Monday, December 31, 2012

My last visit to the North Country for the year...

Yes, it's that time of year again - where one has to plan his/her late night driving around the number of drunks on the road.

Last year, I had no place to go to for the New Year.  I had broken up with a girlfriend of 8 years, and I had not yet made connections to help deal with the absence of that person in my life.  Mind you, I am much better off not having this person in my life.  But I've discussed that elsewhere - and way too much for now.

This year, I have an invite to a New Year's Eve party - and one at which I can present my feminine persona.  It's nice being able to get one's self dolled up and pretty for a party.  (Yet, I can't blame many natal women for hating the headache of makeup.  It can be a time consuming pain at times.)  But this is not as important as the fact that I have a place to go, friends to be with for this festive night.

But as I think of the old year going out, it has been a period of great growth for me.  Not only did I overcome my fear of being out in the world, but I also opened myself up to new experiences.  There is still a long way for me to go - there are three things I want to take care of this year (in no particular order): Weight Loss, Voice Training (for female presentation), and Permanent Beard Removal (first, via laser).  In regard to my career, I want to have made the full transition into using my new skillset, and be ready to take the certification exam in early 2014.  (And hopefully getting a new position in my firm using the new skillset.)

So... I'll try to get some new pictures at the NYE party for the blog - I want to show off the new dress I picked up a couple of weeks ago.  And to all this blog's readers - have a very Happy New Year wherever you are, and remember:

"Don't drink and drive - you might hit a bump and spill some!"


Friday, December 28, 2012

Choices, choices, choices....

Today was a needed day off from work.  No, I didn't occupy myself by doing anything useful.  Instead, I lounged around all day and didn't get showered until 4:00 pm.  The big first decision was - do I go out in my male or female persona?  Like Meg inferred in a recent post, it's the freedom of choice which is important and not necessarily the choice that's made.  (I'll let my readers guess which persona I went out as - it'll be interesting to see the responses, if any....)

There are a couple of reasons why I have to go out today.  The first is a snowstorm that is expected to come in overnight.  I want to be able to eat without raiding my icebox.  The second is that I'm bored as hell, and have some other errands I can do in addition to seeing a movie at the local multiplex.  And, if I want a third reason, I could use some cash from the ATM down the hill.  So this adds two more choices - 1. What do I want to eat?  2. What do I want to see?

If I still considered myself in a potential relationship, I'd have called up the potential lady in my life and said: "Would you like to have a visitor for a day or so?"  But this is not the case.  As I noted in a prior posting, she decided to pursue someone who broke things off with her and wanted to get back with her.  And I choose to wish the best for her - as being anything more than mildly sad, mildly disappointed or mildly upset would be feeding negativity - something I don't want to do. 

So it's back to choices....  We all have choices about what we do with our lives.  What is important is that we try to make the best ones for ourselves that allow us to treat others as we would want ourselves treated in the same situation.



Thursday, December 27, 2012

A quickie - Something useful for part timers

One of the things a trans person doing a part time female presentation often has to deal with is the headache of covering up beard stubble.  Unless one has lasered or electro'd away the hair folicles, sooner or later the erupting beard will show.

I've played with several techniques, one of them being the use of a orangy lipstick applied to the beard area before foundation is applied.  One problem - one needs just the right shade of red/orange to do a good cover.  Luckily, I've found a theatrical supply store that sells two different brands of beard cover.  Although I'm using RCMA beard cover, the Ben Nye beard cover works just as well.  In a good femulator's makeup bag of tricks, one learns what makeup tricks work on one's face.  In my case, I find that the use of Dermablend concealer (for my foundation) on my mustasche area and the chin area below my mouth (after applying beard cover) goes a long way.  However, one should not apply more than one layer of beard cover/foundation without being very careful - if one uses a second layer, one has to apply both beard cover and foundation to maximize the duration of the illusion of a beardless chin....

If one has dark circles under the eyes, the beard stubble trick will work there just as well. But there is one difference - use only one layer of makeup.  The skin in the area of one's eyes is delicate....

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

A Christmas Quickie

Today was a nice day with family.  The more I chat with my niece, the more I find out how much our interests are similar to each other - in the arts, that is.  Here is where I can contribute something to her life that her dad can not - an understanding of the arts she loves, and a way to help her grow in this area.  (I also mentioned to my dad that I'm planning on updating my will soon, and that I want to have her inherit my apartment if anything happens to me....)

So - it was a nice holiday, and it'll be back to work in the morning.  I hope that all the readers of this blog had an equally nice day....

Monday, December 24, 2012

Nothing is certain in life....

What is it that they say - "Nothing is certain life, save death and taxes"?  That's certainly true in my life.  I never thought that I'd be "out" when this year started.  And I never thought that I'd have had a conversation with a woman regarding where were going with our relationship, much less having things end on account of something other than me being trans.  Even with family, until late this afternoon, I had no idea of where I'd be spending Christmas day - if my brother and his wife had started arguing again, I'd have skipped the party and cooked my own holiday dinner - stuffing and all.  But things have firmed up for now, and I'll be trekking out to my brother's place sometime tomorrow for dinner. 

Right now, I have everything I need, including a few luxuries of life: food, clothing, shelter and employment.  But I'm hoping that the people really important to me can have some peace in their lives.  This is my Christmas wish for all....  And with that being said, I wish the readers of this blog a very Merry Christmas - and promise that I will have more to say in the upcoming year....

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Last days of Christmas shopping season

This morning, I saw a friend for breakfast.  It was nice to prepare for going out, applying my makeup, picking out accessories, and then putting on a sweater and skirt combo.  I've said it before, but I could easily get used to doing this every day.  It may be more work to prepare to go out in a female presentation, but it feels much nicer this way.  My friend and I talked of many things at breakfast, but next time, it'll be "my brother" who comes for breakfast.  (I don't mind this.  In the back of her mind, I think she wants to make sure that I'm seeing her for her sake and not for an excuse to get dressed.) 

Afterwards, I ended up doing a little shopping and a lot of driving.  Basically, I didn't have anything important to do around the house that couldn't be delayed, and I enjoyed enjoying a sunny day outside. Other than beauty aids (makeup, sponges, etc.), I didn't buy anything.  It always pays to have extras for critical supplies one may need to use as part of the preparation process.....

Well, enough for now.   I have to change into drab mode, and pick up my prescriptions and my laundry....

Problems go away by themselves...

In business, like politics, the wisest thing often is to push problems down the road (into the future) and hope that some other unfortunate soul gets stuck dealing with a problem.  However, this is not often the case in real life for the rest of us.  But in my case, I dodged an uncomfortable situation by doing just this....

As I mentioned in an earlier blog entry, over the past year, I have been non-comittally dating a woman.  During the summer, for lack of better terms, she told me that she felt like she needed space (she wasn't getting the chance to see family, etc.) and I backed away, letting her initiate contact.  I felt that it was her way of breaking up....   Well, within two months, things were back to "normal" and she initiated another conversation regarding our future.  So at this point, I figured that I should prepare her for my conversation, telling her about this persona. 

I had set a deadline for year-end when I'd tell this woman about being trans, and see what happened.  Well, she made things much easier for me.  There was another man in the picture, someone who dumped her earlier, that renewed contact - and she didn't know what to do.  I said that if her heart is telling her to go to him, that is what she must do.

So I'm free of the burden of telling her anything.   Even if she wants another chance with me, I'd never be able to feel fully comfortable with her again.  Part of me is sad, and another part of me is very glad and relieved.  Here was a problem that took care of itself, in a way that could be expected, but not predicted....

But I learned one important thing - if another woman and I start getting intimate, tell her early on about this side of me.  It will certainly help me avoid a lot of angst.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Friendships

It's nice to be able share this persona with my friends - especially during the Holiday season.  Several times, I've been able to share shopping expeditions with these friends, as they look for things they need, or for gifts they will be giving to their families.

Now, there is a certain thrill for me in going out en-femme.  But the more I do it, the more it will seem natural to me, and not be so thrilling.  Yet, it will still give me pleasure.  With this being said, the people who are accepting this second persona of mine are also the ones who are showing that they care for me no matter what. And isn't this what all trans people want when they take their first steps out in the world?

One nice thing about this blog is that it has introduced me to new people.  We have our discussions, and I learn new things from these people while they learn new things from me.  It is a subset of the larger society.  And it is a subset that is more sensitive to the roles we play and the roles expected of us.  Most importantly, it is a subset of the larger society which is gradually gaining acceptance by being part of the society, and not separate from it. 

When first timers go to events like Fantasia Fair, they often may not know what to expect.  I was lucky to have braved being "out" before attending this event.  So the fears and worries about being en-femme in a safe place were non-existant.  And yet, I still had to become comfortable being out in the world - I was still taking baby steps.  This is an essential part of being "out" - not everyone can just say "I'm Trans" to the world, they have to start slowly until they have built up steam....

I find it hard to believe how lucky I've been - my friends accept me, and I present well enough to be accepted as female (I don't want to use the word "passing", because even natal females don't always get recognized for who they are.)  Does this mean I'm an expert - no.  But it means that I'm moving forward.  And for that, I'm grateful....

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Looking forward to tomorrow....

All these opportunities to go out in the world, and I'm taking advantage of every opportunity I can get.   Tomorrow, I'm supposed to see a friend who knows both sides of me.  So I asked her - do you want to see the brother or the sister?  And she's happy seeing either persona.   I like that!!!!

2013 will likely be a year of greater stress for me - the project I'm managing is late due to factors outside my control.  (My former boss dealt with the same problems with the same cast of characters and said - it's not me, it's the insanity of the people I deal with.)  The two computer systems on which I built a career are being retired.  And no new positions are being opened up in our firm's NYC offices.   So you can guess why I worry....

But I try to live in the here and now, and try to get out in female mode as much as possible.  This brings me great pleasure, as I feel like the kid in a candy shop.  Eventually, this euphoria will ebb, and the day to day feelings of simple comfort will take its place.  When this happens, I'll again focus on the things I need to do for my future - a little bit of networking, a little bit of course taking, and getting my educational certification.  (I will not identify it here, as I do not want this persona to interfere with me being able to get a job with this certification.)  And hopefully, I'll be able to keep a position which allows me to indulge my female persona with the fashions I like to wear....

But enough said in that area.  On another blog that I follow, I saw the blogger in a beautiful patterned dress.  You can guess what I'll be looking for in one of my future shopping expeditions!  Until then, I'll just have to make do with the wardrobe I have - and am very grateful to be able to wear it....

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

A quickie on a day off....

My car made it to the shop this morning, and $326.00 later....

There is one reader of this blog who had the misfortune to be stopped by a policeman while en-femme.  Having had cars break down on me while far from home gives me a healthy respect for the "check engine light' on my dashboard. And the last thing I want is to be en-femme when a preventable breakdown (or worse) occurs.  So it was off to the shop today, and into NYC tonight for an interesting presentation on managing the construction of the Second Avenue Subway....   (No, I will be en-homme for this event.)

For me, I intend to be open about my trans nature as much as possible, except when dealing with work and family.  I will always have a couple of friends who will not be able to accept this side of me - one of them having his own problems with a sister who may be transitioning to malehood.  Yet, I want to be noticed as trans as little as possible.  I don't want to be seen as someone special when en-femme (being a trans person) - and why should I?   So this poses a question - how does one best manage masculine and feminine personas so that one's everyday interactions with people do not stand out as anything special, except when they are truly worth considering as something special....?

More shopping

I'm glad it's Christmas time, as I can go shopping for myself and know that the extended sizes will be available in the department stores.  Tonight, I wanted to pick up a few things: (1) a pair of booties, so that when I eventually am wearing leggings (and am properly tucked) that my feet can be more comfortable than in the boots I've been wearing, (2) Tights, as it is hard enough to find them in a size E or F., (3) a white blouse (us T-Gals can always use more than one of these), and (4) some shapewear (I don't want to risk "Mr. Happy" being detected because he is too loose....)

Hopefully, I'll lose some weight by the time I take my next vacation.  Like Kim, I'd like to be able to fly en-femme, and stay in this persona throughout a vacation.  But the time I do get to spend this way makes me feel good....  And I know this feeling does permeate into my male persona.

Tonight, I've passed a link to this blog to one of my friends who knows about this side of me.  I wonder what she'll think after reading the blog.  It'll be nice to have a person who has known me for over 16 years be able to comment....

Monday, December 17, 2012

Another Quickie - on a serious note.

The TV news is very depressing today.  The first of the children killed in the Connecticut massacre were put to rest today.  There are no words for this, but I know no one who is happy.  There will be a cloud over that community for years.  I just hope that with time will come a sense of peace, and an easing of day to day pain, that the parents, families, and the community at large will experience.  Sadly, this is the big news of the day, and I can't bear to watch it.  So, I have a war movie on right now.  Even with death, there is less pain in seeing a film about a battle that occurred 70 years ago, than to focus on the lives just lost.

My advice to people is to be leery of any statement made by a politician or "talking head".  Right now, they are playing to show how important they are.  They want to show that they care about the problems at hand.  And they will, as usual, be just as ineffective as they and their predecessors have been over the years.  If you're angry - wait a while until you're calm.  And then try to view what happened through the eyes of our "opposition".  Maybe you'll come away with an understanding of their fears.  And if so, please ask yourself what you could do to ease those fears.  We need dialogue to form good laws to deal with our problems, and only by honest dialogue can we move forward....

A quickie to start the work week....

Yesterday, I went shopping at the local supermarket.  This wouldn't be a big deal, except that I was en-femme.... 

I've been en-femme at my local supermarket before, but this is not really that important.  But I never noticed anyone who I knew at the supermarket while I was in a skirt or dress.  So I was pleasantly surprized to be next to be one of my neighbors without her noticing who I am.  I guess that I am passable enough (in passing, or should I say in a brief encounter) not to be noticed as just an anonymous female.

I wonder what she'd say if she knew it were me....?.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Out shopping

I went out shopping with my friend today, and it was fun to be shopping with her en-femme.  Of course, she gave me some hints on what would look good on me, and what I should look for in the sizing of clothes.  I'll depend on her as I flesh out my wardrobe - she has good taste, and there's much I can learn from her.  Today, she gave me a wool coat that was too big for her.  Heck, it's getting easier for me to flesh out this wardrobe every day - and I'm receiving a lot of good stuff without paying for it.  I wonder when I'll have to say "NO" to putting more clothes in my closet.

After lunch, I wanted to make a run up to another store to do some shopping.  However, the "check engine light" came on, and I figured that it would be wise to stay near home, to be safe.  So I ended up going to the laundromat to pick up my clothes, and to say goodbye to the lady who has been doing my laundry for a while.  I'll miss seeing her....  At least I have her address, so that I can send her a gift in celebration of the baby inside her womb....

 


Another Day, Another Outing

It's nice to be able to relate my thoughts about going out in the world in this blog.  It makes things much easier for me, as I have a place to communicate my feelings about going out in the world without boring my friends out of their minds....

With this being said, I'm going out with one of my closest friends today.  First to go for Dim Sum (or something like it), and then to do some Xmas shopping.  Of course, it will all be done en-femme. It feels very good to be able to go out with her as a girlfriend, and not as a straight version of a gal's "gay best friend". (This is the same woman who would live with me as sisters, if she were to outlive her husband - a man who I hope lives a long life.)  And I'm starting to sound like a real female when I'm starting to say "I've got nothing to wear" when my "Girl" closet is full.   (If only my late wife could see me now - she'd chuckle about me experiencing many of the same clothing dilemmas that she did years ago.)  Now if I could only get the energy to get out of my jammies and take a shower.  But that energy will be there by the time I have finished this blog entry.

Shifting subjects....  I was on the train yesterday afternoon, going to meet a friend in NYC.  Towards the end of the ride, a nice looking lady started a conversation, and we had a nice time chatting about things in general.  At the end of the ride, I mentioned my love for San Francisco, and wanting to become part of the human granola of the city (fruits, flakes and nuts).  Then I sprung two pictures on her - which made her day.  First was a provincetown picture of me in a LBD.  After that was the "Star Trek" picture (2 TGals in the loo, boldly going where no man has gone before).  I made her day!  She couldn't believe how good I looked. (The train then made it into the station, and we parted to our own destinations.) So, I then met the woman I'm seeing, and continued prepping her for this side of me.  (She knows I go to monthly parties with polyamorous friends in the North Country who accept me flying my "freak flag" - next is to let her knowing what that "freak flag" is.)  So far, she hasn't gotten antsy when I mention that I have an unconventional side.  Now if only I could figure out what to get her for Xmas....

Saturday, December 15, 2012

The North Country

Last night, I drove to upstate New York to attend a pot luck supper with some polyamorous friends I know.  No, I am not a practicing poly person.  But I am curious to what it is about, and find the people very interesting.  Additionally, they accept me being there en-femme.  In fact, one lady commented that she doesn't remember how I look en-homme, as I only visited that way once - in a hot summer, where wearing a wig was very impractical.


Now, I don't like how this picture turned out - I looked better than this picture would have you think.  But it does illustrate a problem I have.  I'd like to get glasses with frames which help shift focus in the area near my eyes, so that my deep sunk eyes will appear less so.  (In short, I need glasses as a prop - except when reading books....)

But looking at myself in the mirror, I noticed that my beard was growing faster than it did during the summer.  When I see my doctor next, I'll ask him whether facial hair grows faster in the winter.  It won't help me much (I need laser and electro), but it will help me determine how long I can stay out before a refresher shave/makeup session is needed.

In the morning, I expect to go shopping with a GG friend.  If I'm lucky, I'll have some news to report then....

Unexpected events

What can I say about today in light of what happened in a Connecticut school?

I am a strong second amendment supporter.  Yet, even I shudder when I hear of massacres such as what happened today.  There will always be a tension between the individual's right to keep and bear arms, and the community's right to make itself safe from madmen and criminals.  And I see no good way to ease this tension without surrendering constitutionally guaranteed rights - something that I rarely support because I don't trust the government to protect us in time of need.

Since none of us have the full facts in the hands of the police, I'm holding off doing much serious thinking about this incident until we have had some time to digest the facts available to us.  This is the big question I'd like to have answered - is there a way to prevent madmen from getting firearms without meaningful interference in the gun enthusiast's right to enjoy his/her guns?  Please note that I do not now address issues such as the number of guns an individual should own, what limits should be set on gun use, etc....  We can never properly address these issues in light of the second amendment. 

One thing I've heard on the "Liberal" news network today was that the killer was the mentally disturbed child of the woman he shot.  The liberal media noted that no amount of reference checking would have picked up this kid had he been of age and prevented him from buying a firearm. The "Liberal" news continued, noting that these incidents are statistically rare, although they can occur in clusters.  In short, there was not much that could be don to protect anyone without the excessive involvement of big government.

So I ask of people to please learn as much as possible about the proper care and use of firearms before deciding what rules to enact regarding the right to keep and bear arms. What people learn might be very interesting and helpful....


Friday, December 14, 2012

Another trip to the North Country

It's nice being able to burn vacation days at year end.  This has allowed me to use several of them to visit friends in the "North Country" for Friday afternoon/evening parties, and still be able to return to have a full weekend with family and friends.  It has been especially useful in enabling me to go shopping for clothes en-femme, as the stores have been less crowded during the work day than after people have left their offices.

Most natal women would love to be able to simplify their clothing options to the level that most men enjoy.  For example, when a man has to get dressed for an office interview, it is usually a simply choice of which suit to wear - everything else he wears is predicated on that choice, and follow simple rules. To get dressed for an informal function, he can pick up a pair of jeans or khakis, and have almost any shirt in his collection go with it.  And for him, there is no such a thing as a choice of foundation garment and of hosiery - the rules are easy to follow.  However, for women, the rules are much more complex.  And for us trans gals, we usually haven't had the luxury of having a female adolescence to learn them.  So many of us make a lot of mistakes, as some trans gals indulge a long held fantasy or two while developing their feminine style.  For me, I did a lot of preparatory thinking, and tried to observe women of my age to determine what options I'd have and what rules I'd need to follow.  This has been a very big help to me, as I've made few errors. 

One female friend commented on my style - it is extremely conservative for a woman of my age.  Conservative was not meant in the sense of being retrograde and behind the times.  Instead, it was meant that I didn't take any chances with my clothes - chances that some natal females might take now and then to grab positive attention.  She went on to comment that my female persona dresses in a way that my male persona would like his mate to dress.  And this point hit home - she was correct!  My male persona is not as well put together as my female persona - not being a "metrosexual", the male persona can afford to be a tiny bit sloppy and imperfect without triggering anything negative in people's minds -   whereas, the female persona has to follow more rules and follow them with more precision.

So, it's back to the North Country again - and a little shopping along the way.  As usual, I'll be carrying a change of clothes - if my "brother" wants to go into the hot tub there, he'll need a change of clothes for the 2 1/2 hour trip home.  There is no way that this gal wants to go to the bother of doing her makeup twice in one day....

Monday, December 10, 2012

Christmas Shopping

It's nice to be able to go shopping for my feminine persona during this holiday season.  The stores have been reasonably well stocked, and I've found lots of nice stuff to add to my second wardrobe.  But I'm very lucky - I still have a career which affords me the luxury of paying for two wardrobes.

Now, I've been pleasantly surprized to be told by several women that I look better en-femme than I do en-homme.  It's still a shock to me.  But each day that I'm out in the world, I get more confident in my feminine role, that the only things holding me back is a lack of confidence in the use of my voice and the fact that my beard stubble causes me to turn into a pumpkin after a few hours en-femme.  Yet, I'm now told I'm an inspiration to at least one or two people who have only started their process of opening up to the world.  This is also a pick-me-up, as I enjoy helping them perfect their personas for the outside world.

I've had the pleasure to meet three of the bloggers whose out-and-about personas from whom I've gained inspiration.  It's nice to be able to give something back to the community, and I'm glad to "pay it forward".

But I wonder - what are the most important things holding other trans people back from living the lives they choose?  Is there any advice that can be given to help some of these people move forward?  What do you think? .


Sunday, December 9, 2012

Unexpected Shopping

Yesterday, I renewed contact with an old friend with whom I lost contact for reasons other than my crossdressing.  And it was a good thing I did....

Our plan was to have lunch, then to go shopping.  I had a budget in mind - and mostly stuck to it.  And it was fun to have someone with me, handing me things to try on in the changing room.  Since these items were on closeout, I was able to get things at an affordable price.  But what is much more important is that I learned that certain styles of tops or dresses would work on me - I didn't have to wear things with excessively high neck lines to avoid showing that I have no natural cleavage.  Just as important as dressing advice, was noticing something else - my beard shadow is coming up faster than it did a few weeks ago.  It's a sign that winter is coming.  And just as critical, it's a sign that I need to get laser or electro started soon. 

Now, I'll always have a difference in philosophy with this friend.  There is a part of me that knows that I'm doing much better than 90% of the people in this world, and that I could get by (with much effort) if my income stream were to get interrupted.  But the other part of me will always worry about not having enough income to get by, and refuses to spend on things that aren't needed.  And it is a big deal for me to spend any money outside of cash flow.  She'd say that I should rush into getting laser or electro if I'm serious about this style of life.  Where I'd take things slow.  I'm trying to be careful, and not make permanent solutions to temporary conditions.  Is this interest in femininity temporary?  Probably not - I've had it since before grade school.  However, the emphasis on being cautious is still wise.  I've avoided many of the mistakes others have made, and have had an easier time going out in the world because of it.

My friend has another habit that I don't want to pick up on - she has a nasty habit of buying clothes that she wears once, and never wears again.  Guess who inherited some of the better hand-me-downs?  It seems as it once I started getting ready to go out in the world, that my closet started inheriting cast off clothing - some of it useful, and some of it to be given to Goodwill when I get around to it.

The differences in our philosophies even extend into what we want from a relationship.  My friend wants extreme passion in her relationships - what's the point of being in a relationship without being in love?  She wants to be completed by the relationship.  Whereas, for me, I simply want a companion for this trip through life.  No one person can complete me.  But one person can help me feel better, because of simply being around me.  (My therapist has a nasty habit of quoting a Johnny Mathis tune that expresses this feeling better than I can do....)  So, where she has had a lot of bad luck with relationships, I've recently had good luck.  And if things don't work out, I know that I'll have options for the future - as long as I can afford to go out on dates.

Our conversation eventually flowed into sexuality - gender expression and gender preference.  She focused on trying to maximize the odds of finding a partner by opening myself up to same-sex partnerships, not understanding that gender preference is not linked to gender expression.  There was an effective compulsion to fit me into a relationship type, instead of accepting that for someone like me, that I have to meet a lot of ladies before I find those who can accept and tolerate this side of me, much less enjoy it....  Again, if one needs to be completed by a relationship, one will put a square peg into a round hole and wonder why it doesn't fit.  If one doesn't need to be completed, one can wait until the right peg and the right hole are matched - and one can feel better about not being in a relationship.... 

What bothered my friend most is that I could consider a situation posed by another friend.  If this other friend's husband were to pass away (which neither of us wants to happen), she seriously suggested that we live together as sisters as we enjoy the same things in life.  And I'd probably choose this option if it were available to me, though I'd miss the physical companionship of females that I've been enjoying lately....  My friend doesn't realize that many women are choosing just this sort of arrangement in their old age - demographics are against them finding decent men at their ages, and it makes sense to live with friends who can help each other take care of themselves in old age.

So this unexpected shopping trip bought me more insights into myself than I'd have expected.  And it showed how much I've grown in such a short time....

Friday, December 7, 2012

Humming Rodgers and Hammerstein Tunes....

That title sounds a little cryptic, doesn't it?  But it'll make sense by the end of this entry.

This morning, I had the pleasure of seeing a friend of mine who knows about "Marian" while en-femme.  Unfortunately, I was running late, and I had to cut corners in doing my makeup so that I could make it to the diner on time for breakfast.  Rushing wasn't needed - she was five minutes late.  When I asked her about my appearance, she said that I look like a natal female, and my makeup flaws were that of a natal female when rushed.   Over breakfast, we talked of many things.  (For the most part, she was doing the talking - but I was participating in "rapport mode" as a natal female would.)  Sadly, she had to run off to work - but not before agreeing to arrange dinner before the holiday...

After breakfast, I decided to go window shopping at the local mall - and go into the women's departments which I always avoid when en-homme.  It's nice to feel comfortable shopping as a woman, and not feel the awkwardness of being a male in these areas.  Yes, it's just fabric on hangers.  But our culture applies a lot of value to the nature of this fabric and how it is cut/assembled.  And I enjoy browsing through the clothes - even though there's not much I want or need to buy.  (I could always use a nice, simple white blouse.)

When I got home, I saw my nosy neighbor.  (NN from another blog entry)  Although we have important differences, she did say that I looked good (she used the word "passable") en-femme.  She warned me about other neighbors - but I'm not worried about them.  Again - there's not much they can do to me, and I am glad that I'm finally "out".

So when I walked the steps to my apartment this afternoon, I found myself humming a Rodgers and Hammerstein tune appropriate for the day.....  "I enjoy being a girl." 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Another Quickie - Preparing for the weekend

So many things to do, and so little time....

A friend of mine has invited me to any (and all) of her alternate culture events this weekend.  Although I have an interest in these things, I'd simply prefer to see her at lunch and catch up on life as a whole.  I'm going to be busy enough as it is, potentially going into NYC en-femme to do some museum touring.

I'll make some posts later when I know what I'm going to do, or after I've done it....

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Neighborly Chatting

Yesterday was a very interesting day.  But it was interesting for two reasons, only one of them touching on my Trans nature. 

As I've noted before, I'm in the last stages of a career that has kept me comfortably employed for over 35 years.  My primary skillset is obsolete, and though I've gotten training for new skillsets, none of them is likely to provide me with a well paying job.  Luckily, I have saved some money, and have a decent pension that will pay for the basics.  So when my boss's boss announced that he was coming to my office to speak to the 6 of us in our group, we were all prepared for the worst.  And one of the first things he said in the meeting was an effective apology - he realized that his timing and lack of information legitimately triggered thoughts in all of us that we were going to be told when our services would no longer be needed.  He mentioned that this was just a status meeting, and that he didn't want to give anyone the feeling that when he appeared, that it would always be bad news.  This allowed me to breathe a sigh of relief, although I still made a comment or two out of nervousness....

That evening, my nosy neighbor called (let's call her "NN") - someone who previously said that she didn't want to hear from me again.  She called to warn me about a neighbor who should have been evicted long ago, and that this neighbor (who we'll call "MP" for "Miss Piggy") was on the war path for some unknown reason.  After the warning about the neighbor, we got into general chit-chat, and I realized that NN needed someone to gossip with, and to spread rumors.  I did find out that several of my neighbors have seen me en-femme, and I told NN that this doesn't bother me.  It is more important to me that I have the self confidence to go out in the world en-femme, as I no longer want to repress this side of me.

Lots of changes are going on in my life, and things are interesting to say the least....

Now as a segue....

One of my readers and I have had an exchange of emails regarding being en-femme.  I'll bet that the biggest issue for many trans people is that of going to the loo.  What I'd like to find out from my readers is - What businesses, communities, states, and nations have protections for trans people in this area?  There is a web site (safe2pee.org) which has information on this topic, listing places where a trans person will find a safe place to relieve him/herself.  Hopefully, at some future time, sites like this will no longer be needed, as we will have gained general acceptance from society as a whole....

Monday, December 3, 2012

A View from the Trenches

Today, I saw the play "War Horse" at Lincoln Center.  It's kind of fitting that I refer to "Trenches", given that the play is largely about the experiences of a man and his horse during WWI.

First, I received an email from one half of a couple I met at Fantasia Fair.  It's nice to be keeping in touch with people I met there, and am hoping that we can continue to get to know each other outside of the TG community....

Now, I'm going to refer to two ladies by pseudonyms.  I'll call the lady I've been seeing for the better part of a year "Alice", and "Betty", the woman I started seeing when "Alice" said (in August) she wanted more space.  Alice is a nice, vanilla sort of lady who lives in NYC - and we get along well together.  I'm not sure of how open she would be to the Marian side of me.  "Betty" is a professional who lives in the suburbs, and I saw her for the first time in August, but have not had the chance to date her much due to my summer vacation, her schedule, and the late October hurricane. 

At this point, I'm on the horns of a dilemma.  I know I have to tell Alice that I am Trans - we're at a stage where it's appropriate.  (I never thought we'd be at this stage of a relationship when I started dating Betty in August.)  And I have several concerns.  First, I need to know what Alice thinks before I make any decisions regarding Betty.  (If Alice can't handle things, then I don't need to start from scratch with someone new - Betty is still in the picture.)  Next, how do I bring Alice into my other activities with the Poly group who I meet with on a monthly basis?  (Again, I'm not sure of Alice's openness to alternate lifestyles, etc., even though I am not a practicing polyamorous person.)  And lastly, how do I reassure her that I'm the same person she met about a year ago, but I have extra attributes I keep from family and career?

In the morning, I'll be heading off to work, and a higher level mucky muck will be there.  When one of these people wants to meet with us on the first Monday in the month, it's not good.  Usually (from recent experience), it means that someone will be laid off with two weeks pay.  They tell us to pack our stuff and leave - and it frightens me.  With this being said, I think they will tell us how long we have before being laid off - and this kind of change scares the dickens out of me.  I've lived the good life for a long time, and now that Marian has come out, I've really started to enjoy it.  Hopefully, I'll be able to continue this no matter what happens....  God Willing.

ps: please keep your fingers crossed for me.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

A view from the North Country

It's been several months since I was introduced to this circle of friends "in the North Country", and I realized that they have only seen me once in boy mode, and all other times in girl mode.  This wouldn't be so remarkable, save that I also use this trip as an opportunity to go shopping en-femme. And it is a very pleasant thing that when I'm with women in places that men generally have no cause to visit, that I'm being accepted as part of the sorority.

Yesterday, on my way up North, I stopped by one shopping center so that I could do two things - buy a replacement wallet that would more easily fit in my handbag and buy some tights (as I finally found some hosiery that fit me reasonably well). When I was waiting to pay for a couple of pairs of tights, the lady at the register and the lady in front of me were discussing how a short plus sized lady had an option (tailoring clothes, shortening hems, etc.) that taller gals did not have.  I nodded, and was brought into the conversation, when the lady behind the counter referred to me nodding my head in agreement.  And the three of us had a short chat while the first lady's transaction was being finished up.

Interactions like this mean a lot in buinding self confidence.  And it becomes a virtuous circle.  The more I interact with other women as a woman, the more I feel confident in the role, and the more like a woman I become when presnting myself as one.  And this leads on to my next thought....

Recently, I've been having a conversation with one of my blog's readers.  She is at that point where she has to do some hard thinking - What makes her crossdress?  What does she get out of crossdressing?  How far does she want to go?  What are her limits?  Is this an erotic issue or something more at the core of her identity?  You can see the nature of questions I was encouraging her to think about - crossdressing in a half assed way (once one goes beyond androgenous presentation outside "safe" cities and towns) might cause the entire community a problem - the first steps to acceptance are to show the "straight" world that we are just like them - most of us would like to blend into the mainstream.

Now many people might disagree with me on this direction.  They would prefer to cite people like RuPaul, Divine, et.al. as paving the way for us.  But I feel they are wrong.  These people (in drag) are exaggerations of feminity who do this to entertain people as well as express part of themselves.  People like myself and Paula G. (a guest poster on Stana's blog) do this for other reasons - we want to be treated as women, seen as women when we are out in the world in female mode.  I figure that most of us will give off a slight vibe that identifies us as physically male.  But everything else that we cue in others by a reasonably impeccable presentation will have them treat us as women.  Do this long enough and often enough, and we gain acceptance by others gaining comfort in us being part of their communities....  And isnt this a good goal?