I can finally do it. I can finally point out the elephant in the room. Actually, as of four months ago, but because I’ve been ridiculously busy, there have been problems with sitting down to compose anything public.
I suppose it is the day after coming out day, technically. However, since to me given the intricacies of insomnia it is still the same day, there’s some degree of synchronized apropos going on.
My friend Jamie used coming out day to state “I’m coming out of identity”. Well… I can’t quite have the luxury of that yet. Most of coming out day revolves sexual affinity rather than gender identity for historical and rate of incidence reasons. By best count there’s an order of magnitude difference between the two. I’d in the long run like to shed the idea of gender entirely, perhaps, since it feels as if I don’t fit the gender binary (even though I fairly squarely hit the American Femme gender in most respects). The long term may well outlive me. In the short term, I’m a trans woman.
The huge holdup in stating so publicly was for mere physical technicalities. I’m a minor outlier in small, but consequential, physical realities that meant misgendering if I decided on informing employer too early were a huge liability. So I waited. Extremely uncomfortably. But, in a kind of forced patience of someone who has no recourse but can manage to be extremely stubborn when needed, patiently.
The “physical realities” alluded to vaguely? Well, if you must know, getting zapped by a microwave needle in the face for years on end for the sake of permanently removing unwanted noon o’clock shadow can be a concern for some. I have no statistics on how large a contingent “some” is. I only know said activity hurts like hell, is aversive to non-masochists like myself, and over time exerts a steady financial toll. Picture the pain of not only feeling that you’re actively paying to be tortured, money for time, but that this is your lifeline towards — slower than most in your predicament — finally being in a position where you can live more or less genuinely rather than trying to pretend, mostly to people at work, you are someone other than yourself.
Long story short, I’m finally an out trans woman, not just at home and among friends, but at work and fully documented. Life since then has been hectic. Ridiculously so. It has been an extended process compared to many other trans folk. Almost two decades, total, of actively pursuing it. I’m greatly encouraged, and a little jealous (in a kind way) of younger trans folk who receive support (including medical support) early on. (Read: pre-pubescence. Also known to trans folk more or less as that era when your body starts rubbing the incongruities in thoroughly. Until recently, given more modern awareness and treatment.)
So, now, how does it feel, these past several months?
Having decades of weight and misunderstanding lifted: imagine feeling depressed at being fairly depressed by circumstance, only to have the huge weight off your chest removed and your sentence commuted. Some people may not trust your innocence, but goddamn does that start to feel like you’re almost levitating.
Life isn’t perfect, there are still a lot of reasonable paranoias and fears to manage. Those are realistic, unfair, and problematic. On the other hand, life just got measurably better. I handled the emotional equivalent of an untramarathon endured over a period of almost two decades and didn’t die! Not bad, actually. Statistics were not with me on that one, and I managed to actually still be here to be having problems like insomnia and date confusion due to insomnia TO F’N BE GRATEFUL FOR.
Not that I like insomnia.
I’m just saying that it is a peach compared to just six months before.
In any event, I have been busy. You can see some off it leading up to the number of paintings executed before June. Lots more. You discover you have a lot more energy, even with [multiple respiratory maladies here] going on, after you are no longer under a treasure chest weighing about your own weight placed ON TOP OF YOU.
But, more interestingly, I have begun composing music again. In earnest. And I have the coming week off away from the office day job.
I’m hoping for great things in the coming week. I’m actually feeling a bit giddy.
Oh, and happy day (slightly after) coming out day from a trans woman with insomnia. You deserve it.
PS– The elephant in the room is looking mighty fine after being given a makeover.
PPS– Expect some degree of reporting on opinions of a trans woman in the future, on and off, now that I’ve managed to free myself of worrying about whether or not work finds out I’m a woman. They know. No dodging that now, thank goodness.