This was not by choice. The combination of my newly limited schedule, the remote (to me) location of the therapy/group meetings, and the schedule limitations of the rest of the group drove a wedge that seems only to be resolved by my taking time off work. I cannot do that for multiple reasons, most importantly because I need to conserve my time for a major milestone later this year… but I will get to that. The irony I began to discuss is that while I so recently bemoaned my stagnation; I am now in it up to my eyeballs… so much so, that I am “stealing time” to make this update! (shh… don’t tell!) I just cannot seem to do things in moderation.
So, what is new? Since my last update, I have started an aggressive electrolysis campaign with the goal of being mostly complete by September, I have finally seen a doctor to get my hormones in check, I have reenrolled in college (again) to finish my degree, and I am still working an 8 to 5 schedule every Monday through Friday. I have also managed to squeeze in a couple of counseling sessions, though not without major calendar upheaval. There is bigger news… and a major consideration for my future. Would you like me to fill you in?
Of course you would, why else would you be reading all this crap?! You will recall that among my many laments is the fact that I started my new job as a boy – a fruity and fabulous boy, a boy with long hair, painted nails, and boobs – but a boy none the less. This means that I have yet another “big reveal” to navigate at some point in the future. With each passing week of employment, though, my confidence in the company’s position on such things has diminished. Also, with each passing week, the imminence of that information forcibly coming out grows… I will explain that soon (getting anxious?).
I had intentions of opening up. I planned the conversation multiple times, but fate and ever-changing calendars prevented those conversations from occurring. I am not always one to ignore the cosmos, so after much consideration, I took the hint and made the decision not to divulge my situation until it was absolutely necessary. Right or wrong, I need the income to continue on this path. If that means continuing to get into costume every day until the milestones are complete, then so be it. In the grand scheme, the price is small – especially in a state that does not value diversity, in an industry that is still largely white-male dominated, and in a position that is very much expendable.
One important truth and (I think) a critical consideration is that I enjoy a distinct advantage on this journey – the advantage of affluence. I did not start out this way. As a young adult, I barely made enough to survive. I cannot tell you how many months I had to choose between rent and food, how many times I walked to work until I could pay to fix my car, or how often the only reason I had dinner was the kindness of one of my good friends. I worked hard for many years. I scratched and clawed my way to this position. I fought. I sacrificed. I put so many parts of my life on hold to accomplish what I have – family, friends, education… transition. I would not suggest it is the right thing to do or that it is the right path for anyone else; but what I did has put me in a somewhat unique position to actually afford transition. If that entire fight, all those years of climbing ends only in my ability to finally make a permanent transition, then it is worth it. My view right now is that I need to “keep my eye on the prize,” no matter what that means for today. And the “prize” may be just around the corner.
Yes, friends, I have made almost all of the necessary arrangements. The only boxes still to check are an updated passport photo and plane tickets. On September 7, 2012, (drum roll please) I will be undergoing about three quarters of the surgeries necessary to complete my transition – FFS, breast augmentation, and orchiectomy. The only remaining operation will be vaginoplasty, which I will save for some future date. With the help of my awesome and amazing partner, I have also started the wheels turning on the final legal name and gender change to be tackled immediately following surgery. By the end of 2012, I will be able to clean the closet one last time, and I will never again have to pretend to be a boy. Knowing that makes everything I hate about the present seem inconsequential.
The one remaining question is what will happen at work. In a lot of ways, I am in a 2011 eddy. I am still trying to answer the question whether I will transition in place, or abandon my position once the change is complete. I do not yet know the answer to that question. The decision would be easier if I loved what I do, but I do not love it. I do not even particularly like it if we are being honest. So that complicates matters on one hand, but simplifies things in other ways. My only consideration is financial, so really the question will be whether I can affect the final transition and still maintain a happy lifestyle, regardless what I am doing to achieve that.
Peace and love, my friends.