Monday, 30 August 2010

Out and about.

The last week or so has been a social whirlwind holding up work plans which the showery weather would have held up anyway. Usually by the time the garden is dry along comes another downpour. One was torrential with the water pouring over the guttering directly into the garden leaving the new pathway site like a reconstruction of the boggy first world war battle fields of Ypres for several days.
Friends is an interesting term which I once thought of writing a long blog about. What an interesting range of relationships that one word covers. My inner circle of friends and family are well acquainted with what is going on by now but There seem to be an infinite number of less close circles of friendships and in those not everyone needs to be told unless circumstances demand. As the hormones do their work and my appearance evolves it will speak for it’s self but at the moment if someone invites us for a meal for example they had better be updated to save any embarrassment for them and their guests. Not that there has been any sign of any so far.
I am now out in the world with an honest identity for the first time in my life. Until now I have felt like an illegal immigrant or deep stealth spy conscious of not fully understanding the world I lived in and being liable to being uncovered as a fraud at any moment. Even this past year when I thought I had become confident in myself feels a bit furtive and anxious compared to now where my focus is on me and what I want to do with no worrying about what anyone else thinks of me.
This confidence must be showing since it now takes much longer to go shopping since nearly everywhere there is a chance I have been finding myself in long conversations with those in the shops! I used to try to be chatty with serving staff, it makes their life better as I know from my student jobs, but now it is as if I have joined a new club!
As I start to push out to my new boundaries of presentation my happiness increases and we have tested it in various situations from small dinner party with some guests unknown to us, they requested contact details for further meetings, to a garden party where most knew me to some degree and all knew the new me by the end with several women nearly adopting me as their sister. Yesterday was an exhibition opening with about a hundred and thirty people at the gallery where I have had a couple of selling exhibitions and figured they should know, no point surprising them or hoping for another show only to find that they are spooked at the idea. They were fully supportive and have no problems for the future. Largest gathering since we have been back but never missed a heartbeat, chatted to numerous people not all people I knew, the new me is much more approachable it seems!
My official name change is now in progress and I have a letter from the gender clinic ready to apply for a new passport with appropriate gender marker. Must try to get a decent photograph this time, not that anything could be worse than the picture of a bearded terrorist which was on the old one!
Today I slipped on an old tee shirt for working in the garden, it was a lot closer fitting than most and if I had any doubt about the hormones working they are gone now as the concave patches which I had before are now firm nipples atop small pert mounds, just have to remember not to bump into anything or gather up an armful of anything unless I want to squeal out loud!

6 comments:

  1. It's all progress. I can relate to it all, except your hard work in the garden!

    Lucy

    ReplyDelete
  2. I remember going through that period of raised awareness a few years ago. It takes a long time to get used to your new body shape. It's not just changing shape, but my senses other than hearing all improved greatly, especially touch.

    However I did not realise that it would also affect my swimming as I have not been able to go to a swimming pool since I started transitioning and I had no idea it would affect my balance when in the water as much as it did when I used the pool in our hotel while we were on holiday. It's ok when I am actually swimming but standing up in the water at the shallow end has become rather difficult!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Congratulations to the spy who came in from the cold!

    I am well acquainted with the feeling of being an alien or an under cover agent. When I was working, there was always the paranoia of being discovered as a fraud. I used to have nightmares of being in meetings at work, and suddenly realizing that I was in some very inappropriate stage of feminine presentation.

    I don't know how much of your social situation revolves around the arts community, but people involved in the arts, tend to be much more relaxed about personal expression, and it seem that would work to your favor. How lovely to be adopted as a sister!

    Melissa XX

    ReplyDelete
  4. 130 people at a party!! wow you are growing so much in confidence.
    Its not surprising at all as you have changed so much in the short time I have known you.
    You are right to be proud of who you are.
    You are one of the most supportive women I know.
    A true friend.
    xx

    ReplyDelete
  5. It's lovely to read these blog posts. Your friends and neighbours sound like a wonderful bunch of people.

    ReplyDelete
  6. So nice to see the girl blooming and the confidence thriving, Caroline!

    Calie xxx

    ReplyDelete

Many thanks to all who ever joined in the conversation and to those who took the time to follow my zig zag to a new life..

I can be contacted on the email found on my profile page.