the block

I was spilling my guts to a friend over drinks; I think I should just stop drinking entirely.  But in the process of relating my unusual life and its concomittant angst in a crowded room, I realized something.  Or at least my friend realized something – I have a mental block surrounding my voice.

 

From October 16th, 2014:

This is getting progressively more difficult to think about, let alone write about.  I feel lost.  My mind doesn’t match my voice; my body doesn’t really match my voice, and I am lost.

According to my research, the voice is a direct reflection of a person’s mind, more so than the eyes or what one is saying.  Voice is just one of those things that is just not well understood.  The largest, richest corporations in the world cannot make artifical voices that sound human, even though this would increase their profits considerably – it’s that hard.

And then there’s the trans girl with a funky voice.  There are few things that I fear more than changing it, letting someone tinker with it.  Because a voice is who you are – even if it’s physically deformed.  What happens if you change it?  Does it change who you are?

 

Changing my voice has been the hardest part of this process, but there’s no getting around it.  It’s the most squeamish, ticklish, fucked-up thing.  I couldn’t stand my voice since forever, but I hate changing it, softening it, making it higher, pitching its resonance – playing my nasal passages like some kind of pipe organ.  In a gadda da vida.

I’ll never sing again.  I hate myself.

 

But that was the problem…  Apparently, my block is that I hate my femininity.  And voice is probably the purest, most intense expression of gender.

 

I’m paying through the nose for a speech therapist and I wouldn’t do the exercises.  I created endless obstacles between me and the exercises – that they wouldn’t work and I could only do them at a certain time, in a certain place, under certain conditions, because God forbid anyone should hear me feminizing my voice, which seemed like the end of the world.  I even created a semi-soundproof studio in my closet (of all places) to work on it before I got a roommate and needed the storage space.

Why would I be so embarrassed to have someone overhear me trying to make my voice higher?  Because it sounds stupid?  Yes, but no one cares at this point.  And it’s not like my gender identity is a secret to anyone anymore.  So what’s the problem?  I didn’t want to sound more feminine.  It’s weak, it’s wrong.

 

But it’s not.  It’s okay for me to draw strength from femininity, from things that I associate with femininity; community, trust, mercy, and yes – a softer voice.

As it was strong to be masculine as a man, it’s strong to be feminine as a woman.  This is something I need to remember.

 

At least I can do the exercises now.

 

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a strange place

A transgender transition is a strange place to be.  I kind of hate myself, I kind of love myself, and I kind of don’t care.

 

Hate, in that everyone’s first reaction, everyone that knows me, they think I’m crazy.  They’re like, “His small mind has finally cracked – spectacularly – under all that pressure.”  And proceed to treat me like a very fragile person.  This makes it hard to look in the mirror.

Meanwhile, looking in said mirror, I love myself.  I feel more beautiful every day.  This is the first time that my body feels like it’s mine, and not some separate entity.  I have an irrational fear of waking up to find that none of this is real.

 

But part of me doesn’t care.  The fragility of love is clear to me – that it can be shattered with all of the ceremony of an egg dropped from a 30th story window.

 

I thought an egg could be so strong if you hold it just so and squeeze.

Silly rabbit.

 

beautiful freak

I believe that whoever applied the terms cis and trans to gender was a scientist with a sense of humor.

Cis and trans are terms used for two versions of a molecule that are mirror images of one another.  A realistic application of these terms to human beings would be to their DNA molecules.  But a mirror image of my DNA would be complete nonsense.  My genes and characteristics would be garbled like a corrupted NES rom.  If every cell of my body contained a mirror image of my DNA, I would die.

But I am alive; I am a beautiful freak.

 

I stare into space at the corner of a train window.  A man walks by and makes eye contact.  I know he doesn’t see me.

I feel a pain that is always with me, unknowable, annoying.  It’s the feeling in your bones when you’ve been sitting for too long.  I’ve never been able to shake this feeling.

 

A part of me is frozen and lost to my senses.  It defies understanding.  It is excruciating beyond words to feel what she doesn’t feel.

I will never be able to express myself to another human being.  No one will see me.  I will never see the light of day.  I never want to feel this way again!  I want to pretend that I never knew, that nothing happened, that I am not here.

 

I am a trans girl and I have a choice.  I can ignore myself or feel the agony of knowing.

So I type at my keyboard in the dead of night.  I want to know who I am.

 

I want to hate myself but I won’t.  I know what hate is now.  My appearance is changing and I’ve seen hate in the eyes of my neighbors, in strangers and in friends.  My mother fears that the world will turn against me if I tell anyone.  She fears that my father will turn against me and blame himself.

I know that hate stems from pain.  I can’t succumb to it, I won’t.

 

I caught myself explaining cis privilege to my girlfriend this weekend.  I’m like, “You don’t need to think about gender all the time.”  I realize how ridiculous I’m being.  Yes, we’ve known each other for a long time.  No, I can’t actually explain what is happening.  I’m sorry.

Those were the first words I spoke to her as a girl, “I’m sorry.”