Sunday, 30 September 2012

Busy little bee

Since coming back from my trip to the UK I have not really stopped, large projects at work mean that we have a busy period at the moment. Add to that the amount of chores that I also have in home at the moment and it seems that I do not have time to think, let alone stop and recharge.

So what's been keeping me busy for the last 29 days?  I wonder if I can do this without rambling on to much...  Let's see!

Firstly I had a difficult first day back in the office.  With unfortunate timing I had to visit the gender clinic for my three monthly check up with my psychologist the morning I went back to work.  That mean two things - firstly that I would have to work on the Sunday afternoon before starting work to make up for lost time, and secondly that I would have to work from the morning that I should  be catching up with all that has happened during my break.

But, I used the time to go though the 400 mails I had during my vacation and figure out which ones still required action from my part so that by the time I hit the office after my appointment I would be up to speed and ready to start (rather than the normal sit behind your computer for the first day trying to catch up!

The appointment went amazingly - 20 minutes of a 60 minute appointment was enough to show that I am on the right track and that, at the moment, I don't have any issues.  Work's going well, family life is going well and I am simply living my life.  That is the biggest change from the beginning of December, I am no longer spending time stressing over my gender, I'm just living. (Sorry, that feels like such a cliche sentence - but it's just how it is!)

Then on Thursday I had to back to the hospital for my second trip to the MRI for the medical research that I was taking part in.  I took the afternoon off of work as vacation to try and make sure I could get there in time. The only problem was that I ran out of time. Instead of having enough time to make my lunch before leaving I rushed a banana as I ran to my car...

The afternoon was spent doing intelligence and memory tests, orally, written and on on the computer.  Then for the MRI section.  I went into the machine, got half way through the first of 6 tests and the thing crashed and needed to be restarted! But I made it though the rest of the test, and was then given some fun information - which I am not going to share here just in case anyone reading this volunteers for a similar study! They did tell me that the radiologist will also look through each of the scans as normal just as an extra service.

After all the fun of the tests it was time to see the endocrinologist to see how things have been after the first  3 months on hormone.  And to tell me that now the study has finished I switch from patches and injections to 2 tablets twice a day! Oh, and I managed to scare her with my blood pressure.  175/90 the first time she tried to read it.  It dropped a bit the second time, but I have to try and relax when I go back in three months.  It doesn't bother me too much as I know my blood pressure sky rockets when someone tries to measure it.

The time over the following weeks flew, projects and firefighting in the office and seeing family.  Until last weekend when we had our company weekend away.  We were really lucky with the weather that we had - sunny and warm when the week had been damp and cold!  The afternoon was spent making a 'lipdub' to the Black Eyed Pea's I Got a Feeling.  Dressed in a witches hat and over-sized pink sunglasses (we had to wear something crazy) I really got into it after staring with more of a 'oh my god, what the hell is this?'  OK, I'll admit there was a glass of wine (and a bit) in between the first thought and enjoying it :)

What I was surprised at though is I saw a picture someone took and liked it that much that I used it for my Facebook profile. I may still be a little obscured by glasses and the hat, but for once I was looking genuinely happy on a photo!

After the lipdub it was time to go to the hotel room and get changed for the evening.  The theme was black and white and so I had brought a dalmatian print black and white dress, with black leggings and a black cardigan. No one knew what we were going to be doing and it was a shock when we turned up at a quay next to a party boat from the supper club.  The evening was spent on the water with good food, music and drinkable wine.  An evening spent mixing with various groups (also a new experience to me - I normally stick with my colleagues rather then mixing with others groups) on various parts of the boat was a lot of fun.  I called it a night early, as I was driving home the next day I did not want to be to late / drunk, but not before we had two people dressed as panthers stalking the boat.  They acted the part perfectly, and were really intimidating when in a narrow corridor.  But... If you stroked their heads as they walked past they would roll on the ground just like our cat does when you fuss him.  Amazing!

Another week of work brings me almost up to date.  We had a new folder through from a shop last week and both Mrs Stace and I found things we wanted. So a trip to the shops before doing the shopping yesterday and I have a new outfit:

I love it, though it makes me look even taller.  I just hope it's not 'too' for work...  Next week will tell.

They are going to be paired up with new boots that I got a few weeks ago:

Yup I'm starting to get adventurous!

What else...  Well I've been busy with our IT.  Mrs Stace's old laptop died and so we have done our normal thing.  I got myself a nice Vaio Ivy bridge untra portable and she had my Sandy bridge laptop that I had just updated with an SSD.  Now we have to spend the time migrating all of our applications, files and settings and then I am giving my two old laptops away.  They are no use for us anymore, but i have one colleague who is going to use one as his YouTube recording machine (it should be good enough for that) and I'm going to see if my brother can use the other one.

Oh...  And our ceiling fell down in the bathroom!  We noticed a bulge where the 17 year old coating had just given up the ghost.  Half the plaster and coating had come loose so yesterday I had to teach myself how to plaster.  It's not neat, but there is no whole anymore!  I need to sand it down to smooth and then I am going to use fiberglass wall paper to hide the mistakes and just paint it white once everything has set.


  1. Larks, you have been busy.

    Four hundred emails just isn't right.... IMO. Forty, maybe. But four hundred? [sigh] It's the modern world.

    Oh, fab choice of outfits, BTW. Love the boots!

  2. Yup, love the boots and outfit!

    And didn't you have an email or 400 to respond to? :-)

  3. Caroline: Yup, always trying to burn the wick at both ends. As long as I don't get burnt!

    Lynn: I could have done without the ceiling falling down I must admit! It wouldn't be so bad, but just last year we had it skimmed to make it look nice and then the original layer just detaches from the concrete above!

    The emails could have been worse, I think that Mrs Stace had more to deal with. Though I must admit it's amazing how tiring it is to spend a weekend just reading mails and marking for file, delete or as a task. Then running through all of the ones marked as task hoping for the best!

    Carolyn Ann and Lynn: Thanks I love the outfit! After seeing it on Friday with 20 den tights I was worried it was just *too* for the office :) But after trying it today with some opaque ones I'm actually quite relaxed about wearing it, except for people complaining I'm overdressed :)

    After nearly a year it's one comment I get - you are always so well dressed, we feel bad. I have explained that being well dressed is what makes me comfortable - I just hope no one thinks I am trying too hard...

    Well that, and the fact that I have no clothes ruined enough to do things like plaster a ceiling! (OK - I admit I kept some of his old clothes just for doing really dirty work that would ruin my new clothes!


  4. I love the outfit, Stace, and I love that you're living so "normally".

    I may have missed it in a previous post, but I am curious if the research has anything to do with gender issues. I always read anything I can get my hands on to see why I am the way I am.

    Calie xx

  5. Hey Calie,

    Thanks - life carries on! I like a comment that I read somewhere else. It's not that life suddenly becomes amazing, it's that there was a huge weight and always something on my mind that has now gone, meaning that I can get on with life! Well try anyway :)

    The research was about the effect of sex hormones on the brain. There was 8 weeks on hormone blockers to get a 'blank slate' starting point. They did intelligence and memory tests (as I said in and out of an MRI). Then after 16 weeks on female hormones they repeat it to see what the difference is. There are lots of other groups to see rule out other types of effects. I can't wait to get the results!


  6. Hi Stace,
    It is good to hear you are doing very well. Have you tried to measure your blood pressur at home? Maybe you are more relaxed that way.
    I notice you are on injections and patches. What is the injection for? Is this the puberty blocking injection? Why are you on patches for the test and not pills?


    1. Hi Naomi,

      I have to wait for the GP to give me a call, I just went back for my next appointment and my BP is still 155/95 and the endo is not happy. I'm not sure being at home will help. When it starts to pump, I get stressed. We'll see what happens.

      The injections were anti-androgen. They used the injections and patches as it meant everyone was on the same prescription for the test. Now it's over the injection and patches have both been replaced by tablets I'm happy to say!