2009 – The best of times?

I have been postponing writing this for some time because I didn’t want the last few weeks of 2009 to combine with my memories of the first few weeks to colour my review of the year as a whole. Well time has a way of dealing with adversity. But even the passage of time still lets me think: “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…”

It was the best of times because for the first time in my life, I was not spending the greater part of my day (or week, or whatever) living a lie. I was living, the majority of the time as ‘Marie’ and, surprise(!), being accepted that way. Shopping on the ‘Drive, riding transit, going to and even chairing meetings, walking around on the streets of Havana (a dream come true!) and meeting important people, I was ‘Marie’ and accepted as such. Could it get better than this?

Well, every silver lining has it’s dark cloud! For me, 2009 opened at about 4:00 AM with the most intense pain I have ever experienced. Testicular torsion is not something I recommend! The urologist at VGH emergency said I should never let a woman tell me that “men cannot experience the pain of childbirth”. She said that what I was experiencing was essentially the same thing – the stretching of the most sensitive part of the human body. And, she noted, the swelling (stretching) in my case was truly remarkable. Followed up by an abscess a month later (the skin had been stressed beyond it’s capacity to recover) and the surgical procedure in emergency (again!) to deal with that, meant that the pain that started on New Years morning didn’t stop until March.

A flare up of my chronic pinched nerve during the summer and a sprained muscle in my back to close out the year in pain (not as bad as that at the beginning of the year, but still…) made 2009 not a year I would like to relive – on one level!

But now it is well over and I can look back on it with the memories of pain fading and instead, think "My God! I am Marie – at last!” (sorry about the religious reference – old speech habits die hard!). And now, I can look forward to the rest of my life, knowing that I am being honest with myself, my friends, my neighbours and the rest of the world!

“No more lies…!”

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