Zoe Hitzel

I spent yesterday calling the new clinic. They input my gender and name wrong despite the paperwork I filled out. They wrote my estrogen prescription wrong despite what I told the nurse and the doctor. The pharmacy doesn’t have it in stock anyway. There is a global shortage of estrogen medications right now. I have one vial left. I’ve drawn from it three times, maybe four, I don’t know, I don’t usually count how many doses I have left. Now I am counting. Say I have drawn four times. I have maybe twenty draws left, four months left before an E deficiency again, the suicidality, the self-harm, the intrusive thoughts, the symptoms I used to think were worth writing about but now I just want them to stop, the inability to know and feel little else but what my body must inform me hurts. It does this. It has always done this. It will do this later. The E mitigates my body’s distress. We are adjusting my dose right now in Columbia because my doctor in St Louis became frightened in February that the E in my blood is too high. Maybe I felt too good. Maybe the lump in my breast came from feeling too good. We took the dose down and I’m already symptoming more. So I have been researching. I will inform her of my research and hope she listens. The vials cost three hundred dollars each. I will need them for the rest of my life.

I lost my two jobs in early March. I spent March and April phoning Missouri unemployment offices across the state because the website was useless. I took their survey about my experience using their website, about how the website doesn’t have options to click through to solve what I need to solve, but I can’t get through on the phone because everyone else is calling the phone so here is a survey about my experience, please hire more people and pay them extra. An email the next day: “You have been assigned benefits. Your benefit is zero dollars a week for up to twenty nine months.” More phone calls, some days on hold from sunup til afternoon, and finally I get through. I start receiving checks for more than zero dollars a month in May.

Thanks to those checks, now I am making too much money to qualify for food stamps, so I no longer have access to food stamps while I’m unemployed during a global pandemic America can’t seem to care enough about to get right.

All the Americans not wearing masks. The people wearing the masks are mostly women. Perhaps we understand something American men don’t, or can’t, or won’t, until it touches them and turns their bodies or their families’ bodies or some bodies they maybe care more about than other bodies against them.

Maurine’s mother is back in the hospital, a fever this time. Maurine passed her comps on Wednesday. We received her mother from the hospital hours after Maurine defended and brought her to our futon to recover and heal better than she would with hospital food. We run errands with her car now when she drives down from La Plata because Maurine’s car was totaled in February. We stopped driving to St Louis for electrolysis then. I still need it. I can’t get it due to COVID-19. I can’t obtain the other medical care I need due to capitalism, my gender locked behind a paywall. Her mom’s car revs up disturbingly fast once it starts. Its check engine light has been on since March. It is trying to tell us something. None of us can pay to get it fixed.

I don’t know what week of quarantine this is. I’ve been quarantining since I started transitioning in 2014. The world as we have thus far made it is garbage to trans people and I can’t not panic without my meds now, so I shut myself away from it as much as I could, as I can, as I will be able to. My raid group just defeated a boss we’ve been fighting since February. On to the next one.

In February my meds stopped working so I almost jumped off a bridge. My girlfriend kept calling me as I walked toward the bridge, and I eventually answered her after enough time had passed to pull me back into myself. My ID fell out of my pocket then. That ID took me years and letters from my therapists and letters from my endocrinologists to obtain. I haven’t found it since.

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