Time sure has flown by! And it’s about time to give you another update on how things are going. A little over 4 months has passed since I started taking hormones and there have definitely been changes in that time. Overall I’m feeling much better in myself too, I’m very happy with the path I’m travelling along and it won’t be long until I’m living full-time, but more on that in another post. Let’s get down to the interesting changes.
Well I can report that mood swings still happen, I am definitely getting used to them though. consumption of chocolate (dark chocolate) continues at a steady pace, I swear they should provide it on prescription with oestrogen patches, I might write to my GP! My mood has stabilised since the first month where I was an emotional wreck, I’m more used to the female hormones now. I still easily cry and am more sensitive to certain things, like sad parts of films and even hearing about friends and family going through hardship. I’m not sure why, I wonder if there is anything scientific to the feeling that I’ve opened a door to a more sensitive and empathetic part of my mind. Perhaps it could even be a placebo effect? Who knows, but I’ve definitely noticed a change there.
I still have some dark and gloomy days where all I want to do is crawl into darkness and listen to Marilyn Mason or Korn, but I tend to fix that by crawling into darkness and listening to Marilyn Manson or Korn \m/,
With a lower level of testosterone I have read that this can lead to less motivation and drive. This was the case in the first month for me and I still feel that sometimes, but not very often. Now that I have got used to the new levels of hormones I actually feel I can focus better, I am working well and feeling good. A general sense of wellness is a good way to describe overall, happier in myself perhaps?
The fun part! 😀
Straight in there – breast growth. I’ve actually had a fair amount of breast growth in just 4 months, I am now almost a full A-cup. They are of course incredibly sensitive and sometimes a bit painful, which I have come to attribute to growth, so it’s a good kind of pain.
Face shape; from looking at picture from before taking hormones and comparing them to recent photos I think I’m starting to see a difference. Of course, the skeletal structure of the face can’t change, so major changes won’t really happen, but subtle changes in the soft tissue can happen. I think that my cheeks look a little fuller and my face in general looks a little softer and more feminine.
Elsewhere I have definitely lost some muscle mass and friends have noticed my frame starting to look a little softer and rounded (this happens on the shoulders and hips where the muscle, soft tissue and fat are redistributed). My body hair seems to grow a little slower now and my skin is noticeably softer.
Weight loss; I’ve maintained a healthy diet and exercise since before transition and have continued with that (plus a little extra dark chocolate!). I have however wanted to lose some weight as I was reasonably built in regards to muscle and overall build. I don’t regularly weigh myself so I can’t say how much weight I’ve lost but it must be a fair bit.
One of key areas I have been looking to change about myself is my legs, those who know me probably think I’m mental for saying that. You’ll tell me there’s nothing wrong with my legs I’m sure. However I do get body dysphoria about some parts of my body and the legs is one. I have always had very defined, square calf muscles and big upper leg muscles. There’s nothing wrong with a girl having that but I just want to get the shape looking and feeling more feminine, it doesn’t matter what others think, it’s my own self-perception here that matters.
To change this I have been eating a healthy diet and exercising. I stopped cycling and sold my bike, due to reading how defined calf muscles and big leg muscles can be built and maintained with cycling. Recently I have started going to RockFit in Plymouth, a dance exercise class to rock music! It’s amazing, and a shout out to the awesome Hannah Le Rouge who invented it and runs the classes. I think RockFit is actually the thing that is making the difference, I’m starting to see a change in the definition of my leg muscles and my legs overall are slimming nicely. Hormones and RockFit – a TGirl’s best friend \m/,
Ok, so a few weeks ago I had my blood tested to monitor my oestrogen(E) and testosterone(T) levels. This is something for early-stage trans women to be wary of, if the same happens to you then I’m sure you’ll get quite upset like I did on getting the results. My E level, which I of course want to increase, had actually dropped! After 1 month of hormones I had a level of 296, 3 months later my blood test shows it at 259… WHAT!? What’s going on!? I’m going backwards!
Cue many tears, confusion and a pissed off Amber. My T level had dropped from 19 down to 12.1 which is really good, so I had that as a silver lining, but I just couldn’t comprehend why the E level had dropped.
Speaking to my GP, she said I am still going in the right direction and that as long as the T level continues to drop she does not have any concerns. However, my oestrogen level may not be high enough to make the testosterone go below 10 (we are aiming for below 1). So, she has now put me on a higher dose of oestrogen 🙂 So far no immediate effects of being on a higher dose, just the peace of mind knowing something has been done.
So please don’t be alarmed if your oestrogen level drops, mine did and I panicked. Turns out that it’s ok and all will be fine, nothing to stress too much about.
Transition is a long process, a drop one month means nothing in the long run.
That’s all from my update.
Going well and enjoying the gradual changes.