‘The beginning is the most important part of the work.’
A change is as good as a rest the old adage says. I am a firm believer in mixing things up, taking an opportunity when it presents itself and moving forwards. It is easy to get stuck in a rut and plod along without anything new to inspire you. My life the last year or so has been a whirlwind of change on a personal, emotional level and I have evolved excessively. So to keep with this trend I jumped at the chance to slide into a new role at work that has once again wiped the slate clean for me.
I am still doing much the same as my previous department with some twists but it is what the change has done for my confidence and well-being that I could not have imagined. I transitioned at work in September 2015 and everyone was very supportive and I could not have asked for more. They tried really hard to use the correct name and pronouns at all times and for the most part I was very grateful for all their efforts. Moving to a new department however, has allowed me to be me right from the outset without all the baggage from the past. My new colleagues have only ever known Faith and it is this simple change that has allowed me to blossom in my office. I am even more vocal then before and my interactions are much more positive which has grown my confidence. My leadership qualities have come to the forefront and I really feel as I should, not awkward or ‘the weirdo’ in the corner any more.
I have read quite a few of blogs written about work issues and understand the stigma surrounding transition. People do not mean to treat you differently it is just human nature that leads to any awkwardness that can appear. I can also see why many want to switch jobs or start over in new companies because new colleagues only knowing the true you really allows you to be yourself. I found it hard to practice my new voice in front of my old colleagues in case they felt alienated and it got me down that I still reverted to conformity so we could all make it through the day. Now I can use my voice freely and it has really helped me to feel like myself all the time. I have seen a glimpse of a bright future, one following surgery where I can move to a completely new company and nobody will have an incline about the old me. It is lovely to have a future for the first time in my life and it is these experiences now that are building the platform for true happiness.
Breaking free of constrictive situations is what the transition is all about, you physically take yourself out of a body you hate and align your mind with a new one. It makes sense to want or need a whole new life but this is not really possible for everyone because family and friend connections mean you to hold onto the past in some form. But most people spend more time with work colleagues so having the ability to move onto pastures new is a huge blessing for trans people on a scale not many others would understand. You are no longer the elephant in the room and even though my new colleagues know I am transgender it is all they have known so can adjust much quicker than people who knew me before. This all adds up to a happier and less stressful work environment for all. People can look me in the eye and be natural around me without worrying about using a new name or pronoun because there was only ever one. I have had a couple of questions but so far nothing heavy or unfair, just general questions about transition for the most part.
My journey continues and I wave goodbye to an old part of my life while stepping into a new, fresh and happier environment. Holding my head up high and taking each day as it comes. Growing and beaming as a person I am proud of and love being.