I turn around and am surprised to see
The woman staring back is me
All my flaws and faults remain
Behind the veil I’m still the same
They say that the folly of many a transsexual is to believe that the gender change will end their problems. It’s hard not to look longingly upon that moment, whether it’s going full time, the final surgery or just beginning hormones – and imbue upon it magical powers. As if somehow everything that has gone wrong in your life so far stems from that one, fateful quirk of genetics.
As much as I’ve looked forward to my milestones so far, the joy in passing them is never as sweet as anticipated. The high of progress and becoming oneself fades with time. The transgender paradox is that the more you change, the more you’re the same. Your problems and cares await you the next day no matter how long your hair, or what your cup size is. The demons that vex you don’t care if you’re post or pre op.
Perhaps I’m still stuck in the middle – Not a man, not yet a woman. Somewhere between sharing myself fully with the world and contemplating such a moment. Perhaps I’ve yet to experience the full freedom I so long for. Yet I’ve come to doubt that the joy of becoming myself will be as a consuming light shining wonderment into every part of my life.
I see it more as a flower tentatively peering into the spring sunshine. A potential for beauty when fully grown, yet delicately susceptible to a late frost or heavy rain fall. While I nurture the promise, I know that after the finest bloom it’s season will pass. The garden of life remains, tangled and overgrown, and all too soon the memory of this joy and accomplishment will fade.
Transitioning is the most difficult thing I’ve ever done. As many people as I’ve told, the thought of telling some of my close friends still fills me with dread. I’m daunted by the prospect of coming out at work, and filled with a deep sadness that I’ll never have children of my own.
It is hard. But I must go forward. I’m still me… after all.
For those of you who have walked this road, how did you steel yourself against the howling winds of the future?
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