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Hello Live Journal! So long no talk.. I know I know I'm a slacker but a lot has happened since i last posted. I left AWWW and now work for my old company doing the type of work I like a lot.. and making a lot more $$$ doing it. I still teach at Red Rocks Community College online in addition to doing some freelance work for AWWA when needed so needless to say.. I'm a busy fella. In terms of my transition, I have made two huge leaps - I legally changed my name to Ari Carlin and I had top surgery on Aug 12 by Dr. David Greenwald in Tampa FL. I am currently in the process of figuring out when I can have a hysto so I never have to worry about women's problems again!

Additionally I've lost about 60 pounds using a personal trainer and fighting to keep it off due to work related travel and lack of access to a gym. I also had to give Bagel back to the rescue because she was way too aggressive for me to handle and I just traveled too much to take care of her. I felt bad but I know in the end it was the right thing to do. I miss her sometimes but I know that it wouldn't have worked out.

I'm still single and I feel I most likely will be forever.. especially in light of recent drama I've experienced. I really wish some people or really a certain person would just make up their mind about who they really want to be with and spend time with vs. coming in and out of my life. it also really sucks to still be kind of in love with said person as well.. even though they don't really treat me the way they should... but eh that's life I guess. All is know is, I'm not going to beg or chase this person anymore especially since they contacted me after a long period of time. It made me really sad largely because I was dumb enough to believe it may work out.

I also decided I most likely will be moving out of CO. I thought about moving back to CT but this seems less and less like a good idea even though I would love to live in like MA or NY. just too expensive. I also thought about moving back to FL because I miss my friends... so who knows where I will go next. I like CO... especially the weather but making friends here is really hard.. and I kind of want to put a lot of the bad stuff I've experienced here behind me. Other then that, It's just another day and another dollar.... I've been to Seattle, NYC, Indiana, Las Vegas, and KC this year for work and vacation so that's not too bad I guess! oh well might as well go to bed or something ... long day and weekend of work ahead of me.

Big Life Update

panda
Hi all.... sorry not to write for a while but I've been really busy and for some reason.. suffering from writer's block!

Ok.. so here it goes... stuff with me!

I am moving to Denver CO to work for the American Water Works Association! I know... It's basically my dream come true... live in a nicer colder place and be able to finally transition in a more liberal place.. and get paid more with the chance of advancement.

My last day in Hell (AKA Fl) is Aug 12th. I will be driving from St. Pete to MN to see Candi for a few days and then drive to Denver to find a room to rent.

I am very happy to not be working for Black & Veatch anymore. I will miss people here but I won't miss having to be billable that's for sure.

I am still taking T and will be changing my name as soon as I can be considered a resident of CO.

My goal will be to get Top Surgery by 2012.

I look basically completely male now... minus the boobs... but I still get "sired" like 95% of the time now.







So yeah next two weeks is to get out of here.. pack up and leave! Life is good and I think things will get better from here on out!

Officially out at work


I came out to work on Monday. The HR person told the VP or my office.. and then the VP of the office had a meeting with me on Tuesday to talk about how I wanted it to be handled.

I told her I felt that she should tell people over time.. like one by one that I want to be called he and that I am trans.

She said that was fine so she started that. The whole Admin staff and upper management now knows and so far no one has said anything to me.

I came into the VPs office on Friday and she told me that no one cares.. but there was once thing... she told me that most people where scared of forgetting to call me "he" and hurting my feelings.. which i was surprised about!

Granted the people I'm more worried about currently don't know to my knowledge. I told FSAWWA as well. So far they have taken it well. Yay!

So I'm Ari to the world now.

What's up with me lately

panda
It has been about 9-10 months on Androgel... over a year on T total... and it's been really great.

I am surprised how much my voice has changed since Nov 2009. Additional changes, facial hair, chest hair, and some fat has redistributed. Unfortunately I'm not active enough to just build muscle without effort but I plan on working on that.

Still don't have a formal name change.

Lots has been going on.. so much in fact it's going to be hard for me to write it out in here.. but I have to. It's important.

I still have breasts but this is the year that changes forever. it has to. I have an appointment tomorrow with Dr. Hayes to see if i can obtain a hysterectomy with my insurance paying for most of it. Might as well get it over with. I don't want anymore gyno visits.. and since I'm on T and hopefully sterile anyway.. might as well go for it. So I'm hoping that visit will go OK tomorrow.

I'm planning on making my appointment for top surgery this week and then filing the paperwork for my name chance which I have put off... because it's 400 bucks and the St of Fl asks you are life story so its a pain in the ass and expensive.

So hopefully I will be fully Ari by the end of 2011.

Major Family updates... My sister, Lisa, has adopted a kid. His name is Alex.. he's two and really cute.. and I'm called Uncle Ari.. which is nice. My family is still the only people who call me Rachel. I figured this is normal since they have known me as Rachel the longest. Plus I'm not really good at standing up for myself in that respect but I think once the boobs are gone.. they are going to feel stupid calling me Rachel anyways..

I went back to CT for a few days for Alex's B day party which was stressful for me. half of the people in my family know.. and pretend not too.. and the other half didn't so I literally came out to some people at the party. Alex had fun so that’s all that matters.. but it was a huge party.. like 70 people.. both families. I was surprised how my brother in law's family consistently called me Ari through the whole party but avoided pronouns.. which worked for me. Then tragedy struck like 5 days later... when I was back in Fl...

My adopted Grandma died about 5 days after my visit. I'm glad I got to see her before she passed away since she was suffering so much. I felt bad I couldn't go to the funeral. She died not knowing who I really was.. but she loved me regardless.. probably more than my real grand parents. I had known this woman my whole life. He baby sat me when my mom was at work... made me Christmas cookies for me.. and just enjoyed the simple pleasure in life such as family and playing cards with her neighbors. I think she is probably the only person in my life that has come close to loving me without conditions.

I def. will miss her but glad she is no longer in pain.

that was a week ago.. so granted.. I'm looking at her life.. looking at mine and saying... how long do I want to live not being myself.. and letting others not truly see who I am? I don't anymore.. which leads to my next major upcoming development.

I don't remember if I wrote in here or not...but I did Youtube about it. I hinted at being trans to my HR department because I saw a major change in my company's non discrimination policy which included the phrase " generic information". This was over 6 months ago and apparently that phrase protects people like me.

On Friday, our HR rep for the East Region called me just before lunch time, asking me how I was doing and how my transition was going.. so I told her. I told her I was on T. which she noticed anyways because my voice is really deep now.

She asked me if i was ready to tell Office leadership about my transition so they made sure everyone addresses me the way I want. Apparently 4 others have transition at BV.. and still work for them.. and are happy. So that made me feel amazing.. however I did ask her where these people were located... 2 in KC (which is an all inclusive city.. i.e. they had to).. 1 up north some place sooo liberal place.. and then one in the south.. which I'm thinking is either MD, SC NC or GA.

She told me to think about it .. and let her know if she needed me to break the ice... I told I would let her know.

I thought about it for like a day and realized I need to. I sent her an email telling her I would like to talk to our Office VP.

this is kind of a confusing story.. but I think most people in my office know already.. due to the face hair and the voice anyways but it's don't ask don't tell until you say something.. or like denial center till then. I'm not really scared anymore. I Just don't care. I'm more nervous how FSAWWA people are going to take it and all my clients and contacts.. that's going to be harder but i think it should work out.

So yeah... I may be coming out to an office of 20-30 people this week.. leaving this the last place I still live as a woman. I'm actually not dreading it. I think if I go in there being nervous or feeling ashamed... it will give them a reason to feel that way towards me.

I'm going in saying.. I have a genetic/birth defect just like color blindness or like a clef palette.. it's treatable.. and after I get treatment I should feel better. Part of treatment is being call the name and pronoun I want to be called.

I already am scared of two people.. possibility three people in the office that will be weirded out.. one is a senior level technical Engineer... the other is a redneck who likes me.. but as Rachel... he also referred to Susan Station as a freak show.. and the last one is our senior level Electrical Engineer who seems very homophobic. Everyone else there seems too open minded or just doesn’t give a shit about anything to care.

I watched this transgender special on Trans kids by Barbara Walters which I thought was awesome... and she interviewed this lady - a mom of a 6 year old transdaughter - and Barbara asked her.. why do you want your family and your kid on this show? The Lady replied with the best answer I'd heard to date when asked this question: The ones that safe and supportive of their kids have to step up and speak out for the others who are not.

That's what I feel me coming out with work will hopefully do for someone else some day.

Other updates:

I'm moving in a few weeks to Gulfport, FL.. about 15 mins more south than I am now which some kick ass people. It's a house and I will have a whole half of a house to myself. It's going to be pretty sweet.

I started a new youtube channel called Tranniesfordummies. I want it to be an educational piece of people who know nothing about trans people and can use it as a guide to understanding and accepting people like us.

That's about it.. working and teaching as normal.

Just FYI:

This is what I look like tonight. I stopped shaving my face. I am Hairy! :)

back from Denver!


I am back from Denver! AWWA training was AWESOME!!!! I wish I could have stayed longer but at the same time.... I would have been all alone so I wouldn't have enjoyed it as much.

I had an awesome experience on the plane. A guy I was sitting next to dropped a cup of water on me... and said "Sorry about that, Dude". It was awesome!



Denver is a cool place.. and I could very easily live there. Seems very LGBT friendly.

Back to work tomorrow after a week away... it's totally going to be hard.
Exciting news - my period has officially stopped! Thanks Androgel! :)

At least in over 2 months or so... I will be back in CT for four days and for my B day! I am seeing Alexis, my BBF from high school and the girl I was totally in love with for like 7 years.... I have no idea how i will react to it... but I know I will be happy to see her for sure!

Other then that.... nothing else is going on..... No plans this week. Nothing major is happening.

Lately


I've been on Androgel for about 1 month now... so T about 6ish months... and it's awesome.

I am much happier on the gel than the shots.

I've decided to come out to everyone I know offically. I'm not sure how I will go about it (espeically at work) but it has to happen.

Hopefully I won't lose my job, 90% of my friends, and the life I have come to love here in Fl.

But I can't live a lie for much longer...

Of course I will be talking to Dr. Farrell about how to go about this before I do such a thing..

But I will start with my friends with AWWA. My hope is all the hard work I have done for the Section will matter more than a pronoun.

I'm going to Denver CO for two days for AWWA Management Training.. I am so excited. Peggy, out section ops manager, will be going too. I plan to come out to her then. She 's awesome.. and someone I really respect a lot. She is from San Fran, CA so I'm hoping she's going to react the way I hope she does.

I've been talking to this women on Plenty of Fish...who has actually dated a transman and has loved it! I'm hopeful that when we meet there will be some level of attraction for dating :) She seems really smart and I can talk to her for hours so... I hope that I finally met someone worth dating here in Fl.

My 30th B day is coming up!! I will be going back to CT for it. My whole family knows I'm trans so I have no idea how they are going to handle it. My sister adopted a 14 months old boy named Jonathan and I can't wait to see him! He knows me as Uncle Ari... which is very exciting for me. I think I will be honest and direct with my family as possible in regards to pronouns and my name. Less Confusing for them that way!

I am also throwing myself a 30th b day party! Place to be determined but with a bunch of kick ass people! I will even have a tomb stone cake from Publix!

That's all that's new with me. Till next time...

I'm back from Chi Town and had a lot of fun. I could easily live there!

Me and my best mate Candi did a Youtube vid together... it has almost 50,000 views in like two weeks so I'm now a famous Transman on YOUTUBE:



I also accepted the Section Education Award (AWWA level award) with my friends.

It was a proud moment for all those involved.

Other news:

My chest surgery is Dec 10th 2010. I have to place a $500 deposit on Monday and

My Aunt (not really my aunt but more of an aunt than my bio aunt) will be taking care of me. She's an ER doctor. I will be going to Dr. Garramone in Sunrise FL. I already have an appointment with my primary care for medical clearance and blood work.

I am back on Testosterone - I switched from shots to the gel (Androgel. So far so good:




Other randomness:
I have a date tomorrow..... with someone who IDs as a Lesbian but she seems to like me
. Of course I met her off the internet. That's basically how I meet everyone who is willing to give a Transman a chance so..... We will see. Bummer is she lives in Ft. Myers so like 2 hours away from me. I'm just trying to keep an open mind for right now. She seems pretty sweet so what the hell... worse comes to worse we don't like each other and I spend time with someone who is nice.

Work is really really slow... and it sucks. I'm just trying to hang in there until things change.

Other than that, not much is new! Happy 4th! Hopefully one day I can say this is a land of freedom and opportunity for everyone - trans or not.

Sick

pride
I think I ate something bad last night or my tummy is not tolerate of Indian food anymore (I don't even want to think that's the reason!!)

I am dipping into my normal depression period I experience every summer.

All the bad things that happen to me always happen from May to Aug..... deaths, breakups, bad news... always comes in the summer.

I dread it... plus the heat. Why I ever decided to come to FL is beyond me... but I have benefited from being here.. especially professionally so it def. hasn't been a waste of time.

I am going to Chicago next week for ACE. I am so excited. I also get to spend time with my best friend, Candi who moved away about 1 years ago. I def. need a break from FL. I haven't left this state in about 1 year... and it's def. time to have something that resembles a real vacation.

Since I'm not on BVs corporate list I am "not allowed" to go any of the corporate events expect the Professor Student reception. I look forward to seeing old friends from Ohio and other parts of the Country.

I think that's all I got...... my tummy is churning... ugh.

Life


Here is my update.

Alicia and I are no longer dating. Apparently she'd rather fuck around with a lot of people then date someone who actually likes her. Her loss! However I took it hard because she was really ok with all the trans stuff and it's hard to find women who are. I decided to stop dating until I have Top Surgery which I am having in Dec.

My voice is very deep now:





Compared to:





Black & Veatch (my current employer)laid off 1300 people on Wed Morning. Alessandra was laid off. I felt bad but at the same time I was really happy because I really didn't like her.

I am going to Nashville this week to help with the flood recovery for the next 3 weeks starting on Wed or TH. Basically I will be re starting up a Wastewater plant that was completely underwater for 2 weeks. I'm excited! I've never been to Nashville before and I hope it's a positive experience for me.


Today was my lass class teaching at HCC for my Water C Class. I threw my class a good luck/ graduation party. I really enjoy teaching adults and I will continue with it I think.

I finish my Water C Class at UF and got my certificate in the mail last week.




I placed my application in the mail for my own Water C license. I can't wait to get it!

My sister adopted a child so I'm officially an uncle. His name is Jonathan and he's 14 months old. I can't wait to meet him!

I think that's about it!

updates....


It's been awhile since I last posted. Since it's almost 3:30 am and I can't sleep due to an ear infection, i figured this may be a good time to just update!

I went off of T about a month ago... and now I am back on it at a lower dose (0.5 mg/L every two weeks) and i feel more stable at this dose.

Black & Veatch updated their anti discrimination policy earlier this year that included "genetic information", I called HR and asked about what that actually meant. Apparently it covers people who are transgender. Someone in my company recently transitioned on the job. I haven't decided what I am going to do about work.. if anything.


I am now a contact employee for Hillsborough Community College. I start teaching the Water C Ops Class on Tues.
Additionally I will be writing their advanced water treatment curriculum and evaluating their current pilot plant system for about 5K. They also want me to help with training with their corporate center for Water treatment.. so pretty cool!

I enrolled in the UF Treeo class to obtain my Water C license. So far, So good!

The best update is .. I have a gf! Her name is Alicia and she's awesome. We met on OKC and have been seeing each other for about a month. She's the one on the right hand side in the blue dress.



She's 27 and a Nurse. She really makes me happy and she's really cool with all the trans stuff... even gives me my T shots..it's nice to have that kind of support from someone.

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