Analysis (Services and Self)

Koan Bremner's view on life as a database and data warehouse professional / addict and non-genetic woman

Wednesday, January 12, 2005


I'm conscious that I wasn't a prolific poster over the holiday period; it's not that I didn't have anything to say (trust me, I've *always* got something to say!) Although I have to admit, the unfolding tragedy of the Indian Ocean tsunami completely derailed anything I'd planned to write. However, I spent the time doing a lot of reflecting on the past year, and planning for this; including mapping out what I want to do with this blog, with my podcast "VoiceOver", and with new technology generally. Now's a good time to summarise the significant personal aspects of 2004.

More than any other year of my life, 2004 could rightly be described as a "year of transition"! ;-) Well over a year after beginning my so-called "real-life experience" (or RLE) in October 2003, I can truthfully say that I have no regrets about walking this path to womanhood. Sure, I still have difficult days; but those days tend to be difficult because of factors which would have applied, even if I were still living as a man. Highlights, from my perspective, include:

February - legally changed name (I'd thought of myself as Koan for so long that it was so satisfying to consign my former name to history, where it belongs);

March - discharged from bankruptcy (the final relic of the consequences of my old life);

April - funeral of much-loved Aunt :-(

June - visited friends in Scotland - this was the first significant occasion on which many people (including young children) who had known me exclusively in my former life met me as I now am; I was truly astounded by how positive and supportive they all were;

July - began hormone therapy (first medical intervention in my transition since beginning RLE nine months previously);

September - hormone dosage increased (my body was coping with the strain of hormone therapy);

October - first appointment with professional hairdresser (from having, effectively, a skinhead in September 2003 to having a reasonably full head of hair, what a relief!); began writing this blog (bringing me personal satisfaction and rewards which I didn't anticipate);

December - initial filming for TV documentary (acknowledging that I have a responsibility to help others in ways that would have helped me); initial speech therapy session (still on the waiting list for NHS treatment, I am finally able to afford to pay for private treatment); first session of "VoiceOver" (which has engaged my interest in an entirely new area of creative and technological possibilities); initial electrolysis consultation (as with speech therapy, I am finally able to afford this privately); hormone dosage increased to maximum (potential scare over liver function in November has subsided).

Personally, quite a year! Professionally, this year has certainly been "feast and famine", with periods of intense productivity punctuated by periods of ineffectiveness. The highlight was definitely shipping the new release of our reporting and analytics product in March, as it marked the first significant contribution of mine to our product line; and there have been numerous other milestones and achievements (which I can't discuss here, frustratingly) in which I take some satisfaction and pride. Conversely, the latter half of 2004 was characterised by personal frustration with significant memory loss and "cloudiness" of thinking; something with which I am still struggling to come to terms. As I've written previously, I've no idea how my colleagues cope with this (better than I'm coping, apparently) but, overall, they seem to, for which they definitely have my thanks.

So, 2005 is here, and will represent (I hope) a year of consolidation. In a sense, I will be "marking time". For example, weekly electrolysis sessions on Monday mornings will kind of cramp my style a little, because I can't shave after Friday (the electrolysist needs a certain amount of hair to work with) as the hormones have slowed down (but not stopped) the rate at which my facial hair grows. I can probably get away with one day's growth without feeling particularly "ugh", but two days' worth is definitely noticeable (so basically I won't be going out much on Sundays). With the exception of World Superbikes weekend at Brands Hatch in July, of course! ;-) On the positive side, it means I'll definitely have the incentive to do more work, both for Exony and on my extra-curricular interests (e.g. podcasting); after all, as long as I don't let the bristles rub against the microphone, who will know I'm sporting stubble?

And there are other personally-significant events upcoming this year, including:

February - makeover / photographic session for new ID (including passport and driving license); this to be filmed as part of my participation in the TV documentary series (which I now understand will air in September) along with my trip to the Passport Office to actually *get* my new passport;

Early 2005 - roll out and bed in my new voice in public (yes, my long-suffering colleagues will get the "benefit" of this first, and probably very soon);

October - approval for gender reassignment surgery;

Late 2005 / Early 2006 - the surgery itself.

To be honest, I'll be happy if this is a relatively uneventful year. Saying which has probably put the kiss of death on *that*! :-)

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  • At 6:51 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hiya Gorgeous Lady!

    Just wishing you all the very best for 2005 - I really do hope that all goes to plan, (as I am sure all of your friends/subscibers/colleagues etc etc do!)

    We have known each other for quite a 'wee while' now and I am so happy that you have such a positive outlook to the future now. I know of your past torments, but do not relate those times to the wonderful whole person you now are. I really do hope and wish for all to go to plan.

    Love you sweetie!!

    Jinty xxx


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