This week’s main blog was a bit philosophical, and stemmed from a conversation I’ve been having about gender essentialism and the determining factors in gender identity.
But that isn’t where my life is at, and it has been a really varied week.
It began in fear of feeling suicidal again. Just that deep gnawing, unrelenting fear that I have arrived in a place where I can never find another who will love me. That there never can be an intimacy again because everyone out there only feels safe with (or at least strongly prefers) a partner of determinate gender with a determinate history. And I shall and can never be that.
It is the most awful feeling of being an utter outcast in the world of love and intimacy. And yet love and intimacy is like air to me. I am suffocating right now, simply for want of love. It is framed in an awareness of friends who know just what to do. They go the places they used to (before the last relationship), they go on dating sites, the other parties know what to expect, and they start sifting. Kiss enough frogs and they will find their prince/ss. There are rules, they follow them roughly, they will succeed.
I have no such place, no such expectations, no such rules. I am not just suffocating, I feel utterly lost.
Even my garbled squeaks for help on Facebook were largely ignored, except a very dear friend actually called me to see I was alright. It didn’t take much, but it meant everything to me.
Come midweek, and I had an interesting and understanding chat with someone over the difficulty I have, in being asked or instructed to dress (mostly) male for a particular reason. In the above context, it might be understandable that I find this psychologically a very risky thing to attempt. But it also transpired that my transsexuality is not immediately apparent to everyone concerned, and despite my willingness to speak of it, the slight feeling of flattery added a hint of a silk purse in this sow’s ear.
I cannot say that this time is an easy one. The anxieties over buying a flat and selling a house without being there, and the last weeks of being married slipping fast away, don’t sit well with feeling the outcast from human intimacy. Believe me, being torn out of the love of someone you’ve spent your life with simply for being what you are, is the most gut-wrenching event you can go through. This blog is no longer a means of communication between us either. Now it is just me and you, continuing the exchanges of ‘life beyond diagnosis’. There is no play, no pretend, no fighting-to-keep, no misunderstanding, no fear of ‘what if I am?’. And no more believing that I could ever live a dual-gendered life, even for the best reasons on the world. This is the certainty of being born with gender incongruence, and the consequences. It matters, it really matters, that I am not a man after all. And yet, despite the fact that I live and move in this world, everywhere, without any question of not being a woman, albeit a different sort, when it comes to finding romance and love, maybe I am not a woman enough. Is everyone just looking for genitals?!
It is a raw time in some ways. And so I was glad to finish the week and head off for a Friday night of dance. Five Rhythms, or similar events in the summer break, means two hours solid of barefoot, expressive dance, with interactions with random other dancers as partners for maybe ten or fifteen minutes before dancing solo again. There is no speaking, only very free dance. I was determined to dance out my anxieties, fears, resentments, and the horrors of being unlovable. It’s that yawning awfulness that maybe some while ago I had the last loving sexual encounter of my life.
And I think if I really did know that, if that was a certain outcome of becoming my very best – as this – I seriously would want to end right here.
But we won’t go there, because it’s a horrible and scary thought, and what I really wanted to say was that someone, out of the blue, touched my spirit after the dance. I had a few beautiful encounters during the dancing, but it was sitting in the circle afterwards when this person, next to me, shared their own sudden realisation that being different was OK. F**king OK!! With a determination to let go of a lifetime’s angst at the behest of others, and be that ‘being of light’ that we all can manifest. That touched me, because I had gone that night to drive out the bad, rather than simply to let it go and move into a place of dynamic living.
We went on to have a long chat about the similarities in our life experiences, and suffice it to say, if she had said she’d been sent by an angel, I would have believed her. It wasn’t sympathy, it was possibilities, out of understanding each other, that life as we each need it, is possible; that it can be claimed if only we let go and trust.
What a week, after returning to my roots last week (A stitch in time) and facing living alone again. I put it down also to hormonal cycles, though it may be coincidence! It reminds me that I still walk close to the edge sometimes, and that I must simply trust that higher powers that may have kept me safe in every other way, can help me find real loving again sometime ahead.
So thank you to three people this week who have helped pull me back from the brink. If any of you are reading this, you make a difference to me just by being a bit more than just accepting. I am strong, but even strong people sometimes fall over edges. It’s the gravity, you know.