The Company of Women

A strange day today starting with insomnia, progressing to migraine and trouble functioning at work. I’m afraid though that the start had an impact on work and after a bit returning home seemed the better course of action. A nap later I’m still not quite there, but certainly closer to the next opportunity at a good night’s sleep. Needless to say I don’t recommend insomnia.

I live in an apartment and there are nice young women who run the leasing office, which is also where one stops to pick up packages and to request repairs and such. Usually I arrive home after the office is closed, but as I was leaving early it was still open.

I went in to ask a couple of questions and when I had a chance I sat down to talk with C and M. I got my question answered. As so often happens with women we kept on talking and discussing relationships, men’s cluelessness, and women’s versus men’s tendencies. It felt like I was in a warm soup of femininity.

Over the past bit of time, I’m not sure whether it started with surgery or proceeded it by a few or even many months, I have felt more and more like my primary identity is firmly female that I am firmly a woman. This may sound funny, but one really doesn’t just switch from male to female on a  dime. Certainly the surgery helped by removing what was, for me, an obstacle. Yet, this has been a process, a mental transition that started a solid three years ago when I first started electrolysis in 2013.

As we sat there, me at 58, M at 23 and C somewhere in her 20s or early 30s, we had this commonality that made me feel entirely bonded to them. I understood everything they were saying, they understood me.

Over those three years I first started shedding that primary mark of masculinity, my facial hair. Follicle by follicle each hair was treated and removed, most over and over again. Truly a trial of endurance feeling each come away with pain. A different trial of pain occurred in my private life as I came to grips with the transition not being an optional step.

I told M and C about one of the quotes I had read from a radical feminist that intercourse not arising from the woman’s initiation as an act of love being rape and the looks on their faces was priceless. Every normal woman knows that men want sex more often then they do and relationships are about compromise. The notion that a woman’s going to bother initiating sex when the guy’s bound to pretty soon is silly, but it certainly doesn’t make it rape.

After determining that I was starting HRT and started planning going full time there were other trials by fire. Oddly the spousal relationship settled into a bit of a rhythm since a decision about SRS was more than a year off. Name changes, id papers, social security and finally changing over at work was all consuming.

Sitting there with M and C I felt warm, and part of a greater sisterhood. I felt no barriers, nothing that separated me from other  women. I feel now that if I were to try and pass as a guy that I simply would look like a woman dressed up as a guy doing everything wrong at this point.

This is then the endpoint I hope for all of my trans women readers. To feel genuine, to feel normal, to feel like you’ve always been a woman. My past is not gone, I have only to think about it, but unless I’m thinking really specifically about having sex back then, I don’t feel the “guy” back there. Even thinking about lovemaking it is difficult to really call those memories up. It is perhaps a commentary about how ill fitting it was.


2 thoughts on “The Company of Women

  1. Hi Rachael,

    What a lovely post. I guess it’s all our dreams to be accepted by cis women and it was lovely to read how you are now so secure in your primary identity as woman. I am almost 10 years older and just starting my journey; it is real comforting to know that it can turn out well.

    Love Michele xx

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Getting a nice comment like this from you and others is so wonderful and helps validate that my purpose in writing pieces like this is worthwhile. I hope to educate and inspire people like me, because I will never forget how difficult the journey can be for you, and for those who remain silent. Carry on and know you will get there.


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