I was driving back to work after a very nice lunch with an old friend. He and I have known each other for about twenty five years. We had a nice conversation, and we’ll get together again in a month. The restaurant was nice too, high end mexican food, really nice presentation. I got both lunch and dinner out of mind and I (ahem) still overate.
Driving back to work it really struck me how relaxed I’m finally feeling. How not stressed about these issues I am. What a contrast that forms with five years ago and the path along the way to today. It often seemed impossible to ever feel normal again, to feel like “me” again. I wondered who I would feel like when it was over. Now I have an answer.
It has been so many years since I have felt normal. I’m going to say ten years, but it could be fifteen, or seven. Maybe I never really felt entirely normal but there was a good imitation for much of my life, gender dysphoria or not. The truth is that while I was aware of being trans, I’m not sure I’d say I was dysphoric until around ten or fifteen years ago. It was subtle at first.
Depression, sexual dysfunction, slowly leading up to an ever growing obsession with transition about five years ago. I was pretty messed up at that point. Once I came out they had me on Xanax and Zoloft and over a few weeks I lost about 20 pounds and slowly crept back into some sense of normalcy. Normalcy right then was just extreme depression instead of hitting rock bottom.
You know most of the story as I’ve laid it out, about 18 months to HRT, another 6 to going full time and finally another 18 months to SRS. Neither super fast or super slow.
Over the past year I’ve quickly been shedding baggage, it isn’t that I never talk about trans issues anymore, sometimes I have something on my mind or someone else will bring it up. However, it isn’t a very important part of my life now outside of dealing with a minor issue from SRS that will either get fixed or resolve.
I’m also taking a much less directed approach to finding any kind of relationship. I’m really not ready. I’m just trying to get out and be social and enjoy people’s company and life in general. Something might happen, but I’ve taken away the focus.
I don’t spend much time thinking about myself as trans, I feel more confident, I feel more normal. Do I have my moments? Of course.
There are a couple of lingering things that will probably resolve over the next year or so. The first one is that I still find it slightly strange to hear female pronouns directed at me. Male pronouns would shock me, but I don’t entirely feel connected to she/her yet. Very close.
Getting misgendered on the phone the other day wasn’t nearly as distressing as it would have been three years ago, I’m a lot more centered and confident in who I am. It was highly annoying. I hope I can grow to take that in stride more.