Friday, August 31, 2018

Pretending

I swear I must lead the league in contradictions.

Here's the latest one: I am a trans-person/former (current?) crossdresser who HATES Halloween.

Wrap your head around that, if that's even possible. Halloween is the one day of the year where people like me are FREE. Almost anyone can justify dressing as the opposite gender (females dress as males too, ya know) on Halloween. So, why do I detest it so?

This idea just hit me like a ton of bricks as I was talking to someone about role-play. It was mentioned that I don't enjoy doing that, which is true. As part of my response regarding why I don't enjoy it (not online at least; there's a difference), I made the comment, "I already have to pretend to be a man."

In the past, in the same situation, I have stated that I was already playing a role, that of a woman which physically I am not, not yet anyway. And as such, I didn't like adding another layer to the disguise. Maybe that seems like I'm just no fun. That could be true, also. But I caught myself today responding to the same question in the way I described above. Which popped into my head the idea about Halloween.

I think I'm trying to psycho-analyze myself as I write this, and so if I get anything out of it, as usual I hope someone who reads this will also. I don't remember why I started to really hate Halloween. Hate is a strong word; I don't use it often, but it kinda fits here. I just know that, one year I dressed up in a kid costume, super hero or something innocent, went around and trick-or-treated, and then the next year my parents couldn't pry me out of the house with a crowbar. I wish I knew what age that was. Maybe I should ask my mom what she remembers about it. They fought me on this for two or three years till they gave up and I got too old, I guess.

Every year from there on, I hated that day. Wanted no part of it. November 1st was probably my third favorite day of the year (after Christmas and my birthday: IN THAT ORDER). I can remember hiding at my grandmother's house when other kids would come and collect their candy. I remember after it was over getting candy from my family just handed to me. That probably didn't help me get over not liking the ritual of dressing for Halloween, but I digress.

Fast-forward to about 11 or 12 years ago. My own kids are on the scene now, but very small. I tried to get past my own hang-ups and participate in Halloween with them. At the time, I was dressing in women's clothes at home a little, tolerated by my wife. That has come back to haunt me, but I digress again. Somehow, I had the idea that maybe I could cure my fear of Halloween by dressing up and going trick-or-treating with my family. I could relax, have fun, and overcome this long-standing obstacle.

What to dress as? Well, of course, a woman. And so, helped by my wife, I got together an outfit that was kinda cute as I recall, and we went to a friend's house. Trick-or-treated, had a very small party. With me dressed as a girl the whole time. I loved it.

Anddddd....it never happened again. Somehow, I tumbled back into my shell, didn't ever dress up again, and so on. I did help drive the kids around as they did their thing eah year. But, I didn't like it much. Maybe not hated like before, but it was definitely a toleration thing, not a relaxed, have fun kunda thing.

So, today as I recall all this, I wonder: what the heck was it that make me do a 180 on Halloween? What is lost to my conscious memory about it? Did it have anything to do with my dysphoria? I'm pretty sure it happened before I was like ten, and therefore before my starting to dress. Does my dysphoria go back further than age 11-12? Do I just want to believe it did? Would that add to my self-perceived credibility of whether I am really transgendered at all?

These are questions to ponder, for sure. Whether it helps me, I have no idea. I find expressing these things in words is helpful, so this post is not a wasted effort. I need to write about my "origins" soon, so this post maybe leads into that.

So, there you have it: a chunk of the reason I'm not that big on pretending. Size of chunk yet to be determined.

As always, I would love to hear what others think. Does any of my experience resonate at all, either from today or previous posts? Am I just a crazy, messed up person? What do you think? Let's share. It would do me some good. Might do you some good also. Until next time........

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Neutral...is progress

I've been holding off on writing a new entry here. I haven't quite known what to say, so I've held off. I recognize today, however, that I ought to write something, else too much gets bottled up inside.

How to write a positive blog post when things aren't necessarily positive? The same way it's possible to have positive thoughts. I mean, a blog post, a diary if you will, is just thoughts expressed via a keyboard or pen and paper.

I was approached this week by a university grad student about my story for a paper she is writing on transgendered people and their journey. About how they started of course, but with a focus on what has happened in the actual transition, in terms of hiding from society for a time, that in-between time anyone transitioning would have to get through, as well as what their present looks like. I was excited to be considered, and found out all about it. It wasn't meant to be, since I am only THEORETICALLY trans (my term), and wouldn't be able to answer many of the questions on this lady's list.

Maybe that's the topic here as the words flow from my fingers. I know there are many theoretical transpeople out there. Probably more than physical, transitioned trans people. What is that like? What do we do when we live in the "in-between"? Many of us may never progress beyond what we have now. Some will be ok with that, some won't. Can you live with neutral progress?

Where I am with things is exploration. Semi-aggressive exploration with the occasionally-dipped toe. Or just polished toes. I digress. I ask a million questions every day, and read a fair amount. I think it's leading somewhere, and it is. Other than the thinking INSIDE though, there is neutral progress outside. Due to several factors, maybe this is as far as I get. Maybe I learn to live with myself the way I am. Maybe I use my own experience to help others in some way.

Or maybe things EXPLODE and I become radically different. On the outside. Gender dysphoria, in my mind, was always the idea that one should have been born with the opposite sexual characteristics than they were, and having that longing to bring the inside and the outside together. I never felt that as kid. Still don't, really. MY gender dysphoria is in the fact that the things I want to DO would be much better and easily done were I to look like a female. At least I think so.

I love women's clothes. And shoes. And jewelry. And accessories. And makeup. I just do, always have. Always will. I want access to that stuff. These are the things that take up my waking time, when I don't even realize it. Always looking for something shiny to feel happy. It's not that I have to have shiny in order to be happy, but it couldn't hurt. The idea of working out the dysphoria is more in that I want to have the access I mention, but in such a way that I just blend in. I'm not looking to shock anyone.

I guess maybe that "blend in" thing is still a part of conforming to society. That's bad. And it's good. I don't have the personality to be a rebel. Even though I kinda am, accidentally. I didn't make myself this way. It just is what it is. So, after so so long, I'm trying to go with it.

To wrap it up, I suppose I can say I am ok with my neutral progress at this time. What I am learning hasn't turned into anything you can really see yet, but it is there. Even without a transition, per se, at least not yet, I can consider myself trans. It makes sense. You can't have a male body and think the way I do, like the things I do, without being trans. Can you? That's a legit question.

Thanks for reading. Please comment if you can. Answer the question above. Tell me I'm a delusional crazy person. It will only feed my neutral progress, and lead to forward progress, hopefully.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Just Go

I don't have a particular title for today's post. If, by the time I get to the end of it I have something clever, I'll change it. For now it's just musings.

I was just thinking, wouldn't it be interesting to reach a point where I was so used to wearing my feminine clothes that I forget about it altogether. Everything right now is either guys' or girl's'. My shirts are guys'. My jeans can be either. My shoes are girls'. And so on. I wonder will I reach the point someday that it doesn't even occur to me to think about what gender's clothes I'm wearing. At that time, will it just because of me, or society as a whole, i.e. genderless.

Genderless will be a long way off, I believe. Not likely in my lifetime. And how far I get, who knows. I'm still in the infant stages, even though I've been wearing women's clothes for over 30 years, off and on. The steps are small, but seem to happen a bit quicker now.

I think things are happening because I finally just want them to. I'm not as afraid of it. Right now, my living situation is in limbo, in terms of who is and isn't living with me. It seems I will have much more freedom at some point in the not-so-distant future. Which sucks and is exciting at the same time. I'm allowed to feel both those things, right??

I think ahead, and see my entering the real world as Shannyn as just a matter of time. It's not a matter of IF anymore. I'm going to get my chance to see what it really feels like. It may scare the crap out of me. I hope not. A dear friend who is transitioning gave simple advice recently, saying, "you've got to get out. somewhere small, like a coffee shop. see how you like it". That was it. No big production. Just go. It could be for 5 minutes. That's what I want to do now. Just go. Ok, I'm changing the title of the post.

If you read this, and at all can, take a moment to comment. I so desire feedback from others like me. I've got great friends online, and they encourage me. I'd really like to know what people think of what I have to say and share. Even if it's bad. Well, easy on the bad stuff. Please though, reach out.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Don't Wait...Also Don't Hurry

I wrote this yesterday, before things fell apart. Boy, did I see something coming. But why waste a positive message....

I'm not sure if it's just my nature, or something about me that constantly comes out when I consider ideas, or anything, really. I find myself often thinking after I respond to someone, "You always give one answer, but hedge for the opposite answer". Something like that. For instance, if someone were to ask me what I think of their shoes (this rarely happens, to my chagrin; I was born to give opinions on clothing and shoes). I'm likely to take a look, and give my opinion. In what is hopefully a helpful way, even if the shoes don't work. "Those are nice shoes, I love the color and style. But, I can see where others might think they don't look good on you at all. Go with whatever you think, don't worry about what others think".

I seem to always have that thing like "on the other hand..."

Right now, I wanted to write something because I feel quite positive. Earlier, it was less so, and who knows what I'll be like later today. The reason I titled this post as I did was to frame it in such a way to illustrate how I feel right now. My mind is constantly thinking of ways, small and not-so-small, of feeling better mentally and psychically. Making Shannyn come alive! I've been thinking about hair care, and other things like either medical treatments for hormones, or even herbal. All over the place.

I saw yet again that phrase about how you eat an elephant: "one bite at a time" (Thanks, Tanya!). I saw it in article about switching careers, which I'd love to do one day. I guess I am happy because, whereas often I would get so bogged down by the various mountains to climb, or elephants to eat, that I'd get down or just feel like it was hopeless. This same article talked about looking for "little yesses", or experiences that get you down inside to where you can recognize that it felt good. And how each little yes can maybe lead to other yesses, and maybe something significant in the future.

What I took from all that, as I've been working on in my life in general, is to not worry about right now. What's the worst that can happen? Most of the time, nothing too horrible. So, I can do something, or just think something, and maybe it's cool, and maybe nothing comes from it. What have I lost if the upside, in the immediate, is only a little yes? Nothing much.

I suppose what I'm getting at is that I don't need to hurry to change everything all at once, or in a hurry. Some things might never change at all. And I CAN be ok with that. At least, that's how I feel about it now. See how I just did that? I can be ok, but on the other hand.....LOL.

The other end of things that often plagues me is that, in my search to not bite off more than I can chew, to slow down so as to not get overwhelmed, what happens if I am taking my foot off the peddle too much, too often? Should I be concerned that I'm not doing enough to affect the changes I want? Is my non-aggressive personality still harming me, just in a different way?

The answer to that is, I haven't a clue. It seems that it's a delicate balance, one that we all lie with all the time. I don't think the answer can ever be known 100%. When I write here, I speak in first person. I'm talking about me. Some of what I am realizing might be so painfully obvious that someone who reads it, and they think I'm just a very dense, stunned person. BUT ON THE OTHER HAND....and this is my hope, maybe someone reads this and recognizes something of themselves in it, and maybe it turns into their own "little yes".

Sharing really is caring, and I care a great deal. About more than just me. BUT, maybe I care too much. See what I did there??? HAHA. I wish you all well till my next ramblings.