Thursday, December 30, 2010

Tangled Heart

For the majority of my life, I was trapped in a tall castle in a hidden glade. I was told what to believe and who to be and I accepted it all because I knew no different and I knew it made others happy. But there came a point in my life where that was no longer good enough for me. I needed to get out of this castle I was born in....I needed to be free, to experience the world without being trapped in this biological and societal shell.

Despite those around me forbidding me to leave, forbidding me to begin on this new journey, I set out anyway, on my own. I met many new people and was amazed at how much better life could be and they were amazed at who I was and couldn’t believe who I had been was ever real. Many of them could relate to my dreams and it gave them hope to follow their own dreams.

Everyday, life got even better. There were times where things just clicked and everything that had ever happened to me or NOT happened to me just suddenly made seeing the shining lights of your birthright on your birthday. I compared myself to others my age and found that I was sometimes making up for lost time, frolicking around, smiling big, a picture of girlish innocence.

But before all of this came to fruition, I fell into a trap, laid by my parents and the people I called “friend” at church. Their raised voices interpreting verses in such a way that they burned scorches into my skin. They begged me once again to come home to the tall castle in the glade where nobody could see me for who I really was , where they could cherish me alone, the way they desired. I found myself following along with them, now a fate worse than death.......and so I chose death.

Many people came to my aid though, to save me from myself. It set me back on a path facing away from that dreaded castle I had grown up in. My horrific frowns became joyous smiles with sparkles in my eyes, the likes that nobody had ever seen before. And so it still

But unlike Rapunzel, my captors were also my true and biological parents. While she got to embrace a new life with her parents once more, I find myself waiting for the day when I can come home, the long lost daughter that my parents never knew but do want to know. When I can feel the warmth of both of their embraces, crying tears of joy, the many years of separation completely made up for by love and forgiveness.

Note: Tangled is an awesome movie, go see it! =)

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Eventful and Emotional Holiday

The last couple days have been a torrent of different emotions and I feel like I'm preparing to rise up the hill to another week, another year even, and I need to stop and look back and try to process everything that's happened. I figured the easiest way to talk about these is to describe each event and the emotions it incurred.

Event: I met some lovely new ladies at a crocheting meetup group and I really think I made some great friends and they seem to have wholeheartedly accepted me as well.

Emotions: Joy, Surprise, Love

Event: I delivered my presents to my parents' house a week before Christmas and was met with my loving brother and very wary father.

Emotions: Sorrow, Bitterness, Disappointment

Event: I was able to make and give special presents to all of my girlfriends at Zumba and they were all happy and thankful.

Emotions: Joy, Love, Excitement

Event: A recent realization that I wasn't even being asked to be included in outside-of-work-and-guy-related activities from male coworkers anymore and how I didn't miss them at all.

Emotions: Contentment, Happiness

Event: On Christmas Eve, my ex-wife called and (whether she meant to rub it in my face or not) told me that she was going to spend Christmas Eve with my biological family and that she had made my mother a scrapbook of lots of old "boy" pics.

Emotions: Anger, Hurt, Frustration, Bewilderment

Event: My adopted mother and I saw the movie, "Tangled" before church on Christmas Eve and I found myself caught up in everything Rapunzel went through, drawing all kinds of parallels with my own life and transition. (Note: There may be a future blog post in more detail about this)

Emotions: Wonder, Giddiness, Joy

Event: My biological mother texted me in the usual hurtful way, making "Merry Christmas" into a possible start of another argument. I chose to be the better woman and simply wish her Jesus' love always.

Emotions: Hurt, Sorrow, Anger, Love, Peace

Event: Realizing that my biological parents really didn't get me anything for Christmas this year except that my mom offered to pass along some of her fudge via my cousin.

Emotions: Surprise, Weariness, Sadness

Event: Spending the night at my adopted mom's house with my close friend, Kayla. Laughing lots and having a good time.

Emotions: Joy, Giddiness, Love

Event: Having our own Christmas, making the best of unaccepting families, enjoying each other's company, good food, and exchanging gifts.

Emotions: Joy, Thankfulness, Sorrow

Event: Lazing around on Christmas Day in my pajamas and no makeup and re-remembering how my body still doesn't feel or look at all like I want it to without the comforts of makeup and padding.

Emotions: Despair, Regret, Weariness, Sadness

It's definitely been an eventful and emotional holiday.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas everybodies! =)

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Another Breast Posting

Breasts are a popular topic. From food (chicken breasts) to health (breast cancer awareness) to Television (boob tube) to sex or more importantly, foreplay. It seems to me they may have always been a popular topic. For most transgender women, they are more than a topic though….they are a need.

Most natal women grow up, go through puberty, and take for granted the breasts they are given by Mother Nature. They may not understand why a transgender woman would want them, the back aches, the bras, etc. But to a woman like me, breasts are a sign of my femininity that I was denied for the better part of my life.

And now I have them and I find myself caught up in society's obsession with bigger breasts. After a year of estrogen, I have reached an A-cup and I admit to proudly showing what cleavage my padded bras allow. I take comfort in the fact that they are mine…finally. But I still yearn for more.

The other day I was paging through a magazine while I waited in the waiting room at the Laser Clinic and I came across an ad. The woman in the ad struck me because she had no bigger breasts than I did and she was wearing a bikini and she still looked totally and completely feminine and beautiful. Her bikini top did not offer pushup padding that made it look like she had more but instead showed off her natural body.

I put the magazine down eventually and went about my day but that picture kind of stuck with me. I realized I wanted to blog about it and then proceeded in trying to search google for the ad. Of course, I found many ads involving white bikinis but none of them were like this one, if you know what I mean. Page after page of women with much bigger breasts was all I found, to my despair.

So today I finally went back to the Laser Clinic and found the exact ad again and made sure to take notes of what it was advertising so I could find the ad on google that way. And so that picture is below.

I know that there are many years ahead of me and in those years my body will become even more aligned with my gender. I will of course still hope for more growth in the area we call breasts but at the same time, I take comfort in pictures like this.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Transsexuality 101

Someone posted this on a forum I frequent and I thought it was really good. Verbose but not too much so with enough information to get the main points across.

What is a transsexual?
For simplicity, a transsexual is a person whose inner sense of gender identity and brain patterns are completely the opposite of what physical form they are born into. This is a recognized medical condition which is completely unrelated to sexuality or sexual preference at ll, but unfortunately society sees only brazen gay and bisexual people out there using gender bending to express their sexuality and assumes this is what transsexuals are too. A real transsexual has no more in common with a drag queen, gay, or bisexual person than they do with a chimpanzee! They have a deep basic incongruity between their inner identity and their physical form which can only best be expressed as something which is within their very soul. Transsexuality occurs in equal numbers across born male and born female people. Estimates are that approximately 1 in 30,000 people are born with the condition.

How does this happen?
There are many things known today through years of research, though no one single absolute cause has been quantified as of yet. It is almost universally believed that during the formation of the fetus in uteri, a hormonal imbalance affects the development of the body sex characteristics in a way that is misaligned with the core gender bran wiring. The brain "gender identity" is determined very early on in the fetal growth process, though the messages of an incorrect hormone balance sent to the developing fetus' body, redirects the "intended" natural development to the wrong physical gender. Once born, while growing up the body's own hormone generators then further the physical discrepancy - especially once puberty arrives. Unique chromosomal or genetic influences are also possible contributing factors that are being researched as additional contributing components to the phenomenon. It is very important to understand that no two things in nature are alike - there is no black and white bipolar scheme in life, and random types of birth development happen in all species, including transsexuality. Much more common birth development variations include Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome, Klinefelter Syndrome, being Intersexed, or Gender Mosaic.
Transsexuality is not hereditary and a person cannot just "become" transsexual one day. As an extremely complex birth condition the situation is simply a variable in nature and there is nothing and no one to blame. It can actually be a very enlightening, even religious experience about the nature of the universe and humanity far beyond simple primitive bi-polar sociological models. Most transsexuals are acutely aware of something feeling incorrect from a very early age, but lack the ability to approach the issue. Transsexuality is not contagious, a "demon" or a cult into which someone can be enticed into - one cannot "catch" it or turn into it... one is simply born transsexual. It occurs across all races, socioeconomic classes, religions, and childhood upbringings, and has been documented throughout history for thousands of years... many cultures have even revered or worshipped them for having extraordinary vision and wisdom. Transsexuals are actually very good, intelligent, family loving people who are valuable, creative, and productive members of society when given the opportunity to flourish without oppression.

How could someone want "that" surgery?
The person with transsexuality eventually must learn to accept their situation if they are to survive happily in self congruity and not be rendered incapacitated by depression and other co-morbid mental health problems out of frustration and despair. They often have worked very hard at being everything they could for everyone else but no matter how hard they try, they always come up feeling empty and unfulfilled because they are still not whole. These feelings magnify over time until eventually the individual is overwhelmed with dysphoria. They may have tried to live in a role and style that is incongruous for a long, long time until it finally becomes unbearable... this can become a critical life threatening time for the transsexual. To simply try to even live in some sort of duality or "alternative lifestyle" without true physical and social alignment is to just continue the intolerable hypocrisy of a masquerade in a different form, still being something they are not. The ultimate goal is to be truthful and completely real unto themselves as their true gender identity dictates. The only real option left then becomes the social process of transitioning to their correct gender and also the medical process of hormone therapy and surgery. Physical pain and expenses become completely insignificant in comparison to the prospects of having to endure living life in a false way any longer.

The Life Experience of a Transsexual
A person with transsexuality will almost always go through many devastating and long stages of fear, guilt, anger, shame, self loathing and emotional distress though out their life as a result of the incongruity. They know that they will also likely face fear, hatred, prejudice, violence and rejection - sometimes even from those they may love or respect most. No one wants or chooses to have this happen to them, so as a result, transsexuals typically live seriously disrupted lives tangled in deep inner emotional conflict. They must go through a very long difficult process of getting beyond their internalized conflicts and societal pressures by learning to finally accept that this is just who they are, and these are the cards they have been dealt in life. It is then that they realize they must play it out to the best of their ability to achieve congruity, for their own health and well being.
Often those with transsexuality will attempt almost anything in the world to avoid facing their fears and unavoidable situations, including super-human macho activities or careers, marriage, family, extreme creative endeavors or even turn to religion, drugs, or alcohol to escape. Sooner or later though, if they have survived this far, they will find that these things did not work and they must face yet another even greater battle with their transsexual "demon". The fear of facing the issue can instill an emotional paralysis that can be difficult if not impossible to shake. It is then that they must seek professional assistance to gain some kind of movement in their situation. There is an immense amount of deep inner personal work ahead for someone who reaches this point. Many unfortunately, never make it. If they do, they come to realize that the "demon" was an internally fabricated myth woven out of fear of change, emotion, insecurity and social pressure - it was never even really there at all. As US President F.D.Roosevelt put it, "the only thing we have to fear is fear itself - nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts."

The Final Freedom
Once the transsexual person has overcome their fears, guilt, and shame and accepted themselves and learned to feel self worth, happiness and inner pride, with proper guidance they will move forward through transition and on to establish new lives in the properly aligned role. The period of time can be short sometimes for very young transsexuals who can't find coping skills in life or are less affected by social "role" pressures to conform to - or it can take years, even decades to unfold. The path can be a treacherous, painful, expensive, lonely, and emotional one, but it can be done successfully with the highly rewarding end result of rising above the flames of their torment and dysphoria like a phoenix from the ashes.
To just feel "normal" is something almost everyone takes for granted in life. For the person afflicted with transsexuality, it is the Holy Grail. Once an individual passes through the processes involved, wholeness of being is achieved and the person can transcend their past medical condition and live a balanced, normal life.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

I didn't know

I'm sorry
I didn't know your wounds were still so fresh
the hurt that you felt inside completely crippling.
that when we'd meet
there would be a connection I'd never felt before.

I didn't know what your touch would do to me
that your kiss would renew my soul
and your arms holding me close
could give such contentment.

I didn't know of your struggle inside
taking on new endeavors too soon
you warned me often
but I just didn't want to listen.

I didn't know that I was pushing for more
and my desire for your presence
would just push you away
I was too blind to see it.

I didn't know that it would hurt so much
that tears would rain for days on end
that I might make you feel guilty
with public postings of heartache

I didn't know that I'd make things
more difficult for you instead of easier
in these days of loneliness and hardship.

I'm sorry, I didn't know.

1 year on HRT

Wowies, it's really hard to believe it's been 1 year since I started this biological journey to set my body straight. It's been a journey of self discovery, joy, anger, love, hurt, peace, sadness, wonder, and so much more.

People may laugh when I say it's been the best year of my life so far. Especially considering the loss of my parents' love, my ex-wife and her parents, as well as a so-called loving church family. Not to mention, the few heartaches I've already experienced when it comes to dating as a transgender woman. But all of those things pale in comparison to FINALLY being able to be ME. To look in the mirror and finally see what I was always supposed to see. To not have to constantly worry about overcompensating for something I am not. To live naturally and not be afraid to be real. Add to that the endless support from friends (both longtime and new), work, and even some very special family (by blood or not) along with a new and openly loving church family.

I couldn't be more thankful and I look forward to many more wonderful years to come.

I know I've linked back to this video a few times before but it still amazes me that things could change so rapidly. And time flies when you're having fun ;)

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