Yesterday I went to a party organized by the company I work for. Suffice it to say that I'm not really the party kind of person, for a number of reasons. Nevertheless I figured I should give it a try. Finding the location of the party was easy enough, yet after that things are blacking out for me a bit. I remember standing and sitting in places, mostly just feeling absolutely alone and frighteningly out of place. On top of that many colleagues came with their partner, the sight of which dragged me regularly down into the murky depths of my traumas. I mostly felt terrified and on the verge of panic during the first few hours of the party. I had to remind myself that I could just grab my coat and leave any time I wanted to stave off a full-blown PTSD attack.
As the evening progressed into the night and people got more and more drunk this didn't improve much, though fortunately by then I had found some people to talk to, which fortunately gave me something to cling to. In the end I was one of the first to leave, together with the children of the colleague at whose place I'm currently staying. At close to 1 AM I thus went to bed and pretty much collapsed. I slept about eleven hours. Even as I'm writing this I'm still feeling tired, with the headache I started the day off with fortunately almost gone. I don't think that parties are a good thing for me, at least not yet. Too many impressions and too many triggers.
Just learning to be part of and get along with a family as I have to where I am staying is already quite a struggle in many ways. It wasn't until I came here that I began to realize for just how long I hadn't been part of a family, but just locked away inside my own room with everyone in the house living their own separate lives. To communicate and helping each other at daily tasks is an almost alien concept to me, though I'm more than willing to learn those things which should be second nature to most.
Much of what I'm doing these days is about building my life up from scratch. One of the essential items I'm still working on is getting a place of my own, which I'll hopefully get good news about next week. On Thursday I went with my boss to view an apartment in Karlsruhe which I found to be much to my liking. As I'm not the only one interested in this place, I hope that being backed by my boss and his company will increase my chances there. I'd much prefer to start planning moving into this new place next week than to start from the beginning on apartment hunting.
Also part of building up my life here is all the little details like a bank account, which has been completed aside from receiving the last details for using my cards, and getting health insurance. On that last item I sent an email to the company which I got registered with if everything went well, and asked them what the status is. Once that's taken care of I'll have to soon contact my surgeon about making an appointment. That, or maybe ask around a bit more for a good surgeon for this so very important surgery for me. I will probably only get one shot at this, so it better be a skilled surgeon.
Directly related to this surgery are the period pains I have every month. They seem to be worsening the past few months. I can not really call them menstruation pains because I shouldn't have the relevant organs to menstruate. The exact medical explanation for these pains so far completely eludes me based on my admittedly somewhat limited knowledge of the processes involved. The pains themselves are located in the lower abdomen, mostly on the right side, but also center and left, and vary from a burning to a sharp, stabbing sensation. The pains also extend to the groin region where it's mostly a burning sensation with a painful numbing of the skin upon touch, the hips which are painful whether sitting or walking, the right leg which feels sore and itching, burning and stabbing pains in the area of the vagina.
Compared to the confirmed female organs I have this is curious. The vagina by it shouldn't play much of a role here, beyond maybe a change in its wall's internal structure, but shouldn't cause any cycles. My hormone therapy is constant and not cyclic. The only reasonable explanation I have so far is that I do in fact have ovarian tissue in some kind of configuration capable of inducing the hormonal changes which are part of menstruation. Whether I have any tissues which respond to this outside of the vagina is unknown. I do know that if any tissue exists anywhere which conforms the inside of the womb, this will massively change due to these hormones and eventually shed the new tissue at the end of the cycle. This discarded tissue is a massive risk factor in the causation of sepsis. Based on my symptoms every month it seems reasonable to assume that something major is happening, but without any idea of how dangerous this could be to my health, long-term.
It is my hope that I'll get this apartment next week so that I can finalize that part and start focusing on my physical health. The last half of this week I have felt exhausted and worn out, with a near-constant headache and feeling just ready to sleep before half of the day is over with. Maybe I'll start feeling better once this month's period is over with. So far it's driving me to near-despair. As soon as I have this apartment and my health insurance taken care of I can go to the general practitioner. Dutch GPs have never taken me seriously, let alone that they would ever consider for real that I experience actual periods. I would gladly stop worrying about what these monthly pains do or do not mean for my health.
The basic summary is that despite the progress I am making there are still far too many things for me to get far too stressed about, which probably exacerbates these same issues.