[Description: Fireworks on a black background. There are four bursts of colour in the image. Two reddish gold fireworks in the foreground that overlap and are located close to the center. There’s another gold firework above it and a green one to the right of the gold.
Taken from: http://www.hormonesmatter.com/female-orgasm/ ]
I started my fifth month post with silver nitrate applied to my vag which was less-than-fun. The application didn’t take long fortunately. My gynecologist took what looked like a matchstick with a silver tip and gently brushed it against my labia. And then came the burning sensation as the silver nitrate did its work.
For those who aren’t aware, silver nitrate is used to treat hypergranulated tissue – when your body heals up too much and there’s what looks like a red, shiny scab left behind. It needs to be burned off in order for your body to heal properly, hence the silver nitrate.
The whole procedure took a couple minutes and the burning sensation lasted a few minutes more. It wasn’t as bad as I feared. The pain was nowhere near as bad as getting a tattoo. Or even getting a needle. It stings, but it’s over within a few minutes. It’s akin to getting a cut disinfected.
After the silver nitrate is applied, your body has to heal. And part of that healing involves bleeding and old skin that looks like grey goo coming out of the vulva. I joked with my kin that this was the period that I’d never get. My cloth pads were finally getting used for what they were designed for. I felt sore and sensitive for a few days as my body healed. And I had to continue douching and bathing to wash out the gunk. The whole process was messy and made dilating less pleasant, but by this point, I was getting used to cleaning blood out of my sheets and the sight of weird gunk coming out of my vag.
The past few months passed quickly. I had and still have trouble recalling specific times and dates. Life got busy and I had to keep up with it which led to a lot of days melting into weeks. I was tired all the time, especially after an application of silver nitrate. And I had it applied to my vag about once a month.
I had my first speculum exam during my second round of silver nitrate. The one used on me was tiny and designed specifically for people who are very tight (which I was). I was lucky that my gyno (and later, my doctor) were careful and took my lead when it came to using the speculum. It was warmed up before using and I was in control of when it was pushed in, how deep, and how fast. And that felt liberating. I found that when I had control, it was easier for me to let go a little. With the speculum examination, more hypergranulated tissue was found internally and treated with silver nitrate (sigh).
My main issue was and still is how tight I am. I was referred to see a pelvic floor physiotherapist, but the sessions were well over $100 and that was above my budget. So I went without that support. It was really upsetting to find out that the healthcare that I needed was unavailable to me. There also really aren’t any alternatives because not (m)any others have the specialization to address the needs of post-op trans people. And to rub salt in the wounds, I found out that this group of trans men had a free pelvic physio workshop open only to trans men from the group. I was furious because I felt so inadequate for being too tight, being “broken”, and being too poor to afford this medically necessary healthcare.
It took a couple months to come to grips with having a very tight vag. As I said in previous entries, I keep on losing depth. Looking back on this, I really shouldn’t be surprised. Even pre-surgery, I had issues with being very tight and hated having anyone touch me between the legs. I have very strong kegel muscles and I have trouble relaxing enough to allow penetration. And this is why it’s so important for me to have access to pelvic physio.
I eventually had enough of the dilators. I hated and still hate them with a passion and so I switched over to my sex toys after getting permission from my healthcare team. It went well! I was better able to open up to the sex toys and found that I could take the largest dilator to the meager max depth that I had come to grips with. I felt better after dilating, I didn’t feel like death warmed over most of the time. And somewhere along the way, during my seventh month I finally achieved an orgasm.
During that first orgasm, I cried uncontrollably in relief and it felt like my body chemistry was aligning back into place. I was happy that it happened and gradually, it felt like I was regaining strength.
I was a little disappointed it wasn’t a clitoral orgasm. I had been looking forward to a clitoral orgasm, but squeezing something with my kegel muscles and the blunt pressure of something hitting against the wall of my vaginal canal really did it for me. And that was enough.
After finally achieving an orgasm, the world felt better. I felt a lot less grumpy and sad. Things hurt less and I had more energy. It was about then that I had to take on all the chores I’d been neglecting around the house. And I was able to do more. I felt pretty tired afterwards so I wasn’t at 100%, but I was able to do more things than I could before.
By the 8th month, most of the granulated tissue had been burned off, but it wasn’t completely gone. Most of the random shocks from nerves re-connecting had almost stopped. I was able to orgasm (although not as often as I wished) and I felt pretty good where I was. I didn’t feel as much pressure to have a lot of vaginal depth. It was still present, but the ability to give myself orgasms mattered more to me than how much I could fit in my vaginal canal. It’s not something cis women think much about or obsess over, why should I?
(And then there is always that little voice that reminds me that I’m not cis and that my vag doesn’t stretch as much as a cis woman’s. But that voice is feeble and sounds like cisscum).