Breasts and New Bras pt 2

K so quick history: my breasts have grown QUITE A BIT since I started taking progesterone in October, and they’ve grown even more since I started consistently taking it as a suppository in December. None of my old bras fit anymore, which made my breasts constantly sore (ball-havers, imagine squeezing your balls into too-tighty-whiteys for months, like, 2-4 sizes too small), so I threw down on some new bras, from Torrid. I was wearing exclusively Maidenform 38B bras for the last three years, except for random sports bras I found at Ross or on sale at Target.

These Torrid bras are the comfiest things I’ve ever wrapped around my girls.

I’m definitely a 42 band size. Everything I ordered was a 42. I measured myself before I ordered and I was closer to 42 than 41 but still in between, so I gambled a little and got lucky. 42 feels right. Snug but not tight. In place but not pinching. I ordered mostly D cups with a few Cs and Bs thrown in there in case I had measured wrong.

Turns out I measured wrong. I followed a few guides, measured around the fullest part of the bust, still got the wrong cup size. Guess my boobs are just reaching for the stars.

After an afternoon of trying on seven bras, I’m returning five. I’m keeping the 42Bs, one demi, one sports, and returning all the rest. Just too much room in the cups in those.

Once things get returned and I get reimbursed, I’m def ordering more. Like, this is a memory foam demi, but I want to try some more basic T-shirt bras in more common colors (this one is a lush dark purple, sale ftw) and styles (give me some lace I want to feel sexy sometimes) (also is probs a good idea to have more than one sports bra, espesh if I’m planning to starts sportsing more). I’ll have more money when my freelancing gig pays up in a few weeks, but can’t order anything now, so I have time to strategize.

Good news: This 42B demi is just THE comfiest thing. There is really no feeling like…tfw metal wires aren’t digging into the sides of your breasts. The underwire (cozily cushioned) points up into my armpit rather than to my shoulders, so I’m convinced 42 is the band I need. Victory!

SMALL DILEMMA THO: There’s still a little room in the cups. Like, when I sit down and lean back, the upper lip (?) of the cup rises off my breast maybe a centimeter, more on the right breast. Again, super comfy, but that’s the roomiest I’ve ever worn a comfy bra.

Fellow boob-havers, does this mean the bra is too big? Should I maybe order a few more bras down a band size and up a cup size to see if they’re too snug before deciding i am def a 42B at the moment? Like, 40Cs and 40Bs? I’d look for 40As but I don’t have the money for custom bras rn.

Also, my girls are still growing, so I don’t want to invest too much in bras–I need just enough underwear to be functional until my girls are finished coming into their own–so maybe I should just stick with 42Bs for a minute and wait to grow into em more?

Anyways, if y’all were in my situation (female puberty), what would you consider? Thanks for any tips!

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Flood

Basement flooded with drums in it. Spent the morning moving everything–everything–upstairs to the “dining” room where nobody has eaten in at least a decade.

Shells are ok, I think, unless the kick drum spurs–which got wet–plan to rust, but spurs can be replaced.

Cymbal stands should be ok too, pending also rust, and since I’ve had most of them since I was in high school, probably SHOULD be replaced once I get reliable income/work.

Will probs need a new drum mat tho. That shit got soaked 😦

#springisinthebasement

Bike Seat Blues

Cyclist friends! I have two road bikes and they are great. Trek 1.1 circa 2011/2012, older heavier-frame Specialized Allez. Check the pink leopard print handlebar wraps and the snazzy orange lettering atop the deep blue frame.IMG_20180306_165114_763

I really, really want to get out and ride them more this spring, but there are obstacles.

It’s been a few years since I’ve considered myself an active bike person. This is mostly because

1) I gained weight after I started biking because of the toxic antiandrogen (spironolactone) I was but no longer am taking

2) my belly makes riding road bikes not so great because I have to be bent over on my bikes and my knees are pmuch constantly kicking my belly now
3) my bike seats stopped being comfortable, I’m assuming because
3a) see #1
3b) my fat has redistributed and I’ve shed muscle mass, so my center of gravity has moved into my hips and thighs and out of my upper body, meaning more of my weight rests on the seat than on the handlebars now, so it’s real uncomfortable to ride on my racing seats
3c) by “stopped being comfortable” I mean causes significant soreness on the bottom of my crotch and on either side where my legs meet my hips, which makes me want to turn TF around and go home so I can get off my bike ASAP within a minute or two of riding, sometimes right from the getgo
4) I only have road bikes and nowhere I’ve lived in the last three years has let me feel safe on the roads.

I’ve lost weight in the last few months, and that has helped with #2.

I bought some bike shorts with peri-area padding and they’ve kinda mitigated the discomfort in #3c, but it’s not enough to make biking feel like the kind of activity where I can just get on the road and go–I’m still mitigating discomfort on every ride, and that never used to be a problem.

I stopped wearing panties while biking, thinking the elastic bands encircling the leg-holes might be contributing to the discomfort, and while that has helped some, it’s still there.

I’m convinced I need to get two new bike seats (the ones I currently have are both thin deals than flare near the rear a little) if I am going to enjoy biking again.

In an ideal world, I’d trade one of the racing bikes for a trail/crosstrek-style bike so I could do trail riding, but this is not that world. Far from it.

Are there such things as seats designed for male versus female bodies? I know frames move the crossbar down for women’s bikes, to compensate for the lower center of gravity women’s bodies tend toward, but I’m not about to buy a third bicycle until I sell one and/or get a job. And I don’t want to have to get new frames, though I understand I should probs buy women’s or unisex bikes henceforth.

Not sure what I should consider when shopping around for seats besides getting more crotch cushioning to compensate for the junk I carry in my trunk now, but most of the cushioned seats I’ve seen t look more appropriate for cruisers than for road bikes.

Maybe I just have to accept that I’m a special case here and get cruiser seats for my racing bikes? Idk.

Any thoughts or help is appreciated.

48th? Notes

Today’s most satisfying feeling is tfw you’ve been practicing metal on your metal drumkit for a few days because your jazz/rock drumkit is still packed from a gig last weekend, and without wondering if you’re warmed up for it enough you whip out 48th notes (? so many notes) on your double kick pedal at “Laser Cannon Deth Sentence” speeds and precision for a few bars, then playing slower stuff and just throwing sextuplets on the kick into whatever you’re playing, and laugh at a few things at once: the sense of accomplishment you haven’t felt at your playing in years, wonderment at where those notes have been hiding in your body this whole time, and the possible futures this could open up for your playing.

Still room to improve, but I definitely leveled up today.

Pretty good feeling 😀

Why Facial Hair Removal is Medically Necessary for Trans Women

*knock on door*
*Zoë hasn’t shaved for a few days and isn’t wearing a bra, but she opens the door anyway*
Outside person: Oh hi ma’am
Me: Hi there what’s up
Outside person: Oh you’re a guy, sorry.
Me: Um. I take female pronouns actually.
Outside person: Oh.
I’m in transition.
Outside person: Oh.
Me: It’s great.
Outside person: Oh.
Me: No actually it sucks. Whatcha got?
Outside person: Um, I just wanted to invite you to the celebration of Christ’s death next weekend. *hands over flyer*
Me: Oh ok, thanks, I’ll pass it on to my Mom.
Outside person: Ok, have a blessed day, sir.

Me: Byeeeeeeeee

Me: *goes upstairs, tries to go back to work, cannot focus, cries for a few minutes, writes about it on the internet, resolves to shave before going to therapy in an hour*

Side note: The pink/purple versions of the green Shick ST2 Slim Twin razors suck ass and slice up your face right out of the bag. Everything women have told me about women’s razors being crappier than men’s leaps into my mind, and becomes true.

More to Come

I just quit my facebook account. I’ve been using it to crowdsource transition help and to blog my transition experience. After lightly reading about the Cambridge Analytica data breach, it’s clear to me now that the faceplace doesn’t give AF about my data, so I left. I will probably feel a little lonelier for a while, and I may not have as many people reading my posts on this blog versus as on facey, but this may be a relatively safer place in which to share my life online and invite others into it. I know hardly anything about how WordPress uses my data tho, so I could be wrong. Maybe it’s worse than facey. Difficult to imagine much worse tho.

Anyway, I’ll be posting here a lot more. Please follow to receive email updates on new posts!

Leaving Eorzea, Disc 3

Three weeks ago, I restarted playing a social video game I had stopped playing back in December. This was multi-pronged move. I missed my friends, and wanted to see them. I enjoy playing that game, and I perceived it to be a highly rewarding activity even when I wasn’t actively playing. I had some time to kill between then and my move to a new city.

I was also doing science, gathering data about whether or not I can play an MMORPG when my health is relatively good and things are looking up without it eating up more of my life than I wanted it to–I’d previously used MMORPGs as escape hatches from a life I needed to escape, but then I struggled to close the hatch when I needed to return to IRL. The data suggests I shouldn’t be playing right now, but it’s complicated.

Final Fantasy Fourteen keeps me in touch with friends who live far away, and we have fun and do fun stuff and our relationships grow from the time we spend in game. I get to be a community builder among trans fam in there. I lead hunts against giant monsters and make people (myself included) rich (in game currency). I get to have an approximately female body of my own design. I can get my teaching feels by mentoring new players and helping ppl learn mechanics and overcome obstacles we have a shared interest in toppling. My gender is never questioned or suspect. I can alter my appearance with an ease I wish I enjoyed IRL. I can be out and feel 114% safe about that, and the communities I am a part of are full of badass queer allies who more often than not shut down hate before I get a chance to, though the hate is so rare the allies don’t have much to do. The game validates my effort and accomplishments via simple and intricate systems of growth and reward. Directly, it combats my gender dysphoria (somewhat) and helps other mental health issues I have (somewhat) through socialization, validation of my lived gender, and providing a sense of forward motion when I don’t feel I have any IRL.

But the costs of these benefits is pretty steep. In the few recent weeks I’ve been playing, I’ve felt the game competing with almost every other project I’ve wanted to work on and sucking up precious energy I would otherwise devote to them. I haven’t done anything new to learn how to code since February. It’s taking time away from my freelancing gig and interfering with productivity goals I set for myself. I haven’t been writing (outside of the game). I haven’t been reading (outside of the game). I haven’t been cooking nearly as much as I was before (outside of the game). I haven’t been drumming as much as I was before. I haven’t been sleeping as well because the game is keeping me up late, or I’m already up late and the game keeps me up a little later, but whatever’s happening my circadian rhythm is more chaotic than it is without the game. I haven’t been leaving the house as much, even for short walks. I’ve gained back some of the weight I lost in the last two months, likely from spending so much time sitting and eating processed food out of a box or the freezer instead of stuff I prepare on my own. My back gets sore and sometimes my legs swell up from sitting in my shitty task chair all day, either working on the freelance thing or gaming.

I HAVE made forward motion on some large-scale important-type things while playing FF14. I found short-term work, and I worked it, and I met my deadlines. I cooked some badass soup and some more beautiful veggie quesadillas and saw a doctor about my hormones and went to therapy and returned a pair of glasses that kept fucking up my nose. I real talked with my mom. I packed. I took walks. I planned my upcoming move some more with my future roommie. I drummed. I worked for my aunt. I stop gaming to do all these things, and that felt like a success.

But that’s kind of my insight here:

>>I had to stop gaming to do these things, and stopping gaming to do stuff I needed/wanted to do felt like a success.<<

Doing normal stuff I want to do, that I enjoy doing, and taking care of business I need to take care of, and getting my life back together financially, can all be successes, sure. But I have to work extra hard to do them when I have FF14 in my life. And some things I’ve just stopped doing because FF14 is more rewarding than them in the short-term, like writing or submitting my work for publication or reading challenging stuff or learning to code or being awake in the daytime so I can drum without getting the cops called on me or soaking up horrible karma from being that drummer neighbor.

I love FF14. It is one of the most satisfying things I’ve ever done, and its living world, Eorzea, is so beautifully rendered sometimes that I get goosebumps and have transcendent experiences I usually only have when surrounded by natural beauty in the sandstone and sunshine high Arizona desert or deep in a lichen-dripping old-growth Oregon forest. FF14 honors some of my values, like community and compassion, spontaneity and playfulness, being a healing and restorative presence, building independence and taking charge of my decisions, generosity and reciprocity, and femmeing the fuck out. But it doesn’t honor others, like curiosity about the real world, taking care of my health and body, having new experiences, nurturing my intellect, my allegiance to art and participating in artistic communities, interpersonal bravery, being vulnerable and trusting, or a warts-and-all and ideally fearless self-awareness. It makes doing other things I want to do more difficult, and though, again, it is very fulfilling to play, it’s just not worth the sacrifices it asks of me.

I’d like to be the sort of player where I only play on weekends, or the kind who pops in for a few hours each evening to run a few instances or zerg a few hunt trains. But either I don’t have the self-control for that right now, or the allure of the game is just too immersive for me to play like that. I log in thinking I’ll just water my garden, check if my stuff is selling on the market, and dip out before the top of the hour, and next thing I know the sun has set and I’ve lost half a day and my deadlines are still pressing and I’m kinda hungry but I can’t eat anything I spent the day hunting.  So I uninstalled tonight.

I played other games in the last few months when I took my break from FF14. None of them were MMOs, most were RPGs, and they were all infinitely more easy to put down and walk away from when I had the urge to do other things, or when responsibility demanded I do other things. I healed a lot in those months, in real life, and though I don’t feel my health dramatically backsliding right now, I can see some of the positive habits I developed slipping while I traipse across Eorzea, fingers ticking at my keyboard.

This isn’t a pan on all games. I still love video games, and I’m still the person I am today because I played the games I played when I was growing up. Video games can be high art, even literature. The medium can produce moving experiences and improve people’s lives just like reading or sculpture or graffiti or music can. I’m a better person because of the empathy they’ve helped me develop, the bravery and determination and introspection and self-care and authenticity their characters modeled and invited me to emulate in my own life, the rebellious speaking of truth to tyrannical power beneath overwhelming odds I underwent as part of the normal course of life in those games. They’ve helped me learn to analyze systems, and see chains of influence stretching across the world, between people, within people. Everything we do, this daily dehumanizing capitalist money-chasing, the debt, the income, the ownership, the resource-trading, the resource destroying, the value-making, the politicking, the rhetoricking, the world-shaping, language, is games. My project right now is being very intentional about what, and how, I play.

Right now, immediately now, this girl has other shit she needs to focus on, and in the game that is me building a more fulfilling and more livable life for myself via Capitalist Acquisition 2018: Poverty Edition, FF14 functions as a major distraction from the paths I would put myself on. So I am putting it aside, and doing more IRL again. IRL has been pretty grand the last few months, and I’d hate to sacrifice that for something I know is rewarding, but not as rewarding as reality has been.

~Z