Tuesday, November 20, 2007

20th November 2007
I remeber soon after Susie's mum became a widow, she had the greatest difficulty coping with what foir most of us are simple things of life.
She had never travelled a long distance on a train alone, for instance: and didn't really know how to set about it.
I remember being a bit horrified at the time; but today it occurred to me that after 33 years with Susie, it is still quite difficult for me, in terms of managing my life, even if in perhaps more subtle ways.
And that this trip that I'm currently engaged on (seeing an old friend in Brighton) is part of a complicated process of re-discovery. Discovery of how to spend my life, in the knowledge that the same old ways simply will not do.
It's a strange sensation, I trip over a lot, simple things can become very complicated: but how incredible a joy.
Particularly when allied to changing gender.
Last night, for instance, when I went out to eat, the young woman who showed to my table said, "Hello, sir"; whereas the man who brought me my pizza said "Here you are, signora".
This afternoon on my way back from lunch, 2 "madams" in M and S; no end of "miss"es or dears or loves from the Big Issue sellers and I come home in the sense that every encounter, however apparently trivial, is a rather wonderful adventure.
And that the whole obsession with "passing" which so preocupies many of us, and which endless books and articles on "passing as a real woman" try to exploit, is actually a total waste of time.
Because it really doesn't matter: the crucial thing is that people are nice to me.
As they are. Almost all the time


Monday, November 19, 2007

when I'm in rehearsal, I always intend to keep a diary.
But never do.
Life is lived so intensely in the rehearsal room: so much changes, so much is lived through, so much happens.. and then when I get home afterwards life keeps going on, as it does, in its intense ever changing way. Though a whole day of it will be squeezed into a few hours... and my dear self gets so preoccupied with trying to process all these events that there is never any room or energy left for writing about them.
The same has been happening to me lately.
So many profound changes, so much intensity in events that I have not had the space in my brain to describe them.
But the irony is that it is precisely at these times, times of radical and important change, that you really most need to be able to record and document them...
But to come to understand, to come to truly understand, that it is absolutely safe for me to wear a skirt out in the world is like saying it is absolutely safe for me to BE in the world. And that is maybe the most profound change of all.
Everything has shifted as a result.
And then i seem to have been waiting for weeks and weeks to sort things out with the surgeon in Thailand to see if he will accept me for the SRS operation.
And am still waiting.
And it is difficult to concentrate on anything else while this is still in suspension.
Although today it does not seem so important. I am who i am and I am on the journey I am on. Surgery or not.
I have done all I can for now and there is little else I can do.
Except wait; and live in the process; and enjoy the process of living through it.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

saturday 3rd November 2007
Yesterday's entry was not the one I meant to write.

I had wanted to try to describe the process of change in day to day detail.

I had started to write:
"Friday Oct 26th: Went for co-counselling with my dear friend Peggy.
It was lunchtime. I took two buses. I wore a skirt there and back and felt no anxiety at all."

And stopped. And deleted it.
because that sentence, which described what had felt like such a breakthrough at the time, suddenly seemed trivial and ridiculous.

So I never published it.

And thinking about it all later last night, I realised that that is precisely the kind of self-censorship I have been inflicting on myself for years.

It's a kind of stubborn refusal - born out of self-hatred and shame - a stubborn refusal to give full weight to the kind of difficulties I have been facing.

And I need to remind myself very firmly: this is NOT insignificant.

Clothes are an incredibly important weapon in the armoury of means society uses against ALL of us to control who we are.

I think of the dreadful uniform imposed on me at school.
A black suit, of the kind that is held up, still, as a model of a successful dress code for school students.

Of the uniform soldiers are made to wear. The dress codes imposed on office workers.

And the deep miseries I have suffered because I have felt unable to wear the clothes i wanted to wear and so be the person I deep down felt myself to be.

These matter.

And so I repeat:

Friday Oct 26th: Went for co-counselling with my dear friend Peggy.
It was lunchtime. I took two buses. I wore a skirt there and back and felt no anxiety at all.

Friday, November 02, 2007

2nd November 2007

A huge amount has happened since my last post.

So much there's not somehow been the head space to write it down as it happened.

It's as if it has suddenlt become safe to become fully myself.
It's like a miracle..

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