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27th May: I know I said the last update for a while, well I didn't really think it was going to be quite this long! What has happened in the meantime? Well I had surgery, no problems, no complications and everything went just swimmingly. I had a 11 day stay in hospital (read all about it on ,my new diary page) and really did have a good time. This is probably the last update to these pages, this is going to be like an unfinished novel, Iím not saying I am over this particular aspect of my life, but it is a lot less important to me today.


26th April: Phew, last (and first!) update in a while, Wednesday morning I head off to Brighton for surgery at 8.30 Thursday 29th April with Mr. Royle. As I write this I'm busying myself tidying up etc. I'm not actually nervous about the surgery itself (even though I've never had any kind of surgery before), I'm more concerned about getting there and back in one piece! Better fill in on what has happened since the last update anyway: Finally got my corrected degree certificates from Trinity, and (thanks to a small hiccup) got them to correct my records on the computer system as well. Minor heart failure at the beginning of April when a P60 turned up from my last employers in the wrong name, but a quick letter sorted that one out as well. My birthday was weekend before last and it wasn't really much of a happy occasion, the less said the better.


 These updates are getting further apart aren't they?


 24th January: I've nearly calmed down enough to start updating my pages :^) A copy of Dr. Reids referral letter arrived here the 23rd December but somewhere along the way the copy going to Mr. Royle got lost :^( So after ringing Janice (his secretary) at the beginning of January and the letter still hadn't turned up I had to start a paper chase trying to get another copy of the referral sent out. (Of course I didn't know the letters are sent out from Hillingdon!). I toddled off to my normal monthly meeting in Dublin kind of disappointed that I still didn't have a date :( Then on the morning of the 8th Janice rang back, I got to the answer phone just in time to catch her, so after a bit of discussion I'm now booked in for GRS in the Sussex Nuffield Hospital in Woodingdean, just outside Brighton!!!!!!!

13th December: I'm more or less recovered from my trip to Mr. Royle at this stage :) I flew over on the Wednesday night before the appointment and I stayed with Danielle. Down on the 3rd to a very cold Brighton (I know I harp on about it bit it really was cold down there!) and my appointment with Mr. Royle. Everything went smoothly, I had a few questions about the procedure he was able to answer and that was that, 20 minutes or so all in. The only question was about my second referral, I was offered the choice of Dr. Dalrymple in Hove or Dr. Reid in London, I choose Dr. Reid, primarily because London was the easier to get to from any of the airports (rather obviously!). The next day we had planned to go up to London anyway and we dropped into the London Institute in the hope of being able to pick up a cancelled appointment. In the event I was lucky, a vacancy arose and I was able to get my second referral sorted out no problem. To tell the truth I was in something of a daze from then on :) I flew back over to Dublin on the Sunday night still high from it all! Now I have to wait until my referral letters arrive and hopefully I can start thinking about dates and stuff.

 22nd November: I really should get around to updating this more often! I arrived home from Dublin on the 6th to find a letter from Mr. Royle asking me to ring his secretary for an appointment. Of course, being me I couldn't do it on the Friday so I rang on the Monday, only to find she wasn't in :( So 24 hours later I bound to the phone and this time caught her in, so I'm booked in to see him at 11 am on the 3rd December!!! The only slight downer is that I had been hoping to go the Manchester to meet the bananas, sorry bunch:) from TGFolk-UK for this years Face to Face and finances probably wouldn't stretch to two flights in one week.

 3rd October: After several false starts I had my appointment with my psychiatrist Thursday, and after discussing it back in the summer, my first referral letter is now winging it's way to Mr. Royle. Well, the countdown is kind of starting at long last.....

 27th September: Feeling quite a bit better since last I wrote, I finally got a P45 out of my ex-employer, nearly 3 months after I left his employ. He never contacted me at all or acknowledged any of my letters which to put it mildly did annoy me. Fortunately I was able to drum up a second referee for my CV, someone who wasn't as small- minded as him.... Anyway I finally received word from Trinity that they will try and facilitate my request for replacement certificates, (see here) and even the change of name on my bank accounts is going through (albeit very slowly). I've been full-time since the start of the summer, but as yet unemployed, at least I can get my CV sorted out now I know I can mention my degrees.

 26th July: Exceedingly pissed off :( On the bright side my Deed Poll finally came through on Thursday, my tax affairs are now in order (apart from the fact I don't have a tax-free allowance cert yet, but that is a mere formality) and I only have my local bank left to inform about the name change. On the down side I'm still battling with Trinity and my employer does not seem willing to give me a reference in my new name, in fact he doesn't even seem willing to talk to me full stop which is kind of awkward.

 26th June: Last day of work, although I could have worked for another two weeks I had set this date some months back as when I would leave my current job. This is where things start to get scary as I have as yet received no acknowledgement from the tax office that they will change my name nor have I received any word from Trinity as to whether or not they are willing to take my request for new degree certificates as a special case and reissue them. In other words I'm not likely to be re-employed any time soon.

 22nd June: After my last burst of euphoria I heard today that the High Court as had yet another problem with my Deed Poll so I have to go back into the solicitors to get it amended yet again. On the good news front there was no problem whatsoever getting my name changed on my share certificates.

 Today 26th May 1998 I finally got word that my Deed Poll has been deemed acceptable by the High Court ((See Here) so I had to post off my birth cert today for some reason. It had been turned down twice before, the first time because there was an objection to the language used and the second time because there was an objection to the way the amendments to were carried out. Anyway now I can get down to the serious business of working back along my paper trail

Well, as of 5.30 pm GMT 5th March 1998 my name is officially Ciara. To do this I had to take out a deed poll which will be registered in the Supreme Court in Dublin.
 

Although technically I could just choose a name and adopt that as my new Christian name I need some proof for official purposes (such as passport, name change on degree certificates etc.)
 

Below is a copy of an e-mail I sent to those I know best on the 'net the following weekend, it explains my motivations in changing from Leah to Ciara:

From:Ciara (xxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.ie)

To  :Ciara (xxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.ie)

Date:07-March-98 at 23:22:49 (27 lines)

Subj: New Name

You may notice (hopefully:) a wee change in the "From" field on this email, as of 5.30 pm GMT Thursday 5th March I am officially "Ciara *** ******". (Ciara is an Irish name meaning dark or black). Where's Leah gone you may ask? I've always said it was just "working title", I choose it originally to help people who knew me with the change of name as it sounded very like my old name. Unfortunately it sounds a bit *too* much like my old name, especially on the phone so to end any possible confusion I decided to change. Why Ciara? Why not :) I dunno exactly, it is an Irish name meaning dark or black. I had wanted to keep the same initial, but also wanted an Irish name. There are *very* few Irish names beginning with L so that was out. Next was to find a name that could sit comfortably with the English and Irish versions of my surname. Finally it had to just /sound/ right. Lastly how is it pronounced? For you anglophones out there, Kiera is a very  close approximation. Nope it doesn't mean I've gone full-time /quite/ yet :( it's just a aid to get  degrees and certificates etc. changed before I do.

Ciara

--Power corrupts. Absolute power is kinda neat.

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