Things are going well. I’m into my 3rd day of the new quarter here in college. I already like it much better than last quarter. Taking more classes I thrive as the structure helps keep me accountable and busy- last semester there was just too much down time. I bought a binder to begin wearing this year, when it came in the mail and I saw it I was like “Yikes!” it looked so small, especially around the stomach area. I’ve been wearing it for 4 days now; usually only the first half the day while I’m in my classes. There is some discomfort when walking and I can’t slouch, which may be a good thing. But I really like the way I look. I want to buy a few more, as I just bought one since they are sort of expensive and I wasn’t sure how I’d take to it. The thing is it’s really hot, which is fine in this rainy wet weather we are having now, but what happens once hot summers come? I also found new boxer briefs that don’t ride up and practically become like woman underwear. I bought 4 more mens shirts and my dad just gave me some more money for the month. I think I’ll buy another couple shirts.
My classes this semester are 2nd quarter Greek, 4th quarter Spanish, New Testament in Greek, Upper Division Writing, and Gender, Language and Society. There are 5 classes but the New Testament class is just one hour, once a week. I also have an ungraded connection that meets once a week around the common interest of being a Future grad student. I’ll be pretty busy this quarter.
Counseling will probably be cut to every other week so I can go to gender group, also because I’m doing well right now. If I start to have problems we may change apps to Friday or I may go later on Wednesdays and skip Gender group sometimes. When I see the therapist at the end of the month I’m going to ask her AGAIN about when I will have a consult with the gender therapist, I know I was in crisis in November and then in December she had to cancel because she was sick but I’m running out of patience. I just found out today my psychiatrist has a reminder set to have a phone appointment with me on the 20th, then we will talk about reducing the Latuda we had to increase at the end of November because of the psychotic symptoms.
Safety plans in place, and I guess I got my psychiatrist all worried. So I saw my case manager on Friday and told her legit what was going on, and also that I was NOT going to go to the hospital. I told her I told the therapist what was going on but not how bad it was, because she doesn’t know me as well and probably would’ve hospitalized me based on my symptoms. I wrote my psychiatrist a message earlier in the week about my symptoms and he talked to my case manager and the therapist and he’s all freaked out and made an appointment for me next Friday. My case manager was talking about how he was invested in me and worried, lol. I think he’s just frustrated we found some meds that finally worked and now they’re now working again. My sister is holding on to my extra pills, so I don’t have them at my apartment- I’ve been extra suicidal so that’s part of me trying to be safe. I also put a Trans crisis line in my cell phone. My case manager reminded me she’ll be off this week for thanksgiving, but to feel free and call for an emergency appointment the next week and she’ll get me in. Although I gave my sister the extra pills, I put in my chart some extra PRN of Latuda (my anti-psychotic) and Valium in case the voices get to bad and I need to calm down. Just 3 more weeks of school to get through. Then 5 weeks of vacation, and I don’t care if I have to go to the hospital then- I mean I prefer not to but it’s a hell of a lot better than missing finals. Hopefully during winter break the symptoms let up, or I can adjust.
It’s been interesting lately. And of course by interesting I mean a combination of hard, no one knows what is going on, and yet I keep my head above water. I’ve given hints, but some family reads this and I worry what they will think- but I started this for me. About a week ago my nephew was born, about a week and three days ago I started to transition in wearing male clothing and bought boxer briefs and switched my jeans into male ones (though I’m still having trickiness with sizing.) The voices came back soon, they said the baby was going to die unless I went back and stopped making my changes. The voices were the back 1s, the voices that used to be the constant companions, not the episodic side voices like usual. Also the back 1s in the past have been positive, negative, neutral, or narrating so this was interesting that they came back for this to take a stance. I didn’t listen and added coping skills and increased my anti-psychotic. Unfortunately it was during midterms, otherwise I may have just went into hospital for respite/relief. I had actually taken extra Latuda the night before and morning of a Greek midterm and managed to still get a B, with double dose in me and active voices. My case manager thinks the voices are back because of my sister having the baby and that they want ME to hurt the baby and that’s not the case, that’s probably come from side voices. All my midterms are done, 2 B’s and an A; I didn’t try hard so I’m happy with my grades. I’m not very motivated, when not in class, at a club or workshop; I’m usually sleeping. I’ve been home weekends a lot, I don’t know if that’s better or worse, it prevents me from sleeping the weekend away. This weekend is my birthday, most my family is gone anyways, so I’m going to visit 20 somethings friend. Since I told my case manager about the voices I know it’s going to slow down transitioning, medically wise and I really don’t want to tell the therapist because I don’t have as good a relationship with her and it’s harder for me to tell her this is two separate things- even though I’M SURE they are.
Today I had a counseling appointment and even though my case manager doesn’t really want to address the gender identity issues she today said that my self harm was a result of gender identity and sexuality issues. I was quick to point out I was self harming before those issues came to light and for other reasons. I often worry about people taking my biological disorders and my situational life happenings and screwing them up and trying to put something where it doesn’t belong. I did mention that yes I did self harm on my breasts because I hated them; but I self harmed for a slew of other reasons before I hit puberty (when gender issues came on) and before I met PK (when I started discovering my sexuality).
I’m thinking about using a new name with my new gender variant expression, when I start transitioning more, a nickname my sister has given me that is my initials. Before I do that though, I want it to be okay with her as it is her nickname sort of and I don’t know how she will feel about being gender variant and I don’t feel right about taking a nickname she gave me and using it; if she takes the transition really badly. I need to feel her out. I’m not good at feeling people out.
Do you sometimes feel illegitimate or your diagnosis means less than because it isn’t paired with the typical diagnosis. Than your case manager tells you that you weren’t washing your hair just to act out and you know distinctly it was because of the sensory issues. If it was to act out, why would you allow family members to wash it in the sink. Would those be the people you were acting out against?
I feel without the comirbid ASD diagnosis my SPD is less legitimate especially as an adult. I know there are few adults with SPD. And I know I meet the symptoms and criteria. I just don’t have melt downs, I do shut down. I’ve found coping strategies. And I feel I have to ignore my issues and sensitivities because people will now say they are less legitimate. Family always has, except for knife sharpening; cuz they can see how that would bother almost anyone.
Another day in the life of a complexly mentally ill person.
A few days ago me and my dad got into it. It was just like every other time. It was over something petty, it involved him calling me names, screaming at me and cussing at me. But there were a few things different this time. I didn’t cry hysterically immediately in front of him, I didn’t automatically apologize for all of my behavior to placate him. And when he said he was sorry, I said if he was sorry, maybe he should try to work on trying not to do this anymore. When he said it was because he loved me and he cared about me, I flipped internally- hello the definition of abuse. I said there you go again the “old dog” and “just the way you are” and then I ran off to my room and started crying. This type of behavior has been going on since I was a child, minus me sticking up for myself somewhat. And it just really clicked what it was, what it is. And I don’t understand how he can justify it as “love” and “care.” After I stood up for myself I was practically shaking in fear, I’m still somewhat afraid but it’s been 3 days so it’s mostly subsided. My case manager thinks I’m afraid I’m going to hit him or lash out in anger towards him. Really I’m afraid of retaliation from him, not that he’ll hit me. I don’t think he’d do that, but more sudle emotional ways or something.
Gender identity has still been swirling round in my head and it won’t slow down. I even went to look at our local Gender a health Center’s website today. Thinking about setting up an appointment to talk to a counselor there. You may ask “Marci, Why would you do that? You already have a case manager and a therapist!” Yes, I do and I saw the therapist yesterday and I didn’t bring it up much because I didn’t think we had enough time to talk and I knew it’d just leave a big puzzle till next month. I’ve brought it up a little with my case manager and I think she thinks it’s me who doesn’t want to talk about it. I just think she doesn’t have any knowledge in it. That’s why I was looking at the gender health center. I guess I’ll ask her tomorrow at our appointment.
Anyways. There were some intake forms so I printed them out and began to fill them out. I also talked a little bit to my trans blogger friend. I don’t think I’m cisgender but I don’t think I’m transgender either. I guess that leaves gender queer which I don’t like the term. I really want my breasts gone or reduced but then what happens if people start referring to me as male? I’m already not that girly. I thought I’d be okay with it, until the person on Facebook used the male possessive pronoun (his) based only off looking at a picture of me.
Filling out the forms I’ve also realized this is something that has gone back to puberty, which is 15+ years. People say I have time and I understand that. And I deinetly don’t want to make rash decisions. But this isn’t something new that just came up. And now that I’ll be living out on my own I feel like I have more sovereignty over my body so I can make more decisions or at least explore what I’d like to do.
I’m also not clear on my sexuality and as I’m getting older I think I need to be clear where I stand if it’s true that I don’t need a partner than that’s fine but if it’s just some stage right now. I’m going to be pissed when I’m 40 and trying to find someone to settle down with. It’s true I’m happy how I am right now for the most part, I feel satisfied. It just seems strange. Like is this really a thing?
Yesterday was the NAMI Walk here is a picture of my 2016 Team:
Biggest team yet with 23 participants, 4 of which were children and 2 of which were dogs. It rained so it was a good turnout of my 31 people registered. I met my fund raising goal of $1,500. The highest amount I’ve raised in all 4 years too.
My ASD (Autistic Spectrum Disorder) Evaluation is set for May 24th so we’ll see what happens I also have an appointment with the therapist that day and it’s a week after school ended. Me and my case manager have decided to go to meetings once every two weeks because I’m doing good but that might chance with the loss of structure from summer and some realizations I had when talking with some Autistic friends. I’m set to receive to more AAs this semester, Associate Degrees or 2 years degrees one in Foreign Languages and the other in LGBT studies (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender). I’m not going to either commencement ceremony but for my LGBT studies one I am going to a more informal Rainbow Graduation and 20 somethings friend is going. I only invited 3 people, my sister and family friend couldn’t go both are traveling.
I signed my commitment thing to go to UC Davis and will be going to their transfer day this Friday and touring student housing and making my decision when I get home I plan on filling out the forms and putting my deposit down for student housing. My financial aid finally went through and I’m relieved I won’t be paying that much for college so if my unpredictable parents do something stupid I’m still okay.
Things are good but I’m exhausted from yesterday.