yesterday i was in a state!
it’s not often my mind whirls about so frantically without being able to find its ground.
i’m like a lightning rod, usually. most mental activity passes through me, then into the earth. its a gift.
but apparently not a constant!
i should explain.
ziona was found to have testicles that were undescended. at least that’s what the primary care physician thought and a subsequent ultrasound revealed.
enter urologist appointment. after gathering support from mental health and legal professionals, lest surgery to descend the testes seemed imminent over the more logical procedure for a young trans-girl nearing puberty blocking time..removal.
all my ducks neatly in a row, monday night, i got maybe 2 hours of sleep. nothing short of knock out drops would coerce the sandman to close my weary eyes. i knew it was anxiety for what could be my first real fight for ziona’s rights.
tuesday, we arrived at the urologist’s office to find that the physician’s assistant for the doctor, was the same one that ziona had seen before at the gastro-intestinal doctors office! the first sigh of relief escaped my body unnoticed by this familiar face.
this p.a. already knew ziona as both zion and ziona. he had seen her for follow ups and pre-ops for the annual colonoscopy she must have to remove the polyps that keep cropping up in her large intestine. it made telling him what our needs were much easier.
it also made it easier for ziona to allow him to try to manipulate the testes out of their very deep hiding place. it was a painful procedure, but he was able after many weird leg positionings and much wrangling, to get them into the scrotum. only one at a time and only briefly! they popped right back up inside of her the minute he let go of pinching them into place.
but still, good news! no surgery!
so we followed up with the primary care physician, because whether retractile or undescended, getting a ‘feel’ of the testes to determine tanner stage was not going to be possible. so the logical next step, the alternative, is to do a blood draw to measure lutenising hormone levels.
i was shocked to learn that she wouldn’t order the test. she seemed to have been on board all along. even claimed to have had a transgender patient ‘graduate’ out of her practice in the recent past. all the times when we had spoken about the implanted form of the puberty blockers and hormones, she listened and once even said that the procedure was easy enough that she could do it in the office.
in what seemed like a blindsiding about-face the doctor started talking about legal ramifications, mentioning the fact that ziona is a minor and digging in with statements like, “you’ve got to understand where we are”, meaning the deep south, where every good christian will tell you where folk like ziona and myself will be spending eternity. she claimed not to know anything about the protocol involved, like it was an experimental procedure i was asking her to perform. and i felt betrayed, … big time.
surprised, i said, “but i thought you had had a transgender patient in your practice”. then she explained that the person in question had parents who wouldn’t sign off on anything and had waited until 16 “pursued it on their own”.
i offered to send her links from various studies, links to various clinics around the country where the ‘protocol’ and proper therapies for treating a transgender child are in practice. when i got home i did just that too. frantically, and profusely firing off email after email from the web. and then i sent her the link to the ucsf program that ziona and i had decided on for pursuing her care.
but i was puzzled.
why had the doctor listened and seemed to ‘be on board’ for so long? had someone or something scared her? it occurred to me that maybe she thought i expected HER to ‘do’ the protocol. so i sent her a release form from the program at ucsf, asked her to fax them ziona’s records, then emailed her to apologise for not communicating well enough the fact that she, as the primary care physician, is only involved tangentally in the whole process. just to order the occasional test, and otherwise simply to see to ziona’s health and well being.
the sandman eluded me for a second night in a row as i pondered what had gone wrong.
i admit, my reaction to wednesday’s events was almost ballistic, altho since i tend to be rational, on the outside at least, no one probably knew the extent of my panic.
but what a difference a day makes!
today i spoke with the intake person at the ucsf program, got ziona registered, got her first appt set up, then bought airline tickets to bring us to san francisco and back to florida the same day, even lined up a neighbor to look after letting the dogs out to poop and pee while we’re gone for the day.
i think i may even sleep tonight.