Friday, July 31, 2009

What is Transition mean to me?

Transition will mean many things to many people, so bare with me as I describe what it means to me.

From Wikipedia:
“Transitioning is the process of changing genders - the idea of what it means to be female or male. For transsexuals, the new gender is "opposite" that of birth sex; for intersex people it is different from how they were raised; for genderqueer people it is neither solely female nor male.”

For me it is the journey we all take in our lives to discover who we are and how we will handle things in our future. Transition is not all about the process of just changing genders or taking the final step toward SRS. It is so much more than that. It’s a process, a process that may start 2, 5, 10 or even more years before even getting to the point of SRS. And in my option, transition does not stop after those final surgeries. This journey we go through will take us to so many places deep within ourselves, some will be dark and others will shine a light that gives clarity to many misunderstood thoughts and feelings you may have had in the past. This clarity is an important part of transition, because without it we may get ahead of ourselves and jump into something before we are ready to take the correct steps.

This journey took me to many dark places because I resented that fact I could no longer play with the other girls when I got to a certain age. If I didn’t play with the boys I was looked down upon because “boys” don’t play with the girls. You must stay in the male pack. I hated my body in my teens as it changed with more masculine features. I was envious of the girls around me because I felt I should have been growing and socializing right along with them. Yet my body was forcing me in a different direction then I wanted to go. To survive, I immersed myself in other things such as music and drawing, but those things really never could relieve the torture I felt inside. To add to the pain, I knew I could not tell anyone because I knew that if I didn’t even understand what I was feeling no one would either. On top of that, I knew I would me mocked and labeled a freak. All of us at this age (teens) are trying to fit in somewhere, and to be left outside of a group was to live a lonely life.

Without the knowledge or resources we have today with the internet and so many other places of support, life for me looked rosy on outside, but very cloudy on the inside. I only mention the above to make a point. The point being that because of that journey (painful or happy side), it eventually led to moments of clarity. The search for knowledge began as the internet began to emerge. I always wondered why I felt I was meant to be a girl? Why dressing made some of those sad feeling go always, but only for a moment. Why did I still feel something was missing? Why? So many whys went unanswered most of my life.

I tell most people that I’ve been transitioning for the last 15 or so years. It could have been even long if you consider the whole journey apart of transition. But it was about then when the internet emerged and I slowly found answers to some of the burning questions I’ve always had. In every new peace of knowledge I grew. I grew to better understand my thoughts and feelings. I grew to know myself better. I was finally able to cut away some of those barriers I’ve built up so long ago to protect myself from harm. The barriers that held me back from being authentic to me and others. I began the journey of self discovery. Slowly the clarity in my mind began to shine a light on the path that I knew I needed to follow. The clarity of self acceptance was the biggest stumbling block, because at first I didn’t want to admit I may be a transsexual. I was afraid of what that would mean to me and the family I now had. It took a while, but the more I read and compared it to my past and present, the more I realized that this was never going away. The more I realized this, I could finally declare to myself that this is who I am and trim away the shame I attached to it for so long. It also helped to know I was not the only one out there. I soon learned that there are many that have traveled down this path and did something about it and are much happier for it today. I wanted to be one of those people that were happy with themselves and life.

Since I got serious about my transition, I am happier which makes the hard time more bearable. With each step I take toward my goals, the light shines even brighter. Even though the transition is not complete, I now know in my heart that this is the right thing for me. Complete. Hmmm, I wonder if anyone can ever call a transition complete, because the discoveries won’t stop after going full time. And they sure won’t stop after SRS, at least that’s what I believe. Maybe I can settle on that a step in the transition will be complete:)

So after all this rambling, what is transition? Well, it’s a journey of self discovery that for some will never end, but with each turn in that journey you’ll discover new and wonderful things about yourself and life in general. It’s a process that’s not made for everyone, but for the select few who go through the process it can be a life changing experience. So take a very close at yourself and find where your journey will take you.

And by the way, what does transition mean to you?
Hugs Michelle


Debbie K said...

Hi Michelle
An ellequent, thought provoking & opertune post.

I agree with you. I think we will forever be a work in progress. For ever learning. Sometimes recently I have crashed. I need to give my brain time to catch up with my heart, during these times.

Just being able to finally be true to your heart is a joy. It feels very spiritual.

We are not alone.

May your path be a happy one.


Michelle said...

Thank you Debbie. I think many of us may have those little crashes once in a while, it's part of the transition I believe. It's part of getting to know your limits and maybe even learning to over come those perceived limits. I've gotten so much out of this journey that I don't I will ever turn away from it. Just being out of the shadows and pealing away that shell of a person I was has been so liberating. It both scares me and excites me what the future holds. What ever it is, I want to live my life to the fullest, finally.
Hugs Michelle