Out and about

  • Posted on January 25, 2014 at 11:19 pm

When I began this blog over two years ago, I had realised where I was heading. I had given up fighting and self-hating, and was determined that all pretence should be over. I decided the best way to survive was to communicate, and that meant being ‘out’, online and well before announcing myself fully to my world, and losing my marriage and family. I was just me, and that must mean natural, and if different, then normally different. I no longer felt terrified of being discovered for being the wicked, even perverted, person I had long thought I must be, underneath the much nicer façade everyone knew.

I have said most of what needs to be said, I think. I can debate many things over and again, and there are some subjects I want to return to in coming months. But I guess my writing should embrace wider thoughts, and I want to bring in more poetry. I have begun doing this, and in speaking with people I meet, I casually say they can read it online. Well, it’s one thing to have a poetry blog, quite another to host it on a site that was set up to explain and observe gender dysphoria!

This blog outs me as much now as it did at the start. I am getting used to the fact that some people simply don’t know my ‘gender status’, so now it’s doing the opposite. Back then, people still encountered me as if I were a man, and I was saying ‘No! I’m not!’. Now people who only know me as a woman are finding out my history by reading the same thing. Are they thinking I’m not really a woman? Well, I have to live with that. My history is my history, and there’s no point hiding it. I would rather help the cause that a lot of people are born trans, and some of them truly transsexual, and that this is a perfectly normal human experience. Yes, it runs counter to the comforting social division of male and female, but it’s about time we faced that truth.

For me, there is a great deal of continuity, with a massive step change, but for some new readers, it may come as a surprise. Will I change my view in six months’ time? I am heading finally to the surgical treatment I need in order to conform with my identity. Once gain I shall have to think carefully how to phrase the explanation for an absence at work and socially. Some will be incredulous or squeamish, some may understand. My feeling is that ‘reconstructive surgery’ says enough and accurately so. But something will need to be said, just like my first big coming out, to avoid speculative, uninformed and unnecessary gossip.

For my part, I am of course going to feel a lot of anxiety the closer this time gets. It’s scary as well as the thing I’ve dreamed of for quite some time. Having seen the reality of what I can expect, my innermost feelings of how I should be, have gone into overdrive. The effect is to put me, much further ahead than necessary, into nesting mode. I’ve been sorting my flat out by completing renovations to my bathroom. No longer truffle brown, it is oyster and pink (I know, I did say lilac before, but pink just happened). And I could have painted the whole place today, the more I felt I was putting my own homeliness into it. I’ve started thinking about collecting my favourite music, a supply of books, lining up friends to visit and help, and planning projects at work to finish in time. I’m excited already.

If anyone wanted proof of a gender dysphoria diagnosis, this must be it! Who else in their right mind would have this as a dream of fulfilment? And afterwards, when there is nothing more that has to be done, will I still want to be out, or just content to explain when required? I suspect ‘open’ will be a better description than ‘out’.

Today I spent all afternoon and evening in my old overalls, painting, fixing, fitting up a new heated towel rail to plumb in tomorrow, and smeared and spotted with paint. For the first time the decorating has been just for me. No-one to say: ‘Um; isn’t that just a bit too pink?’ And that in itself feels strange. But I caught myself in the mirror towards the end, and was almost surprised to see not what I was when I’ve always done this before, but genuinely looking girly. A girl in overalls, doing what I’ve always done.

I feel good. Very good. This is my nest, and I’m not hiding why. Out and about, that’s me, and this blog.


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