I ran into a friend, a lovely person with one of the greatest jobs in the world. Not an easy one. She commented how open I was here on my blog and I have been with information on transition and my struggles with identity and sexuality. I don’t think I’ve kept a whole lot back. Perhaps that has been wise, perhaps not, but I swore my experience would help others; and I believe the only way to accomplish that is to set an example of facing my fears with a degree of dignity.
Although I try to have dignity it doesn’t mean that I don’t experience fear, tears and pain. This has not been an easy journey and I don’t think I’ve implied anything else here. Nor can I share everything. There are close ones I refuse to hurt. They have their own stories to share and it is their right and not mine to decide when and if those get shared and with whom.
While I will probably never say that learning to be the new me will ever end, that’s like saying I learn to be a better person daily. Every experience for me, and I hope for you, shapes my perceptions, adds to my ability to empathize, to communicate and to exist in harmony. I will never perfect being who I want to be. Perhaps that’s the charm of it all.
Aside from convincing my brain to start using my new voice full time, and my minor corrective surgery in October, there are really no interesting trans issues in my life. I reached the milestone where I accepted myself. At that point others who don’t accept me became ever so much less of a threat to my ego or self confidence as I might otherwise say.
No, I struggle with my all too human frailties of getting older, chronic health conditions and trying to reconcile myself to the likelihood that I need to take disability and get over the feelings that come with that – having spent years as head of household, taking care of others and earning an honest wage.
When I came out I dropped to a 4 day week. Not just because I needed the time for therapy, which I most assuredly did, but also because it was all I could manage. Yet now if I’m honest and look at my actual served hours I need to take an average of another half or full day off each week. This is not going to improve.
Sometimes courage is to face your shortcomings and accept that you’ve had a wonderful career and done a lot of good things, and helped a lot of people, and exit stage left before they ask you to and find yourself without wages or health care at 62.
It hasn’t happened yet, but it will soon. I don’t just owe myself either. I’d be lying if I said this doesn’t wrankle. I did have dreams that past transition my depression would abate and I’d have fewer migraines with less stress.
Man plans, god laughs: Parkinson’s made it’s appearance and adds to the depression and the migraines worsened, all of this makes insomnia common and insomnia all by itself makes energy and focus very difficult for someone who makes her living with her mind.
This was definitely not the plan. No it was not….
But life will go on. There is much that can be done even if work is denied.