never alone – a paradox

It’s a hot sunny day.  I just had one of those enigmatic lunch meet-ups where you make clear to the other party that you’re really, actually, truly gay (really).  And they lose interest; I’m walking back.

A foreign family is taking photos on the sidewalk, and I swear I can feel the cold vacuum of space – stretching off into non-existence.

We are alone in the world.  And all we have is each other, that is all.

 

I’m never alone.  Between the coffee shops, the cafes, my officemates, my roommate, the people I date; I’m rarely actually out of the presence of other human beings.  This is an unexpected outcome of the transition.  I used to spend a week at a time in isolation, occasionally coming out for air, to go to the office, find food, whatever.  And the world was so big, the sidewalks stretching out to distant vanishing points; the air lacking the clarity of virtuality I became accustomed to, staring into an abyss of pixels.  Never again.

 

I’m bad at being human, which apparently makes it so.  To be imperfect, fragile, pained, and needy.  Desperate, beautiful and young.  People see themselves, extend constant minor assistances, tell me things.  And I think of them.

All I had to do was to become ambitionless, and lost.  I can see it in their eyes, ‘welcome home.’

 

“I’m sorry about all of that stuff I said last night.”

“It’s okay.”

 

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square zero

I’ve taken to blending out.  It’s like blending in, but in addition to looking normal you try your damnedest to go unnoticed.  It’s like passing, it’s related to passing.  I hate that term ‘passing’ like ‘pass for a woman.’  I don’t even care anymore, just as long as no one sees me, which is ironic.

 

It’s anticlimactic, ‘passing.’  It’s getting back to square zero, where everyone starts, “Oh look it’s a baby boy.”  The birthright, your gender.  I get a gender.

I wonder how I could have explained this to myself a year ago, if I could go back in time; that I go by a female name with a mostly female body, that I don’t live in the same place or have the same job.  That, all told, it cost about $20,000 (not including doctors’ visits and most prescription costs).  That our only real ambition now is to get through the day without feeling like crawling under a rock, to go unnoticed.  To live quietly, our painless lives.

 

Relatively painless.  I don’t know what I would have done or said if I had heard this a year ago.  I think I would have felt joy.  I think I could have lost consciousness.  I think I might have hugged me, I don’t know.  Why do I think about these things?