Earlier this week we ran a post here in Cyrsti's Condo called Beyond Transition. At that time I mentioned I had a few more thoughts to share on the matter. Also, this week is home to "National Coming Out Day".
Huge ideas to be sure. I look at transition as a passage from point "a" to point "b". When I look at the transgender community as a whole, does anyone ever really get to point "b"? My only point of reference is when I'm out with friends and I lose any sense of gender. I simply just am who I am. Have I transitioned, am I done? Am I the same as a transsexual woman who has gone through SRS and lives her life with no fanfare down your street? Could be...or not.
Although I have not had the surgeries the trans woman down the street has had, would her transition qualify as being more complete? Probably not. In essence if either of us is facing taking estrogen till the day we die, we are still transitioning. Perhaps the only defining separation is one of us is determined to talk about our life to hopefully lend some guidance to others - the other not and that's fine too.
On the other hand transitioning does imply a certain series of events. The external move from gender "a" to "b" is very clear. You decide you need to change to live, you begin to socialize yourself in your non birth gender, you decide you want to ingest chemicals into your body to further the process and you go "under the knife" to complete any physical changes you may deem necessary. This black and white process looks very good on paper and especially works well with a male mind but often runs into problems with the mental processes.
In my case, some would assume I already have the problems with my mental processes, so it's been damn difficult on occasion to sort out what is coming from where. An example is years ago on my first visit to a "gender therapist", she asked if I had any problems with my cross dressing. I said no but I did have problems on the effect it was having on my marriage. To make a long expensive story short, the only good result of the visits was that she diagnosed me with a very clear bi-polar disorder.
So I guess transitioning is in the mind of the beholder. The TS woman down the street may be "snug as a bug in the rug" in her stealth life. On the other hand, I don't think I have ever been snug at anything. If the river is calm, bring me a boat to rock to see if I can tip it in my heels. Plus I hope I never lose the wonder of where this life has taken me.
Years ago when Uncle Sam let me go after three glorious years, I was discharged at Ft. Dix in New Jersey where my car was waiting from Germany. I threw my duffel bag in the back seat of my 1973 VW Beetle and headed home to Ohio. The next morning was clear, blue and beautiful when I got onto the Pennsylvania turnpike. Just for a split second at a toll booth on a hill and had a chance to look at the road in the valley ahead. What a rush of freedom it was! I thought I would never have a chance to reclaim that moment again but guess what - I'm close. Never say never.
So I guess my transition will only end when I depart this life and I look back and think how crazy it was that being transgender was so earth shattering. I will get back to you on that!
By the way, the "National Coming Out Day" link is actually a guide and a good one for you to check out.