Here I am, pretty comfortable in my skin. I would say I’m post transition, but the truth is that there are still small changes and accommodations still happening over time. Adjustments between my daughter and me is still going on, but at least we’re talking some.
I’m unrecognizable from before. I’ve gotten a kick out of showing people my driver’s license photo taken just before I went full time. One person asked whether I’d have a problem if I were pulled over; I thought there was enough resemblance for that, but really just enough.
When I first went full time I was a bit pollyannaish about it. It was just as well to wear rose colored glasses and think I passed well rather than just ok. That I knew had to pick out clothing and put together an outfit rather than, as one nice woman at work put it, dress edgy.
I knew I was passing well when conversations changed with men as I approached, doors started being opened automatically, and they smiled at me consistently. It really wasn’t a question, but it did take time.
The stuff that is hard after three years I still pass former coworkers with deadpan faces, and people who won’t return an hello in the hallway. The department I work in is great, and many, many people know and are absolutely fine with me, but sometimes I feel icicles growing from my eyebrows when I see some of these folks.
When I do come out to someone new I have to answer the litany of questions. When did you know, explaining about deciding or not deciding, and so on. Explaining other things depending on what is or is not understood.
Yet these days I rarely tell people. It isn’t the common case that I have a reason to tell them. If there’s no reason, why do it? Lots of people probably realize, I don’t edit talking about my pass other than absolute direct giveaways, like talking about prostate troubles, but I’ll talk about working on the house or doing things for my spouse (I just say her). If they do realize that’s their business.
It is often hard to keep in mind that we are rare geese to them, whereas we aren’t to ourselves. As someone put it to me today “they want to see if we fart rainbows”, yeah, what she said. However, it sometime makes you feel like a specimen under glass rather than a person. I want to stand on a soapbox and scream “I am not here for your amusement, go live your lives and let me live mine”.