‘Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them.’
Reading through some of our fellow bloggers post recently has brought a raw realness to our individual journeys. Everyone is striving for different things. Some want to ‘pass’, others are searching for happiness, some are just looking for themselves. Such a great variety of journeys and achievements. I personally just have a need to feel ‘real’, complete and accepted.
What acceptance and completeness actually mean to me is quite fluid and is ever changing as my appearance and mind develop continuously. It is an odd concept to qualify with any real sense but my experiences the last week or so have shown me what I need and want from life. I may not be there with all my goals but there has been some important steps in my transition, in social, medical and official ways.
My appointment with the endocrinologist is booked and while it is four months off, the extra time will be spent growing my hair and setting up work for the final switch. And it will also allow my wardrobe to grow and take a break enjoying transition instead of having to work so hard at it.
This has been a week of firsts and lasts mixed in with milestones and excitement. An important ‘last’, if not particularly exciting, was wearing a male suit for the last time. This came about when a new position opened up at work, a position I have wanted for many years. I got through to the interview stage and it would have been inappropriate to attend this in my usual scruffy, androgynous attire, so bit the bullet and wore that sleek, tailored and stylish (yuck) suit for the last time. It felt odd wearing it, but it was fine and maybe helped to leave behind the old world with some official purpose. As a side note if am successful and get this new role I will tell my new manager right away about my transsexualism. I feel a fresh start, amongst colleagues without preconceptions will ease the process along.
Moving onto my next ‘last’ and also a ‘first’ was visiting a solicitor to formally change my name. This was my first dealings with a solicitor in my life and being quite a free spirit the formalities and official nature of the proceedings was quite alien to me. The lovely solicitor did make things easier and having people that have known me from childhood act as me witnesses was wonderful and special. It also highlighted the fact that I could actually say, with a sense of authority, that I am Faith. The last time I will have to write my name as a male has passed and the burden it had over me has now disappeared. It felt very satisfying signing my new signature. Now comes the hard work for everyone in my life getting used to using Faith, she and her!
Another new adventure I have experienced is going to my first ladies night and what an experience that was! Not just from a fun and enjoyable point of view but also social. Building up to the evening was slightly nerve-wracking because I would be putting all my new skills to the test and had to be accepted by my fellow ladies as an actual lady. I have the confidence for sure but this means nothing without acceptance and a real sense of inclusion. I was worried that I may have been left on the side-lines, the man in the dress, the oddball freak and such like. I went with my friends mother who once I met was so welcoming and it was great to be getting ready for the night with both of them. It felt natural, how things should be and I was very jealous of my friends mothers handbags! I do not fear or worry about these situations anymore, if I ever did at all, because to be accepted you have to actually BE! What this means to me can be explained by thinking of the differences between acting a part and being a part.
Walking into the venue after a quick cab ride was surprising. I had never been in a room full of women without any men around. The din from all the talking was almost panic inducing, not in a bad way, however. I was thinking the high pitched tone being strewn across the large entrance hall would be spoilt or tarnished by voice. My head dropped a little and I thought about simply hiding behind my friend for the first part as this was such an awesome and over powering experience. But this is me and no amount of fear or worry would contain me and I was just myself. All the other ladies who were in our group were welcoming and at no point did I get a sense of me trespassing on their territory or resentment. I felt at home and I was glad that not that many TRANS questions came my way.
My ‘feminine’ social skills were really put to the test throughout the evening, there were times where I was not sure if I was succeeding or just that drunk not to notice faux pas. Overall it was a right laugh and I made some new friends.
The other part of the night was, of course, the entertainment! Now, I have been to stripper shows as a man many times, and the first thing that struck me when watching strippers as a woman is the sense of community against the solidarity. Men watching female strippers will be mostly quiet, examining the lady dancing and occasionally sipping their drink. The music will be playing but the mood is subdued for the most part and, dare I say, seedy and dark. Woman watching male strippers, however, is an almost celebration of female sexuality, there are no dingy corners to hide and perv in, no escaping the wailing screams of excitement and fantasy that is filled throughout the theatre. It is a contrast that is not lost on me. I was never really a fan of watching female strippers as the environment never sat well with me. Male strip shows, though, add a huge fun factor and offer much more in terms of entertainment. The objectifying of men and woman is so different in their delivery but I am glad to have seen both worlds first hand.
Finally my last ‘first’, playing football in a skirt. My friends son is fun and I miss football so much that I just could not help myself. It was strange to say the least.