• entries
    23
  • comments
    38
  • views
    12,326

About this blog

Stuck in the middle without you!

Entries in this blog

As I write this post, I wonder how many different directions it can go.

You know I don't often jump into the cat fight between the transsexual and transgendered camps. I don't have time for the bitterness.

Speaking of bitterness I surfed across a blog that one of you may have seen. Of course I can't seem to back track to where I saw or read it. The main point of the transgendered woman's post was disagreeing with a "gold star" transsexual view of basically the rest of us poor transgendered "wanna be" women.

The definition of a "gold star" transsexual is a person who assumes the female gender and is absolutely gorgeous. (basically)

Since I fall into the category of the poor downtrodden transgender "wanna be", I started to think of how I really felt about the situation.

I know no matter how long I try and how many hormones I take I will never achieve the "gold star" status. I feel so very fortunate to be able just to interact in the world as a female as much as I do.

Also, when I read or hear a "gold star" put herself up on a lofty pedestal, I always believe somewhere in their male past they always wanted to be really good at something. That something just happened to be a beautiful looking female. Maybe they are just are the best looking guy in the room. (I've told you in the past I knew someone like that.)

That is just me playing in both sides mud hole and I'm moving on. Life is too short for their petty arguments.

The discussion does raise other personal questions however.

As I have posted in the past, I really wonder where my "internal transition" fits with either group. In response I asked my therapist what she thought. What did she think about my recent subconscious feminine reactions to movies, music. language etc. Obviously without hormones.

My psychologist brought up the "gender cube". Basically, the cube lists nearly 30 different sexual/gender combinations from "straight hetero male" to whatever. When I bypassed the transgendered categories altogether and identified with a masculine feminine female; she simply said I had been burying my true self. My inside self just had never had the need to transition. Just being open to who I really am (I realized) was transitioning without hormones.

By now, you are wondering what point am I trying to make.

Since I am not planning on any radical surgery, will the "gold stars" ever accept me as much of a woman as they are? (Even though I am feeling more and more as one?)

How many of them are still really just guys who became enamored with the pretty girl in the mirror and simply went for more?

Better yet...who cares? I guess sometimes I do!

Halloween 2010

By Cyrsti,

I was looking over some of my posts last year before Halloween. Here is one:

Or is it really you in your Halloween costume?

Well girl, it is almost Halloween. The time of year for transgender and real sisters alike to strut their stuff.

It's our Christmas, New Year and Thanksgiving all rolled up into one glorious weekend. At the least, you can hit more than one party!

It's the party where the women are jealous of your legs, hair and makeup, and by the way, where did you learn to walk in those heels? Who did do your makeup?

It's the party where your guy friends either shy away from you or to you after a few adult beverages. How innocent is it when they run a hand up your nylon covered leg?

That's you isn't it? The witch in the low cut dress. Hanging with Count Dracula your golfing buddy? Will he ever look at you quite the same again after a few beers in the clubhouse?

The fun part is, you have so many ways to attend a Halloween party. You can wear a fun, sexy comfortable female costume or slut it up and go as a hooker. Remember girlfriends, those heels are very unforgiving after awhile and that short skirt becomes very difficult to be ladylike in all evening. Especially if you happen to get buzzed.(Yes, I've tried it)

OR learn from Le Anne's example (she is a follower here) She dazzled a party by attending as a Hollywood starlet. Everyone was amazed by her look and how she presented as a woman. To LeAnne however she wasn't dressed in a costume. She was just dressed up! I paraphrased much of her comment but she makes an excellent point.

Your big party night can be a coming out bash for the girl in you.

Beware though, once you let her out and the compliments start rolling in-you may never be able to shut her in again.

Finally, be careful of thinking you are one heavenly creature and go to WalMart the next day in the same clothes.No one will be impressed with you in the heels and the mini trying to look like "Lady Gaga"!

Instead, take the compliments and build your confidence. Remember though, many of them are saying you make a great looking woman...for a guy.

But that's OK! That's when the fun starts.

Along the way through our gender journey some of us have identified as a transvestite, transgender or a transsexual person.

For most of us the trip has been a very lonely one. Many have longed for a friend or a mentor to help along the way. Most of you I communicate with still are looking for a magical transgender mentor.

For the most part, I don't think she exists in the traditional sense.

I was lucky. I did reach out to a few women who did help me. One actually made me up once but then sold me out later. The others were actually more of mental role models whose constant input centered around the true female realities. In essence I was experiencing the female positives and living none of the negatives.

A true mentor is hard to find. In fact I think more and more genetic women suffer from lack of mentors. They are female of course but not women. A topic for another post.

The magical mentor who can transport to your chosen gender is in reality yourself.

Sure a woman can apply your makeup and as you fall in love with your new beautiful face (especially if the woman who applied it is in a relationship with you) the dynamics can change radically.

All of a sudden, you could become competition or you become reality. All of the talking and planning is behind both of you and your girl self is in front of her.

In some of our cases (me) I loved what I saw and pushed my mentor for more and more. She was a very strong person (deceased) and kept pushing me into her world. Perhaps you have read one of my older posts "You Make A Terrible Woman". Her entire point was I was looking the part but so what? I had no understanding of what reality was as a woman.

At that point I became my own mentor. I observed and became a student of a feminine life. Sure, I can never experience the problems of a monthly period or the agony and ecstasy of child birth but I can express my female self on my own terms.

Perhaps you are one of the very few who a genetic female has taken by the hand and guided along the feminine gender path.

Congratulations! For the rest of us, get going girls. Do what genetic women have always done. Deal with life the best you can and make it yours.

On the way down the hall with my psychologist, she spoke briefly of the strides transgendered vets such as I have started to make in good old "conservative" Ohio. Some of the other professionals at the center it seems are starting to "reach out" to other gender experts in the community for advice.

She also mentioned some of the directives within the VA and the military itself concerning gay and transgendered vets as positive changes. Then added she hoped the new thinking would continue. However,

I have mentioned she said no doctor in this clinic would consider dispensing hormones but there could be other altrnatives she was checking into.

When and if any of these alternatives actually materialize, I will pass them along.

In the meantime, I'm happy to be able to help any other transgendered sisters or brothers walk through the same doors I did. By all indications there haven't been many or any before me.

I'm sure all of us know trangendered men and women seem to always be the last to benefit from advances; after the gay and lesbian community. We have to work harder to make more of our opportunities.

The most important point she made is we all have to keep these doors open to make the most of the future.

Or I could title this post "You Can't Always Get What You Want...But If You Try Sometimes You Get What You Need!'

Today I did. I got my recommendation letter from my psychologist to begin female hormone therapy! I tried, I wanted and I got what I needed. Wow! As recently as a couple of years ago the path I'm taking seemed like an impossible dream. Perhaps a dream I didn't want to pursue.

As pieces of paper go this is a very big one in my life. This paper ranks up there with the college diploma and such.

As I leaned over her shoulder to look at the letter on the computer, several of the most beautiful pronouns in the English language jumped out at me. The pronoun of course was she. The sentence went something like this: Cyrsti is in a transitory period and I have been seeing her for the past several months. She is interested in hormone therapy to continue her transition.

Several hours later when my feet touched the ground again I began to think this was just the beginning...again.

From the first time I slid my Mom's hose over my legs and squeezed into her bra to this point in my life was one giant twisting journey.

Doesn't seem possible but I'm doing it again!

This post is actually a rewrite from a summer time piece. It reflects how life is an ever changing process.

The first time I heard "Bob Seger's Hollywood Nights", I knew exactly how he felt. The lyrics: "He knew right then he was too far from home. He was too far from home." burnt a hole right through me.

In your life I'm sure you've been on some very slippery slopes. Relationships, family or job issues made you feel you were sliding towards a very steep cliff.

I was there, on that cliff (with Seger) looking down on the lights of a big city. I'm a Midwestern boy too, but I went to New York City, not L.A.

Did you fall off your cliff and lose a spouse, a family or a job? I fell off my cliff too and lost my gender.

I know many of you have always known you were just that-a girl or a boy. Many of us however, did not have that luxury. I went through the first 30 years or so of my life fighting and then giving in to my female urges. During that time in my life, I was afraid to lose touch with my male side. My female side was scary but wonderfully euphoric and exciting. NYC, of course proved to be the perfect cliff for her to jump off of. Making the whole decision terrifying was a beloved spouse and an "Alpha" male side who had his fun moments too.

.

Within two months however, I experienced two defining moments that would set my life on a female path forever.

The first was a trans "mixer" of sorts I attended on Long Island . The real lady at the door wouldn't let me in until I proved I was a guy. "No single real women allowed!"

The second was a Halloween party I attended with a couple friends at work. It just so happened that one of them had two other tall female friends that were dressed as exotic as me! What an evening!

I knew then, I could never go home-even if I did move back to the Midwest. I didn't want too!

A couple years later I did move back to the Midwest but the cliff moved with me. Yes, I'm still falling -as I'm sure many of you are too!

Good luck with your cliff! I finally found there is a girl at the bottom waiting for me. You know, she resembles me a lot!

I hope you have someone waiting for you too!

Cat Fight?

By Cyrsti,

Unless you live in a cave, or with me in a box under a bridge-you probably haven't missed the transgender news in several areas.

Transgender youth are making headlines as homecoming queens or kings in their chosen gender. The latest story comes out of Texas where transgender student "Andy Moreno" was nominated for homecoming queen by friends.

When the school principal said no-Moreno protested. Rightfully so!

Transgender political candidates are stepping onto the political stage. One of the races in Oklahoma, pitts transgender candidate "Brittany Novotny" against an ultra conservative opponent.

Being a resident of the Midwest, all of this has not been lost on me. This activity is NOT taking place in NYC or San Fransisco. All of this news represents a true "Gender Quake" in middle America-in society.

As a public transgender person the "Quake" helps me tremendously. Finally transgender folk have better public roles models other than "Jerry Springer" and slasher movies. People have an easier time seeing me as a real person.

Of course, in the midst of all of this you have in fighting in our own transgender group. A genetic female friend of my mine sent me to Calpernia Adams website and was confused by the lengthy negative discussion of our own.

http://www.calpernia.com/

Basically the argument boils down to a cat fight between girls who have lived more life as girls to those who haven't and should any of us "cuddle up" to the male gay movement. Unfortunately, I was involved in nearly the same discussion in an on-line transgender site. It was prolonged and ugly as me without.makeup.

It seems the more life improves for us in the public-the worse it gets with our own? Shame on us!

Some of this proves again "You can put the girl in a man-but you can't take the man out of the girl." I'm sure Andy Moreno could speak to the fact that being a girl is so much more than looking like one. Sure you can spend thousands to change your body to beautiful, but you can't spend any money to improve your soul!

Or all we bringing out the worst in women as former men?

Just Say Something?

In all my years hanging out in bars with the guys or alone as a guy-there were several times when I felt I wanted to approach a girl that was sitting close to me.

I have always been a reasonably shy person,plus my transgender background usually played a role. Would the woman even want me to approach? I really don't like pushy guys and I expect most women don't either.

Usually, I took the easy way out. I kept ordering drinks to build my confidence to talk to her...and she left.

I'm fairly certain the same thing happened to me tonite.

I was finishing up my evening at a favorite pub watching the baseball playoffs About halfway through the game, a guy grabbed the stool next to me and ordered the nightly beer special.

As the innings progressed, I noticed he switched to mixed drinks and was ordering when I was. Then-I left.

I will never know if he was "tracking" a transgendered "Cougar" or if the whole situation was a just part of my imagination.

Maybe that's the best part!

As fall and October get ready to make their appearance (already has where I live) there are so many things to consider!

I already bought a pair of new fall boots that I managed to fall in last night in front of a bunch of people. I know what your thinking! The boots were not the four inch stiletto style. Still had a heel of course but not enough to go down!!!! Just a little sore in the body and very sore in the ego department!

But girl friends it's almost the magical time of the year called Halloween!

If you've got that fun Halloween story, feel free to share it here!

I have mixed emotions about the day now. Since I'm out so much, I can't attend a party with friends. There is too much of a chance that they have seen me!

But some of the bigger parties at venue's in the area are too much fun to pass up. I went to a big outdoor event last year and just kind of hung out and watched the crowd.

I pretty much just went as female. No real costume.

This year it might be fun to head out to one of the big straight clubs..haven't decided yet!

Halloween was my first high heeled step out of the closet. It very much has a near and dear place in my heart! I dressed as a hooker years ago and went to a party with friends and ended up telling them it was more than a costume to me!

Two rules, however-don't expect to win a contest unless you are dressed as a female

character. (not just as a girl) Sarah Palen comes to mind. Rule two is don't expect to present easily as female! People are really looking at each other!

Then again you may not want to on Halloween! Don't know what delicious trouble you could get into!

Trick or Treat!

If I can quote "Bob Seger's Hollywood Nights" tune-"he knew right then he was too far from home. He was too far from home." Then relate it to losing your male identity, I would. Wait! I just did!

The reason I did quote the song (basically about a beautiful California blond and a Midwestern boy lost in her charms) is that I remember defining moments when I didn't want to go back home to my male self.

I know many of you girls have always known you were just that-a girl. Many of us however, did not have that luxury. I went through the first 30 years or so of my life fighting and giving in to my female urges.

I knew I could never go home happened to me when this Midwestern boy moved to the NYC area.

Within two months, I enjoyed two defining moments that would set my life on a female path.

The first was a trans "mixer" of sorts I attended on Long Island . The real lady at the door wouldn't let me in until I proved I was a guy. "No single real women allowed!"

The second was a Halloween party I attended with a couple friends at work. It just so happened that one of them had two other tall female friends that were dressed as sleazy as me! To this day I remember walking across an intersection in a mini dress and heels WITH 3 other real females. What an evening! The girls insisted I dance with them and even a couple of their boyfriends.

I knew then, I could never go home-even if I did move back to the Midwest.

If I was a betting girl (not) I bet you girls have defining moments too!

I welcome any stories you might have, when you knew you could never go home!

http://cyrstiscondo-cyrsti.blogspot.com/

The other day, I overheard a conversation from a mother accepting a personal phone call at work. (Against the rules.) She explained it away by saying she was going through a divorce and it was her 10 year old son calling.

The boy, it seems was a little nervous being alone after dark.

Of course I flashed back to my youth and thought how much hell I could raise in the extra time alone. No way I'm calling them!

Did that make me any more of a boy than this kid? Was I more of a male because I couldn't wait to get my license and a car? Today, it seems it's not a huge priority for guys.

We all know the answer-no it didn't make me more of a boy.

But I still wonder if the vast amount of single females raising boys- opens the door just a little more for boys to explore feminine things? What's a Mom to say if her son comes home and wants a manicure and pedicure so he can win a "womanless" beauty pageant?

Mom's thinking-what's the harm and Dad's not there anyhow to go WHAT? Plus, we all know there would never be a revenge factor in a messy divorce! Here Dad-isn't your son so pretty? BUT:

OK, girlfriends this is how I really feel.

We are either destined to be female at birth (true transsexuals) or we are exposed later in life to something that leads to a transgendered experience.

Society has finally advanced to a point where all of this is more acceptable. In my generation, being alone as a boy at the age of ten was OK. I had my parameters and if I screwed up-I paid. If I was a girl of ten that would have never happened. So, I'm glad gender lines are blurring. It's no secret, younger females are beating the boys in most everything except major sports and the guys do make the prettiest girls in gay bars! (And some beauty pageants!)

The lesson in all of this? I need to quit eavesdropping on other people's conversations!

I recently finished a hour long question and answer session with a graduate student working on a transgendered thesis.

As we sorted through the usual questions of when did you feel transgendered first and how much counseling had I gone through, here came the big question- how did I make new friends as a transgendered person.

Fortunately, I could fall back on last night's experiences to answer the question.

I was having an outstanding time conversing with a cis-girlfriend of mine. At the same time we were talking to one of our regular bartenders about her day on the job and I noticed another rather attractive woman switch places with the guy she was sitting with to get next to me.

Well, I was in heaven! She started a conversation almost immediately about the different places we have seen each other.

Question answered, I made a new friend as a transgendered person by osmosis. She had seen me around and I was interesting enough to talk to. The next step was the politics of nice.

I've mentioned before the art of communication between genders and how transgendered fits in. I call it the politics of nice.

Number one, I've learned plenty on how women talk to each other. The verbal or non verbal, the eyes and the touches all form a basis. The icing on the cake is just being nice. I try to project that basic fact. Underneath all the window dressing, yes I'm transgendered but I am a good person that you may want to know.

I wasn't always this way. On occasion I was bitchy and a loner. I did learn however that some women are as curious about us as we are about them.

As we talked "girl talk", being transgendered sort of just faded away and I'm gained another friend through osmosis!

So much more satisfying than be a bitch or a loner!

Where are transgendered folks from?

Perhaps we are the "earthlings"?

Think of the possibilities and the challenges.

No matter if you put a dress on once a week or you've fully transitioned, we earthlings are a unique tribe.

We suffer the same problems as Venus and Mars, and quarrel about them in similar ways. After all, the gravitational pulls of the other two

planets tug on us daily.

We are uniquely flamboyant or conservative in our dress and mannerisms as we struggle on our planet.

The problem with our planet is that we have opened "Pandora's Box" and we can't close it. All the different glittering gifts in the box fascinate! Those gifts send us down different paths we don't understand our self.

Imagine what that must be like for the inhabitants of the other two planets? From downright hatred and violence to curiosity and

acceptance-we get it all!

What's an "earthling" to do?

We hash and rehash our lives here to each other. In many cases we are all we have to communicate the pain and the joy of our planet.

All of this it's helps us to become stronger.

We need to believe in our tribe and embrace it's diversity! We have lived in the other two camps. If in the smallest way you can use that knowledge, you are one of God's chosen creatures. What ever God you believe in.

Communicating with the two other genders is a rare gift. Learning it and using it is the challenge. Accepting the challenge and being successful will make our planet a much better place to live!!!!

No, I'm not a criminal.

The "scene" was another sports bar I frequented a year or so ago. It was the only place that I have ever been discriminated against.

Most of the abuse started when a group of younger redneck guys read me. I put up with the cheap shots and comments because I do not let people like that run my life.

However, when "Dude looks like a lady" was played on the juke box 3 times in a row, it was time to go. The wimpy manager wouldn't intercede (I was a regular) but that was his call.

The final blow happened a week or so later on a Saturday night.

Everyone once in a while, I will draw the attention of a GG who is positively entranced with the image I portray.

It has more to do with what I do than how I look doing it. Between her and three other very curious "20 somethings" that night, I attracted a very serious "posse".

I loved it! All was good until I had to make a trip to the Ladies' Room. (An urgent trip!)

There were some other occupants doing what girls do.

One older bitter looking woman hit me full blast with "How's it going Dude."

I'm normally pretty quick with a come back, but this was different. I wasn't a rookie in the bathroom wars. I've had to stand in line to wait with the girls and shared tp and fashion tips.

On this occasion I just smiled sweetly and said "I need to get back with my friends" (I think she was jealous)

On my next visit the same manager said he was having "comments" about which bathroom I was using. So I left...gave him my frequent user discount card and left for a year.

I simply returned to the two other places I went to in the area (one for 12 years).

I finally did return last night. Just to see if I could. I knew the manager was long gone but the regular bartender was still there.(we never had a problem).

I watched the end of the ball game. Listened to some good music (one of the reasons I went there) drank two and left.

Problems? No, and I think I saw my old nemesis. She did not give me a second look. (A year of practice!)

By the way...on the way out I did have to use the ladies' room.

Last night I changed my look for the first time in a while. (girl's prerogative, right?)

I choose a shoulder length straight black hair style. I used to wear it quite a bit until I became enamored with my red curly fun hair.

The public has told me the "Red" does wonders for me and I LOVE the curls and length. I never have had a problem presenting in it. The compliment invariably comes from women.

The camera seems to like it also. The pictures are normally my highest rated. The mirror (which sometimes fibs!)

likes it too!

My problem is which input do I trust? Guys in my age bracket (more mature... ha!) approach me in the dark hair. No compliments...approaches.

I normally never fail to attract a conversation all the way up to the "motel room key" switch!( Another story.)

The camera is not cooperative. I have had a heck of a time taking a quality picture.

The mirror on the other hand, flat out loves the look!

I can only speculate that women like the volume, curls and color of the red hair. If done correctly, it's a sexy look. If wrong, drag queen comes to mind.

I don't get hassled, but not approached.

The dark presents it's own set of makeup problems. The eyes have to be overdone, along with the cheekbones with less emphasis on the lips to really make the look work.

Just right and my green eyes really stand out. Too much and "goth" comes to mind.

Reality tells me that I must be attractive and approachable to older guys and that is very flattering!

I guess the final impression comes from inside anyhow. But the showcase sets it up for success...or failure.

Here is one of the stories I sent to a friend and she thought I should share so...Here" ya" go! Direct from alternate life style redneck bars , two stellar tales...of me being me.

The first establishment basically was a female biker bar, not hardcore outlaw women, but a serious crew none the less. The best way I can describe the place was I got the juke box turned off one night when I played Shania Twane "Lord I feel like a Woman." No sense of humor...kind of like the urinal that was made into a planter.

The best pick up line I heard was "you don't look half bad. Maybe I should take you with me and we can see what kind of time we could have."

YAHOO. Me thinks that could have hurt!

Back in those days my wife was still alive and I had to be home around midnight. She got off about that time and I had to be presentable with all signs of makeup gone. Believe me, no amount of jabbering would have saved my place in the house when I told her I was abducted by an alien lesbian.

A kinder and gentler lesbian bar also operated on the same side of town. I made friends there that I'm in touch with today. (5 years later)

One night karaoke was the entertainment. Here she comes...burr haircut, cowboy hat and weighing in at a conservative 250.

I'm in long blond hair, tight jeans and boots. It occurred to me quickly... it may be about time I started sharpening up my non existent singing skills.

She did ask me to sing, she TOLD me to pick out a song. I thought "is this the way they treat girls in Texas?"

I opted for the only song my male self destroyed after many beers...the romantic ballad

"You don't have to call me Darling, Darling.

David Allan Coe if you're familiar.(I think he wrote it in jail?)

After we made sweet music (ha) she said "your voice is as low as mine!"

I felt as if I was in a "Lola" song remake, just all twisted up. In this version, I was the guy and she was Lola. Well, I kind of was the guy and she was kind of the girl but backward... when and if she put me on her knee. I thought maybe I could outrun her if I took my boots off!

We parted friends (thank god!) and I don't truly know if she guessed my gender. I had never seen her before or after!

Unfortunately all the pure lesbian bars are closed now in the area. How

sad. I miss drinking free. But more importantly, I won't get to try out

one of my top fantasies...female strippers in a lesbian bar! Dammit!

Mo MO MO! as Billy Idol would say coming up!

I have been frequenting a couple of the casual chain bar/restaurants in the area for over ten years. On my first visit, I was so scared that I took a seat next to a supporting post around the bar and tried to blend with it! I didn't dress as a piece of oak however so that didn't work!

I did live through the evening and found out the world wasn't trying to destroy me for being a girl! So I continued to return. In fact, a couple of the bartenders that have waited on me since the beginning are still there.

I also became pretty good "buds" (no not the beer) with the crew of the other unit. On one trip I ended up sitting next to one of the regular bartender's sister. I had heard stories about the exotic "stripper sis" and wasn't sorry! She was exotic with some well placed tats.

Her other job was as a hairdresser and she proceeded to tell me how much she loved trannies and gave me some tips on my appearance. She even went as far as inviting me to sister #3's bachelorette party. (another story)

Her husband was always with her. He was a big guy with a classic Triumph bike and the look to go with it. He ran a lumber yard. What a threesome!

The only problem was she loved to trade shots and the extra Jaeger and Tequila was hard to survive!

About three months later, she broke up with her husband. I guess exotic strippers have a hard time with monogamy? One night after the breakup, he came in with about three other friends that I knew..

Regardless of his decision making process with women, the poor guy was heartbroken. I tried to lend some support the best I could and away I went.

A week later, he was in the bar again and came over to sit next to me. Much to my (and the bartender's amazement) he was really interested in talking about things like his bike and music WITH ME. He was leaning into me ever so slightly and added some light touches. He had to be at work early the next morning. He gave me his cell number and left. He never asked for mine.

One of the bigger mistakes I've made is that I never called him. Only saw him once after that and he moved away.

At that point in my life my profile would have read "no men" After my brief encounter with him, I changed that profile. Ever so briefly I connected with a person who shared many of the same interests with me. Ever too quickly, I never tried to see the gentle bear of a guy again.

All of a sudden spending time with a guy wasn't such a bad thought.

I often wondered what that ride on the back of his Triumph would have been like!

Back to a time of confusion and loneliness and innocence.

I was on a simple journey across town when I saw a woman walking down a long drive to her mail box. For some reason my mind flipped back to the days when a trip to the mailbox in what makeup and clothes I could scratch together gave me my first tentative steps out the door as a girl.

The driveway became a different dimension. In reality it was probably about 75 yards, but during my walks it magically transformed into a mile or shortened to ten feet. If my distant neighbors happened to drive by it was the mile for sure! If I had just shaved my legs and wore a skirt, the journey was way too short!

This time of my life was similar to so many of you others. Al Gore had not yet invented the internet and I was fairly sure I was the only boy with my hobby.

Currently, so many of our blog posts are into life and death struggles with spouses HRT and the like. Why wouldn't they be? We didn't choose this particular aspect of ourselves to be so difficult and pervasive. It is a struggle!

But what was your magical moment of excitement of youth that you remember the most? A time before all of this got to be so difficult and demanding.

Maybe it was your first walk down that driveway or that first Halloween party. I'm sure that moment is one to remember!

Questions anyone?

By Cyrsti,

On occasion, I do become tired of people asking me why I dress the way I do. It's getting to the point where I can predict when it's going to happen.

Recently, I've gone through a period of no recognition of my gender and no questions. I felt it had to end and tonight it did.

I wasn't over dressed as I made my way through the evening with jeans, flip flops and a bunch of curly red hair.

All in all, a very uneventful evening until the young blond in knee socks, short flippy skirt and tank top showed up. All legs and hair.

I was watching my MLB team and the bar's version of "American Idol" was going on in a side room.

After a while she came up and sat down beside me and started some innocent chat. Before long she said "what's your story"I knew where she was going and I bounced the line back to her. "Are you one of the performers?"( An obvious reference to her outfit.) It turns out she works for a "pub" concept in the area and she was wearing her uniform. Which by the way she quickly apologized for!

Inwardly flattered that she was talking to me, I finally came up with a couple lines to answer her question.

I simply told her that I am a very harmless creature..but very exotic. Please be careful of the pronouns you use with me. I'm not your "he" and I'm not your "she" refer to me by my name.

What you see could be false but what you hear from me probably isn't.

Her questions were answered but not her curiosity.

I received an invite to her pub and left with the satisfaction of knowing I had finally verbalized what I felt all these years.

The only question I didn't have an answer to was "where can I get one of those skirts!'

Following a surprise encounter with a guy in a very straight sports/bar restaurant the other night, I sought advice from a female bartender I know. I was very unsure of how I handled the situation.

He caught me with an approach and a comment that most females probably encounter at the age of 14 (or less). I was with a GG friend and she left. He started quickly and aggressively with questions about her and then moved in on me.

So quickly, I didn't have much time to make much of a value judgment of his personality. First came the drink offer and "why was I so shy?" He was reasonably attractive and well dressed but something just didn't seem right about him.

My regular bartender wasn't there that night. The two of us have developed some really effective non verbal communication with our eyes. Information that would have told me a lot.

Not having that resource and low on my drink, I didn't take a chance with him and took off.

What a quick journey that night to the other side of the curtain! Following major soul searching about the experience, I labeled myself inexperienced, naive and ignorant.

Inexperienced because I don't have the life experiences from a girl's side of the fence. I was never forward enough as a guy to make the approach he did so I had no point of reference from either gender.

I was naive to think I could project as a relatively attractive single female in that arena and not get some sort of reaction. After all, where had I been my whole life...well not in that situation!

Finally, ignorance is always not stupidity. I had never encountered that experience so I was ignorant in how to handle it.

As my friend's knowledge of the situation grew (she probably had the same conversation about guys with girlfriends a thousand times over the years) She told me one solution for the next time. Always use the cell phone as a prop and tell him I'm waiting for my partner and SHE will be here shortly!

I did feel better when she told me she knew who I was talking about and she thought he was a creep.

Let me preface this entry by saying my wife passed away a couple years ago. It was her love and perseverance that glued our 25 year marriage together. This is one of the questions she asked that helped me be the person I am today. She would want me to "pay forward" this experience to any who can use it.

Many years ago, my wife indirectly asked me this question. "Are you man enough to be a woman?" This is how it happened.

We were living in an area directly above NYC. I was still a novice in most girl situations but learning fast. You might say I became the proverbial teen age girl. I started to test some deep waters.

My wife knew of all my activities before our relationship, but in all fairness to her (and me) we didn't see the train coming down the tracks. In the space of a couple months I went from a "dress at home girl" to "go out and party girl".

It all started when I was almost refused entrance to a TG event on Long Island. The woman at the door told me I was in the wrong place and they didn't let "real" single girls in.

Shortly after that I attended a Halloween party in a bar with about 4 tall beautiful women dressed about as sleezy as I was. I knew I was going with one but not 4! They gave me the "bitch" look when I hit the door and it was on!

God I was in heaven as the 5 of us hit the door in heels and mini's. They made sure I mingled and danced with guys and everything.

Over the next month of so, a couple other minor happenings occurred and I was mentally shot. All I thought about was the next time I could "dress and go".

Needless to say, this was not the award winning marriage experience my wife was looking for. Finally she said "look you are making us both miserable" Make up your mind. Man up and be a woman or not. It's your choice, it's not fair to either of us.

Then she said "by the way, you make a terrible female." I was stunned! Obviously she wasn't there when I was almost turned away for being a "real girl" or when I fit right in with the GG's at the Halloween party! What the hell did she know?

But you know, it wasn't about looks. She simply pointed out I had NO feminine thought patterns. As we all know being female is more than looking the part. My wife labeled me a "bitch" and didn't like me.

Not immediately, but over the years my thick noggin began to realize the truth in what she said. Somewhere in my personality I managed to do my part in keeping the relationship together. I found out the hard way the time we had together was the best gift of my life.

Since she departed I have done my best to be a woman she would accept! I found I could be a friend who cares and gives.

She still would not approve of my clothes and makeup choices but that is who I am on the outside. I have always been.

I believe she would approve of my inside being. Be it female or male, I try to be more compassionate and fun to be around! The people around me tell me I'm a good person which transcends gender.

Maybe I was "man enough to be a girl". Certainly it's tough enough to face the male life challenges. I played with the Alpha's rather well.

It's tougher still to move to the other side and I have no desire to play with the alpha girls! If you think I have a pretty face I'm complimented. When I move unnoticed through a young crowd in a sports bar I'm exhilarated! But deep down all that matters is inside.

Maybe she would approve!

I found her!

By Cyrsti,

How many years and tears have passed before she walked out of my head and into the world?

Trial and error, starting and stopping and above all else? Observation!

How many thousands of times do we read you must dress to blend and dress your age. Blah, blah blah. We must dress to be us and I'm in my 40's.

I'm a faithful reader of many of the fashion mags and the excerpts we see on line. The bottom line in most age related fashion tips is you wear what is you. If you can incorporate different fashion items from different age groups into your style...then it makes you who you are.

My biggest compliment comes from a woman giving me that "you bitch" look. She is not reading me, she is judging me because my hair is too long or I might be wearing too much makeup. It is not my problem if she can't or won't take the time to take care of herself and her biggest thrill of the day will come in the produce section.

I found the women of my age category who "put themselves together" are out there and I love them!

I can never hope to be as knock down sexy as the "Jamie's" of the world with her book on passing.

But I can hope to be me and move confidently through situations I only dreamed of attempting years ago.

In those moments all the error of trial and error becomes worth it!

I have been really fortunate over the past two years to really explore life as a dual gendered person.

Yes, another tag to add to the others describing our "condition". This is the difference in my opinion.

I'm still not "girl" enough for the SRS crew. I can't share the experience of having a baby or having a sex change operation. As with any human being, we tend to seek those out with similar experiences and exclude the rest. Many times it is not malicious just normal.

In addition, I'm not ready to end my male existence. On occasion I enjoy it immensely.

In many circles, I'm too much girl for the CDer's. I'm kind of like a cat. Most felines can make it on their own without us and yes I could make it without my male self. I've worked hard to present myself as female and I try to not be the bitch in these circles just because I've done more. (So to speak)

You see, in a mixed crowd...the guys in a dress still shy away from me as they do the "changelings". Do you get my point?

Probably, the most accepting group of all (and most of my friends) are the lesbian crowd. Many male gays are as biased against us as much as the straight males. Especially if they realize the HUGE difference in us versus the "queens".

All of this is just my view on the whole situation and I just throw it out to see if any of you have similar experiences1