Saturday, 10 December 2016

Tough times…off track…head back in the game

You’d think that an alien had taken me over and that a different girl was writing blogs if I didn’t throw you the odd rollercoaster.  Things have been very happier and steadier for a while, but the last two weeks have been very VERY up and down.  Its amazing what unexpected things affect me.  My gender issues always leave me in a volatile place I guess anyway.  I’m prone to undulating bouts of dysphoric misery.  But when negative stuff happens around me, I guess it triggers unhappiness too.  No-one’s fault - its my issue to deal with, but certain things have made me sad.  Sad and me (and diets in particular, I’m finding) don’t mix well.

Someone who I’ve felt very close to of late has been having a hard time, also through no fault of their own, although I think they feel like it is.  Horrible position for them to be in and its caused me to feel down on their behalf.  Combine this with an odd conversation where I, probably wrongly, got the impression that people in my life feel that hiding my thoughts on transition from Mrs A is a really awful thing to do and I got in a funk about it.  I think I’m open to feedback, but that hit me absolutely for six (or out of the park in a bad way?).   There was almost the sense that others are getting uncomfortable about being a party to my hiding of Rhiannon away from my family and being careful about who knows what about me.  I can understand that, I’ve been living by lying and hiding for 42 years, so I’m used to it.  It makes me feel awful that I put anyone under any strain by telling them my secret.  I felt that maybe my reaching out for support among my friends isn’t the best idea in the world for some people.  Add on top that its been a very busy and challenging time at work with lots going on and major travelling and…so on...

Last week in a desperate moment of indescribable sadness, looked around my world for someone to talk to and in a stupid moment of panic, I didn’t know where to go.  So I reverted to type.  My go-to people for help are Mrs Wine and Mr High Fat Food.  I’m ashamed to say that for part of the last fortnight, I got into a very unhelpful spiral including the appalling night I consumed two bottles of wine and a 14-inch pizza by myself. As well as my dinner.  Eating to the point where I almost felt sick.

I know its not good and probably points to underlying issues and all that jazz, but remember the title of the blog.  Its a story of redemption.  I realised just how badly I was doing and I found someone in my world who I could reach out to and I did.  As usual A2’s advice was amazing in response to my very long and traumatised email and she really helped me get out of the bad place.  She also realised that I completely overthink everything and when in a bad place can be a complete worrier.  I normally try to hide those two things too.

Today (I write this before I've left) is my weigh-in at fat club and I’m going to see the damage for the week.  Given that this was about a week ago and that I’ve got my head back in the game, I think I’m going to be ok, but its been hard.   Despite 'recovering', there will, I'm sure, be consequences.

This week though, I have to give a shout out, I was considerably helped by visiting Chameleons (trans support group) in Nottingham, UK.  How anyone can go to that group and fail to be cheered up is beyond me?  Not only was there dancing, food and the opportunity to put on a great dress, there was fantastic company, not least from the very lovely Lynn Jones of YATGB fame.  If you are ever down, you need her to help!  Thank you Lynn, you probably didn’t know how down I was feeling because I hide it well, but you really did make me feel so much better. :o)  I took this selfie before I left (forgive the bathroom behind it) and felt great.  Lynn shared the other picture, below, on her blog, so I’m hoping a reciprocation is ok, but whether I’ve changed or not, I’m not sure, but is that really what I look like?

Postscript:  I’m now back from fat club and…well, amazingly 2lbs off.  Its horrible when that happens in some ways.  I know people in the room who have worked hard and sacrificed - and I’ve done the diet for 5 out of 7 days and then had two days off the rails and still lost weight.  I’m sure I’ll reach the point where I can’t.  I hope I reach the point where I don’t go off the rails at all.  Of the rails normally means something has happened that I can’t deal with.

Anyway.  I know I’m going to regret posting this because I’m embarrassed by my human failings and weaknesses, I find this post mortifying, but I know that I try to be honest here - there has to be one place where you are I guess.


  1. You did hide it well, Rhi. If I had know, I'd have come over sooner, bless you. <3

    The weight loss thing, it's a journey, no? There's no constant progress and dare I say, for someone who teaches folk about moving on and engaging the right direction, listening to your (or even our) own words can be difficult. We know, right? I mean, we're the tutor. Maybe, listening to what we tell our friends could help us too.

    You did look great at the party (loved the dress. Very chic!) and psst: note I'm twisted to the side (a cheat for thinness). Is that how you look? Partly, but in real life you're more animated, more smiley, and it's not always easy to capture that in a photo.

    So glad to read you enjoyed the visit and that it's helped. That's what Chams is for: a warm welcome and friendship. Hope you'll make it again soon.

    L x

    (PS: wine and pizza aren't the answer. A long walk to see the world, be that people, trees or even the shops, may remind you the beauty of the world and also, that things do get better when you look for the good you.)

    1. Thank you Lynn, such amazing words, I feel really touched.

      When I arrived I was on my upward curve but still sad - I get really embarrassed about it and don't show it very easily at all. I play happy instead but our conversation was just like being refreshed - talking to another person who gets it and knows what I'm experiencing - was what it took. Ironically its because I'm more extroverted - lots of time alone brooding is often a bad thing for me... You were hugely appreciated.

      I started walking before and you are right, so helpful. Need to get back to it again. I do need to listen to the advice I would give others more often...

      I'm so learning to turn sideways!

    2. Well, not everyone wears their heart on their sleeve and some folk are easier than others. I know Mrs J's mum keeps her emotional cards to her chest. It's not a bad thing, it's just part of who she is.

      Good luck with the walking. Just so long as it's not to the local Italian deli. :-)

      As to words, you are important and their are folk who care about what happens to you. Sure, we're far away, although the Interwebs are a wonderful thing, in that regard. Chams was there for me when I needed help, so now, I try to play it forward and be there for others.

      PS: I will get around to answering your email. Apologies!

    3. Correction to top line: "... some folk are easier to read..."

    4. I need to learn to be more willing to open up about my issues around my trans status. I tend to only talk about it when its become so bad that I have no choice. I guess it comes from not wanting to put my considerable burdens onto someone else. I also sense a frustration that often times there isn't an answer to the problem - its usually intractable. People like to solve the problem when actually I just like being listened to about it most of the time.

      Chats really is a great place and the kindness and generosity there is so valuable. I read your reply and am so tired now, its bed time, but I'll definitely be back in January, so I'll bring goodies with me :o) x

      PS - time to dust of my walking boots again that pizza is not going to get itself!! lol :o)

  2. We all have frailties as humans, doing what you have set yourself is not going to be easy of quick but the results will give you more joy than you can imagine.

    If you wish to make the great move forward to transition then being fully prepared will pay off. getting yourself into that position will also show those you come out to how seriously you are having to take the prospect.

    I spent an age removing facial hair before I came out, that was my big project and it certainly brought it home to others how serious I was.

    I hate the food madness at this time of year, be careful and hang in there.

    1. Thank you Coline, that's exactly my aim really - I know that I will struggle to be in a condition to have the medical interventions without some weight loss and I really want to get on with it. So on my projects list system, it's 'The Rhiannon Project' :) Already I'm getting joy from it, I can only hope that continues as the project progresses...

      Time of the year, combined with natural propensity to comfort eat is a poor combination!

  3. An honest post Rhiannon, thanks for sharing.
    Don't be embarrassed though, we have failings and weaknesses, I often fall off the wagon and comfort eat only to regret it days later.

    Good luck with the dieting, it is hard work but you'll get there. Sorry I haven't stopped by your blog more in recent times.

    1. Hi Charlotte - so great to hear from you :o) Thank you for stopping by! As Lynn said earlier, heart on the sleeve is tough for me. I do it ok at work, but am more used to hiding my trans status and anything surrounding it. Need to get more comfortable with it.

      Thank you for the encouragement re: eating. It is a complete nightmare - wish it wasn't, but definitely, I will get there!

  4. The 2 pounds lost despite those indiscretions with wine and pizza, and no doubt other friends, must surely be a real encouragement. Well done, I'm thinking!

    It's wonderful to have non-trans friends, but it can be awkward for them if they have other loyalties too. That said, no responsible adult who lives a normal life can escape being a trusted party to secrets and confidences that occasionally put them on a spot. It happens. But unless anyone has become really uncomfortable, I would carry on sharing Rhiannon with them. In the long run, the more people there are that know and like Rhiannon the better.


    1. Thank you Lucy. As usual, very good advice. I actually had the conversation with the person in the blog and we resolved it all and I got her broader perspective which was really interesting and I cried a lot. I think I'm just under a lot of pressure in life in general at the moment and that the dysphoria, waiting and frustration is building to a crescendo again which always makes it tough.

      Thank you for the diet encouragement - how is yours going?

      Rhi x

  5. Two more pounds… yea!!! Way to go! And the dress looks absolutely fab, my dear! As does your smile in the second photo. You have an adorable smile!!!

    Keep up the great work, girl, and don't let a bad day/week make you lose sight of how far you've come. You're doing great, and I'm proud of you!

    Hugs & love,

    1. Thank you Cass -- and loving the Mrs Santa look you've been rocking of late! The diet continues - I'm very determined despite the odd setback. I got off another 1.5lbs this week, so I'm up to 39.5lbs now which is good news. Aiming for 3 stone by the end of the year and then 60lbs if I can by end of February. We'll see!

      If I don't speak to you before, hope you have a fantastic holiday season!

      Take care,
      Rhi x