Wednesday, Day 2 out from a 7+ hour long operation in this gender reassignment/feminization journey for Firstborn, aka Rowena.
It’s one thing to know this ‘n that will happen – shorten the distance from the upper lip to the nostrils, repair deviated septum (which by-the-by was 80% displaced and causing all manner of difficulties), adjusting the hairline, the chin, etc – and it’s quite another to watch the doctor unwrap the mummy, revealing the full, glorious extent of what actually was involved. Believe me, there’s way more to this than meets the eye.
The swelling was impressive, to say the least. Eyes swollen shut, black and blue everything everywhere, an upper lip resembling a poofy beak, two stent type devices keeping the nostrils open but not unclogged, a nose brace. But the real extent of the damage, um… work… was revealed after the gauze came off.
Yowzers. There’s a line of stitches from right ear to left, across the crown of the forehead, probably 200+ in all. It was all neat and tidy, not at all gross (the nose is gross, trust me on this one) and of course I needed details.
And boy howdy, I got them—down to the nitty gritty of shaving away the bones forming the masculine brow ridge, giving lift and separation (no, not the boob job, that comes later) to the eyebrows which actually are quite fetching, and then some magic done to reduce the widow’s peak. I can see now why they call it “plastic” surgery.
Her chin has a new implant (that’s to modify her dad’s genetic contribution) to look more feminine. The Adam’s apple was shaved down, and quite a substantial amount of excess “fat” was removed – he mentioned a number but all I could think was… do you do hips? Sign me up.
He got to comparing noses, Ro’s and mine, while both of us moaned and whined how much we hated our noses, and he’s all no no it’s a good nose <pinches mine shut> a strong nose. He stopped short at strong Slavic peasant nose so props for that.
I’m going to throw out there that this medical trip also included some demasculinization as well, mostly to reduce testosterone production so the hormone therapy can proceed apace but at reduced, safer levels.
So far Ro’s been able to drink sparingly, mostly water and gatorade, a couple mugs of chicken broth, and protein drinks. Today I’m on a mission to get some solid food into her. It won’t be easy – her mouth is still so swollen she can’t really open it much. And I’m real sure she isn’t keen on me trying to spoon feed her. I’ve got bananas to mash, some flavored instant oatmeal, the ubiquitous jello.
Neither of us were really prepared for the aftermath of the surgery. I had planned on going home today to resume taking care of the critters but there’s no way I can leave her alone. She’s pretty much bed ridden until the stitches come out (moving around elevates the blood pressure and that’s a very bad thing) so a dear friend has stepped up and will care for the horses, chickens, Little Miss Mayhem and Mr Tom through Friday. By then I should be able to run home and check on things, then day trip until next week.
If all goes well, Ro might come home on Tuesday.
Gawd, she’s brave. She doesn’t complain although I know she’s in pain. She’s grateful for all the well-wishes and prayers coming her way. And I know she’s a little nervous about how she’ll look once all the swelling goes down and she’s ready to see her new normal. It’s very exciting, and very nerve-wracking too.
And again, my thanks to all of you who support Rowena on this journey. It means so much to both of us.
Peace and love.