January 31, 2008
We had the big kids tonight, and we went to the Bellevue Square Mall to have dinner, and I had to go to visit Verizon to get a new phone for Anh, and also replace my MIA data card.
Why did Anh need a new phone? Well, Samwich likes to put her phone in his mouth. His spittle is a little phonotoxic. It has special toxic effects on the “2”, “5”, “7”, down arrow, right arrow, send and menu keys. Today, it got so bad that Anh was able to take calls, but not place them. There was NO way to actually use the available, working keys to place a call. Basically, he bricked her phone.
New phone time.
I’m taking the money out of his college fund.
Ok, and I got to pay the $257 dumbass tax for losing my data card when we were in SFO for my surgery.
While I was taking care of this Anh and the big kids were playing on this big foam ferry that’s right across from the store. Samwich had a blast, and I could hear Peri and John laughing from inside the store.
The Verizon folks were very nice, and took care of the transaction quickly and professionally. When we were done, I asked the salesman if he could change my name on the account. I showed him my old and new licenses, and he took at look at the system, and it turns out that no, he can’t. Only the on-the-phone customer service could do it. No problem, I took my license, put it in my wallet, and we walked over to the counter to pay.
He said to me:
“I just want to ask, would you like me to call you ‘Megan’?”
“Yes, that would be great, but how did you know that was my name?” (Because all my records are still under Michael).
“I DO pay attention, you know. You did give me your license, and even though I couldn’t change your name, I saw your new one.”
“That’s super nice… thank you!”
January 29, 2008
Ten Days Before
One Day After
One Month After
Two Months After
I’m back to my pre-FFS activity and energy level. I can exercise and run (6 miles pushing Samwich last Saturday!) and eat anything (even crunchy!).
I still can’t wear glasses or do electrolysis – one more month for that.
The bottom of my nose (underneath, near the nostrils) is still numb, as are the top of my ears (right worse than left). The top of my noggin – still numb, but getting better (its starting to itch -a good sign!).
It’s all good.
January 28, 2008
I’ve written about how Samwich is hypnotized by the song “1234” by Feist (the song from the Apple Video Shuffle Ad).
Tonight, we were eating dinner, listening to the radio. Anh and I were eating dinner, Samwich was sitting with us, in his highchair at the table, eating cheerios. (He had already had dinner earlier).
He was being a little crazy, and then, all of a sudden, we heard the start of his fave song. Instantly, he stopped, looked up, and started swaying back and forth in his chair (dancing!), with his arms out forward. He did this for the *entire* song, with the same little smile on his face. (Of course, I turned the radio up!).
The song ends, and the DJ comes on.
“Feist, she’s Canadian. And, have you noticed, a little, um, manly. You never know, maybe she was born a he?”
Anh and I both looked at each other, cracked up, and Samwich of course, started laughing along too….
However, I don’t think he got the joke.
We woke up this morning to a light dusting of snow – probably about half an inch. We only realized this at about 6:15am (still dark), when we went out to go running. It was lightly snowing still, but the clouds were broken and the moon was out. It’s been pretty cold here recently, so the snow stuck, even on the roads.
That being said, we were able to do our normal run, and we came back home, and I was thinking that it would be a normal work day – maybe a little longer commute, but no biggie.
We got ready, and I went downstairs at about 7:30am with Samwich, and noticed the following scene.
This car apparently was coming down the hill, braked, and got sideways.
A couple of cars tried to go up the hill, but stopped. One car was coming down the hill, and miraculously got by via the sidewalk.
However, proving that wishing that gravity and friction are fungible laws of physics doesn’t make it so, a green minivan tried to go up the hill, but lost traction, and the following merriment ensued.
This guy really needed to get somewhere, so after switching drivers, they somehow got there car out (more bumper cars ensued in the process), and left the scene.
Finally, to add to the total fun, an Audi came down the hill, and slow-motion t-boned the red car.
Two hours and two sand trucks later, the Audi was able to back out and around, and then the red car was able to get out as well.
In Boston, a half-inch of snow is a “flurry”, here it’s a state of emergency.
I got my letter from the DOL on Saturday (January 26), 22 days after I sent in the paperwork.
Here’s what it said:
Dear Ms. Wallent:
I have received your request to change the gender shown on your Washington driver license and the supporting documentation verifying your transition.
Your request to change the gender on your driver license to female has been approved. Our decision was based on your letter of intent, letter from your physician and surgeon, and copy of your current driver license. We strongly encourage you to coordinate with the Department of Health and the Social Security Administration to update their information as well to ensure your records are consistent.
Please present this letter to the office supervisor in the driver licensing office of your choice to receive your new license. You will be required to pay all necessary fees when applying for your new driver license. To locate a driver licensing office, visit our website at www.dol.wa.gov/officelocations.html or check the government pages in your local phone book.
Should you or the office supervisor have any questions, please contact my Executive Assistant, [Name] at [Phone Number].
Mykel D. Gable
Driver Services Division
Ok, I’m glad that they did this, and that there is a procedure that can be followed. There are a couple of things on this that I think are interesting.
1. There is no published procedure from the DOL to do this. You need to call the right people to figure this out. While they give you a web address to find locations for offices, a web location for the current process would be very helpful.
2. It is positive that they list the factors that they used to approve my request. That’s very helpful.
3. The encouragement to “coordinate” with the Department of Health and the SSA – again interesting. From a Department of Health perspective, this is a non-event. I wasn’t born here – my birth certificate is from Massachusetts. From a SSA pov, I’m still male (and from a State Department perspective too – my passport has an “M” on it).
4. The “Old-School” MG:mp thing at the bottom, means that Mykel D. Gable’s admin typed this up
I feel fortunate to live in a state where it’s this easy, and I realize that many other trans-people don’t have any where near as easy as a path. So, for that, I’m thankful.
January 24, 2008
Today I sent mail to the Washington State DOL asking for the status for my application to change my gender on my license.
Initially the replied saying that I would get a letter sent on January 31.
Then, they said the letter was being sent tomorrow.
I will post a full story once I get the letter.
January 23, 2008
Today at work I was at an all-day training with the managers from all across my manager’s organization. There were about seventy-five people in the room.
This is a relatively common occurrence at work (training, lots of people), and I’ve done this a number of times before.
I was fascinated to see if this was going to be “different” for me, or not.
Totally, 100%, not.
No difference about how I was treated, no “extra” looks, same level of engagement, no issues.
During one of the breaks, I was having a discussion with one of the HR folks who I work with and she said:
“You know, we [HR] all thought this [me transitioning] might be more of an issue. Yes, other people have done this, but you are the first GM to do it. You know what though, it’s just not an issue.”
That’s been my experience too, and I wasn’t sure if maybe I just wasn’t seeing it, but I’m coming around to the fact that its now just back to normal….
Side Notes: I wore heels (well, just two inches) for the first time at work today as well. I had just worn flats of various types before. I like ‘em!
Out of the blue a couple of days ago, Anh says to me:
“Would you like flowers on Valentine’s Day now?”
“Well, girls do like flowers you know. Now that you are really a girl, I was just wondering what you wanted.”
Me: (Blushing) “That’s very sweet….”
I thought it was over at that point, but as you can imagine, nothing is ever all that easy.
This morning, Anh says to me:
“Are you going to blog about our discussion about Valentine’s Day?”
Me: “I didn’t think so.”
Anh: “Why not?”
Me: “Well, ok, I guess I could.”
Anh: “Well, you realize that I wasn’t going to get you flowers on the actual day, right? WAY too expensive! I’ll get them for you the week after!”
The context here is that we have this discussion re flowers for Anh every year. She can’t stand paying full price for anything, and flowers on Valentine’s Day are at least 2x-3x more expensive than any other time of year, so this is a total violation of her values. No matter if she’s buying or receiving, no matter. $100 for a dozen roses – not going to happen.
I expect that we’ll celebrate Valentine’s Day sometime the following week, depending on the market’s net-present-valuation of a rose. Your actual timing for Valentine’s Day may vary.
I was watching Sesame Street with Samwich the other morning. There was a segment on with Prairie Dawn (blonde little girl w/high voice and very pink skin).
The little segment is about “First and Last”, and Prairie Dawn has set out five cookies for Cookie Monster.
Prairie Dawn Says: “Cookie Monster, which cookie do you want to eat first?”
Cookie Monster (cradling his face in his hands): “Ughhh….. no no no!”
Prairie Dawn: “Cookie Monster, what’s wrong? Which cookie do you want to eat first?”
Cookie Monster: “Me think you have fundamentally misunderstood cookie eating process!”
(Cookie Monster eats *all* the cookies at once.)
I laughed so hard, my nose hurt again. I’m not sure why this struck me as so funny… perhaps it was the googly eyes. Anyway, it was hilarious.
Tonight I read “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” by Eric Carle to Samwich as his bedtime story.
- Sunday. Egg is on a leaf.
- Monday, caterpillar is born. He’s very hungry.
- Tuesday through Friday: He eats an ever-escalating shitload of stuff, gets a tummy ache.
- Friday Night: Builds a cocoon
- Two Weeks Later: Butterfly comes out
Now, I’m not saying I’m a butterfly. More like a moth. However, I was encouraged to eat everything in site before FFS, given that I would loose a ton of weight from being on the crazy no-food diet for an extended period of time. In addition, the name of the place you go to recover after FFS (with Dr. O) is “The Cocoon House”
And, it takes about two weeks to recover there before you can go home….
Coincidence? I think not!