I put them on yesterday morning, and I'm still wearing them this morning. I had them off for a brief period of emotional instability yesterday afternoon, but then I was wearing them again inside of an hour.

Part of me is quietly disgruntled that I'm doing something as an exercise in self-delusion, and that's been one of my biggest fears for so long that the internal suggestion of pulling the wool over my own eyes, for any reason, makes me want to stop what I'm doing instantly and atone to some nameless deity for trying to lie to myself. I'm not, though. I'm not lying to myself about what I'm doing. I'm fully aware that when I look down and I see my shirt stretched out over my chest that it's not really me that's causing it. That doesn't stop me from smiling when I look in the mirror at seeing what I wanted to see when I first started my transition.

Even now, I find saying the word "breastform" out loud to be difficult. "Fake tits," while closer, is something to be said with a self-deprecating snicker, and thus isn't what I want. There is a part of my psyche that says that having gone through this entire process without wearing them, to do so now is somehow to cheapen what I've already done and rob it of its meaning. I don't wear makeup to cover my shadow. I don't lie about my past. I recognize that I'm not where I want to be yet, and I live with it. I don't try to hide behind crutches.

Why, then, does the simple act of putting on a shirt and having to work around my own chest make me smile the way I did when I first put on a skirt and went for a walk outside?

If anything, everything I've done before has been the "self-delusion", saying that I was happy with my body as it was. Yes, I want to be heavy-chested. Perhaps not as large, proportionately, as some of my friends, but definitely
bigger than I am now. I've wanted this since the beginning of the changes. I've known that when I crossed my arms across my chest that I wanted to feel my own breasts resting on my forearms, and that even with the forms I'm wearing now they don't quite feel large enough in that regard. I have such a hangup about feeling like I'm lying, to myself or to anyone else, that even openly saying that I want something like this I'm having to fight internally because I feel like I'm making statement that this is what I already am, not that this is what I want.

As Jessie pointed out, I was using the ladies' bathrooms for eighteen months before I had my surgery. I could say nobody could see what I had under my crotch, but with some of the cuts of jeans I like to wear that's not true

I'm not comfortable wearing these in public, but I've started to investigate alternatives.

Work is actually going well. I know since saying I had a job I hadn't really said anything else about my position, but that's mostly because in the last two months I haven't had the time to actually do much beyond work.

I've always said that I would rather be too busy than too bored. This job promises to test my belief in that idea.

I'm currently working with Bennie at an Evil Data Collection Company, which is to say my job consists primarily of taking slices out of a McHuge pile of data and serving them up to clients, or else I'm taking client data and then cleaning it and checking it against ours for consistency. It sounds fairly dull, and a lot of the job can be repetitive, but with the way the office runs it's rarely a dull moment, and those are usually a welcome reprieve from the rest of the craziness. 

Working with someone that was already a friend prior to the job has been an excellent boost to my morale about the company. My ramp-up time has been incredibly quick, and within a week I felt like I was being a productive
part of the team. The fact that I received a task that has literally taken me from my second week to next Tuesday to finish has been proof that my role here is fairly safe. This project is almost certain to be a repeat one, and every time I do it I get slightly better at it, which is a good sort of stability.

I know I bitch about the salary thing a lot, but I really do feel like I'm being underpaid. I have, in the two months that I've worked there, left half an hour early on three days, and put in at least three twelve-plus hour shifts to finish up projects that had to be done by a certain deadline. I can only hope that at the end of my six-month "trial period," my manager and the HR guy see the effort I've done as worthy of being rewarded. I've already been promised at least another five grand a year. I'd like to think I've proven myself worth more than that.

Sadly, I'm finding that the more money I have, the more things I find on which to spend that money. I've still got to get out of debt, but at the same time I'd like to be able to start planning for my eventual retirement and I've also
got getting into a house to consider. Then, too, there's everything that the aforementioned topic will cost to fix. Plus, that Jessie's asked me on a few occasions now to look into school and the associated costs. While in the long run I see that as a step towards larger income, I know in the short run that it will cost me more money that I'm going to need to start setting aside today to cover.

Right now, getting into a house seems like the fastest means of getting more income on the table. If I can get a duplex or triplex, or even a large enough single-occupancy house to give Kelly her own space, it should cost me less to manage than staying in an apartment. The extra money from that will free up immediate budgetary concerns. Putting money away towards retirement is a lofty ideal, but sadly I know it needs to wait until I can get other things paid off. Fourteen percent interest trumps ten percent dividends.

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