Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Big and Small Things and the Half Way Betweens

The view of Hammersmith from the 6th floor
Charing Cross Hospital

The header photo is the view from the 6th floor of the main tower block in Charing Cross Hospital, London. It's a big building but from up there, other big things down below look rather small. It's a bit like life isn't it? From far away, even those important things on your horizon can seem relatively tiny. I've been looking at an eventual admission date for GRS for seven years; years have gone by and the likelihood of it ever happening still seemed slim. Now, just like that tower block it's staring me in the face.

Last Tuesday saw me heading down to London again on the big red 11 car Virgin train; big city, long journey, big event (for me). It was the day of my pre-op. I imagined that I'd make the trip down on my own but my lovely youngest daughter wouldn't hear of it. She's a High School student in her senior year; she has so much work to do; it can't have been an easy decision to make. Beth however is one of those people for whom people and relationships mean more than raw grades, I really respect her for that and I was so glad of her company and endless chat on a long train journey. It was a big sacrifice for her to make but I so appreciated what she did: Big event, long journey, big sacrifice, long day, long journey back.

The tower block at Charing Cross is small by tall building standards; next to the Empire State it would look like a toy. Events seem to go the same way; one big event leads to another even bigger and now I'm sandwiched between the opening act and the main attraction; my admission date on the 9th April and GRS itself on the 10th. In between those big events lies something tiny; my Leuporelin injection; small with a massive effect, especially without HRT which I gave up 2 weeks ago. I have found myself incredibly tired, exhausted and having to pace myself more slowly. The same medication which rids me of those awful feelings and effects I experienced as a teen also reduces my hormone levels to a cool zero. Whilst I was on estradiol patches I had tons of energy, now I seem to have absolutely none: It's a famine or a feast and no 'Half way Betweens'.

I keep telling myself that it's a really small price to pay for a long term end but in the meantime it makes work difficult. I do a day job in a Community College helping differently abled students to complete their degrees and diplomas by coaching them with their learning needs. After the next 2 weeks I'll be away for the remainder of the current semester. Faculty aren't replacing me. Instead I'm being asked to get students finished before Easter (pause while your T-Girl disappears under an avalanche of papers, journals, books and buff folders). The whole business has exhausted me further to the point where my doctor wanted thyroid and diabetes tests done. He now wants me to finish work early and take some rest and yet I feel really guilty about doing so. Currently we're flirting with the 'Half Way Betweens'; altered hours, shorter working day; a way of combatting big fatigue with small half way changes that keep Faculty happy and me from total exhaustion. I'm not sure. I'm still thinking about it all. Am I trying to do too much? I'll have to make a decision before the end of today....

I wrote all that yesterday. Today I'm at home having that rest. I think I was the right decision. Now I have to start packing that case of essentials for April 9!

Hugs, Robyn-Jane xox



  1. The right decision ..... No point working yourself ragged and then come down with a cold or flu because you are exhausted.

    I hope the withdrawal symptoms are not too hard to deal with.

    You are in my thoughts as you approach this final leg of this particular (long) journey

  2. Thanks so much Becca, I felt so guilty taking the time off but I've been working so hard and it's not been getting easier. I wasn't doing myself any favors by carrying on till I got ill.

    Hugs, Jane x

  3. Wow and more wow. Your school tasks are Herculean. Good for you for taking rest. Are the students aware of you situation?

  4. Thanks Monkkey. I'm glad somebody appreciates the Herculean element. My students aren't totally aware of the situation. They simply know that I'm due for surgery. I know that a few of them are concerned about he lack of a substitute. I won't be there to see what happens if they complain...