This could get very boring, very quickly for those who drop casually by if they find this blog silting up with ripostes to THAT blog. 

So rather than protest the insinuation that i have overnight developed such fey tendencies that i could not possibly bear to chip a nail – huh! – there is a sort of real point behind the story that my partner tells today.

It goes to the heart of why i am where i am…or at least, it throws into sharp relief one part of my journey.

i am 52.  i cannot remember a day, as a “male”, looking at myself in a mirror and being impressed.  i have never liked my body all that much: in part, i put the dislike down to being a bit overweight…a bit awkward.

But maybe i was looking at things the wrong way round.  Maybe the oddness, awkwardness was not cause, but result.  For there is nothing whatsoever about me, the man, that is interesting enough to work on or have incite me to try and change.

Then there was the coming out, followed almost at once by a blitz on all that hated body hair.  New features slowly emerged: wrists that, if not dainty, are at least slim and – omg! – feminine.  Fingers now capped with varnish: cared for nails.

It is not fetish because, try as i might, there is not the least twinge of desire as i react to this new me: just a blissful feeling of rightness.

Now, too, there is hair.  Coloured.  Conditioned.  A visit to a hair salon at the weekend to discuss what i am going to do with it.  i outed myself to a lovely stylist, who suggested a bob – and then asked if i minded it being too feminine.

Mind?  It is dream and coming home in one and the same act.

i have been out – properly out – for two weeks now.  Since that day, it feels as though i have permission to look at myself through new eyes.  i am allowed, at last, to see myself as a person with a real physical body.

More…i am allowed to take stock: to pick and choose.  For the first time in my life, i have looked at me and begun to say: “this i like: this i don’t”.

After 50 years, my body feels like it is beginning to belong to me at last.

So if i do occasionally fuss a little over chipped nails, please indulge me.  i have a lot of catching up to do.



2 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    rose stimson said,

    Phew! I thought you were going to say you’d turned true blue! Transgender I can cope with! You’re healthy enough for a 50+ year old, you’re happy with what you’re doing, you have someone who obviously loves you very much (I’ve just read both blogs -am supposed to be working!). This is a journey for you both – much better than sitting at home with pipe and slippers. I don’t mean to make light of what is tremendous upheaval for =you both but good on you – how exciting. Discretion is my better name by the way.

    As a mother of a 16year old daughter as well just a comment – your daughter may not know what she feels , she ca’t share it with you even if she wanted to. Whatever it is won’t beconsistent. One mnute she’ll be angry with you for changing (parents = have to be stable didn’t you read the job description?) she’ll be angry at herself for not coping with you changing – who is the grown up here?, she’ll be confused because she also is at a stage f defning her existence and sexuality , she’ll be scared of public ridicule and humiliation – no-one trusts their friends at 16, she’ll just feel a the middle of a whirlwind. I’m sure you’re doing this but all you can do s having lit the touchpaper retreat and just let her know you’re there for when the storm dies down. The daughter=father relationship is a very basic one on which I could bore for England having been deserted by my own father when I was 13.

    Sorry if that is coming across as insensitive to your changes because you also are at the centre of your own storm but I know you will come through with flying colours look how far you’ve come already! Good luck to you all on the journey……………


  2. 2

    Dennis said,

    Jane.. re your loved ones who have found this difficult.. know what sometimes, the glare from the glow of someone becoming their best self is something they need to shut their eyes from.. but more often they are just shielding their eyes from the unfamiliar glare awhile.. those who truly love you will accept you in the end, it can just take some time coming to terms with what may feel like a dramatic change – and for young people they crave stability and this may feel a bit unstable.

    My parents have still not accepted fully that I have changed my gender and my name. These days I cant sign my name when sending a card or present because they won’t use my new name and I refuse to write the old one on principle. So variously I’m writing things like ‘your eldest’ or ‘us lot in manchester; etc. It’s awkward but not really a big deal.

    In general they are still there for me and I suspect there is more acceptance than not (as my mother said, I;ve always been strange, it’s hardly new!). Perhaps sometimes this is the best we can hope for.

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