no honor among thieves

I sit in my room.  It’s a nice room but a bit dusty, and I’m allergic to dust.  So I’ve been struggling to breathe since I moved here.

 

My trans friend sleeps across the room, on the small mattress we found on the street.  She’s been transitioning for 10 years, though she’s much younger than I am.  She used to update her video blog.  She’s always telling me to get some real problems.  Every day we wake up head-to-toe in that tiny bed.  Would we have it any other way?

 

She insists she isn’t my girlfriend.  She doesn’t like to be touched.  I remember what that was like.

We share food, share our lives.  Thick as thieves, I wear the ring her boyfriend gave her.

 

And something interesting has happened.  She walked the path I started upon, took it to the extreme.  Gave herself nothing and no one to lose, but it ends nowhere.  So I found something to care about.  It’s obvious.  It’s inevitable.  As sure as I would die without her, I need to complete my science work.  It’s not a question of discrimination or profit, I need to be what I’ve become.

 

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grand theft personhood

Perpetual motion, an asthmatic commute, outfits lined up like uniforms on laundry day.  I took such great care to avoid the dreaded ‘uniform’ that plagues so many trans women early in their transitions.  A clothing rut, dug through self-consciousness, a maladapted body, brokeness, cluelessness.  No, I will not wear the same shit every day.  Almost, some weeks I almost do, but not quite.  No, I’m going to enjoy my wardrobe in all of its pastel, beginner’s luck, genderfuck, wild fashionista glory.

 

My experience has morphed and blended itself into something soft, something fast, something that needs not be comprehended.  I don’t need to know what I’m doing on any particular day, it’s all memorized or written down somewhere at my various workstations.  I just sit down and do my job, do my routine, buy my groceries.

Oh, the groceries I’ve bought!  After nearly a year of hiding in my apartment and having them delivered, I finally ran out of money and had to go to the grocery store.  Luckily, I passed by then and everyone at the store is too focused on their food to pay attention anyway.  Nothing emphasizes what I’ve done like pushing a cart down an isle I’ve walked for a decade, after not doing so for a year, and just knowing that I move differently through that space.

 

I surprise myself.  Almost every night I get home and it’s dark.  I’m half out of my mind with exhaustion, so I hang my shirt on a chair.  Something catches my eye, the many reflections in the mirrors and 70’s-modernist windows of this small, dimly lit place, and it’s me.  Tall, standing there in her camisole, her curves over a militaristically lithe figure.  I am her, and I feel elated through the exhaustion.

But it feels like I stole this.  Like I stole my life and myself from somewhere, someone, grand theft personhood.  And I don’t care.

 

the magical megaproject

“When you start your treatment, it might feel a little bit weird.”

“Really??”

“Yeah, well it stands to reason…”

 

I don’t even know where to start right now.  I don’t exactly know what to tell you.  That’s probably because it’s not that complicated…

I decided to start my physical transition.  I scheduled the necessary appointments.  Didn’t tell anyone.

Made my appointments, met delays, freaked out.  Waited.

 

Still waiting…  Feel like I’m going to black out, or throw up.  Apparently, as one gets closer to physical transition, gender dysphoria increases dramatically.  No idea why, but it’s horrible.

 

But I’m so happy and excited to transition, I wish it would happen already.  Then I gave myself an asthma attack reading up on progesterone cycles.

My hormones are just going to go around and around like that?

 

Now I’m working most of the time.  I’m going to be working like this until at least 2016, because I need cash.  Like, yesterday.

I guess that’s it.

 

…oh, and I don’t have a plan.