january 2017 winner

Jan 31, 2017 | monthly writing competition | 0 comments

Congratulations Stephanie Russell

Transformation is January’s winning story. Stephanie has won a $20 W.O.W OP Shop voucher, a $20 Officeworks gift card and will have her story featured on our site and social media pages. You can read her winning story Transformation below now.

Thanks to everyone who entered, voted, shared and liked. Missed out on winning this month, February entries opens 1st & close on the 16th, for more info click here.

Transformation

by Stephanie Russell
(MWC –  Jan 2017 Winner)

They looked at each other.

‘How do I look, Hun?’

‘You look like shit, Albert’

‘Don’t call me that.’

‘Sorry… Alison dear. You know how hard it is to get used to. How do you feel?’

‘Like shit. They gave me pineapple puree with breakfast and I keep wanting to return it to them. I don’t think I could face eating pineapples ever again.’

Margaret was sitting on the edge of Alison’s bed that bright morning after the facial feminisation surgery of her husband.

‘Have you looked at yourself in the mirror yet?’

‘I did, last night. It was too dark to see much, and I had trouble identifying the eyes among all those bandages. Once I had them, I was a bit relieved.’

‘Here,’ said Margaret, fishing out a mirror from her handbag, ‘check yourself out in this.’

Alison grimaced, but that hurt, so she returned to stony faced neutral. With all the swelling her face looked square, there was a nose splint kept in place by a sticky flesh coloured bandage, with another bandage over the chin. There was a white gauze bandage over the head, and blood was still caked below the nose and on the lips.

‘I wish I hadn’t looked, now. I look ridiculous. You can’t tell where the bandages end and skin begins, the head bandage is at a crazy angle with all the hair sticking out like that grassy frondy plant in the backyard.’

‘That’s not for ever, Alison dear. You’ll soon be pretty as a picture. It’s a new beginning.’

A nurse bustled in.

‘Hello, I’m Jean. I am going to remove the head bandage and the drain. Do you want some oxycodone?’

‘What’s oxycodone,’ asked Alison.

‘A painkiller. I recommend it as the drain removal may hurt a bit.’

‘But once it’s out, it won’t hurt, right?’

‘That’s right.’

‘I’ll go for the painful option, then.’

Jean went out to get the gear, and returned soon after.

‘I told the other nurses how good you were.’

For the first time that morning Alison’s feeling of happiness overcame the nausea, and her eyes teared up. The nurse took off the head bandage, which was limply stuck to the hair; she cut out the single retaining stitch, then addressed the drain.

‘This is the bit that may hurt,’ said the nurse, ‘so let me know if it gets too much for you.’ She pulled out the tube. It felt to Alison as just that, a long thin tube being tugged out of the scalp.

‘Well,’ said Alison, ‘that wasn’t an everyday feeling, but it was entirely painless. Thank you so much, Jean. You’re obviously well skilled at this.’ The nurse smiled and left with the accumulated medical rubbish.

‘How do you feel now,’ asked Margaret, ‘worth a million dollars?’

‘Hardly,’ replied Alison, ‘perhaps two dollars fifty. I’ll feel a full ten dollars if I can just get over the nausea.’

‘Don’t worry, beautiful girl,’ said Margaret, ‘we’ll have you feeling a million dollars in next to no time, once we get you home and get some home cooking into you.’

‘The doctor reckons I can come home tomorrow,’ said Alison. ‘That will be so good. I hate it here. Grey featureless walls, a window overlooking another wall of wards just like this one. And the food…’

‘I can see what you mean,’ said Margaret looking around the room. She got up and placed the only picture in the room on the blank wall in front of Alison on a handy picture-hook, rather than on the side wall where it was invisible from the bed. She put the green fronds she had pinched from the Botanic Gardens in a vase, and placed it on the windowsill. ‘How’s that?’

‘Perfect,’ said Alison, almost smiling.

‘I had better go now,’ said Margaret, ‘it’s a long walk back to the car in the rain, and I want my lunch. I’ll come back and see you tonight.’

‘Margaret. I’m a sixty year old transgender. I’m never going to look female, let alone pretty. Do you really think I’m worth all this fuss?’

‘Listen Darl, you’re worth a million dollars to me whatever you look like, so quit worrying. The kids will get used to it, you’ll see.’ She kissed her husband gently on the lips and walked out.