Absolutely. But you have to have guessed that there is something so enormous driving me that all the fear, all the pain, all the uncertainty still is not enough to persuade me otherwise. I will go through the op to be complete and, in case you think there is nothing but risk and negativity ahead, this post is meant to act as counter.
So much of what people read in the popular press about transgender focuses on two wrong things.
First, there is the focus on someone at the point of “coming out”: when, according to the medical establishment, the trans man or woman to be first starts to “live in role” in accordance with medical establishment requirements. We possibly look a bit odd at that point: no hormones…so just new clothes, literally, draped on existing body.
That’s when the jibes are at their worst: fun is poked at trans women who “look like truckers”. Idiots queue up, it seems, to inquire about our “true” gender.
That is wrong because, for all the reasons above, that is exactly the point when someone is almost certainly at their least trans. As well to pull in a student on day one of their Physics degree and quiz them about the theory of relativity.
The second wrong focus in the press is the use of “pre-op”. Why? Its prurient. Some women are “post-op”, in the sense that they have had a hysterectomy or other intimate surgery. Do the press regularly report on that (unless its absolutely relevant to a story)? No way. Nor should they.
But of course, the pre-op thing is press code for “still has a dick”: because until you’re post-op, as far as much of the press, maybe much of the public are concerned too, you’re still a bloke masquerading as… You’re not serious about it. As though the shape of one’s genitals is somehow public property: something that the press may validly write about.
There is one thing the press rarely, if ever write about…its something I am beginning to understand from those who have gone thru the op…and it’s the sheer joy of waking post-operatively to a new body.
I hope no-one minds my quoting them, at several removes: but those now post-op have told me about being unable to stop smiling for a month. Of waking in tears of joy. Of crying as they went in to the op because they were so happy.
And on and on and on.
No. The press focus on the prurient. They focus, too, on those who claim to have regretted their decision. But outside the trans community, I wonder how many of the puiblic have ever read of the sheer unadulterated joy that so many of us wake to.
Its….its the sense of finally reclaiming one’s body. Even now…even feeling the fear that I so definitely feel in respect of what lies ahead…I can feel the shadow of that joy looping out to greet me.
Which is why I will go ahead.
To stop here would be “safe”…but leave me forever half-way there. Incomplete. And forever cut off from the happiness I suspect lies the other side.
I worry now that this is beginning to sound almost religious – mystic even.
But before you worry about me too much…before you sympathise for the fear….remember that there is a plus side too. And that plus outweighs almost every other negative imaginable.