The Story Concludes
Simon Jones is Eve Jones. But she didn't know.
Eve now knows she is 100% female but remains in hospital
Now the story continues.
I next woke at six on Wednesday when the lights suddenly went on full in my room, this time it was nurse Karen who saw to me. She gave me a menu when she'd finished attacking my dressings so I could choose breakfast. I went light, I didn't think I could manage eggs let alone the full monty.
I must have dozed again as the noise of a trolley clattering through my door startled me. Breakfast was served and I finally found the remote for a TV in the room, meaning that I could now watch the morning news. I pushed the relevant buttons on the remote and ate whilst the woes of the planet were played out in front of me, the economy was the lead item, again, with all sides alleging blame for the country's state.
My media studies coursework could be entirely based on the press coverage of this economic slump, recession, or financial crisis. My English studies coursework could include a comparison of exactly the same terms.
I barely noticed Karen return to my room, accompanied by an orderly who was pushing a trolley with a monitor on the top. "It's easier to do the ultrasound here than drag you down to the maternity ward," she said as the orderly left. A woman in a white coat came in and introduced herself as Rachel and said she was a radiologist, Karen watched from across the room.
"I'm going to do an ultrasound scan of your belly, just to make sure that everything is where it should be. Are you pregnant?"
"Er, no, but anything's possible given my medical history."
The gel was cold and she didn't give me any warning, I wondered if she thought I'd been making a bad joke? Ten minutes later she handed me some paper towels and suggested I cleaned myself up. As soon as Rachel was out of the door, Karen found some wet wipes and helped me remove the last of the gunge.
She'd been gone for ten minutes when the Johnson contingent arrived, Sharon had obviously been briefed by Mum and stopped the expected bed dive from happening. Claire was clearly uncomfortable, stood next to the bed.
"So, what's your news?"
"Claire, I don't know how to put this," I pretended it was going to be bad news.
"I'm having a period."
"I'm a girl, a real girl, all of the bits are there and apparently in full working order."
"When, how, what?" Her questioning is improving, if only she knew what she wanted to find out. Sharon took over.
"Why did they think you were male?"
"I had what looked like male bits," I pointed South, "but it wasn't the real thing. They operated on me to open my vagina and remove the odd bits, saving my life in the process I think."
Claire's face was now full on concern, although her mother was just nodding."Oh, what happened?"
I went through a diary of what I could remember and what had been told to me. Annie kept quiet throughout but walked over and gave me a big hug.
"Welcome to the sisterhood Eve, now you'll really know what we have to go through."
Claire became jealous and gave her twin an evil glare, Sharon immediately shot a look back at Claire. Nothing had been said, but Claire was gentle as she leaned over to kiss me. When I came up for air I asked Sharon why they hadn't visited last night.
"I was giving Claire some cookery lessons and we would have ruined a few things if we'd have left home immediately after your call. Unfortunately common sense flew out of the window, Claire became ratty and said a few regrettable words; she's now grounded for a few days and more intensive cooking lessons are under way. I've only allowed her half an hour to see you today."
We talked a bit more then at eleven Karen asked them to leave, I knew that meant my dressings were due to be changed but I wasn't expecting Dr Roberts to walk in as well.
"Eve, I need to have a look at the stitches, to check if there's any infection or any of them have failed."
Karen cleaned me up then Dr Roberts examined me, including using a speculum. The cold of the metal made me jump.
"That is very good, it's clear of infection and healing nicely. I see there's not much menstrual blood there either. If this keeps up you could even go home Friday."
"Could I? I hope so."
"We'll see how you are in the morning, but I understand that Mr Evans will see you later today."
The rest of the morning was fairly quiet, Mum came by for a while with some shopping, I chose my lunch from the menu and I had my dressings changed at two. Then Dr Fox arrived.
"Good afternoon Eve, how are you feeling?"
"There's not much pain now, just some discomfort when I move."
"That's not quite what meant, and I think you know it."
"I feel happy that finally I know what was happening to me, but upset it has taken this long. We could have avoided all of our meetings if someone here had just investigated a little more."
"I understand, but I hope you're not going to go around blaming everyone?"
"I'm annoyed, I'm annoyed that I've wasted time when I could have been a full woman, albeit only now experiencing a period, but that's a small price to pay. I've also missed two months of school."
"So do you blame anyone?"
"No, not any one person, but the system itself has failed me, going back to my birth."
"I can't argue with you, but is there anything you can do now that will change that?"
"I don't suppose there is, but I don't want anyone else to go through this."
"I can understand, but no individual can have that affect on the Health Service."
"I can try, in my own small way."
"Eve, I'm going to schedule a couple more sessions with you, one just after Christmas and one around Easter, just to see how you are. In the meantime, if you need to talk to me, call. Okay?"
Dr Fox left, I now had mixed feelings about her and her profession. I know she wanted to do her best, but for who? It wasn't always for me and that was a worry.
I dozed and but was woken by Julie to choose my dinner and to have my dressings changed. Mr Evans had obviously timed his arrival so it would coincide with my next unveiling. He was satisfied and left, Julie started to prepare the fresh dressings.
"Julie, can I see?"
"Are you sure you want to? There's plenty of bruising still."
"We don't have any mirrors."
"Look in my bag, there's a digital camera."
I had her take several, despite her many objections, but with the flash disabled so as not to draw attention. She handed me back the camera before putting clean dressings on me. Julie did mention that my flow was reduced, I think that was good news, but it was outside of my current experience. I reviewed the photos while I waited for my dinner, I don't know what I was expecting but all I could really see was the purple bruising, the poor light didn't help either. So much for that idea.
Mum popped in at seven for a short while before going home.
Thursday morning I was awake again for my dressing change then, after breakfast, put in a wheelchair and taken to the diagnostic imaging suite. By now I was off all my drips so only a certain bag had to come with me. I was gently put onto the table and waited for the CT scanner to do its business.
Jenny and Claire both visited mid morning, with mum following, then Dr Roberts came by in the afternoon. Again he wanted to see my nether region. Before he could start, I had to press the call button so a nurse could be present, Julie arrived a minute later.
"Very good, Eve. If you like we can make some changes."
"I'll have Julie remove the catheter and we'll change the dressings for a sanitary towel. Do you have any?"
"I think so, mum brought some bits for me." I pointed at the bag.
"Right, I'll leave you with Julie. Subject to no other problems, I think you can go home in the morning, but I want to see you again on Tuesday at ten to have the stitches out. I'll put that on the discharge letter with some more information."
Julie went to my bag and retrieved a pad plus a pair of knickers, before gently removing the catheter. I was so pleased to be free of it, but thankfully I hadn't experiencing any of the previous problems. She suggested I head for the toilet then take a shower before putting my knickers on.
Back from my shower I pulled on a clean nightie as well then sat up to read, Julie had raised the back of the bed for me after changing the bedding. Mum came by at six and was surprised to see me out of the hospital gown, I gave her the news about my discharge and got a hug from her, then I made a dash for the loo, yelling to mum for a clean pad, I'd forgotten!
"Mum, I've got to see the Headteacher tomorrow."
"Eve, don't worry. Now that you are legally a genetic female he can't set any special conditions. He'll see you on Monday morning."
"I've got to be back here on Tuesday morning."
"I'll let him know."
"How did your appointment go on Tuesday?"
That was a dead-end conversation. I suggested to mum she be back here at ten in the morning, then she left.
I was alone again but no longer restricted. I put my slippers on my feet and picked up my barely worn dressing gown. Suitably dressed I walked out of the room and along to the nurse's station.
"What are you doing out of bed?"
"Taking a walk."
"Go back to your room, you'll tear your stitches."
"No. I've been on my back for almost four days, I need to stretch my legs for five minutes but I know I have to be careful."
I spun around.
"Oh, hi Julie."
"Do you mind if I walk with you?"
"Not at all."
"What do you want to do?"
"I think I'll head back to my room to pick up my purse then I'm going to find a decent coffee. Are you joining me?"
"I think I will."
We were back in my room just under thirty minutes later, I'd had my walk and we drank our coffee in a small enclosed garden area. Julie had stayed with me until I was nearly back on my bed, but prompted me to change my pad. She told me that eventually I'd have take care of myself without thinking about it, but for now I needed to be reminded.
She was still waiting when I came out of the bathroom. Julie produced a cannula and asked for my blood, one way or another I was losing plenty of the red stuff.
"Eve, I managed to find out about your twin."
"The hospital wrote to your mother and asked her to arrange for your twin to be collected or to authorise us to deal with it. She never replied so, as far as I can tell, it's still in the morgue."
"It was a she."
"Sorry, sometimes I can be too impersonal, sometimes too personal."
"Thanks for letting me know Julie," I gave her a hug, "I'll let mum know."
I had a good night's sleep and woke when the morning nurse asked me to choose breakfast. This time I remembered what I needed to do in the bathroom, but I also had a shower, before dressing.
Dr Roberts came by just before ten and told me I could go, but of course I was still waiting for mum to arrive. She was a typically a few minutes late and we left soon after with a copy of the discharge letter and a few pills for pain relief, just in case. I was to return to the hospital the following Tuesday when the stitches would, hopefully, be removed - he'd decided not to remove any before my discharge. I also now had an appointment for that Friday morning to see the nurse at our health centre.
We drove home and mum parked outside our home, there was a banner across the front of the house.
|I stepped out of the car and immediately received hugs from everyone there, if anyone present had any lingering doubts about my gender then the banner would sort that out!
At the back of the crowd was Claire, my love. She walked slowly up to me then hung herself from my lips for what seemed to be an impossible length of time.
Everyone wanted to know everything all at the same time but I said I needed a coffee first. A slice of apple cake arrived with the coffee.
"Who made this?"
"Claire did." Knock me down with a feather? The cake was light, fluffy and very appley.
I sat for an hour describing what had happened to me, although most had already heard it. Alison and Suzie arrived halfway through causing a short rewind. I didn't tell any of them about the photos, I really should delete the images?
Just after lunch the doorbell rang and mum let Mr Spinner, my Headmaster, into the lounge. The four girls instantly went quiet.
"Eve, I understand you couldn't come to see me today, therefore I took the liberty to see you. I understand that your status has changed again."
"Yes, sir. I am officially a girl and apparently I always was a girl, someone got it wrong seventeen years ago."
"So, will you be back on Monday?"
"I hope so, but I have appointments during the week."
"We'll work around them, but have you realised, young lady, how much work and stress you've caused me?" He looked serious for a minute then creased up, that caused the room to descend into chaos. What a turn up, Headteachers have a sense of humour!
We talked about how we'd handle my return then he left, leaving a pink envelope with mum. I was feeling a little tired so I excused myself and went upstairs for a rest.
Mum woke me in time for dinner, but I was back in bed two hours later.
On Saturday morning mum insisted I was up and showered by eight. Just before nine I was stood by the front door, not sure what I was doing. Outside I saw Claire waiting so I went to her, receiving the customary welcome. I didn't immediately find out what she had planned.
Fifteen minutes later, however, we walked into the best salon in town and were treated to the full beauty treatment, including a leg wax. I'd previously decided against this on several grounds, but now couldn't think of one. By the time we walked out I had a new hairstyle, new nails and a new feeling on my legs.
We took a comfortable, slow, walk around the town, stopping for a coffee and pastry at midday. I took advantage of the pre-Christmas sales to pick up some bargains. By the time we were finished I had three bags of clothes and make-up.
We made it home just after three and I relaxed, perhaps even dozed. At five mum told me to get changed.
"We're going out, for some culture. I think you should wear that blue dress we bought in 'Dress Heaven' a month ago."
Mum had ordered a cab to take us and Claire to the theatre. First we went to the venue's restaurant for a meal then at eight into the auditorium to take our seats. The production was Romeo and Juliet by a certain Will Shakespeare, performed by the English National Opera.
The production was brilliant, a perfect tonic after a hectic week, I arrived home barely awake. Claire helped me out of my dress and into my nightie before shooing me into the bathroom. By the time I returned she was in my bed, and I couldn't see the straps of her nightie. Thankfully she only wanted a cuddle tonight,
The next day was Sunday the first of November, my seventeenth birthday. I was first up so made my way to the kitchen to make a coffee. During a quick visit to the downstairs loo, I discovered my first period had ended; I just hope the rest don't last a whole week! Back in the kitchen I was wearing a strange smile as mum handed me a stack of birthday cards.
"What's that face for?" I had mum confused.
"Out with it."
I couldn't answer as I was giggling like mad and mum never did get an explanation! I sat down and opened the cards. I found cards from mum, of course, plus everyone else I saw regularly. The biggest card by far was from Claire, who apparently hadn't surfaced yet.
I then found cards from my Headmaster, my solicitor and my shrink, it was a sweet thought. What surprised me was how many cards were from my old school friends, I got the feeling that Claire and Annie had been phoning the rest while I was in hospital. It bodes well for tomorrow morning.
Mum sent me up to the shower saying we were going out for lunch. I found my bedroom empty, I hadn't seen Claire get up and leave, what had I done wrong? Mum then told me she'd dashed out whilst I was in the loo.
Julie had warned me that, because of my stitches, I should wear a skirt for a few days, although a frock would have done just as well. It reminded me of the way mum had forced me into a skirt two months earlier, ironic is it? I wonder how long it will be before I can put jeans on, I'll have to ask the nurse on Friday as I doubt if Dr Roberts won't be able to answer that one authoritatively. I put a long-sleeved top on as well before doing my make-up, carefully. I still had no idea where we were going. Should I put something else on?
I shouldn't have worried, we had been invited for lunch by Sharon, although it was apparently my love who was doing the cooking, hence her rapid departure. Apparently she could cook after all, but was a tad lazy in that department. I wondered which cruel punishment she'd been threatened with?
It was a lovely atmosphere with no pressure. After the meal, while we each sipped a glass of wine, I finally got to open my pressies. There was lingerie from cousin Jenny, black of course, some sensible clothes from Aunt Sue, including the receipts so I could change them!
Amongst the others, Annie had obviously thought, her package included "The Girls' Book: How to Be the Best at Everything", essential reading! Sharon had bought me a necklace that spelt my name whilst Claire told me I could have her present later!
Mum had three small packages for me, she insisted I opened them in the right order,
|My provisional driving licence
Driving lessons, starting tomorrow after school
I was speechless. I wanted to run outside but mum told me it wouldn't be there for me until tomorrow, she knew we'd all have wine and that I shouldn't lose my licence on my seventeenth birthday. Drunk in charge of a car before I'd even got in it, I shuddered at the thought. No, tomorrow was soon enough, I just dangled the keys for a minute, watching them glint in the light.
I was in a daze for the rest of the afternoon but eventually ended up with Claire on the couch, the others giving us space.
"Yes my love?"
"You know you have to wait for a month or so?"
"Yes, but I already know what my early Christmas present will be."
We both giggled loudly, several heads turned in our direction then quickly turned away.
"Claire, I have a serious question."
"What are you planning to wear to school tomorrow?"
I woke up alone on Monday morning with a little trepidation, I would be attending school for the first time since the end of June. Mum had suggested last night that distractions, I think she meant Claire, weren't a good idea but Sharon had apparently already said that to my lover.
Before she went home, Claire and I had managed a dig through my wardrobe, so we had a better idea of what we would both wear. I was restricted, my choices were a skirt or a frock until I was told otherwise, although tights were allowed. Despite her agreement to co-ordinate with me, Claire wasn't overly keen to wear a skirt as the outside temperature had dropped below 10C!
Of course I still hadn't inspected my car and mum had been adamant that the keys remained indoors until my lesson that afternoon. It could be an interesting day.
End of Book 1
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