Over the course of the evening, my daughter and I spoke; we were finding common ground. By the end of the night, we were in a much better place. We were both able to laugh at each other again, something we aptly demonstrated the next day. While we out shopping the next day, we crossed the road by some traffic lights. As I ran across the road, I suddenly saw that I was distinctly running just like a woman, and it made me chuckle. I told this to my daughter who laughed and said “yes, you did,” in agreement with my own observation.
I am happy to say the week that I spent with my daughter was very special. I believe that we covered a lot of ground, and my daughter understands exactly who I am. I also know what she needs from me and can cope with things if I visit again at Christmas. I have no problems with that now.
My daughter has also been helpful in a way of which I had only hoped before my visit. She is a qualified beautician, and is very good with makeup. She gave me some mascara, a sponge applicator / blender for foundation, and a great eyeliner. She also promised to send me a list of products that she recommends I try. I am thinking that I may be glamorous when I visit at Christmas so I need to buy some pretty clothes too.
Before I end this story, I have to mention my ex-wife and the mother of my daughter. I was completely surprised by how cool and fully accepting of me my ex-wife has been. She was extremely supportive, and we talked a lot while I stayed with her, at the start and end of my visit. During the later part of my visit, she gave one of her night dresses as I had not room to take any of Sophie’s clothing. I was very touched by that and found a little comfort in that.
Despite the emotional ups and downs, my visit with my daughter has taught me much about who I am. I have learned that my daughter really needs me to be a father in her life. Though this may change in the years to come, it is true and important for the time being. I had not expected to discover this, and it took me a while to adjust to the idea. This visit has brought me to a new place in my life. After some thought, I realised that while I may not have dressed as a woman for most of my life, I have been Sophie for longer than I gave myself credit. This realisation has given me new strength, and turned what appeared to be a negative point in my life into a positive thought.
In closing, I would also like to share that the trip has inspired me to begin writing more songs. Writing songs is a very therapeutic process for me. It allows me to get things out of my head and onto paper where I can absorb my words again and reflect on the whole picture. It’s really helpful. At this time, I have written two songs inspired by my experience. The first is provisionally titled Bare My Soul and the second is So That’s What Love Is. Both powerful stuff. I will need to sing these songs a few times before I can get through each without falling apart – that is a key to development for me. I am discovering the depth of my new sensitive and emotional life as Sophie.
On a another note, what I have learned about myself has already helped me in other ways. I have three months of cooking in a restaurant as a man this summer. Before this trip, I was concerned how I would handle the limits that this responsibility would place on Sophie. But I am happy to have found a way to get myself through these upcoming months. No matter how I am dressed, I know that I am Sophie on the inside and that will not change.