Being normal is overrated… miaow!
“We’d worry a lot less about what other people think about us, if we realised how seldom they do”
David Foster Wallace
I came across this quote online yesterday, and it instantly struck a chord with me. I had been ‘dressing’ in secret for years and years, but was so worried about what people would think about me that I kept it hidden from the world.
This was not a healthy way to go about things, as the more I wanted to live as me and express myself, the more frustrated and depressed I got that I felt I couldn’t. I decided that if there were no other people in the world then I wouldn’t have a problem, I could be whatever I wanted. But this wasn’t that realistic a hope, so I stayed in my bedroom instead.
I think it’s a weird part of my personality that I’ve always looked for validation and approval, be it from parents, teachers, managers… whoever really! Maybe it’s about a lack of confidence or self-esteem. Either way, balancing this with what I felt was such a dark secret was never going to work.
And so in recent years I’ve tried to understand what’s going on in my head and to work with these feelings rather than letting them fight against each other. I’ve proved to myself that being trans isn’t a dark secret at all, I am a normal person leading a normal life and I don’t need approval from everyone else in the world to progress.
Most people, as David Foster Wallace pointed out, aren’t actually as interested in judging me as I think they are. And for those that do? Well, rather than letting them see me as a drone desperate to conform in all areas, why not let them see me as a happy, interesting person who is enjoying their individuality?
Not looking too bad, considering I’d just woken up after an operation!
I’ve spent all day lying around in bed, taking it easy after a minor operation in hospital yesterday (it’s ok, I’m fine!) but it does mean there’s no excuse to not write a new blog post or two.
The operation went well, but there were a few unexpected moments of gender confusion cropping up. Because I’ve not changed my name yet, I’m still officially a guy on paper. So when the nurse came into the waiting room to call for me and didn’t see any men there, she decided I must have run off and went to get a search party together to find me!
Then later on, when I was asked to go and sit on a bed until my surgery time, one of the male patients started questioning me to find out why I was there (was I waiting for a ‘male friend?’), and then grumbled to the nurse about them making girls wait in the men’s ward.
I guess I should be pleased that I get this reaction and, don’t get me wrong, I am. But I do still find it weird because it always happens when my mind is on other things. Like going through security at an airport, or when I’m stressing about an operation. I was always a bit worried that if I changed my name it’d be really, really awkward if someone misgendered me, but these days I seem to confuse people more as I am now!
Another hint perhaps that I should get this whole ‘full-time’ thing moving sooner rather than later…
TV Repartee issue 78 (Image: repartee.tv)
I was really excited a year ago when Bella, the editor of the transgendered and crossdressing lifestyle magazine TV Repartee, asked if I would be interested in being featured in the publication. I wrote a short bio and supplied them with some of my pictures and, sure enough, there I was with my own little space in the January 2014 edition.
You can imagine how I jumped at the chance then, when a couple of months ago Bella got back in touch and asked if I would like to do a follow-up article and even be on the front cover!
The brief was to write 2,000 words on what had been happening with my transition in 2014. At first I was a bit worried that I wouldn’t have anything interesting to say, but after having a look back through my blog and jotting some ideas down on paper I realised there was plenty to write about. I won’t spoil it too much though, as really you should read the magazine!
It’s kinda interesting to compare my voice a year ago with how I feel now. My mum has read both articles and said the 2014 one reads more like the words of a crossdresser, nervous and excited about going out dressed as a girl. I feel that in my latest article I’ve got a more mature outlook, that of someone who is much more experienced and comfortable in themselves, someone who knows what they are aiming for.
The issue came out a few days ago and I am so pleased with how the cover looks 😀
You can find out more about TV Repartee at www.repartee.tv