Transition

Time Flies

The speed at which life moves is lamentably vicious. And because of that speed and a belief that life is trundling by, I made an attempt at contacting one of my estranged family last week. I did get a reply, which I’m thankful for, regrettably it came to nothing. But that’s ok. Clearly it’s just still not time. Surprisingly, I carry no anger about the lack of progress. I don’t know what’s going on in their lives, any more than they know about mine. In an ideal world, we’re all doing ok collectively but it’s difficult to process that the door to their world remains firmly closed to me. It’s no reason to be despondent though. It is what it is. Close to 2 years incommunicado. Which sometimes feels like a punishment for I’m still not sure what. l refuse to accept that this is it for ever and ever though . Which is either the apex of optimism or the depths of desperation. I don’t care which. To think any other way would be to admit defeat. Never going to happen.

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Transition

A Close Shave

As of today, I cannot shave till Tuesday. This is going to be strange. But necessary. I need another set of photographs to document how my IPL is going. And that means the temporary return of The Artist Formerly Known As Chris. I’m a little bit anxious but it will definitely be OK. I managed 40 years so 3 days should be simple enough. Surely to God I can “Man Up” for a weekend. It’s not without it’s difficulties however. I’m planning to cut back the nails that I’ve grown, dig out the “emergency” boy clothes and just get on with it. I don’t intend hiding away at all but I’m mindful of the acceptance I’ve had. I might have to be picky about who actually sees me because of this. I’m consciously going to have a child free weekend. I don’t want to confuse little brains more than I perhaps already have. But I’m choosing to view it as an opportunity too. I regrettably never had a last boy’s night out. I might now be able to fix that. And that’s an oddly entertaining prospect to me. I’m hoping I can use the time to show that I’m significantly happier in my own skin now. Although I’m relatively sure my friends do know this. But it will be nice to see old friends as I was. And as they remember me. Well, now with added moobs.

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Transition

Nut Allergy

A slightly salacious theme for today. The joys of Internet Dating to be precise. It’s something I can do outwith the scrutiny of my own social group. And quite deliberately so. I’d need to know myself that someone was not a total dick before subjecting them to the gauntlet of other people’s opinions. I form my own opinions left to myself. And I like it like that. But internet dating is a double edged blade. There is less safety perhaps and almost any idiot is free to contact you, if you put yourself out there. And that I have, to an extent. So far I can divide men online into mostly two groups. Perfect gentleman magicians who do fantastic text and then disappear in a puff of smoke when they realise you will only meet in public. And then there are complete morons who equate my being Trans with being a desperate slut. For the record, I am not remotely desperate. But I’ve still persevered, on and off, in the belief there will be someone out there in the market for a ropey opinionated transsexual. It takes all sorts they say. There is a third group, the kind I want to meet. If only to assess whether there’s any real potential. I come into contact with those the most rarely but it’s hardly a barrier to happiness. Surprisingly, the best thing about internet dating has been platonic contact, often from women but sometimes from supportive straight men. It’s chiefly this that convinces me to keep giving it a go as there are decent people out there. Until then I can just order calendars of Firemen from Amazon. At least then I can be confident that some day my prints will come.

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Transition

Mother’s Pride

This weekend sees Glasgow Pride take over Glasgow Green.  http://pride.scot/

It’s only my second as Chrissy but this time I’m more inclined to get involved. So Saturday morning, I’ll be up at the crack of dawn to help out at LGBT Health’s Pride Breakfast ahead of the march and Pride itself. http://www.lgbthealth.org.uk

And then Sunday I’ll hopefully be manning a stall with other volunteers and the LGBT Health & Well-Being staff at the Pride event. With the added benefit of getting to see some acts later on.

I never really got Pride before now though. Now I think I do. It’s a celebration of how far things have come. I’ll drink to that.

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Transition

Keeping Schtum!

Think I’ll continue on the family theme this time. It’s the one topic that barely leaves my thoughts. My family problems, like most families, essentially boil down to secrets and lies. Whether they were meant to be secrets or lies is a moot point. A breakdown in communication meant my news went off like a cluster bomb. Casualties in every direction. Now I can’t help but wonder if it would have went easier if I’d just been more honest earlier. I deliberately hid a huge part of me from my own family. Which caused them particular anguish that they hadn’t noticed more about me. My friends at least had some inkling that my gender was more fluid than theirs. I’d like to believe I was protecting them but I’d have to admit I was likely protecting me more. I was the oldest of 3 sons and knew what I stood to lose. But then my early choices meant I did lose exactly what I feared. But it was mostly through understandable shock at devastating news. I don’t think there were any villains in the piece. And it all came about because of secrets. Even now I keep my own secrets. Really terribly stupid secrets as well. Let’s face it, I will never top the massive herd of elephants in the room revelation that started this off. But the things I keep to myself are mostly about perception. Other people’s. And I wonder why I even care. Secrets ruin families and friendships. And they are totally pointless as they always out eventually. If I was ever doing this from scratch, after borrowing a De Lorean, I’d just make it abundantly clear to my family who I was. That way, there would be no rug to be pulled from under them. But that’s not an option, just wishful thinking. Should have, could have, would have gets us nowhere. When we do speak again, there is nothing that will be off limits to my brothers. Because, look where that got us. I love hindsight. It’s always 20/20.

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Transition

An Awful Admission

I’ve said before that how I told my family was pretty poor. I doubt anyone realises just how poor. My Mum learned as she was about to move home. I’ve covered that earlier but still, stressful enough without my news. But on the back of this, I made plans to tell my brothers. Originally at the same time. But busy schedules meant I missed one brother by just minutes and the hastily rewritten plan meant I told the other brother on his own. It went so terribly that it was the last time I saw him or my nephews since. Which will be fast approaching two years. On November 17th, not that I’m counting every day. I was so stunned by the finality of this that I let my first brother find out by default. Rather than get a similar reaction. Which was totally unfair. At least he could have reacted honestly. Instead, we’ve met once by accident and both of us were too shocked to speak. To each other, anyway. So the carnage of my family relationships is down to me entirely. Most days since, I wonder how to undo the damage. I’m mostly stumped. If I thought going back to being Chris would do it then I’d do it. In the smallest fraction of a second. But it’s beyond superficial cosmetics I think. Although 20 plus months of inaction haven’t helped either. I’d like to think that time might have fostered some understanding but I’m a bit too afraid that the answers will remain final. But at least I’d know. Still, not to finish on a down note, family is much more than what you’re born into. And I’m exceptionally lucky in that regard. Even if I don’t tell the important people to me that often. I’ll be doing that more frequently hopefully. I can always blame the hormones.

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Transition

Technological Difficulties

This week I had a catastrophic meltdown. Not personally but my phone, which I mostly write this blog on, decided to pretty much die on me. This involved resetting everything and losing track of anything it’s ever occurred to me to blog about on this page. Especially songs to illustrate a point. I put more work into this than most things I do, so this seemed devastating at the time. But over the week I’ve rescued half of it from memory and it’s more of a blip than a fatal error now. Plus it’s maybe easier to go back to how I started, which was to blog things as they came to mind. I might not really need a plan. But I will take note and back things up from now on. Save a lot of tears. But back to business next time around

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Transition

Collect The Set

Mine is turning out to be an oddly diverse sort of life. In so far as, transitioning is not something most people will ever experience. Although transsexuals are perhaps more commonplace these days, I doubt anyone else on the planet really gets the opportunity to experience both sides of the fence so completely. To date, I’ve been a straight male, a gay male and I’m currently locked into an amorphous limbo sort of status but on track to be a straight female. That’s not too shabby for 42 years on the planet. But there remains the extremely distant possibility that I may, once I am the finished article, have a fumble with another female. That’s as close to the full human experience as you’re likely to get. I’m not even sure there is a word which encapsulates what that means. Although there probably is in German. Anyway, the whole point of this TMI type revelation was to illustrate that I’ve had many other labels during my lifetime. The Trans label is the current one but it’s really as irrelevant as the others in terms of how I choose to live my life. Which is one day at a time and one foot in front of the other. Like everybody else.

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Transition

Roll Over Beethoven

I warn you in advance this post might have a relentlessly optimistic tinge to it. But I won’t be apologising for that. There are so many things to be glad about on a daily basis. Maybe not the sorry state of British politics,probably not the perils of international terrorism or even the woefulness that is your monthly wage. But tiny things. That may appear inconsequential but collectively  tell you that life is generally pretty good. And that make it worth getting up in the morning. It could be just getting through the day without incident. It might be finding out you haven’t spanked your wages entirely over the last weekend. Or it might even be a two year old that honestly believes your purpose is just to be available for play. Doesn’t matter. It’s all too easy to let what’s wrong bog you down. But it’s always worth looking out for what’s right at the same time. And that’s my happy little tuppence worth for today. Have a great weekend if you happened by.

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Transition

Cape Fear

One of the most satisfying aspects of my transition has been the relative absence of fear. As time has gone on, nothing scares me. Not public reaction, not Transphobia and not even the risk of Trans related violence figures in my daily life. It could be I am being naive or it could be I am spectacularly adept at avoiding idiots. Or it could be something else entirely. But fear is not something to let control your life. Ever. I don’t keep a count of unpleasant encounters at all. It’s genuinely so rare that it hardly matters. To borrow from the Building Trade, it’s “570 days at this site without a reportable incident”.  And that’s pretty impressive from my perspective. I’ve read plenty of evidence that this is contrary to the norm for those transitioning.  But I’m glad that this is not my experience. I might only ever potentially be one corner or one bus journey away from something bad happening. But that’s not a good enough reason to let it cripple you. In any given week I will encounter at least one person who feels compelled to attempt to belittle me. I find total indifference works best. I will walk away but not through being scared. Would be assailants should be aware though, I might run like a girl but I punch like a boy.

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