Friday, 22 November 2013

Support group and TDOR

Remember last month when I chickened out of going to a support group? Well, on Monday I tried again, and this time I found the courage to push myself through that door and into my local trans community! I went in boy mode, but presenting effeminately, and introduced myself as Tyler, making sure to indicate that it was only my birth name. It was very good to meet other people like me.

The discussions were mostly related to medical or legal aspects of transitioning, and so didn't have much to do with where I am. The focus of the group might not be what I'm looking for at this time. However, I learned of a different group that meets there that's more of a TG\CD social group, and I think I'd like to join them at some point. Either way, next time I'm in such a setting, I hope to go as a girl.

This Wednesday was Transgender Day of Remembrance, and the first one since I've identified as trans. I didn't go to any services, but I read the list for this year, and it's absolutely heart-breaking. Honestly, I don't even know what to say about this stuff, but perhaps I don't really have to: that ugly list can speak for itself.

Sunday, 17 November 2013

I (finally) left the house as a girl! Yay yay yay!!

Yesterday evening I went for a walk around my neighbourhood as a girl, and it was lovely! The snow was falling softly, and made for a very peaceful winter's night. Even if I passed I must have looked kind of silly clomping through the snow in my heels, stopping now and then to take selfies. But that's okay, I enjoyed myself, and that's what matters. (Only a crossdresser wears heels to go for a stroll, right?)

One of my roommates was home when I left. I'm sort of in a glass closet to my roommates: I haven't "officially" come out to them, but I make very little effort to hide who I am and I suspect they kind of know already. Nonetheless, I've decided I don't want them to see me as a girl until I've had a chance to explain why I crossdress and make sure they're comfortable with it. Thus, in order to get from my room to the outdoors I had to do a bit of sneaking. Just to be on the safe side, I left the house in my boy shoes, climbed into my car, put on my girl shoes in there, then got out and went for the walk. Kind of a silly extra step, but whatever.

I only really got nervous once. There was someone behind me and I wanted to stop to think about which way to go, but was afraid of them catching up to me. Instead I just kept walking. Overall the experience was very liberating: being out as my female self, doing something in the real world. The closet, even a glass one, gets pretty stuffy after a while.
A liberated woman! ♥
Not unusually for a winter in Alberta, it was a chilly -11° C out. The cold compelled me homeward sooner than I might have liked.

Two things have resulted from this little excursion. One is that I feel more confident and comfortable with myself. Before I always felt a twinge of embarrassment talking about my crossdressing with either of the males I'm out to. Today I brought it up casually in a conversation with one of them like it was no big deal. The other is that I've decided I need to buy some winter-appropriate feminine footwear: walking through snow in heels is kind of stupid and a little dangerous...

Anyways, let's hope this is the first of many such outings!

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

A morning mantra

As the alarm goes off yet again, I decide it's time to start the day.

"Good morning, beautiful world," I say quietly as I sit up in bed. Putting my feet on the floor, I shamble over to the mirror and see my hairy, male body in a pink camisole and polka-dot pyjama shorts, the remnants of yesterday's mascara smudged around my eyes. "Good morning, beautiful girl," I add with a smile.

This is becoming my morning mantra, on days when I remember to say it. Call it optimism, I guess. I'm not a natural optimist, but it seems I can become one out of necessity. I am a natural dork, so talking to my reflection isn't that out of place. :)

Well, dorky or not, I think it's important to tell ourselves what we know to be true. Though both may be hard to understand sometimes, the world is still a beautiful place, and I am still a beautiful person— and I'm betting you are too! It doesn't hurt to remind ourselves of these things, even if, as in my case, it might take a rather silly morning mantra to do so...

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Wishful thinking

When I shop for clothes I typically try to get stuff that's practical. (And when I say clothes I mean girl clothes— I haven't bought anything from the boy's section since I started crossdressing for real last May). I'll buy jeans that I can wear as a boy, or a skirt that I could wear as a girl without seeming out of place. I think it's fantastic that so many crossdressers get all gussied up in cocktail dresses and ball gowns, but for me personally, I always kind of figured I'd wait until I actually had an occasion to wear something before I bought it. Well, I may not have bought a cocktail dress, but I definitely broke that rule.

I buy nearly all my clothes from thrift stores. For a crossdresser they have some definite advantages: the SAs don't ask you what you're looking for, and they usually have unisex fitting rooms, too. So, I was perusing a Value Village yesterday and had picked out a number of practical and needed items. I was just about to check out when I figured I'd try on some less practical stuff, just for the fun of dressing up. What I ended up getting, of all the silly things, is a two-piece swimsuit. And, I must admit, a pretty skimpy one at that!
All set for a day at the beach!
Now if only Edmonton had beaches instead of snow...
This, I suppose, is the epitome of wishful thinking— and not least because it's winter here in Alberta! :) I put it on when I got home, and though it "felt right," my body has never looked more wrongly shaped to me. It did look a bit better once I put a loose tee-shirt on over top. In any event, it was only five bucks— that's the other advantage of a thrift store— so it's not like I wasted a bunch of money.

At this point I haven't completely ruled out the possibility of medically transitioning, so who knows? maybe there will come a day when I can feel comfortable in this thing. One thing's for certain though: if I'm going to wear bikini bottoms, I'm going to have to learn how to tuck without a gaff!

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Ungendering Facebook

I use Facebook quite a bit. I'm on there at least once a day, and for a number of people in my life, it's my primary means of keeping in touch. (Whether or not this is beneficial is debatable, but that's a different topic.) Like anyone, I want the persona I project online to reflect the person I feel I am. I recently made two small changes in Facebook-world that I feel very happy about.

I'm now they instead of he. This was surprisingly complicated. Facebook, ostensibly, does not allow users to unspecify their gender, nor does it provide any non-binary options. You have to choose a gender, and it has to be male or female. At best you can choose not to display your gender on your profile, but it will still refer to you with gendered pronouns based on your choice. However, it used to allow gender to be unspecified, and still retains the functionality to use neutral pronouns. With a bit of screwing around and some help from this thread, I was able to outwit Facebook and force it to stop gendering me: take that, Zuckerberg! :) I'm honestly surprised by how much better this makes me feel.
(For the record, I'm not a huge fan of singular they either, though that has nothing to do with gender and everything to do with linguistic pedantry. Even so, I'd much rather be mispluralized than misgendered.)

The other thing I did was to change my profile picture. My last one had been up there for nearly three years, largely because I'm never really happy with pictures of boy-me (for obvious reasons) and I'm still mostly closeted about girl-me. My new picture is, in fact, a photo of girl-me— I was fully crossdressed when I took it— that's been carefully edited. It's cropped so that my boobs are out of the frame, and desaturated so that my blush and lipstick are nearly invisible. The result is that it doesn't scream "crossdresser," but looks much more feminine than its predecessor, replete with beard and bushy eyebrows as it was. And I feel so much better, knowing that the face I'm presenting is that of the real me.
Boy? Girl? Who knows!

Friday, 1 November 2013

Facial hair and the power of kind words

Sometimes I let my facial hair grow out for a few days. I know it's really psychologically unhealthy to do so, but I'm lazy, and shaving sucks, and it can be a bit of a trigger too. (I recently made the impulse purchase of an epilator, hoping I'd be able to use use it on my face. The prospect of no shaving, no beard shadow, and three weeks of no re-growth seemed fantastic. I gave it a try, but it's just too damn painful. There's a lot of torture I'm willing to endure in order to look pretty, but even this t-girl's gotta draw the line somewhere!) It's always kind of surreal when I go to shave after a few days of not shaving. I'm inevitably struck by how good I look, as a guy, with a bit of stubble. As gross as it feels to say this, I make a very handsome boy, and I definitely look better stubbly than I do clean-shaven. What a pity I'm so uncomfortable looking like a guy...
Epilator? More like holyfuckilator...
Yesterday I was the recipient of some kind words (and possibly speculations?) about my femininity, from a cis girl. NL is a friend of one of my roommates, and she's started to become a friend of mine, too. She was over at our house for a visit when she caught sight of my hands and asked, "Did you do your nails?"
"Yep!" I responded, holding them out for her to look, "Aren't they pretty?"
"Wow, did you do them yourself?"
"Really? Right and left hand?"
She seemed pretty impressed. She made a comment about me being like a nail salon, and added, "You should do mine some time!"
I giggled at this suggestion. Then she asked, "Did you do your eyebrows, too?"
I grinned. "Yeah, I might have."
"Awww," she said, "You've just been, like, experimenting?"
I didn't really know what to say to this, and answered, slightly awkwardly, "Yeah, I guess so."
Then, before I knew it, the conversation had turned to something else.

It's such a small thing, she probably has no idea what a difference it made. But because of that little excahnge I felt a lot better about myself and my gender than I had in a while. Who would have known I had such a knack for nails? (Maybe she was just being nice?)

I haven't yet come out to three of my four roommates, (and yes, I live in a house of five people. And we share one bathroom. And I'm a crossdresser. It's pretty insane, actually). This conversation, ironically, took place in front of precisely those three. If they didn't suspect something before I'm sure they do now! In retrospect it was probably the perfect opportunity to tell them (and her), and I'm a little annoyed that I missed it. But, the fact that they all seemed unfazed by it gives me hope for acceptance when I do let them know. Which, all things considered, should probably happen sooner than later.