So, Xmas and New Year came and went. Sun, sea, sand, tan, good eats and drinks, and exercise. Then 6 weeks of my 85-year-old mum over from the UK; too personal to go into details, but a hyper-active, neurotic, 85-year-old toddler who managed to ask the same questions and say the same things 5-6 times a day, and expecting entertainment during every waking hour just about sums it up. Yet, all respect to her, she did fly around the world to see us, and she did enjoy the drives round the country, seeing the dolphins, being fed, drinking sherry. It was a sad time, as the last two of her brothers died while she was here, leaving only her & her sister from her family left (apart from me, two sister-in-laws, and nieces & nephews…).
Now she has gone home, with a twinge of sadness as well as relief, because each time I see her, I seem able to discern a little bit less in her of the woman my mother used to be. Somehow, though, with all the stimulation, company, conversation, it seemed like there was more of her when she left than when she had arrived, if that makes sense. I feel for her going home having lost two brothers she was close to, and having lost one of her best friends just before she flew out. Growing old must be wretched, especially when you have to see all those you have known pass before you do.
I have my life back again, and my partner has helped propel me into a fitness regime like I have never experienced before. Started pilates. Having done yoga and Tai Chi in my twenties, I think I prefer this. Then there is swimming with her and sis, which revealed a real need for me to sort my breathing technique out properly – so now I am having adult classes, which is cool, as it is seems to make a huge difference of what I am capable of with the same effort! Then she got me a gym membership; oh how my muscles love those weight machines, I’d forgotten how much I needed it. My aches and pains seem to be diminishing with each visit to the gum, and my body feels great. It feels like the way I walk and stand is different, and I feel fitter and more confident after just a few weeks. There is something about this country and fitness, and it feels easier to get back on track than it ever was in the UK.
I made my first pizza’s last week, and discovered that the base could be knocked up pretty easily using the breadmaker and some powdered yeast. Yummy. I am not a fan of pizza, normally. But home-made pizza is something else!
I had a visit to an endocrinologist here, for the first time. He was completely on-board with where I was at, understood my history, considered some of the UK practices I experienced barbaric, and reckoned I pretty much had it sussed, leaving little for him to have to do. He made me very aware that healthcare provision for intersex (as well as trans) people here is abysmal, mainly due to lack of funding. So, having discussed this with other members of OII international, I have decided to re-launch OII Aotearoa, which has been pretty well defunct since I arrived. I really am sick of the politics, but it sounds like something like OII is necessary here, and somebody has to do it.
To anybody who is still following this blog, thanks for hanging in there, and welcome back from what has been nearly three-months of dormancy. I will try to get some pictures up of the dolphins, as well as a video of the Dresden Dolls (who were magnificent) at Auckland; I have co-authored a paper which has been accepted for publication, and will post details once it is in print. Kia Ora. Life is good.
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