This morning I braved a winter weather advisory to make my appointment with the doctor. It was my three months follow-up since I started HRT. As much as I didn’t want to go out in the weather I needed to keep my appointment so I could get a new prescription for my T – especially since I would be running out in three days. The plus side – the waiting room was nearly empty and I didn’t have to wait to be called back to the exam room!
The visit was pretty routine. The doctor decided that based on my vitals and how things were progressing, it was unnecessary to do a blood draw. Instead, we would leave that for my six-month checkup. There were no surprises with the changes from taking the testosterone. My voice is fluctuating quite a bit – although I am hopeful that will level off soon so the results of my vocal therapy from my thyroplasty will be more evident. My facial hair started coming in after about a month on T – above the lip first. I am also seeing a little more beard fuzz every week. I’m actually shaving twice a week now with an electric razor and zero (0) guard. The beard action is growing in faster than I expected it would. The idea of having to deal with the facial hair was top of my list of reasons for not taking testosterone; but, I must say that I am looking forward to it now. Even the juvenile mustache and fuzzy sideburns that are creeping down my face are already a huge help when it comes to deterring the misgendering. I’m excited to see if I can grow a full face of 5 o’clock shadow. Another plus…I haven’t seen much acne yet. I have had a little increased oiliness on my face, but it’s been easily managed so far with a daily acne face wash. This is something I watch diligently. I didn’t have the teenage acne fight and I certainly don’t want it now. I am staying on top of this.
The negative part of the changes has been part of the body shaping adjustments. About five weeks into the HRT I noticed that my stomach appears to be filling out as the female to male body shifts are happening. The doctor said this is entirely normal and that since it is under the muscle it can be reduced by increasing my ab exercises. That is certainly good news. Instant “dad bod” was not part of the agreement! Also, they weren’t joking around with the whole “man smell” thing. I don’t hate it, but it was certainly a surprise the first morning I woke and got a good whiff of my arm pits. Wow! I couldn’t jump into a hot shower fast enough!
As much as I fought the idea of HRT for months – I was dead set against it for a long time – I am glad I took the leap. All I can do is take things month-to-month and monitor the progress. Unless I start to see negative changes from the testosterone, I see no reason to consider stopping. Updates to come when there is more to report.