eat at the same time!

    2. The bridge of my nose is still more prominent than I hoped for. Given the amount of time my nose took to reconstruct, it's perfectly understandable that Dr. Suporn didn't do that...and I did give him a free hand, after all.


    Chin and Jaw
    I still have some swelling on my chin, most noticeably in the lower centre. That makes it a little difficult to see the actual shape of my chin, although I've got a fairly good idea. I'm taking anti-inflammatories (Diclofenic Sodium) each day to help with the swelling.

    The swelling is expected, and not an issue. However, there are a couple of things I'm keeping an eye on:

    1. touching my jaw where it's been been shaved results in quite uncomfortable nerve pain which at first felt like it shot straight up inside the teeth in the vicinity. Thankfully, its not so bad now, and I imagine in time it will cease.


    2. A a little more concerning is what feels like a rather abrupt discontinuity between the line of my chin and jaw. If I trace the line of my chin from its centre back towards the sides and the jaw proper, there is a noticeable transition at each side of the chin where the jawline is significantly higher than the corners of the chin.

      It's hard to describe, but not noticeable in practice, and although it doesn't feel quite like bone, it doesn't feel like swollen tissue either. Odd.

      This could well be normal...I've no idea. I'm not particularly concerned about it, but I would like to understand what's happening there!
Despite these minor issues, I'm still very satisfied with the results of my FFS. If I had to make the same choices again I'm sure I'd still go to Dr. Suporn. I hope to post some updated pictures soon so you can see my progress.

I'm actually hoping to return to Thailand early next year to have the tracheal shave I should have had done last time, and while I'm there I expect I'll be able to have my nose tidied up. I'm certainly looking forward to seeing everyone again!

Meet the Parents

Posted by Anna at 22:42 on Monday, July 19, 2004
I've been a very busy bunny...tonight is the first night I've spent in Basingstoke since Wednesday!

Once again I spent the weekend with Beth but this time there was a surprise - her parents were visiting the area, and on Saturday afternoon they came to see us. They were quite simply wonderful to me, and I felt completely at ease. They're both very interesting and friendly people, and her Dad in particular is quite a character...he's an incredibly fit person, and regularly takes part in demanding sports events such as triathlons. That's certainly something I've never come across directly before!

In the evening we all went out to an Italian restaurant called Sale E Pepe. The meal was gorgeous and the company wonderful. I thoroughly enjoyed myself, and feel like I've found a new family.

Life is feeling rather amazing at the moment, and that's all down to my love Beth. I'm so looking forward to our future together.