changeling times

trials and tribulations of eclectic chicken

It’s over July 13, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — eclectic chicken @ 12:43 pm
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Its been a busy couple of days… with hindsight I should have taken the easy option and stayed in a hotel in Brighton and taken taxis to and from the hospital. But I’ve stayed with friends (far nicer to go home to friends than an empty room) and enjoyed seeing brighton from a bus window. I’ve also walked far more than I usually do… due mostly to me getting my bearings from the main railway station…. which isn’t actually near the hospital jane’s been in OR where I’m staying 🙂

But anyway… that hasn’t been the main event.

We checked jane in on Monday and then signed her out to go and buy all the important things she needed on the list that she had misplaced.

And then I left her there…unlikely to sleep much… neither was I… and I didn’t think I’d make it back in to see her off to surgery at 9…so we said our farewells.

6am I received my first text of Jane…. I was awake anyway.

I went for a wee.

Found three more texts on my return… not very clear texts… but the sort of thoughts you have before going on holiday (take the dvd back… remember the recycling)…. so I thought i may as well get my arse down the hospital. So I left a note for my hosts,  grabbed a taxi and was in hospital about 7am.

Jane was bouncing off the walls with nerves (except the bit after the enema – where she managed to sit still for a while) -expeliamus!!!

Its the first time I found it really difficult having a film crew around… now I’m used to them its usually interesting and fun – sometimes both. But suddenly when really important shit is happening in your life it gets difficult again.

So I kissed Jane and told her I loved her and turned away becuase I couldn’t bear to see her go.

And then the wait.

About four hours in all… but it passed fairly fast. (I had a long shower and drank lots of hot chocolate and read the paper and caught up on facebook and made her a playlist on spotify)… the only time that dragged was once I knew the op had been successful and she was in recovery. At that point i did some serious pacing.

And then she was back…. so pleased to see her. She was totally zonked on morphine and not making much sense but every time she came to the surface she smiled… the beatific smile of the post op trans woman 🙂

Such relief she’d come back… I cried…she talked nonsense and we listened to music until the nursing staff kicked me out for jane to have some rest.

I went for lunch with the film crew (it was about half 2 and we all realised we’d not eaten yet that day) and then I tried to sleep in the car but couldn’t…so laid and watched the rain on the car windows and contemplated life the universe and everything.

I certainly realised the fear and stress pre op (for both of us) was about having a big op… not what the op was about.

Up til the last minute they kept asking Jane if she was sure…to the point where the question ceased to make sense. Jane likened it to someone asking if you want a piece of pie…and you say ‘yes please’ and they ask again and you say ‘yes please’ and they keep asking…. it makes you wary about the pie… and then you have to become very determined to keep saying yes.. But there comes a point where the question doesnt mean anything… becuase its ceased to be about the pie and more about the question.

Anyway…. I went back in at about 5 and she was slightly more with it… we opened some cards I’d brought down… and she was allowed some water through a straw but has to stay flat on her back for a day to lessen the chance of bleeding.

What made me realise how right this is for Jane (for both of us) is when one of the nurses asked about her pain level (scale of 1 to 10)..and Jane said.

“No pain at all vaginally but my back is a 3 or 4”

Vaginally…. she was off her face on morphine… couldn’t remember her facebook password (she wanted me to post for her)… but the word vaginally came out without a thought.

For me that clinched it.

She’s where she always should have been.


Countdown June 10, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — eclectic chicken @ 9:19 pm
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The official date for GRS is the  12th July.

Jane is counting down in days… hours…. and no doubt in her quieter moments her mathematical brain is dealing in seconds.

I just know its sometime next month…. that hopefully some childcare in the form of Jane’s sister will appear so I can take Jane down to Brighton and settle her in. And then welcome her befannied self back into the world before heading back North to touch base at home before ricocheting back down again (hopefully with boy in tow) to have a couple of days by the seaside, a few hours by the bedside and then take Jane home again.

And then very much like after a birth one goes home and gets on with the real challenge of a life changed irrevocably.


A grand day out…. April 5, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — eclectic chicken @ 9:07 am
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Last week (as mentioned previously in this blog) we went to Brighton to visit the hospital and meet the surgeon in anticipation of Jane’s operation.

I havn’t been to Brighton for probably twenty years or more although it is on our shortlist of places we’d like to move to and it was so lovely to be down by the sea, eating chips, watching the waves, walking on the beach.

Except Jane it appears doesn’t ‘do’ beach walking…and certainly not in ‘these’ boots.

But we walked on the beach (mostly up and down a small stretch for the benefit of the filming) and one of us voiced memories of a similar beach almost eight years ago, where we met and walked (in fact i seem to remember being given a piggy back over the pebbles)… and the other of us whinged about the cold, the greyness of the sea and her boots….always the boots. (and no I didn’t give her a reciprocal piggy back… just a lecture on  sensible footwear).

And then on the the Nuffield. (where we did more walking up and down).

Its a lovely hospital.. and by the end of the day I was certainly wishing I’d prioritised being able to afford (at least my second baby) under private healthcare. My two main memories of my stay in the old Peterborough maternity unit are a plate of gristle they atempted to pass off as food and a midwife who upon being approached by a post c-section mother trying to share a bed and breastfeed a 10lb 7 oz baby on a second night without sleep and only gristle to eat and just needed her baby taken for a couple of hours to another room PLEASE….told me (yes it was I) to go away ‘it’s not like its your first child’.


I know the NHS do wonderful things… but sometimes they don’t.

Anyway…I digress…

We had a guided tour of the facilities…. lovely room…view….own bathroom…meet the one to one nurse….and the other nurse….and the surgeon.

We were there three hours (ok..partly being followed by a camera slows things down)…but everything was explained properly… everything covered…. all questions thouroughly answered.

And we left with hugs all round.

The other thing of interest with the Nuffield is this.



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