Friday, July 24, 2009

Identity, Serenity, Felicity

I'm at a point where it feels like things are really starting to come together. My thoughts about the pace of my transition shift from moment to moment. This morning I woke up in a pesimistic mood and decided I wasn't sure my new hormone regimen was working at all, with lots of my physical traits in the mirror bringing me grief. But then I snapped out of it and started thinking back over how far I have come, and forcing myself to be objective. Its very clear everything is still moving in a positive direction, just at a slow, oft times invisible pace. Like the opening of a bloom perhaps. Most days I am incredibly proud of my progress, and today I am doing my best to hold that thought and be happy with myself.

I'm also making mental progress with another little problem that arose over vacation. People here have mostly been kind to me and let me slowly change my presentation without much friction. But on vacation, I got a lot of unwanted attention and I have become aware of how odd my male presentation is at this point. The result has been a sudden bout with shyness upon returning home.

I keep thinking everyone secretly thinks I'm a freak. As a result I find myself self conscious of my voice. In conversations with some people, I try to sound more masculine again. Also I find myself nervous and blushing a lot, and often unable to make eye contact in conversation. But over the past few days I have made very real progress with regaining my confidence. Still its odd. I don't pass yet, but already I feel more confident, and more secure when I can socialize as myself. Still I am at peace, because I know this is a transitional moment in my life, a situation I know I must weather to get where I need to be.

Things are going smoother with my family. People are still polite at work. I've been living exclusively in a male mode for over a month. But this week, I have lots of refreshing opportunities to change that. I'll be shopping with Leslie, Tina, and Sylvia tomorrow. Then Monday I have my first general physical exam with a physician who knows I am transgender. Then, Friday, its back to Tennessee for more laser hair removal.

I look forward to all these opportunities, but at the same time I'm nervous. Things have settled into normalcy, and now I feel I am again, rocking the boat. The travel will worry my parents. Then Friday, when I come back with scorched beard, which will eventually fall out and leave me smooth faced again, it could change my situation at work for the worse. Already, people clearly know something is happening with me. I get odd looks everywhere I go in boy mode. Yesterday I ate out with Mom and Dad for their anniversary. The waitress called dad sir, and mom, ma'am, at least 5 times each over the course of our dinner. I never got a title, and at least once, got a hessitant pause from her, at a point when she would have otherwise used a title. My guess is that she couldn't decide which title would be offensive to me in my current situation. I was honored not to be called sir. I hate the word. But, at the same time there is a little fear that my transparency will cause me problems.

Still, I can handle the consequences so far, and I have an exciting week ahead with lots to enjoy, and lots to forward my transition. I feel happy. I feel serene. The worries about future consequences are there, but so far it is all worth it.




3 comments:

Lori D said...

I remember that 'middle zone' of androgyny. I looked like a guy wearing capris, which is a major fashion faux-paux around these neck of the woods. I also wore dazzling white keds and whatever I could to try and incorporate more feminine attire. But yeah, you'll get noticed...quick. The good part is that as I was gendered female more and more, the less I'd get the wide open eye stares.

You're making progress. Keep it up. And don't feel alone. We all go through that.

Wickked said...

I hope you know that I love you no matter how much of a crazy man-lady you look like. I miss you so much Shan. I'd like to try to get up with you and have lunch sometime next week. There's a lot of things you need to know.

Just know that even though communication is limited right now, there's not a day that Chase and I don't think about you and miss you.

Hope to see you soon, honey.

ms.shandy said...

Wicked:

Miss you too. Just barely missed Chase's call tonight on my way home from shopping. :(

I'll be home anytime tomorrow, so give me a call if you would like to talk. If not then call Monday. I won't be in the office though. I have to go to Lexington for a physical exam with a general practitioner. But i would so love to talk as soon as we can. And I hope we can get some lunch next week too! Maybe Tuesday?

I hope everything is well with you two. If you can't get a chance to call, drop me an email. Just so so so nice to hear from you again.

Lori:

Thanks for the encouragement. It can be awkward, but its so worth it!