Another Place

A friend picked me up from school tonight, a little after 10p. We drove to my gf’s place to pick up my stuff. My stuff: a small canvas backpack, a small tote bag mostly filled with dirty clothes from this week, a small duffel bag full of my school books, and a larger duffel bag filled with my clothes and grooming stuff. My friend has a room in a 6 bedroom house. It’s a nice house in a nice neighborhood. I’m staying in his room tonight.I’m sleeping on a comfy duvet. He’ll introduce me to the woman who owns the house tomorrow and maybe I’ll be able to sleep on the couch for the duration of my stay here. Which may be just a couple nights. He’s trying to find another place for me that has more space and privacy. By next weekend or the week after I should have my financial aid and I’ll be able to rent a room for May and maybe June and if I get the deposit back from my old place I’ll be able to rent a room for June and maybe July.

Yesterday, I went to my old clinic and asked to be put on the waiting list for a therapist. I decided that I want to talk to a therapist and get an official diagnosis for gender identity disorder. I started my medical transition at a clinic that allows a person to start without a therapist letter. It’s an informed consent clinic. There are clinics in Los Angeles and San Francisco too and I’m sure New York and other major cities. Informed consent is saying that I’m an adult and I understand what I’m doing with my body. I chose the informed consent route because I didn’t want anyone therapist acting as a gatekeeper to such an important, personal, completely life altering/affirming decision. To start my transition at the clinic, I had to have an interview and a full physical work up, blood work, papsmear. They want to make sure you’re healthy enough to take the hormones and also establish a baseline so they can monitor what’s going on in future. During this time, I found out I had a heart murmur. To get the prescription I had to write a 5 year life plan. I got the script a couple months after I had started going to the clinic and I started injecting testosterone on June 3rd 2009.

Last fall when I was going through a hard time it was all transition related. I am estranged from my parents. My only sibling and I are just recently starting to reconnect, I’ve been dealing with poverty. If I can’t afford the dentist, clothes, eye exams, food, an apartment, how can I even think about surgery (chest reconstructive surgery)? I’m just so absolutely over wearing a binder. A binder is what I used to flatten my chest so it appears male looking. It restricts my breathing and cuts off blood flow to my arms and fingers. I’m out all day usually and last fall I didn’t want to go to school or leave the house really because I didn’t want to put on the binder. Recently I’ve been bringing a baggy sweat shirt and a button down shirt and taking off the binder when the sun goes down. Most people are gone and the people who are still on campus are not paying any attention to me. I mostly stay in the computer lab until the library closes or in the piano practice rooms.

I’ve really gone off on a tangent here. Back to the Gender Identity Disorder diagnosis. My being a transsexaul and my transition is affecting my physical and mental health. My self esteem and confidence are affected. My main worries before starting transition were whether or not anyone would ever love me and if I could support myself through transition. That’s one of the reasons I went back to school. So as to get an education with the hopes that I’d be able to find work in a field of interest that fills a social need and I’d be able to financially take care of myself. If I hadn’t transitioned I wouldn’t be alive today. Period. I had done all I could to try to live the life I lived before and I just couldn’t anymore. Even with the mess that goes along with being trans and queer in this society, it’s been worth it because ever since I started T..well it feels like bonus life. But last fall, especially last fall, and sometimes now, I find myself thinking, “I can’t afford to live.” I can’t afford life. It’s a false thought. Obviously false. Because I’m here, Dear ___ I’m here. I have learned to live off of so little. It’s truly amazing. But I want to live better. I want to be healthier. I’ve gained 20 pounds in the last 4 months. Stress eating. Junk eating. Late night eating. Wanting to have something to hold me here. Hold me down. Wanting to be solid and heavy and here and present. But my nature, my inner nature is light and spacey and free, and joy filled. I don’t want to be afraid like I’ve been afraid this week. I don’t want to be afraid anymore.

Not having a place is scary. Being dependent on other people’s kindness/charity is too. I’m trying to find the lesson in this so as not to repeat myself. It’s hard to think properly though because I’m in it and life keeps on happening. I’ve made it through the week. Almost. I’ve gone to all my classes. I didn’t turn in a paper in one of them but my teacher said I could turn it in late. I have a test tomorrow in Astronomy. It’s the 2nd of 3 tests for the semester. There’s a lot of material. I’m about 60% prepared for it. But it’s not for another 11 hours. If I get a couple more hours in I’ll be fine. I can pull off a B at least. I’m hoping. For the first test I missed 3 and I set the curve so I have 100% in the class. All my homework I’ve gotten A’s and attendance is 12% of our grade and I haven’t missed a class.

School is my lifeline right now. If ever I am a teacher, I’ll be more than aware that sometimes for some students, school is the safest, most caring, place they know and my awareness will dictate my behavior. One of the things that comes out of hardships is the compassion that is developed for others and one’s Self.

My friend for picking me up and letting me stay in his room with him and offering to help me find a place for next week.
My gf for having let me stay at her place for the past 6 days and her friend who said I could stay at her and her mom’s place if I need to.
The netbook that I’m typing on that my Aunt gave me. I don’t know if I mentioned this but my cousin bought my Aunt a new laptop and she gave me her old netbook which she didn’t like. It’s been sitting in her closet for almost 5 months and now it’s mine. I’m really digging it. My computer is 8 years old and has been chilling in my friend’s shed along with my printer since April 1st.
I am thankful for the blue sky and being able to lay on the grass this afternoon and study and nap for 35 minutes.
I am thankful for the good times my gf and I share, especially the conversation we had this morning and early afternoon on a wide range of topics.
I am thankful for our physical chemistry/relationship too.
I am thankful to the actors and creators of Switched At Birth. I watched one and a half episodes tonight while taking two online quizzes for my music class. It’s a great show and really comforting. I’ve been signing more! because of it. I have 2 and half more episodes of Season 1 and then I’ll be scouring the earth or waiting very patiently for the Season 2 DVD release.
I am thankful for my class tonight. We were talking about communication and how to be an effective communicator. Our professor let us out an hour and a half early because he needed to catch a train to go to a conference tomorrow. Being let out of class early is what enabled me to watch/listen to Switched At Birth tonight.
I am grateful for MTS (bus/trolley system) for getting me around.
I am grateful for my inner resilience.
I am grateful for Spotify and my Glee playlist.
I am thankful for my relationship with a friend who lives near “where Dorothy left on her way to Oz” and or mutual love for Dr. Who *hugs*
I am thankful for the internet and the connections that are made through it.