the importance of being perfect…

Yes: its another transition first! Though maybe not quite the sort of breakthrough to write home about. Because I’m definitely getting to grips with the whole “body issue” thing. Not, now, as someone “in transition”: but rather as someone who has well and truly “crossed over” – and is getting the feel of how insecure it feels not having the body of a size 10 teenager .

I s’pose I always knew this sort of thing was going to happen. For as I have written, or maybe alluded to a fair bit elsewhere, my transition was a lot to do with social integration: “coming home” to the only place I feel I really belong. So I’m always going to be that much more of a sucker for female peer pressure than male.

And its all new to me, which sort of gives me the instincts of a teenager and the lived experience of a grown up. So sure: its wonderful exchanging views with women of same age and social background as me who have grown old gracefully – or even disgracefully – and, after a lifetime of coping with the subtle unstated fascism that is female groupthink around looks and presentation, have managed to break free and be themselves. But I haven’t had that bit: haven’t had the time to get to grips with me, before I have to learn to get to grips with me getting all saggy, wrinkly and less than perfect.

Oh, what IS she complaining about?

I guess I’m not complaining, as such. More succumbing to a wider wistfulness and, yes, grief that occasionally creeps up on me in the middle of the night: grief, simply put, that life or genes or something played this trick and I missed the best bits of growing up as me.

I take stock: the boobs are still about a cup size below where I’d like to end up…mostly because I have a broad back. On the plus side, there is this ever-so-teeny bit of envy from one or two friends (you know who you are!) that being newly minted, they are perky, in a way that 50-something boobs have no business being. Yay!

Legs, too, are a plus (the one advantage of arriving here with male biology in my past). So a drawer full of leggings and skinny’s for me!

But the rest? I want smaller feet, less height. I want a cuter nose, trimmer waist, wider hips. I want hair that doesn’t turn to bird’s nest at the slightest breeze. I want a “designer vagina” (of which more in a minute), nails that don’t break and perfect complexion. I want, I want, I want…

You get the idea?

Because, sure, when it comes to body, some people may be worrying that men – bless ‘em – are now being co-opted into the corrupt world of body obsession. To which I can only say that apart from a few, who spend far too much of their lives obsessing about “training” – and the predictable changing room joshing about “size” – what men internalize is but a fraction of the masochism that women, all ages, sizes and backgrounds, are trained to inflict upon themselves.

I’ll get over it. One day, I’ll start to grow old more gracefully. But not yet!

jane xx


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