Wednesday, February 22, 2012

T Minus 1 Day - Surgery Eve!

"Tomorrow! Tomorrow!
I love ya, tomorrow!
You're always a day away."
-- Annie (Annie), Tomorrow
Hooh! It's been a full week, as expected, which has kept my mind from wandering too much. Every once in a while a wave of realization will hit me, and I'll reel for a couple of seconds. It's finally here!

The flight from SLC to LAX was fine. After going through the body scanner, a TSA agent did give me a "thorough patdown", but she was very amiable and professional. The flight was short, but I'm already considering looking in to an upgrade for the trip back, just for slightly more comfortable seats.

Disneyland was a lot of fun, though the lines were longer than expected, and rides kept going down right when we wanted to go on them. Erin and I take a trip down there every couple of years, because it's an easy/fun road trip and we get to stop in Vegas, but I've never seen the rides go down that much.

We'd only planned to hang out with Erin's brother Chris while there, but we found out a couple of weeks ago that Erin's oldest brother, Dave, who lives in SLC, was coincidentally also going to the LA area at the same time as we were. He and his girlfriend ended up joining us at Disney, which was brilliant. Funnily, both of Erin's brothers are averse to roller coasters, so us three girls ended up going on Space Mountain without them.

The visit with the grandfolk on Sunday was good. Since we were exhausted from Disney, it was nice to just sit around chatting over dinner, and they're such good people.

I knew we'd forget to bring something from home. The something ended up being hairspray, a mouse for the laptop, and a car charger for our phones. The charger was the most problematic, since we use our phones for GPS directions. Thankfully we found a Best Buy (and grabbed a couple more video games to boot) before driving up to San Mateo.

We met with Dr. Bowers yesterday, and she talked us through the expected outcome and possible (but unlikely) complications. I thought I'd have a million questions, but I just kept looking at Erin, and neither of us could think of anything. I spent so much time over the last couple of years researching the surgery in general and Dr. Bowers in specific, I think all I really needed was to hear her reassurances. And she was amazingly reassuring.

She's obviously been at this a long time, and being trans herself, she has a unique and very comforting perspective. She said everything looked fine and that there shouldn't be any problems.

After that, we went and picked up my prescriptions (laxative, bowel prep, pain relievers, antibiotics, and antibacterial cream) and some supplies, i.e. neosporin, baby wipes, and clear liquids for me to subsist on today. We'd thought about doing something touristy for the remainder of yesterday. Instead, we relaxed in the hotel for a while, then went out to a steak joint for my last meal. It was a nice recharge that I think we both needed.

We saw Dr. Beck this morning, and he was a little less personable than Marci, but still very nice. After he took some pictures and measurements of my chest, he had us work with his assistant Jasmine on sizing and such, and she was wonderful. She knew just what to say to boost my confidence and make me feel good about what I'm doing.

Next, we had to drop by the hospital for some quick blood work. Then back to the hotel to start in on the bowel prep to clean me out. The solution came in a jug, which I filled with water to mix it. I was then supposed to drink a glass every ten minutes until gone.

The first five or six glasses went down fine, but after that, the stuff started to make me nauseous. I know it was partly psychosomatic, so I did my best to power through it, but I couldn't seem to down a full glass without feeling like I was going to throw up. It didn't help that the jug was four freaking liters, meaning about 16 small glasses over the course of several hours to get through it. Ugh.

I also wasn't allowed to eat anything today, just liquids. Remarkably, I haven't been that hungry. A light snack probably would've helped settle my stomach when drinking the bowel prep, but I made do with ginger ale or apple juice chasers.

At this point, I'm just waiting for bed time so we can wake up and head in to the hospital. We're supposed to be there at 10:00am, but the actual surgery doesn't start until around 11:30. It should last around 4-5 hours, with both docs working at the same time. I'll be in the hospital for about three days, then back to the hotel for another week before heading home.

I half-expected to have a lot of doubts and moods swings to work through over the last week, which would've been normal, but I've had surprisingly little apprehension. I'm anxious and antsy, but I think I made up my mind and overcame my qualms a long time ago.

By now I'm just excited that the wait is finally over. Of course, this is also just another beginning, but in my head, it's the beginning of the rest of my life, and I know that I'm ready for it.


  1. Happy V-Day! I'm so happy for you. It's been pretty amazing to watch you take this journey. It seems like it started out with baby steps and now here you are about to hop on a high speed train to wrap up the last major changes. I think the farther along you've come in the process, the comfortable you've seemed to grow in your own skin. All the best today! I'll be thinking of you and watching for updates from Erin. I wish I could have made it out there to help, but I'll be to help, if you need me, when you get back home.

  2. I think I'm more nervous for you than you are. I was looking at a calendar last night counting how many days until you got back. I'm sure everything will go smoothly, but calling that steak dinner your "last meal" doesn't help. :-P

    I've been trying to think of more "can't open the pickle jar" type jokes to tease you with when you return. So far, I've only determined that you'll no longer be able to throw or do math.

  3. Oh, duh. You'll suck at driving now.

  4. I'm watching your countdown clock as I type... two minutes to go. You are in my thoughts and prayers! (JH)