Transition isn’t really about quick changes – hormones work slowly and other interventions (aside from surgeries) also tend to take time to develop and manifest. But there are a few things I’ve experienced which might be illuminating.
- About a month after I started hormones, I looked in the mirror and saw her. It was just a glimpse, but when I had seen myself in the mirror, I saw myself as a woman. It was gone as quickly as it happened, but in the coming weeks, it happened more and more, and began to last longer when it happened. How did it feel? At first it was magical and miraculous. It was unexpected but very welcome. It was happy. It was a relief. It gave me hope. About 6 months later. I could see her in the mirror fairly reliably, and by a year in, I rarely saw anything but her in the mirror.
- Once my breasts began to develop enough that they were undeniably there, I had a different kind of relief. I realized that my brain had been wired to expect that my body would have breasts, but when there were none, my brain had a kind of noise that I couldn’t identify because I’d never had breasts to know that it was associated with them. When they grew in, that noise went away and was replaced with a feeling of relief and satisfaction.
- When I woke up from my bottom surgery, the very first thing I noticed was being thirsty. The very next thing was that I didn’t have a buzzing sensation in the back of my head anymore. You see, having the wrong genitals, much like not having breasts, caused my brain to be confused about the signals it was receiving from down below. Once the surgery was done, the signals made sense and I no longer had to deal with that buzz – the confusion of the signals. That buzz has stayed away permanently, and I don’t ever expect to experience it again. Again, this was a huge relief, but it also felt like I got a boost to my brain function — after all, I no longer had to deal with mixed signals from my genitalia, so the mental effort I’d previously had to spend dealing with it was now available to me for other thoughts.
So really, the most common feeling is one of relief. I also experience Gender Euphoria from time to time – that is a total trip! Having my body in alignment with my gender doesn’t make me happy, but it certainly removes obstacles to my happiness!