I just read this article in the Advocate, it was brought to my attention by several people I follow on Twitter. The first person indicated that she didn't agree with all of it, but that it raised some good points. Another person, who tends to be a little more "aggressive" in her opinions, opened fire on it repeatedly and, I think, unfairly. I think it's a good piece discussing the divisions within the trans* community and the difficulty that causes in forming an effective movement.
I've been looking to get involved somehow myself. I went to the Trans Day of Action a couple of weeks ago. I felt a bit out of place, just because I didn't know anyone. But at the same time it started to make me want to get involved again. In the past I've been politically active, but I had become pretty apathetic over the past few years. This seems like something that can get my activist spirit going again
But the article, and the Trans Day of Action, really got me thinking more about my identity as a transwoman. As anyone who's read any of my blog entries probably knows, I've been quite focuses on "passing" (whether I called it that or not in any particular entry). But there is really nothing to "pass" as - I am a transwoman. I plan to start HRT, which will have some physical and emotional impact, but already I am dressing the way I want, I am doing make-up the way I want, overall I am presenting the way I want. I have a few more steps to take in terms of what I wear - I have been exclusively in pants so far and I know that I really, really want to wear skirts and dresses (I've done it cross-dressing, but now I want to do it for real).
I'll continue doing electrolysis - but otherwise I need to stop obsessing over "what else I need to do" and just start living it. As far as the wig, I may or may not choose to wear it - I did wear it for the entire evening on Saturday to try to get the feel of it, and it wasn't bad, but I don't know if I want that full time rather than just working with my natural hair.
I think the take-away from this for me is that while I am still transitioning, I am now transitioning within the realm of being a transwoman - I moving towards my identity as such, I'm not longer transitioning from male to female, that's done, the male is behind me (feel free to add your own innuendo to that thought - I just did).
The biggest hurdle I have right now - that I have to overcome very, very soon - is the rest room. I've still been using the mens' room, even though I feel more and more uncomfortable every time I go in there. Today I honestly felt like I had no business being in there (most times it hasn't been too much of an issue because I've been alone, but today someone else is in there).
Since I'm on the subject of "identity" I also wanted to add a thought I've been having on the topic of dressing "appropriately." Some may disagree with me, but while I agree that it's the right thing to do to consider what you're doing or where you're going in terms of how you dress (going to work, going to a wedding, going to a funeral, etc.), I don't agree that age should really be a consideration. When I'm at work, I dress appropriately for work. When it's the weekend, honestly I probably dress "younger" than my age, and I'm happy with that. I do think that if you're dressing younger because you're actually trying to be "younger" that's something that you might want to discuss in therapy, but if you're dressing "younger" because you like the fashion, then go for it. People dress all sorts of ways, some that appeal to us individually, some that don't, and that's great. If everyone (even everyone at work) was dressed exactly like me right now that would be really boring.
I'll leave it at that - especially since it's Bastille Day and I have some partying to do :-)