I've ached, my whole life, to be able to live naturally. As the woman I am. That has, however, always been an unfulfilled dream.
The reality of being seen and forced to act in the wrong gender causes existential angst, deep enough to persuade some to kill themselves. That is not my inclination, however; I've always been tenacious and optimistic. I've been called "dogged," which I accept as a compliment. I have a titanium will and I never give up at anything. That quality has enabled me to survive.
What I've done, at every stage of life, is whatever was available to me. For most of the time, that was merely furtive feminine activities conducted by myself alone. Wearing pantyhose as a boy in the privacy of my bedroom; later pushing the gender-boundary with transgressive clothing briefly permissible in the wild days of the 1970s. I have fond memories of a tight, flowery, midriff-revealing top made of soft cotton with an elastic waist which actually was made for a man to wear but only for that short period in time; platform shoes, too, were briefly allowed for men then.
The hardest part of living like this was always the isolation. Being alone in my twarted celebration of female life.
That changed when I started fashion-blogging and you guys embraced me. My emotional reaction to your support has been so profound; you touch me so deeply. Comments that might seem casual about, say, the attractiveness of an outfit, are something much more to me -- critical acknowledgement about the viability of my life. This is why blogging and you have transformed my existence. And made me dream about new possibilities for which I'd given up hope long ago.
As I mentioned, isolation has been the toughest thing to bear. From as early as I can remember, my imagination craved having social experiences as a girl. Like sitting in a BFF's kitchen and drinking tea with her while we gossip about our friends. Like going to a cocktail party in a cute LBD, standing in a circle of women, and complimenting each other on how we look. Like shopping with a girlfriend at the mall.
I've never had that. The closest I've come have been fleeting public outings that weren't really social, like my recent motorcycle ride. That was fun but it was, literally, a drive-by experience.
My girlfriends Nicole and Jamie, who helped me take the motorcycle pictures and The Prom Project, just informed me that they'd like to hold a party for me at one of their homes at which I'm invited to dress any way I want. With a tinkle in their eyes, they suggested I dress as a girl.
It was hard not to cry. Boy-training kicked in to stop that but the depth of emotion I felt at their offer was intense. I appreciate their generous support which, from them, is not a surprise. When I was in a life-threatening motorcycle accident eight years ago and spent over a week in a hospital, Nicole was there for me in a big way. I know she loves me and I love her back. Jamie, too, has become a dear friend.
The prospect of this party -- which, on the surface, will simply be a room full of women standing around, eating hor d'oeuvres and chatting -- has me swooning with joy. Nicole and Jamie said I can invite anyone I want and we have a month or two to plan it.
I wish all of you, whom I love so much, didn't live so far away. I can't expect anyone to travel from Canada or California to attend but I wish I could see you there. I'll share the experience with you in a bloggy way to show you how much I care about you.
I guess, if you live long enough, dreams can come true. :)