Transgender women are reporting their passports are being retroactively revoked by the State Department, with requests for proof of transition.
This is my journey as a transgender female, just trying to figure myself out and bring you along on the trip…
Regardless of how many times you lie to yourself the truth will come out.
I can be unbelievably stubborn even when I know deep down I’m wrong… maybe more so. For months now I have been struggling to shed myself of all things gender related, thoughts, emotions, even dreams. I have refused to present as myself, tried to change the way I thought, spoke… my mannerisms. Anything, everything.
I was willing to destroy myself from the inside out to be remade in an image which was never mine.
My depression spiraled out of control. Anxiety and stress began to erode my health. Dysphoria and suicidal thoughts coursed through my mind as I struggled to build walls of denial around myself only to watch them crumble with a single discussion or pronoun.
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It seems maybe I’ve gone a “little” overboard trying to explain what’s going on inside my head. I have long used words as a shield, not from others, but from myself and the truth of my thoughts. In the end I am a coward, afraid of my own shadow… my own thoughts and emotions. It has always been easier to evade than stand up and except the truth. To give up than fight.
Of course fighting only works when you’re on the right side. Too often, almost always really, I have been fighting against, not for, myself. Most times I find myself trapped by the feeling, almost a certainty, I am wrong. Whatever I thought, felt, experienced, was never what I thought it was. At least this is what I convinced myself to be true.
This has been even more true with being transgender. I begin to accept the truth about myself, feeling better about myself and who I am and then the voices of the past come back whispering in my ear, bringing back all the old doubts and fears, causing me to question myself and it becomes an avalanche which buries me, crushing beneath its weight. Instead of fighting it I simply give in. After all, when the whole world screams “you’re wrong!” how can you be right?
This is what has been happening to me over and over these past months. I reached a point where I was willing to turn myself inside out trying to be this thing everyone insists I am but I can’t do it. Who I am in my very core refuses to be pushed aside.
Despite my promise to myself I was going to leave anything to do with Kira behind and to become something, someone, else, I would find myself answering the question, “your name?” with “Kira”. No thought, no hesitation. In fact it happened today at a local store. Several times I have come out to people I never thought I would.
You see, this year has been a real mess in the real world. I lost my job after having a nervous breakdown, then we moved to a new neighborhood where, due to some things beyond my control, everyone met me as male and I began to believe the universe was conspiring against me ever being able to live my life as Kira. Soon I convinced myself I was never meant to transition, I would be forever trapped being nothing more than a ghost, a dream which faded in the light of everyday reality.
Of course nothing is ever black and white, simple or straight forward. Time and again I would find myself returning to my natural mannerisms, my normal voice. I found myself drawn to things which I liked and enjoyed such as clothes only to spend hours, even days beating myself up over because they were feminine.
Then someone would call me “Miss” or address my partner and I as “Ladies” and instead of being upset, I felt elated. Then back to beating myself up of course.
The fun part? Every night I would go to bed and think I had survived another day without transitioning, never mind the fact I had been slowly falling apart.
Following the incident in the store, I returned to my car where my partner was waiting and told her what happened. Then I asked out loud, “why do I keep doing this to myself?” to which she replied, “Because it’s who you are.”
She’s right of course.
When everything else has been stripped away, I know who I am and trying to deny it is a pointless exercise in futility because the truth will always come out regardless of if I want it to or not.
I had a post mostly completed but I realized some things are better left unsaid.
The LGBTQ+ community has long been maliciously associated with pedophiles and sexual predators by people who wish to further stigmatize us. Internet trolls are aware of this violent tradition, and are taking advantage by spreading propaganda that, on first glance, resembles an embrace of pedophiles by LGBTQ+ people. It’s an effective tactic if we accept the false premise: that there is a link between sexual predators and queer people. But there isn’t, and it’s time we stopped meeting that propaganda on the trolls’ terms.
A documentary about Leelah Alcorn, the teenager whose death by suicide in December 2014 triggered awareness of the struggles of transgender people, is scheduled to debut in August at the Woodward Theater in Over-the-Rhine.
Filmmaker Elizabeth Littlejohn of Toronto, Ontario, said she wanted to make the 24-minute documentary “Leelah’s Highway” because “as a human rights activist who believes the right for gender self-determination, I believe this story needed to be told.”
July is coming to a close. Sometimes I am surprised at how quickly times seems to fly by, then again I shouldn’t be as I have lost so much of it as it slips away unnoticed…
Almost surprising is how long ago I came out. Was it really over six years ago now or was it just yesterday? It often feels like no time at all or a lifetime. Either way I feel as if I have run my course.
I am always exhausted as if I haven’t slept in a hundred years or more. My dreams bring no solace. I awake feeling saddened, confused, and lost. It’s almost as if I had something within my grasp only to have it slip away.
Days pass as endless thoughts, questions, doubts, and fears churn through my thoughts and no matter how hard I try to stop it, wondering who I am, what I may or may not be seeps into every moment and I am sick of it. I am sick of how it burns through everything leaving nothing behind but ashes and regrets. No matter what I am doing or why it is there, a shadow I cannot shake.
I don’t want any of this anymore.
No more thoughts of anything LGBT, trans, gender, identity, or what any of it means… that’s what I pray for every night and fear every day. I don’t care about putting anything back into a box or fitting into some preconceived notion of who or what I should be. I just want to leave it all on the side of the road, an unwanted burden soon forgotten.