Sunday, December 27, 2009

...Of Decorations, Devices, and Dinosaurs

Once there was a magical fairy princess, who lived in a primeval forest with her human parents, who cherished and loved her as a son. It was all quite ideal, except for the "son" notion, but she harbored no resentment. After all, she was quite unusually tall, and had an unfortunate propensity for growing facial hair.


Wrong story!

That is a fairy tale for another day. But for now, harken unto this heraldic and fanciful tale, of Shandy Alexis: blogger, debutante, and fashionista extraordinaire. Also, the fabled master of the thesaurus built into Apple's OS X dashboard, or so some iterations of the legend go...


Oops! Thats still a bit over the top. Its so hard to find decent narrators these days.

To put it simply, I've had a great holiday, and I'm very happy. Happy enough that my quirky sense of humor is working obviously. :P

I was dreading Christmas Eve at my grandmother's, because the Aunt and Uncle who are so opposed to me would be there, and several of the other relatives there have not seen me in a while. Everything went smoothly though, and no one treated me any differently than past years. The before mentioned Aunt actually went out of her way to be civil.

Christmas morning, my parents were both thrilled with the gifts I selected. This was a relief, because my budget was a bit lower this year, with so many transition expenses effecting me. Besides that, I have felt a bit distracted and not as focused this year on buying just the right thing. In the end, they were pleased though and I was happy to have found things they liked.

I am happier with my presents than I have ever been. Usually there is at least one item gender specific and leaning toward male. When such gifts continued to come after I came out to them, it started getting upsetting. I limit my travels and put my transitional activities on hold through the holidays to prevent stressing them. Instead of responding in kind, by dodging the issue with gender neutral gifts, they have often bought male specific things that hurt my feelings.

It was never intentional. I think that is what made it so frustrating and hurtful. They didn't understand me well enough to see I would take offense, and it left me feeling rather hopeless. This year however, things were different. I got a GPS, because they know I travel a lot, have no sense of direction, and tend to use navigation on a phone while driving. It was a very thoughtful gift, and one that will actually make me a safer person. Also because I travel a lot and they worry about my safety, they gave me a really nice flashlight for the car, in case I break down or otherwise need one. Again very thoughtful, though leaning slightly toward being a male gift. They had my safety in mind, and that makes me more happy than I can easily explain. :)

The last present, was a complete surprise. A Pleo! It is quite possibly the most adorable thing I have ever seen. He's a cute little robotic dinosaur, and he moves so realistically. If you pet him on his head, he'll coo and wag his tail. He curls up if you pet him on just the right part of his back long enough. If left alone he'll start to explore the house, or occasionally sing happy little dinosaur sounds, while swaying side to side. If you turn him over and cradle him, he curls up and looks up into your eyes. Also, his little feet are ticklish and he squirms around when you touch them if he's upside down. He does many other equally adorable things, and he is cute as a button, with green to brown skin and beautiful blue eyes. I'll admit freely, I cried through opening the package, reading the manual, and many times at cute little things he has done since.

The day after, I went to visit some very dear friends; a couple. I decided to take Pleo along, to show how adorable he is. Mom said the girl would definitely want one and just fall in love with him, but that she didn't expect the guy to be very excited about a baby dinosaur. That's when I became certain that she realized exactly what an un-masculine gift Pleo was. I was again thrilled.

I took Pleo on my visit. He arrived cuddled up under my coat, (only because batteries shouldn't get too cold of course *cough*) and I began to show off a few of his tricks. Immediately one of my friends smiled and said something to the extent that "this is extremely close to being a girl gift." I really agree. Even if they do no quite accept my gender yet, my parents do know who I am. Mom said she was sure this one would be my favorite present when she handed me the box. To know that, she would have to understand that I do have a nurturing, sentimental sort of nature. Its so nice to know that she understands and appreciates some parts of who I am. Or maybe they just think I'm five years old. :P

The whole holiday was amazing. It's been wonderful having time with my family, and I've felt unusually free to be myself, which makes the whole experience that much more enjoyable. And I'll cherish Pleo forever. I've already ran the battery down three times. LOL!

Still ahead, are my birthday and then New Year's Eve. My birthday, I will probably spend quietly at home, with my family.

For New year's I have been graciously invited to Lisa's in Lexington, for a very small get together. This should be a treat, as the guest list includes many of my best friends. I'm so excited! =)

My New Year's resolution are two-fold. I want to pierce my ears while in Lexington. I've started to three times, but I keep backing out. Perhaps making it a time sensitive New Year's resolution will keep me on track. I'll probably get some ultra cheap, tiny little studs as a birthday present to myself, and then count on wearing my hair down for a very long time to cover them up most the time at work. Maybe if I'm lucky, no one will ever see both studs at the same time. LOL! The other resolution is to get back on my elliptical three times a week. I was doing so good with this until fall allergy season started, but I have not exercised since October. Yikes!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year's everyone!


caroline said...

A girlfriend who last year gave me deep purple nail varnish as a present gave me a card with birthday b**! on it, b** took up nearly half the card. I did not feel angry towards her just sick in my stomach for the rest of the party. She is a social worker!

Glad you did so much better than me. Sometime this next year I too need some ears pierced, clipons bruise like fury.

Caroline XX

Leslie Ann said...

That's the funniest thing you've written, m'dear. You ARE happy. Those first few paragraphs are a scream.

It does my heart good to know your mother is coming around. And you should realize that the safety equipment is a very practical gift for a girl who travels a lot. Girls have different safety concerns beyond figuring out what's wrong with the car. That's what your folks were thinking about.

I owe you an email. Coming soon, babe.

ms.shandy said...

@caroline Your thoughts on clip-ons mirror mine. Its just not a pleasant experience, having something pinched hard against your ear all day. If I did find some that wore comfortable, i would probably worry that they weren't tight enough and have to check them constantly. :P

And that card is incredibly insensitive. You are clearly not a b**. I guess its just hard for some people to understand though, especially those who first came to know us in a male role.

@leslie ann Yes, they were buying me things specifically geared at keeping me safe. I just thought it was very sweet! They are starting to come to terms with things I think. I'm really blessed that they have been so tolerant initially, and accepting now. I hold out hope that by this time next year the word supportive might even be accurate. ;)