Forty Miles In

N333 Forty Miles In Blog

Not many in SL are aware of this but before I got into the busier parts of graduate school, I was an avid road cyclist.  I loved it…well, still love it.  I need to get back into that with graduation here.  I might have to look at January or February to pull my bike out of the shed and start cycling again.  I need the exercise and exercise certainly does help with depression.

Speaking of my depression, I had mentioned the other day that problems with my transition were one of the factors contributing to my depression.  See…when I started this whole process of transitioning almost two years ago, I was told I should be ready to present as female within six months of starting HRT and after two year of my estrogen levels hitting their marks, I would be able to have gender reassignment surgery (GRS).  I walked out of the doctor’s office that day just knowing everything would go just as the doctor expected.

Boy was I wrong.  Here I am, almost two years since I began this journey, and I am no where near speaking with a surgeon about GRS.  I haven’t even been able to begin presenting yet.

So yeah, when I realized last week that I was right back in the depressive cycle, I realized that the troubles I have been having with my transition are a significant contributing factor to what’s going on in my head.  Its been a long, hard and emotional road.  The one blessing about being so busy for the past 16 months is it hasn’t allowed me too much time to dwell on how slow everything has been going.  With all of the lab values that have been out of whack, I haven’t been able to sit there and allow the disappointment to consume me for extended periods of time as I have had to meet so many other priorities.

But then again, by not having time to think about them, I also haven’t been able to process the ongoing disappointment and some of the thoughts I have had have been these barely audible and nagging negative statements that have ultimately eaten away at me every day.

In recognizing my depression last week, I was able to really hear those nagging negative thoughts that have been eating away at me for some time.  A lot of these thoughts, I have recognized in significant moments…such as when my labs would come back with my estrogen really low and my testosterone higher than it should be.  These thoughts have lead me, at times, to consider quitting this whole process…not because it isn’t what I need as I do need to transition for my own mental and physical health…but because the disappointment of another set of labs not meeting the expected mark was becoming too hard to deal with emotionally.

Fortunately…and I say that with an exasperated expression…my latest round of labs has come back and everything is right where it should be. My testosterone is below 20 for the first time…ever…and my latest estrogen is literally within 5 points of my doctor’s perfect target.  This is the first time this has happened as we have changed from pills to patches and now injections for my estrogen administration, and then tweaked the dose of my injections.

I will admit that I am, for the first time in a long time, feeling a sense of optimism regarding my transition.  I am also cautiously optimistic because of previous labs where things looked promising and then the next set of labs were all out of whack.

Weirdly enough, as I was thinking about all of this yesterday and trying to process that my labs were FINALLY where they should be, I thought back to my cycling and the century rides I have completed.

So…in cycling, you have Century Rides.  It can be a metric century (100 kilometers) or a standard century (100 miles).  I only do the standard century rides as that is, to me, a greater challenge.  Century rides are not easy and when I thought back yesterday on the rides I have completed, I don’t know why but I am seeing a similarity to the emotional struggles I have had transitioning and the emotional struggles I encountered on my rides.

When I do a century ride, I hit these points of mental and physical exhaustion about every 15-20 miles, starting at around mile 40.  Its at that point, around mile 40, my muscles will experiences their first signs of cramping, my stomach begins to tell me that my body needs more carbs and, if I haven’t been hydrating properly, my mind starts to really question my ability to finish the ride.  This is the first time during a long ride that I think about pulling over and signalling for the van to come pick me up and take me off the course so I can just go home.

As I thought more and more about how I was having those same kinds of mental doubts and exhaustion with all of this, I also remembered that I have never quit one of my century rides.  I have completed them all.  Some have taken me longer than others.  Some have required more breaks than others.  Some never would have been completed if it had not been for that random cyclist who happened to stop, check on me and motivate me to keep pushing through…reminding me that each stroke of the pedals put me that much closer to the finish line.

Its weird when I think about that because when I was younger, I used to quit things all the time.  Since about 2012 though…I haven’t quit on any goal I set unless I had truly exhausted every option possible and could not finish it.  Does that make sense?

Right now, I feel like I am at about mile 40 on one of my century rides.  Getting these lab results back has been incredibly helpful with my motivation and has helped some with my depressive feelings, but I know there is still more to do and more challenges to come.  The recent results would be like that random cyclist who stopped and encouraged me on…but doubts still linger as I fight to get to the rest stop at mile 50 where I will finally eat a meal versus an energy bar and over hydrate myself again.  That point will be my next lab draw, in 3 months, where hopefully all of my labs will come back where they are supposed to be again.

I’m going to keep peddling, everyone.  I’m going to push through this depression.  Yes, I have doubts and insecurities about my ability to handle all of this.  But I haven’t quit anything since 2012.  I’m certainly not going to stop now.

That doesn’t mean I didn’t make the time for a celebratory cocktail last night.  I think I earned it. ♥

See it on Flickr!

What I’m Wearing
Cae – Engraved & Monogrammed Bracelets, Simplicity Pearl Dangle Earrings & Necklace
Thalia Heckroth – Eva Dress
Truth – Mitzi V2

Amitie – Martini 06 & Prop

Shelf&Wine – Cork Pot

Apple Fall
Hetton Barn Conversion

Upcycled Wine Glass Holder

Little Branch
Red Bud Tree {Animated} 4Seasons [@ Uber]

Wine Bottles and Glasses

Tuscany Table Lamp
Tuscany Wall Art
Tuscany Winery Bottle Single
Tuscany Winery Fireplace Full

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Robert Wilson says:

    That’s a beautiful photo of you hon. And its great to hear your transition is back on track. I agree, exercise in the great outdoors is a great way to curb your depression, wether it is hiking or cycling. In the meantime you deserve that cocktail!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you, hon! I am working on getting back on track one step at a time ♥


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