It’s been nine months or so since I started writing this post. For some reason I don’t fully understand this post has been very emotionally difficult to finish. In addition, my stubbornness would not allow me to write another post until this one was done. Well, I finally realized how self defeating that was and decided to simply post what I had written so far with a brief summary of what I intended to say next. I’m hoping I will then feel free to post more as things come up.
What I had written so far:
“Back in August, I met Beta in a one-time bohemian PA town which has taken a touristy frou-frou turn. However there are still some cool places to go. We went to a vintage clothing place that had some things I would just die for, but they didn’t fit me *dang* We also went to a fetishy shop and I tried on some things including a plaid mini skirt, but again, didn’t fit right :( It was still TONS of fun.
I drove there in boy-mode and changed into femme dress in the car (leopard spotted headband, black gauchos, a pink tank-top belted with a black belt with a circular buckle, with eyeliner and brown lipstick). I called Beta because just as I was ready to change, some lawn workers started working near the car and I wanted to wait until they moved on a bit to change. I was NERVOUS. Beta was running late and driving. I said I’d meet hir at the vintage clothing place. But as I got ready to leave the car, I was consumed with fear. I ended up calling Lumi (since Beta was driving), and asked hem if zie would “hold my hand” while I walked to the store. Zie said zie would, the loving darling that zie is.
In a way, I see the humor in my fear of walking past three old ladies in the parking lot. I was talking to Lumi about it at the time, and tried to sort out why I was so afraid. I realized that previously when I walked the streets in femme dress that I was either a) in the city that I lived (where I knew the lay of the land and therefore where to escape to should I meet hostility) or b) not walking by myself (with Lumi where zie lives).
Now I want to talk about what it was like to spend time with Beta. First and most important, more important than any of the gender stuff, is that Beta is a kind hearted and beautiful soul. Zie is also really smart and lots of fun! However, since this blog is about my gender expression journey, I want to focus on what it was like to be with another person who is transitioning in a similar direction. Now while Lumi and Beta are both exploring an orthogendered experience, in terms of public physicality Beta is challenged in some of that same ways that I am.”
That’s as far as I got. By challenged I meant we were “mis-read” in the same way and I was going to give an example. My intention was to then talk at length about how it felt to “not be alone” in my public presentation. Then I was going to talk about my wife’s reaction. I was staying with my in-laws and changed back into “boy-mode” before returning. In the kind of close-up view only a spouse would get, my wife noticed the traces of eye liner I had washed off. This was the first time I had been deliberately dishonest with my wife, since I had not told her I was planning on dressing femme. She was angry, and rightfully so. I promised not to lie to her again.
I was going to wrap up with an important realization I got checking in with my process group (a variation on group therapy). A few people talked about their fear of how much I was going to change as I transitioned. It occurred to me that for all the changes I was going through, the changes looked much greater to those around me. I was trying to express something that has always been there. For others this seemed like a much more radical change. This actually lessened my own anxiety and helped me to see how much I was taking on other people’s fear. I am not changing in essence.
So that’s it. I seem to have gotten stuck on expressing how meaningful being with Beta was (and still is) to me. Perhaps the words to express my joy and relief and my love are not available to me. Perhaps the emotions are just too overwhelming to describe. I don’t know. This is the best I can do at the moment.