From her to Me: help Danny with Top Surgery

Hi my name is Danny, and I am a transgender man, and I need your help with top surgery.
Every morning I stand in front of the medicine cabinet mirror so I can only see my shoulders up. From there I can see myself as a real man. I know I am real. I know I am a man. But this chest, these breasts betray me. They make others see me as a woman. They remind me that this body isn't my own. Every time I go down a flight of stairs, anytime I jump or even exercise I know they are there.
Even the slightest bounce reminds me. In the shower it's worse. I pretend they aren't there. I wear a compression vest, a binder, that flattens my chest to give the illusion of a male chest. I live in a house with 3 male roommates, they do not know I’m trans and nor will they ever know. I put my binder on every time I go to the kitchen to eat or drink. I put on my binder to flatten my chest in all of the shared spaces. I want them to see me as a man too.
To be seen as a man, I’ve worked incredibly hard to get to this point. I’ve been to many doctors and therapists, to get approved for my hormone treatment. I have gone through the paperwork to officially change my legal name, and my gender marker on my driver’s license. My next step, and probably my biggest, is to get top surgery to remove my breasts.
I am working two jobs day and night to make my dream happen. I fulfilled all the requirements to get the surgery. As required by my insurance, I have lived as a man for nearly two years, and seen two different therapists to receive letters of recommendation from both to be approved for top surgery. I’ve pushed myself by dropping over 40lbs this year to get my body healthy for surgery.
I am working with the Michigan Transgender Clinic in Ann Arbor, MI, and my surgeon is Jessica Jen-Tau Hsu, MD with the University of Michigan. I’ve set the groundwork to get to the surgery, but I need help for when I heal after. This is one thing I can not do alone. My family live in other states, and are not able to support financially or with after-care. I’m asking for your help to care for me after the surgery.
I need your help to reach the finish line. Even working two jobs, after paying bills it will be a struggle for me to meet the finances required for surgery and so I am asking for your support.
Top surgery is an outpatient surgery, when it's done I am released the same day.
As I have no support close to me, nor can I travel after surgery. I will need to heal in a local hotel near the hospital until I can travel home.
With your help, I’m asking to raise $6,000 so I can go to an after-care facility and then to the hotel for two weeks, which is the minimum amount of recovery time before I can make the two hour drive home myself.
The total budget is $6,000 which is broken down into the following:
1. Be able to purchase medical supplies like a post-surgical vest.
2. Staying at ProMedica, an after-care surgery rehabilitation facility, until I can be released and go to the hotel.
3. Hotel stay for 14 days.
4. Travel expenses to and from the hospital, after-care facility, and the hotel.
This top surgery is a catalyst for greater things. It’s a hope and a dream to be able to look at myself in the mirror and be proud of the man I am. I want to make a difference in this world. I want to show other transgender men that our goals are within sight as long as we work hard for them. I want the world to know that with perseverance and determination any man can reach their goals.
If we end up going over our goal then we can make a difference in someone else’s life and I will give all remaining funds to help another transgender person become their physical authentic self. No one should have to go through this journey alone. Please help me show other transgender people this also.
With your kind donation, you are not only helping me, but other lives as well.
Thank you for taking the time to read about my journey. Any support you can give is greatly appreciated
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Dash Lionsheart
Saginaw, MI

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