Sunday, January 13, 2019

Outfit - Grey Dress

Dress - White House Black Market - Similar @ WHBM @ Amazon
Leggings - WHBM - Similar @ WHBM @ Amazon
Sweater - 89th and Madison - Similar @ WHBM @ Amazon
Shoes - Unisa - Similar
Scarf - ?? - Similar

I like this outfit.  It is pretty simple, but super comfy and casually cute.  Do you know what I get the most compliments on?  The scarf.  By far and wide it is the scarf.  And the bummer?  I have no idea where I got it.  I do know that I adore it.  It is soft, warm, purple, ombre, and sparkly!  What's not to love?  I have had the pleasure of wearing it for quite some time now.  I used to wear it all the time last year with my more plain and boring work outfits.  Now it gets to come out and play only when I think it goes well with the outfit. 

The most amazing thing happened on the day I chose to wear this.  I'm pretty sure it was either last Monday or Tuesday.  Probably Monday, my first day back after winter break at work.  One of the administrators at my school has asked for all teachers to go over the district's sexual harassment policy with our students at least once per quarter.  I've decided to also include a brief discussion on what it means to bully and harass people in general.  This particular time I included a brief discussion of LGBTQ+ issues.  Things like the high rate of suicide, that most people will not say anything due to deep seated fears, and how we probably have 1 to 2 students in our own class who identify that way and have yet to let anybody know even though they know.

It was a fairly usual speech for me.  Nothing all that out of the ordinary.  However this time I did have a few new students in my classes.  A student that I have only had for a month or two waited around after class while everyone else left.  She came up to me and said something along the lines of "Mrs. Denithorne, I just wanted to say thank you for having that talk with us today.  Especially the part about the LGBT community.  So thank you very much because now I feel a little safer at this school.  Can I give you a hug?"  To which I said yes while choking back the tears. 

Oh my god!  Really??  Some part of me thought that just by seeing me, students would get the message that they can be safe, but that is not really true now is it?  It needs to be explicitly explained to them before they really understand the issue.  For both sides.  The kids who are being harassed don't think anyone will care.  And often the kids harassing really do not understand what they are doing. 

So, I thanked her for speaking to me, and wished her a good day.  She smiled and went about her school day.  I took several deep breaths, savored the moment, and went outside with a huge grin and tears in my eyes to welcome in my next class and repeat the whole speech. 

Damn teaching middle schoolers can really blow your socks off sometimes.

Love you!!

Love yourselves!!

Monday, December 31, 2018

What? Hormones Were Life Changing?

Recently (who am I kidding, it was months ago!) a reader of this blog, Stana, a most awesome blogger herself, asked for me to expand on this section of one of my posts:

Hormones - This one was life changing for me.  It really opened my eyes to my reality.  I laugh at who I thought I was prior to last July and changing my hormones to the right ones.

Changing my hormones did many things for me.  Physically they have done very little, in my opinion.  That is super tough, which is weird.  At some point I was super afraid of what the physical changes would be, and now I'm bummed there hasn't been more.  The fear was that I wouldn't be able to hide the physical changes, which is now irrelevant. And hey, surprise surprise, I'm a woman, so I'd kind of like to look a bit more feminine. 

The number one thing that changing my hormones did is it allowed me to accept who I am and go with it.  When I first decided to do this I had no intentions of going full time.  I never saw myself as actually being a woman.  I figured I would give hormones a shot and see if that would help with some concerns I had.  Now, after having been full time for about six months, and having been on estrogen since July 2017, I know I will never go back.  I can see now that hormones didn't make me want this, it allowed me to admit what has been there all along, I'm actually a woman.

Which brings me to the number two thing that changing my hormones did, rewriting the narrative that is my life.  Here is a brief summary - as a young child I cried over everything, once I hit puberty I was frequently angry over everything, as an adult my wife and I super struggled to get along, sprinkle in a large obsession with sex throughout it all, and that was pretty much what I thought my life story was.  Well, pieces of my life story, but they were pretty big pieces.  I figured that as a child I was sad because I had a fairly dysfunctional family, so obviously I cried often.  Once I went through puberty that sadness turned to anger because yeah that is what testosterone does.  And I had a bit of a sexual obsession, well because there is testosterone again.

I figured that my job on this planet, with this body, and this brain, with my interests, temperament, and desires, was to figure out how to be who I wanted to be without being uncontrollably sad, irrationally angry, and inappropriately sexual.  Also I wanted to get along with the love of my life like we are long lost soul mates.  Easy right?  Ha! Ha! HA!  No.  Not so much.  However, I change my hormones, just sort of on a whim, right?  No, not really, it was a multi-year, possibly decade long ponderable.  In the end it became sort of a hmmm..... nothing else has seemed to help, so why not try this?  And then things shift.  Life begins to change.  Memories fade and old mental boxes open to show long lost secrets. 

So, how about this for a life rewrite?  1 - I was sad as a young child because I couldn't rectify the discord between my male body and my female brain.  2 - I got super pissed as a teenager, because my body began developing secondary male characteristics.  3 - My vast sexual drive was actually a combination of an intense attraction to the feminine and an attempt to be as close to anything feminine as I could without it appearing to be anything related to my gender.  4 - The difficulties with my wife have actually been me being just a bit pissed off because, you know, I'm actually a woman who was trying to live life pretending to be a man. 

In short - I have spent about 30 years or so thinking that I am a sad, angry, almost sexually addicted individual, and in reality as it turns out, nope, it's just that I'm a woman.  Simple right?

Hmm...... yeah, that's a pretty life changing realization.  Now, who really knows why exactly I have done what I have done and why I was who I was, but I will tell you the whole, I'm a woman thing makes so much more sense. 

How about this flashback image - hopping into the way back machine - It was the summer of 1991.  Jules, my girlfriend at the time, and I had just completed our first year of college.  We were back home in Northern California for the summer.  The night before we had hung out with our friends and had a pretty crazy night!  We were in my room of my childhood home and it occurred to me that this woman was who I wanted to be with for the rest of my life.  I got down on my knees and proposed to the most fabulous human I had ever met.  She said yes and the rest is beautiful history right?  Hmm..... not so fast there trigger!  It took a bit for us to find her a ring, but we found something she liked and I could afford.  And for the next few months I was fucking pissed!  Wait, what??  Right?!  Well yeah, my explanation at the time was, it is stupid that only women get engagement rings, men should too.  Sounds logical enough, right?  Yeah, just like that bullshit that says women's underwear is just more comfortable! Hahahahahahahaha!  Sorry to my gender diverse friends who still use that one.  How about a much easier and simpler explanation, (especially considering the vast majority of men could care less about engagement rings, except for possibly how in the hell are they supposed to afford them,) it's just that I'm actually a woman. 


This has become my life as of late.  Realizing where the bullshit was laid, figuring out how to pick it up, and deciphering the truth hiding underneath. 

Recently, well maybe somewhat relatively recently, I hung out with my sister in Las Vegas for a little bit.  It was the first time she and I hung out, while I was actually being me.  She said to me "you move differently, has Jules mentioned that to you?"  I asked what my sister meant and she explained that she felt I was moving in a more feminine manner.  I mentioned that estrogen has changed my musculature, but she said that it was more than that.  If you don't know my sister was super super super close to being an Olympic athlete, majored in some sort of body-science thingy, was a licensed massage therapist, studied reiki, so yeah.  I mentioned this all to my wife and she said that she has never mentioned it to me because I have always moved like that around her.  I was kind of dumb founded.  I didn't realize at all that I hid myself so well from so many people, including my sister, one of the closest people to me.  Bummer. 

So, it is for sure a fascinating process.  There have been highs and lows.  Most of the lows are simply realizations of who I have been my whole life while I was too whatever to actually see what was going on.  Vocabulary people!  Having the proper vocabulary to actually explain who the fuck you are is amaze-balls!  So a low for sure is coming to the understanding that if I had the vocabulary to explain myself at an earlier age, I would have.  When I was young I was sure there were only two types of humans with penises.  1 - regular men and 2 - gay men.  That was it.  Two types.  Period.  I did research, with pre-internet BBSs and such, I was trying to find an answer.  I knew I wasn't a regular guy, but I also knew that I didn't like guys.  Thus, I was lost.  All I did from that point forward was to misread pretty much every signal I sent out.  That is kind of a bummer to finally grasp the reality of. 

But really, those sorts of thoughts have been the only low bits.  Everything else is fabu!  It's just kind of a trip having to get it through my head, wait, damn, yeah, that makes sense, it's just that I'm a woman. 

This post has been in my drafts for at least a couple of months.  It has been a total block for me.  Why?  Because In order to expand on this (switching my hormones was life changing) I felt as though I needed to offer up some sort of undeniable, obvious, easily digestible, proof.  Now that I have laughingly attempted that in this post, what I really see is that I can answer this question in a far more direct way.  Switching my hormones was life changing because, for me, it was the first undeniable proof that I am a woman. 

So yeah, it really is just that simple.  Hmm, so I suppose there is a long and short answer.  That is actually often the way it is with me.  Lately I have begun calling myself Mrs. TMI.  I often give WAY too much information!  Ha!  Ha! Ha!  Of course if you have read my blog at all, you should really already know this.

Another reason that this post has taken me forever and that I have not blogged much is that I have been working on another pretty dang important project - I am super close to beginning to start public speaking.  Yeah I've done a small piece, but that was different, what I'm trying to get going is a one woman show.  Me, doing what I do, giving way too much information.  In reality it is a 30-90 minute presentation aimed at college students informing them of what this 1 transgender humans life has been like.  Trying to bring a bit of humanity to some labels.  Anywho, it has been dang hard for me to get something together that has a beginning, middle, and end!  But, at long last, after many months, I have something I actually like!  Woo-Hoo!!  I will keep you informed, as I am sure you waiting on pins and needles for my world tour to commence right???  Hahahahahaha!!  Damn, this girl is funny! 

Love you!

Love yourself!

Love yourself damn hard!  Damn hard I tell ya!

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Mini Update

Really?  Is it possible that I can match my already written title of a mini update?  I seriously don't know!  I'll try and keep it small, but lately it seems as though being brief is not my strong suit!  Hahahahahahahahahaha!!!

#1 - well things here in my personal life keep chugging along.  I am occupying much of my time with trying to change over my name on every little thing!  It is kind of annoying.  Do you know what would be super helpful?  If you legally change your name, it then is magically changed across everything!  It kind of stinks having to get a different doctor letter for my court case, my driver's license, and my passport.  Aren't these all government agencies?  Does the court order mean nothing to these other groups?  Hmmmm........

#2 - like my timeline photo above?  I do!  It is weird in changing your hormones.  At first all I wanted was the mental benefits of changing them, now that I have those, I want the physical changes too!  Have you ever seen a female to male trans individual who goes on testosterone? T is a pretty strong drug.  So is E, however it's effects tend to be stronger on individuals who have not had any hormones in their body before.  T on the other hand has profound effects on pretty much all bodies.  No it cannot un-grow breasts or reduce hip size, but it can cause body and facial hair, as well as a deepening of the voice.  Those few things are huge gender markers!  Huge!  Anywho.... E's effects are not always as noticeable.  Thus I love comparing my old favorite photos to my new favorite photos.  That is where I see the most changes.  Most people keep saying - yeah you look happier.  Do you know what?  Something else must be happening.  I can't just be getting happier and happier.  Was I happy when I first got the hormones on 7/3/17?  Yes I was!  Am I happier now?  Well life sure is grand, but it can also be quite annoying.  I'm still happy, but happier?  Huh, that's hard to judge.  Just because everyone is saying it does not make it so.  Something else must be happening here people.  And with so many of you refuting that any actual physical change is happening, are you aware of how much that hurts?  Well you do now, so can you please stop?  I'd really appreciate not hearing anymore of how I look the same, just happier. 

#3 - while we are on the happy topic can we please stop telling trans people who chose to transition "well if that is what would make you happy?"  I'd really appreciate if we could stifle that narrative.  Seriously, transition is about far more than mere happiness.  More and more lately when I hear the above phrase all I translate it to is - 'I think you are completely loony and I have no educated idea of what being transgender is all about, but I believe in people having the freedom to do to their bodies what they want, so go ahead and do it to yourself."  Cookies make me happy, transition has finally begun to make me whole.  There is a difference.

#4 - my little honey's foot is healing but not quite healed.  That darn toe bone takes forever to grow!  Hurry up big toe she is getting tired of having to thump around in her boot!

#5 - work is going well.  Surprisingly I have only had to write up 1 student, out of 550, for sexually harassing me.  Little turd!  Oh well, 1 out of 550 is flippin great!

#6 - a super kind reader sent me a little note letting me know that my About page was woefully outdated.  When I read it over I was shocked! Shocked I tell you!  Seriously!  That has now been updated and is truly reflective on where I am at currently.  Though admittedly it is rather long!  I thought it would be a good idea to give some sort of explanation of how I went through a few phases before ending up here at transgender female.

#7 - Eeekkkkk - I'm at the beginning stage of attempting to modify my voice.  It is kind of tricky trying to picture yourself and be perceived as female when you clearly sound like a male.  I am fond of saying that I pass fairly well, until I open my mouth, then it is shot to shit!  So....I'll keep you updated on how that all rolls!

Hmmmm........ I think that is about it peeps!

Love you!

Love yourselves!

Love love!

Friday, November 2, 2018

My Outfit - Bold Red Booties

Jacket - Guess - Similar @ Amazon
Top - WHBM - Similar @ Amazon
Skirt - WHBM - Similar @ Amazon
Booties - Xappeal, Alexa - @ Rack Room Shoes Similar @ Amazon
Tights - Target - Similar @ Amazon
Belt - Target - Similar @ Amazon

The last time I was outlet shopping I was in shoe heaven.  I was in a place called Rack Room Shoes, at the Tejon outlet mall in California, near the Grapevine, if you know the area.  Anywho, I had found about 3 pairs of lovely feeling boots when I spotted this bright red beauties.  I really didn't think they would be work appropriate, but I have not purchased much in the way of fashion shoes lately, so I went for it.

Generally where I live there is no nice place to shop.  Many of my friends get annoyed with me as my preferred activity when I visit them is to shop!  They often roll their eyes at me, and lament that I am too into shopping and I need to get out and do other things with my time, and especially our time together.  The harsh truth of where I live though is that there are no nice places to shop.  Even the places that often carry high end clothes, like Macy's, do not offer those nicer products in my area.  It is really sad actually.  I feel bad for people who do not have the means to travel far from where we live to find those nicer products.  It is really sad when you consider that this same policy holds true for food as well.

Well then..... I had these super cute booties waiting in my closet and yesterday was the day they made their first appearance to the world.  And I'm not 100% sold on how I wore them.  They certainly popped with this outfit, but the white tights may have made them pop a bit more than I was really wanting them to.  Without the jacket on they do look a bit out of place.  Hmmm..... sometimes to be fashionable one needs to take fashion risks.  I don't know how fashionable I am, but I do know I take risks with my clothes.

Another risk I often take that my wife just does not approve of?  The white tights.  They really rub her the wrong way.  However, I will say she is not a leggings, tights, jeggings, stretch pants, type of girl anywho.  I mean, she thinks they are fine on some others, but not for herself!  I have noted that she tends to be a bit more discriminating than I in these types of leg coverings.

Alrighty, that's it!  I'm outta here!

Love you!

Love yourself!

Love red booties!

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Gatekeeping, Ignorance, Transphobia

Do you know what gatekeeping is?  Here is an acceptable definition:

the activity of controlling, and usually limiting, general access to something.

How exactly does that apply to trans folk?  Normally it is interpreted as - you cannot do this thing, take hormones or have surgeries, until you have met the following predefined characteristics.  Those characteristics are outlined within WPATH's(World Professional Association for Transgender Health) SOC (standards of care.)  The SOC have never been an issue for me until recently.

About six months ago I had a pretty big panic attack when my pharmacy told me they would not be able to refill my spironolactone scrip due to being out of that medication, and further more they had no idea of when they were going to be getting anymore.  Admittedly I was going to a very poorly run CVS, but still!  They advised me to start calling around.  Which I immediately did.  My panic levels slowly rose with each phone call and denial I received.  If you don't know, it is the spironolactone which keeps me from absorbing that wonderful, naturally produced steroid called testosterone.

Pretty much no one, especially me, wants me operating on testosterone ever again.  It is not a pretty scene.  Anywho..... after a multitude of phone calls and a few in person visits, I finally found a pharmacy willing to work with me, who calmly explained that they would easily fill the script, just with a different manufacturer's version of the drug.  Whew!  Close one.

But it drove the point home, that it radically pisses me off that I am not in control over my own body.  I don't naturally produce the hormones that I should, and further more, my very own body is constantly in a battle to poison me with that nasty testosterone!  (I get that if you like it T can be just as awesome as E, as long as that is what you are wanting and expecting.  I also understand that T is not a poison, I'm just stating it for dramatic effect!)

Okay, so super long prelude to discuss something that many of you may not wish to read about - So this is your fair warning part - if you would rather not read about personal intimate surgeries, then go no further as this is exactly what will be discussed - and it will involve those private of privates, genitals!

Are you sure you want to proceed?

Really sure?

Okay, but don't tell me I didn't warn you!!

I want to have my testicles removed.  There, I said it.  Yeah, I know, thrilling.  Well actually for several people in my life, this decision kind of freaked them out.  Me?  Nope, I've been wanting it for awhile now.  My wife, nope, she totally gets where I am coming from and is in full support of me.  However, some others?  Not so much.

Whatever..... this procedure, if you don't know, is called an orchiectomy.  It is a fairly small procedure, which lasts about an hour and can be done either under a general or a local anesthesia.  However, in order to qualify for this surgery, certain hurdles need to be passed.  I have had no issue with passing all of these hurdles, except for one.  Most doctors willing to do this procedure need 3 letters, 1 from my hormone doctor, 1 from my therapist, and 1 from a mental health professional with a doctorate degree.  My doctor readily gave me hers, my therapist is working on hers, but I don't have the third.  My therapist recommended a psychologist who I had heard of.  What transpires is our interaction.

(I did try and remove any identifying information from this person, but if want to know who it is, email me and I'll share it with you personally.)

 Hi  -

I am a transgender middle school math teacher in California.  I have been working with my doctor, Julie Nicole for my hormones, and my therapist Carol Montgomery Brosnac, for about the past year and a half.  Carol is who recommended me to you.  I have been researching doctors to help me with an orchiectomy.  Several of the places I have spoken to are requesting a 2nd letter from a mental health expert and I was wondering if you can help me out with that.

I live in the Central Valley, near Bakersfield, so possibly doing an online appointment would be ideal.  However, I think you are closer to the Bay Area, and it is possible for me to drive on up that way if that is what would be best.  

Please let me know if you are able to assist me with this. 

Thank you!

Dear Kelly

I will be glad to help you with this matter. I am familiar with both
Carol and Julie and feel good about following up on their work with you.

I am open to working with you over Skype. Before we set a date please
read my new client information page
(on her website)  If you agree with the
conditions I have listed there, get back to me with your consent and I
will get back to you to set up an appointment via skype.

My fee is $150 per session. If all goes well, I should have enough
information in one session to feel competent in writing the letter.
There is an additional fee of $50 for my time writing the letter.

Thank you for your inquiry. I look forward to hearing from you.

Dear _______-

Thanks for the prompt reply.  I have read your client information and all seems good.  However, before we proceed to an actual appointment I do have a concern.  While Dr. Nicole and Carol are both in support of me in receiving an orchi, WPATH guidelines clearly state that I need to have been living in my preferred gender role for at least 1 year.  That is the area in which I am a bit fuzzy.  Talking to Carol she said it is a recommendation and in version 8 of the SOC, it may be removed in regarding just an orchi.  Just a brief bit about me - I was convinced that I was non-binary for the past 8-10 years or so.  During that time I went to work, and lived my life in a half and half appearance.  Meaning, everything I wore was feminine, clothes, jewelry, painted nails, using a purse, etc, however I did not have anyone address me as female.  I thought I was doing well until I had a bit of a break down and realized I was not addressing the real issue.  Which of course is that I am actually a woman.  That is when I began hormones.  Which was July 3rd, 2018.  I then let everyone at my job know that I am trans as I had to dispute my employers discriminatory health care policy,  I made an appeal, they denied, I took them to EEOC, we mediated, and as it turns out they are totally legally able to deny my health care benefits based on being a private pay insurance.  Sorry for the long story - it was at that point that I began to pursue my legal transition.  I got my legal stuff done on June 28.  Woo-Hoo!!  Thus I then began this school year with my new legal female name, and had students switch to Mrs. I have decided to make my appearance decidedly much more feminine to help others in my life with the changes.  Oh and yeah, my wife has always known, married for 22 years, together for 32, my sister, my only remaining family has known for at least 10 years or so.  And at this point I don't think there is anyone who doesn't know.

Okie dokie, so now here we are, and I am pursuing an orchi but many places wont even talk to me until I have 3 letters.  Being as you are a WPATH doctor, would you be willing to hear my story and at least consider writing me a letter recommending an orchi, even though technically I have not been "full time" for the 1 year period?  If it helps at all, most likely the orchi would not take place until next June.  

If this is acceptable to you then I would for sure be willing to meet with you.  If not, I'd rather not waste more of both of our time, so please let me know your thoughts on the matter.

Thank you!

Thank you for the informative reply. My first take on what you have told me is why do you want an orchiectomy so early into your transition? Is there a medical need for one--i.e. you can't tolerate large doses of estrogen? If that is the case there would be no one year RLE requirement. Another question...if you are not planning on having the orchi until next June, why do you want the letter now? One of the reasons a letter is required is for the surgeon to know you have been examined by a mental health provider and can make an informed consent to the surgery. Having that examination 8 months in advance does not qualify as timely. He or she may want a more current letter later on. Another you have a surgeon set up for this? Perhaps you have already discussed this issue with him or her and have some sort of agreement.
Having said that, I remain open to seeing you for the evaluation. Keep in mind that the letter would note your state of mind as of the date we see each other and that you will not have satisfied the SOC until June 2019. At that point it will be up to you and the surgeon to decide what  to do. 
Let me know how you want to proceed.

Hi -

1.  Why do I want an orchiectomy so early into my transiton?
I do not consider where I am at to be early into my transition.  Personally I see my transition as having been a long drawn out one.  True, there are those who would view my transition as having just started.  But that view point is highly limited in its definition of transition.  There are those out there that do indeed go from appearing as nothing but one gender and then abruptly change to appearing as the opposite one.  But that is not me.  And that is certainly not how those in my life have viewed me.  I would estimate that my social and professional transition began at least 10 years ago.  That is the point at which I decided to stop appearing as a typical male would.  I began dressing, full time, as a blend of genders.  Pretty much the only difference in my appearance between then and now is that now I wear a wig and makeup on most days as opposed to just some days.  There is the difference as well with having legally transitioned.  But assuming that I am early in my transition erases non-binary entities entirely.  I would more accurately describe this stage of my transition as far closer to the end of my transition than the beginning.

2.  Why do I want the letter now being as I am not planning on having the procedure until June?
Many surgeons will not even have a consultation with me until I have 3 letters.  In fact I am finding it extremely difficult to find surgeons who are willing to work with me as I am only interested in an orchi and that I do not have insurance coverage.  The other issue, I did mention I am a math teacher right?  As such I like to have my "ducks" in a line as much as possible.  Most of the places that have published information on surgeon's desires have stated that for most insurance companies the letters need to be dated within the last 12 months.  Placing my desire to obtain this gate-keeping letter at this point well within that time range.

3.  Do I have a surgeon setup for this?
As of now, no.  However the most promising of my inquiries has been with the TG surgery center in Philadelphia.  Which I finally heard back from late last week.  They actually do not require 3 letters, only 2 for an orchiectomy.  Which would make our conversation here moot.

4.  I will not have met the SOC until June 2019.
Again, I feel that is a very narrow and limited view of what a transition consists of.  Which makes me question why this is the ultimate date marker for me.  Would you consider that to be the official date of living as my preferred gender due to me having received my court ordered name and gender change in June?  As if that is the moment that I began presenting as my preferred gender full time?  So does it negate the one year full time requirement if I chose to not wear my wig and makeup on one or both weekend days?  Personally what this makes me ponder is, do the SOC apply to non-binary individuals?  Or if you are non-binary will you not ever qualify to have any genital surgeries?  One can have breasts installed or removed.  One can have FFS.  But one cannot have their testicles removed unless one is the stereotypical transexual woman and presents as a stereotypical cis-woman does?  So, what if I legally change everything, however I don't present as some think I should, would I not ever qualify then?  

Basically, what I am seeing is a deficit in the way the SOC are applied towards non-binary humans.  The SOC are fine, if you think that gender is a binary and humans are either one or the other.  And that even if I wear women's clothes full time, along with my nails painted, along with using a purse, along with wearing nothing but feminine jewelry, along with telling everyone in my life that I am transgender, that I am somehow less of a transgender human being because I am not conforming to someone else's idea of what gender is.  

As a non-binary human, I went to my job and fought for the rights of all transgender individuals.  I went before a public committee and argued that our company should cover all transgender healthcare procedures.  When that appeal was denied, I took my concern to the EEOC.  I participated in mediation, attempting to have my company's policies changed,  And what I am currently hearing is that even if my company changed their policies, I personally would not have benefited from that change until I presented full time?  

Much of this reeks of a trannier than though attitude.  Those who are deemed transgender enough, by those who are in positions of power, wield that over other individuals in an attempt to get them to conform to their view of the world.  This process does not seem any different than the transphobic attitudes expressed by our current POTUS.  You will express your gender the way I say you should express your gender, otherwise I will not give you the same basic civil rights because I deem you to be somehow lesser.  

I know that I am opinionated, and I hope that I have not personally offended you.  For while even expressing my opinion I am terrified that at some point I will need to return to our interaction and ask you yet again for a letter that I should not have to need in the first place.  Cis-gender humans can have procedures done to themselves without a single letter from either a doctor, or any mental health professionals, they simply need to find a doctor willing to perform the procedure and be able to pay for it.  Should not all transgender human beings be afforded the same basic decencies?  

I will trust that you will remain a professional and that if in the future I will indeed need your services for this letter that you will remain open to working with me.  Thank you very much for your time in this matter.


That is quite a discourse on how you have been discriminated against by the SOC 7 (of which I am a co-author). All I did was ask a few basic questions as to where you were in the course of living your life. What I got back went way beyond that to being insulting. Comparing me to "POTUS", especially after the last couple of days, was beyond my ability to continue to be professionally objective about working with you in the future.

_______ -

Can I remind you of these couple of sentences, "Keep in mind that the letter would note your state of mind as of the date we see each other and that you will not have satisfied the SOC until June 2019At that point it will be up to you and the surgeon to decide what  to do."

That was not a simple ask to a few basic questions.  That was directly informing me that regardless of what transpired during our potential meeting, that June 2019 was the date at which I would be able to receive the procedure I am interested in.  

That was plenty clear.  If that was not what you meant, maybe it should have been stated otherwise.  It is unfortunate that you are unable to remain professional about this matter.  I will allow my therapist to understand that for non-binary individuals that you may not be the best resource to refer people to in the future.

This is why WPATH has gotten a bad rap for being a group of gatekeepers.  However, my therapist is a WPATH therapist and her opinion on the matter is far different than the one expressed by this doctor.  The other thing, if you didn't catch it, is that I found a surgeon willing to do the procedure with only my doctor's letter, and my therapist's.  Thus I luckily do not have a need for this letter.

As well, while closely reading the SOC I discovered that this particular psychologist, who claims to be a co-author of the SOC, is unaware that in Version 7, there is no need for any RLE (real life experience.)  Shouldn't someone claiming to be not only an expert, but a co-author be aware of what the SOC actually says?  I think they should.  Especially when they then attempt to use that as a basis for denying care!  Unreal! 

But isn't the real issue here transphobia?  It is only through a transphobic society that prerequisites are established for how one treats their own body, when it does not conform to expected gender norms.  Now I am not a professional surgery expert, and I certainly do not know everything there is to know about every possible surgery out there.  But with that being said, I also have not heard of any other surgical procedure that requires what transgender genital surgery does.  There are a multitude of prerequisites to be met in order to even be considered for those procedures.

Some of you may think that it is a good thing.  But I will again question you and ask, what other procedures require the consent of 4 people - the doctor performing the procedure, the doctor who gives you hormones, a therapist, and a psychologist?  As well as other requirements.  Look them up if you'd like.  Think this is good?  Then I better start seeing you protest to have similar "protections" put in place for similar cis-gender surgeries as well.  It's not going happen.  Want a facial surgery, go for it, want bigger or smaller or no boobs?  Go for it.  Want your vagina redesigned?  Yup, go for it!  Not one of those things require anything other than your desire and a doctor willing to do it.  Transphobic much?

Okay, I gotta stop!

I love you!

I hope you love yourself!

Friday, October 19, 2018

So I did a Little Thing

One of the easiest things in this process of legally changing my name and my gender was getting this driver's license.  You may recall that I was quite nervous about the process.  In the end, it was super easy and I was in and out of the DMV in about 20 minutes.  Yes I did have an appointment, and I highly recommend making one if you are ever in a need to visit that lovely place.

The super surprising thing about the entire process was that exactly one week later, I received this lovely little piece of plastic in the mail!  Woo-Hoo!  I finally failed sex!  Get it?  I've got the F next to the word sex on there.  Yeah, I know, I'm fricken hilarious!  I did mention that I am a math teacher right?  Anywho..... the DMV worker said that I would receive my new license in about 3-4 weeks, and they killed that time expectation!  Lovely!  Simply lovely!  Thank you Cali DMV!

Oh, and I also think that my picture is pretty good as well.  I mean it does look as though my eyes are half closed, but heck I still look pretty darn cute, so I'll take it!  I also like that they were not so closely zoomed in on my face that you can actually see a bit of the dress I have on.  Woo-Hoo!  Now I'm just hoping that when I go in for the Real ID that they don't make me take another photo.  Crossing my fingers!

So now, onto the massive pain in the ass, my birth certificate.  Yup this little lovely came only one day after I received my driver's license.  When did I first send away for it?  July 11th.  Yeah, so that made it about 3 months to complete this mission.  It shouldn't have taken that long, but it did due to an error that I made.  Yup, I was kicking myself!

Initially I sent it off, like I said, on July 11th.  It was returned to me about 5 weeks later, and I was thrilled, until I opened the letter and discovered that I had made an error.  It said something along the lines of - mother's name at birth, and what they meant was mother's maiden name.  That would have made it clear.  Like a fool, I did what it said instead of what it meant.  They returned it, with my mother's name corrected and told me to resubmit it.

I mailed it back the very next day with the corrections having been made.  Five weeks later, I had nothing.  Sometime in the sixth or seventh week, I noticed that they cashed my check.  Woo Hoo I thought, they will be sending it to me any day now.  Alas, there was no such luck.  It took another two to three weeks for them to actually send it to me.

For me, the absolute weirdest part was that when I received both of these items, one day apart, I was not nearly as thrilled as I thought I would be.  I was happy, but not absolutely ecstatic, over the moon happy.  I actually had to tell myself to be happier.  What was the issue?  I was having my period.  Yeah, I know, not possible right?  Well, I did have a pretty major adjustment in my hormone levels at the start of last week.  My doc doubled my spiro dosage.  My T was still too high.  I think that hormone adjustment put me into a bit of a funk.

Whatevs, right?  Well for me it was as within a week I was absolutely thrilled to have gotten these two giant checkmarks off my list.  The driver's license was huge actually because that was what I was waiting for to begin pretty much all of the rest of the changes.  Now, I'm making a list and checking it twice for every last little instance of my previous name.  It will probably take quite some time for me to find every occurrence, but I will get there eventually.

In the end, if this is a course you are taking, make sure you do not make ANY errors on the birth certificate application.  That's my one piece of advice, oh and be prepared at the DMV and be willing to explain the process to whomever is attempting to help you as you may very well have to explain to them how to do it.  Yeah, that was funny for sure! 

Oh, and another super cool thing, I actually composed this blog yesterday and when I got home what was in the mail?  My new credit and bank cards!  Yay!!  Super YAY!!!  That means that pretty much everything in my wallet is now with my correct name!  That is super FUCKING AMAZE BALLS!!!  Oh, geez, oops, did I just let an F bomb fly?  YES! Yes I did!  I even yelled it right?  Yup, that happened! 

Okie dokie!  Love you!

Love yourselves!

Work hard to get yourself what you need! 

Care about the other's in your life.  But take care of yourself so that you are able to care for others. 

It's important.



Wednesday, October 3, 2018

My Outfit - Off to the DMV

Dress - White House Black Market - Similar @ WHBM, @ Amazon
Leggings - WHBM - @ WHBM, Similar @ Amazon
Booties - Unisa - Havana @ DSW, Similar @ Amazon
Scarf - WHBM - @ WHBM, Similar @ Amazon

I had waited far too long.  My court date to legally change my name and my gender was on June 28th.  My plan, which was wonderful, was to get my birth certificate and then get my new license.  Doing it in that order would allow for me to get one of those new fancy Real ID thingies.  You know, that ID that you will need if you want to board a plane, starting in October of 2020.  Yes that requirement is a ways off, but why go through the joys of visiting the DMV now, just to have to do it later??  Yeah, I'm no fool, so I sent off for my birth certificate.

Ah such well laid plans!  You know how this is going to turn out don't you?  Well you should!

Anywho..... I sent off for my new birth certificate on July 11th.  Yes I waited about a week or two between the court date and the mailing of my forms.  But remember, that was also the time at which my wife had her foot surgery.  So, I tried to cut myself some slack.  Five weeks later, I got back a letter from the CDPH (California department of public health.)  They were returning my application as it had been rejected due to an error on my part.  The place that says mother's name at birth, actually meant, mother's maiden name.  Silly me!  Why did I not understand what they meant instead of what they wrote.

Oh well!  I refilled out my application, and mailed it off again.  Within a day or two, or so, I got a letter from the DMV.  It turns out that my license will be expiring on my birthday, October 4th.  Which basically meant, I had about 8 weeks for the CDPH to receive my application, and then send me my new birth certificate before I would need them.  Plenty of time, right?  Yeah, no.

Lots of words to say, I visited the DMV yesterday to get my new license!  These photos show what I chose to wear for my day.  It actually started off with me going to my OB/GYN for my 6th month check up and blood work.  That was in the morning, so I made the DMV appointment for that afternoon.  When my doctor saw me, she mentioned that she thought my outfit was on point!  Which of course made me glow even more.  Love my doc!

I began this post with stating that I felt as though I had waited too long.  Yeah, unfortunately the birth certificate did not come, and I was not able to fulfill my original quest, that of the Real ID.  But in hindsight, I think that I was using that to avoid something I was super worried about.  It turns out that I have a little bit of an inner issue, I am terrified that someone along the way in this whole transition journey is going to tell me that I can't.  Can't what?  Can't be who I know that I am.

It is sort of like that shark in my swimming pool thing that I wrote about recently.  Logically I know that it is not going to happen, but I fear it so.  This was not something that I consciously realized prior to standing in the DMV and realizing that I was shaking.  I had shown up on time for my appointment, checked in, completed an online form, received my number, and was waiting for my number to be called.  Everything had gone smoothly, and I was pretty sure that I had all of the forms I would need to complete the job.  However, as I stood there, leaning against a counter, I realized just how terrified I was.

Realizing I was shaking with fear and doubt, I pulled out my handwriting practice paper and began to sign my name.  Have I ever mentioned that I am practicing my handwriting?  Well I am.  It has of course been one of those life long gender issues.  As a child I never practiced my writing, why should I when my teachers calmly explained to me that boys could not write as well girls due to a lack of fine motor control.  It never occurred to me to challenge their incorrect assumptions about gender and actually just practice my writing!  Well, phooey on them I say, and now 40 years later, I am actually taking the time to practice!

I stood and signed my name over and over, trying to control my breathing, and force my hand to slowly and calmly form the newly learned strokes.  I was having a tough time.  My signature was certainly shaky.  Far more shaky then it was when I wasn't terrified about some unforeseen impending doom.  Within minutes my number was called and off I went to find my window and enlighten the next individual who was going to be bound to helping me be me.

Not surprisingly the DMV worker had not performed a name and gender change before.  No worries, I talked him through it!  Yeah, seriously!  I informed him of the paper work that was needed as I handed it to him.  He tippity tapped on his keyboard, went and consulted with a more experienced worker a few times, made me some copies, had me verify everything, then gave me a temporary license to sign.  With that, he asked me to step over to the camera.  With a thumb print, a signature, and a flash, boom, I was done at the DMV!  And out I walked, no longer in possession of an incorrect male license, but with my brand new license with everything correct on it for the first time in my life.

Yeah life changing.  Seriously.  It is funny how when I finally accomplish something like this, I realize just how long I have been waiting for it.  Prior to doing things like this, I fairly confidently lie to myself that these things don't really matter.  But then I do it, and I can almost literally feel weights dropping off my shoulders.

Now, I have my court order, my SSN is updated, my driver's license is updated, and today I sent off my info to have all of my banking and insurance documents changed.  I am still waiting my for new birth certificate, but they have cashed my check so that is a good sign.  One day everything will be done, but for today I will be thrilled with what has been done.

Love you!

Love yourselves!

Have you tied looking for those things which have annoyed you for so long they have become normal?  It's worth the look.