I started a GoFundMe

I started one to help with my transition costs.  Its not cheap to transition, its a tough road that I would not do if it was not needed.  I appreciate the people who have offered the emotional support.  Right now I need a little financial help if people can spare it.  Doesn’t have to be much, every little bit helps.  Thanks in advance and I wish you all the best.

Link: https://www.gofundme.com/2msbztg

Trapped

I tend to be inside my own head a lot.  Thinking about things, assessing things, playing a song in my head, thinking about lunch, etc.  Often I am so far entrenched that I barely notice others around me.  I have learned to do this over the years.  To constantly ignore the outside world to protect myself.  I am hyper-aware of my surroundings, but often put effort into ignoring it to protect myself.

I have a very vivid imagination.  Often I will put myself in a situation or place where I am constantly/silently playing.  My mind stays occupied so much that sometimes small things can surprise me.  When I do not do this, I feel as if every person who passes me by is staring at me, perhaps judging me.  I feel the stares of others, it’s hard not to.  I tend to hide my face, look the other way, or put my head down so I don’t have to meet their gaze.

Hyper-awareness is a blessing and a curse.  I typically have to turn it off or down some so that the anxiety does not invade and make me feel awful.

This is the typical norm that I default to.  It’s learned behavior that is hard to break.  I know that I don’t have to do this.  It’s unnecessary but it is VERY hard to break the cycle.  It is not for lack of trying.  I use to drink to turn it completely off, but that’s hardly a solution and pretty dangerous at that.  Especially since I am diabetic.  I shouldn’t be drinking much if at all.  I tried using someone else talking for me to open up conversation.  That’s not a solution either as it causes other complications and sometimes resentment.  I tried just talking myself and I trip over my own words or don’t know what to say.  I often don’t know what I could add to a conversation.  Especially if it’s about stuff I know nothing about.

I have been blamed for being clingy.  I tend to stay close to those I trust with my feelings and words.  I am open with those I trust and will talk with them openly, but when around strangers, I clam up.  I just can’t get words out.  And when I do, it’s one or two things and the conversation moves on as if I said nothing.  Or if I do say something more than a few sentences, I lose track of what I’m talking about and get overly anxious.

The place inside my head is safe.  It doesn’t challenge me to try to be social.  I have done it for too long and have never really learned how to interact with people I feel.  At least not in person.  I am sure I will be told with practice that I will be better able to communicate.  I just don’t know where to start.  I am impatient and lazy.  I know there is no easy answer to this.  The work needs to be done and I can not imagine it away.  I need to talk to people.  I need to be more social.  Or I will continue to be a prisoner inside my head.

Fear and Blindness

I use to look to you
For everything
You were my life, my focus
I gave you all I had
And some things I didn’t

But you showed what it was worth to you.

Blinded by words
Held back by fear
Living a lie
Just to make someone happy

But I no longer need you
For anything
I dont need you, no longer my focus
I now give you nothing
And take back what I need

I know what I am worth

No longer blind
No longer in fear
Living my life
To make myself happy

I do not need to look to you
For anything
I have my life and things to focus on
I have everything I need
And some of the things I want

I am worth more than what you valued in me

No longer blind
Fear is a memory
It’s my life
I can be happy without you.

Dear Mom,

I have a lot of things I never got to say.  You left before I had a chance to say them.  I was not brave enough to say them at the time.  I have ignored or pushed away how I’ve felt about you for years.  It’s time I stop that today.

I was sad that you left, but more worried about Dad.  I suppressed my grief.  I did for him because he just lost the one he loved.  I don’t know exactly how that feels to lose someone in that way.  I can imagine it, in some ways I can feel it.  It’s a heavy weight that I wanted to help him with.  Eventually the weight lifted where he could deal on his own so that I could get back to trying to deal with my own emotional weight.  I still suppressed my grief.  I didn’t want to feel it.  A year of standing still, imagining I was happy.  Constantly reminded of what is wrong.  Just trying to get by and build on other things.  Play games until all hours of the night to forget about the pain.  Any issue within the groups of friends I had, any issues with my wife, made the thoughts come back.  I finally decided to be happy.

I decided to start living as I truly am Mom.  I started going to a therapist to take care of it.  She diagnosed me with gender dysphoria.  Mom, I’m not your son, I never was.  I was the girl you wanted.  I am your daughter.  I don’t even know if you understand this or not or why the sudden change.  You being gone was a reminder that I need to find happiness.  I expected you to be mad or frustrated at me if you were to ever find out these feelings I had about myself.  The things you would say, the attitude about me not being masculine enough, that hurt.  It made me angry at you for not understanding.  I felt I could never tell you that inside I am female.

But, I forgive you.

You only went on what you knew.  Me not being the man your raised may have made you feel like you are a failure and it didn’t feel good.  Mom, you raised a perfectly good person.  Gender has nothing to do with it or feel guilty about.  You should be proud of the daughter who is becoming the woman she should have been.  I have made lots of major changes and survived some really harsh emotional stuff.  I am about to be divorced, I am accepting my true gender, I am changing my spirituality, I am deepening the healthy friendships I have into very loving relationships.

I have never been able to say that I love myself.  To think it would be embarrassing at best.  That is no longer true.  Every morning I see a pretty face in the mirror.  It’s not a perfect face, but one that has lived through the scars of the past.  One who knows who she is and is not afraid to say so.  One who is growing more confident everyday.  But one that also misses you a lot.

I miss you mom.  I love you.  I wish I could have told you about all of this.  I wish we could live through this transition of my life together.  To see the person I am and make you proud.  But I will be okay mom.  You raised a good person, a very loving person.  I will remember you always.

Love,

Sara

Social Digging

Yes, I said I may not write for a while.  Sometimes things change and you just have to get something out.

Social situations are often an awkward affair.  Usually why I tend to sit back and be an observer instead of a participant.  Eventually, if you listen and observe long enough, you see issues between people for what they are.  Sometimes it hits you like a ton of bricks.  Sometimes you have an idea of how to start fixing it, sometimes you do not.

Lack of sleep tends to bring about emotional clarity.  At least, that’s how I feel it works for me.  The situation I am referring to above will be explained in an analogy.  Bare with me if you will.

You start getting interested in what some of your friends are doing.  You see them shoveling a shiny pile of stuff from one pile to another.  You wonder “how can I have my own pile of shiny stuff to shovel?”.  You ask your friend, they explain what they are doing and give you some pointers to how you can start this yourself.  You find out this thing they are doing is called Shiny Shovelin.  It’s a practice well known and something that really interests you.  So you start collecting your shiny pile to shovel and start shovelin!  You keep talking to this person and other people, asking questions about shovelin.  You start to learn a lot.  Eventually your friend wants to share in a common interest you both have, invites you to watch them shovel.  Eventually they would like you to shovel with them.  How exciting!  You go along and watch them.  You go to more shovelin meetings, your starting to understand things, the motivations for who, what and why.  You like the closeness the team seems to have.  But there are cracks.  They don’t always agree on how to do the shovelin.  Person in charge says “Can we please start shovelin?”.  Others hear it, but it seems like an option instead of a request.  You see and hear the mis-communication.  You want to say something, but can’t because the pile is not yours.  You can not say how, when or where they should shovel.  But you see the problems with mis-communication, mis-interpretation, insecurities of other shovel-ers, and lack of trust.  You wonder why you would want to shovel with them.

Any group with a goal in mind needs good leadership, but also needs good inner communication.  Trust is a hard thing to gain, but in a social group setting, is essential.  Compassion for when things don’t go your way or others way is a key factor as well.  Sometimes we don’t have time to shovel that pile.  We have other piles we have to shovel that no one is helping us with.  Those piles are our responsibility.  The group pile, the one you have a passion for, should not turn into a chore.  But it takes some sacrifice from everyone.  Everyone has to trust one another, everyone needs to be clear on their intent, everyone needs to clearly communicate what they want, and finally everyone needs to be compassionate for each other.  All groups have a certain level of intimacy that they build depending on the dynamic, needs of the group, and the bonds that are formed.  The things mentioned before are so important to have and build for the group to grow.  Otherwise, the pile never gets any lower, someone feels like they do all the work, people feel left out, etc.

I hope that this helps someone, as silly as it may sound.  Analogies are funny like that.  But I think this can be applied to most, if not all groups of friends, people, or work environments.  Now lets dig that pile!

Nothing

I have run out of things I care to share publicly.  I still write, a lot even.  The time for making it public is done.  Not that I don’t want to share things with people.  But I have nothing good to share.  I may come back and write again, but for now, there is nothing to say.  I can not help but protect myself at this crucial moment.  I am in pain still, it’s different every day.  But I can’t continue to share it here.  It’s just too personal.

Healing

To get better sometimes means feeling the worst of what ails you.

I have been so grateful for meeting a group of friends that have been there through all my emotional issues.  It helps when you have a group with a common interest that can come together.  Not only being accepted, but also looking past the problems and just talking about the thing that we came together for.  Being accepted as part of the group can help when you feel like you are alone.  Especially when your exploring a new part of who you are.

Even with the good, there are the times when I come back home and remember.  Memories tied to things, some material, some digital.  In this case, it was all the digital memories.  Lots of things that were created together.  Pictures, videos, projects, vacations, graphics.  Every part of it a memory of something I no longer have.  It hurt, a lot.

I cried for a while, it was ugly.  I both needed to happen and did not need to.  The emotions need to be let out, but I can’t keep feeling this way when I am alone.  Lately I have been feeling dysphoric at work.  Sometimes causing major anxiety.  I am tired of coming here, wearing this uniform of a person I am not.  A mixture of these two feelings hit me yesterday while I was still at work.  I had to close my office door because I could not control the tears.  I am lucky to have the friends I do, that are willing to listen to me when I am in this much distress.  I can’t thank them enough.

The hurt I felt brought back the issues I’m facing.  I am not over it by a long shot.  The days that are good are increasing in amount, but there are still days that are some of the most hurtful they have ever been.  I know it won’t be fixed overnight.  I am thankful for all the support I have had so far.  I hope that those around me are patient enough to listen when I am having one of those days.  I personally am always there for them, but even if someone says otherwise, I still feel I am a burden.  So much pressure in the world to “feel positive” or “enjoy life”.  You know though, sometimes I am not okay.  Sometimes I am not feeling good.  And that is okay for me to feel that way.  I need to so I can heal.