Penny's Story

A cute little drummer living her dream.

Six-Month Post-Op Update: Penny’s Excellent Adventure

[This is part of my ongoing diary about my SRS experience in Trinidad, Colorado with Dr. Marci Bowers. See the main page here: Penny’s Excellent Adventure.]

You’re kidding, it’s been six months already? Wow. It’s funny, because my mom was just saying that it seems like over a year since I had my surgery. And in some ways it does. But at the same time, when I think about it, it’s amazing to me that this surgery that I had hoped for my whole life is six months ~behind~ me. It’s just astounding. I have never felt so good, so relaxed, so just flat-out normal.

Which brings up the first point, I guess. I still have some residual issues with the word “normal,” because for so long it was used as a cudgel against me, but I’ve been very surprised to discover that I’m actually a lot more normal than I ever expected. It’s been a weird process of realization, and I think it’s only been possible because I had surgery.

There’s fun stuff to talk about. I guess the first way to approach the subject is that everything seems to be working fine. I have orgasms and I’ve been having sex with my boyfriend. It took a bit longer to have my first orgasm than I had hoped, and their was more numbness in my clitoris and clitoral hood than I was expecting for longer than I had been prepared for. But the sensation has improved dramatically and there is very little numbness left. Orgasms still are an interesting adventure, which makes me feel very typically female, actually. There’s more than just the physical involved in a way that’s new since surgery. Sex has been amazing. I mentioned to one of my friends that I think I’m having the best sex I’ve ever had and she basically said, “Well, d’uh, you’ve got the right parts now.” It was a point very well taken. I guess I knew I had the wrong body before, but I wasn’t prepared for how right things would be after surgery. It’s amazing to just be able to enjoy intimacy with no hang-ups about my body. [Well, not ~no~ hang-ups, I mean, I’m still fat and all. But my hang-ups about my weight and such are miniscule compared to how much my brain used to hurt while I was being imtimate with others with the wrong parts.]

There have been some interesting healing twists along the way, most notable of these being the ongoing saga with exuberent granulation tissue. I’ve seen a local surgeon a few times to have it cauterized and it seems like it’s making tons of progress. I think most of the external granulation has been resolved, with a couple very small spots here and there. I do apparently have some internal granulation tissue, but the local surgeon suggested that I stand pat with that as is and let it resolve on its own and I think that makes sense.

Several weeks ago I noticed that I was developing a more natural odor, which at first troubled me. It seems to just be me building up some natural vaginal flora. I saw the ob/gyn and he was unconcerned, so I’m not worried about it. Also, it seems to be less strong than it was initially, so I think it was just very noticeable to me at first as I got used to my new smell.

I still make a mess when I pee, and I seem to have some extra skin around my urethra. Clean-up is pretty easy, though, and I haven’t really decided how troubling this is. It’s possible that I might go for a surgical revision at some point, but I’m not feeling like it’s necessary right this moment.

I’ve been amazed at how much the scars have faded. Especially on my left side where the suture line split open. I can still see the scars, but I’m not sure how obvious they would be if I didn’t know what I was looking for.

Dilating officially goes to once a day as of today. Hooray! What a pain in the ass that is. It’s so boring and time-consuming. It’s a small price to pay, and I’m not complaining, but it’s very nice to reach this milestone. Oh, and even nicer is that sex counts. 🙂

Overall it’s been an amazing six months getting used to having the correct body. I am thankful beyond words. Even stupid little stuff like having my shorts fit right has just caused me to pause and smile.

A completely unexpected side-effect is that I’ve been much colder since surgery. Several of my friends think I’m nuts because I get cold so easily. I remember coming out of the operating room, which was as cold as a meat locker, and being freezing. I’ve pretty much been cold since then.

Something I had worried a little about is my weight, and I have put on more weight than I had hoped. I’m hoping to convince myself to get back on track with my diet now that I have so much of my energy back. It’s been fun to run up stairs again.

The overall thing I guess I could say about having surgery is that it was the single best thing I have done in my entire life. I am finally peaceful within myself. Wow. I waited so long to feel this way, and it feels even better than I expected.

If sex reassignment surgery is the right path for someone, I truly believe that it will change their life in ways more profound than they can even imagine. [Of course, it goes without saying that surgery ~is not~ for everyone, and I can’t imagine how awful it would be for someone to have this surgery if it’s not the right choice for them.]

So, yeah, life is better than I had let myself dare to dream. In the most sacred corner of my heart I never could have even wished that life would be as magical as it has become. I am well and truly blessed.

This will be my last specific update about surgery until the one-year mark. Wahoo!


  lisalee18wheeler wrote @

I can’t believe it’s six months too. I was in Colorado Springs the day before your surgery but couldn’t make the trip down to Trinidad. I’ll be two years in Oct and it’s amazing what a little surgery can do for oneself… 😉

Hooray for Penny!

  pickypenelope wrote @


  Véronique wrote @

Someone was counting days today, so I counted mine — 148 days until my surgery (as long as nothing changes). I used to think it was going to be just another milestone, but now I’m thinking that you’re right, that it will change things in ways I have not yet imagined. I do know that I’m really, REALLY looking forward to those 148 days being up.

  pickypenelope wrote @

I tried so hard to not build it up too much, but in retrospect I underestimated how important it’s been, and how ~everything’s~ changed.

The time passes sooner than you think, too. Those 148 days will fly by before you know it.

  ariablue wrote @

Awesome =)

  pickypenelope wrote @



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: