Things have been looking up for me this last month—new job, an upcoming conference and colloquium in the next couple weeks, and new changes!
My voice has dropped like two octaves. I feel like Peter Brady from the Brady Bunch. It cracks every once and awhile, but it feels as though I’m hearing myself for the first time. It’s like a sigh of relief—here is my voice. The voice I’ve always had inside me. The voice I’ve always used. My inner voice finally being reflected on the tangible, outside world. The same vocal chords that expressed a womanly voice now grown into the next phase of my life–I will never erase that past of mine. This month I have also not experienced my goddess moon cycle, so I do believe that that part of my life has fully transitioned.
Facial hair is starting to turn from the light vellus into terminal dark hairs! I haven’t shaved yet, but I plan to next month on my one-year anniversary. I have been using generic Rogaine on my face intently twice a day. After four hours from applying I put on jojoba oil mixed with peppermint essential oil to stimulate growth. I’m in a facebook group page called The Minox Beard Spot, and it’s a very open community of beard enthusiasts who are using the ‘juice’ to grow a beard. A pleasant surprise is the amount of transmen in the group, and how supportive everyone is in our transition–no transphobia at all–just comradry on our journys towards bearded glory.
I went to my very first powwow this year. I’ve always shied away but I felt a strong need to go. It was the most surreal and healing experience, because I was seen and accepted as a native man there. I was asked, “What tribe you from?” and I told my story and ate my first Indian taco. All of this has re-awakened my quest to enroll in my tribe, and I know that will entail finding my biological father and needing a paternity test. (He is not on the original birth certificate.) But the time feels very right.As an adoptee….being around the heritage that was denied or taken from me….was the most healing thing that my many years of going to a therapist couldn’t even do. I mean, I feel less ‘crazy’ and no longer feel so alien. I felt a sense of “home” or at least a direction of where I’m going now.
The term Splitfeather refers to “adult Indians, who were expatriated (adoptees, fosterees) from their homes and cultures as children and placed in non-Indian homes.” I read up about it two years ago, and Splitfeather Syndrome makes a lot of sense to me–it coincides with adoption trauma and is something that I am trying very hard to understand and heal from. Going to the Powwow and being “seen” as a visible native man…..it was like everything just clicked.
I also went to a few demonstrations and sent donations and support to Sacred Stone Camp (if anyone wants to donate, more information at the link!) .
I really love the Fall Season—The neighbor next door has given us a steady supply of tomatoes and cucumbers. I’m so excited to cook more squash and soups!
I started Sub Teaching and things have been going okay for the most part. I really enjoy going to a different school each time and being able to set my own schedule–I get to choose which jobs to take, etc.
I’ve been feeling more and more confident. It feels so good to actually be present and embodied—and even liking the way I look. I love Masculine Fashion. I’m really getting into setting a distinct style for myself.
The best part is that I actually PASS now. The teachers and admins all see me as a man. I go by my first name in class because I don’t really like the authoritative vibe that comes with Mr.
Although, yesterday while subbing something really unsettling happened. I had played this scenario in my head over and over before, so I was expecting this to happen eventually. I also handled it very well, considering. One student (basically the whole class) asked me if I was a guy or a girl. I made light of it of course to ease the awkwardness and discomfort as best as I good, but I got really shook up about it. I mean, in my head I was not freaking out, neither were my emotions going haywire–but my body reacted in fight-or-flight mode and the biggest knot formed in my stomach and has been there ever since. A huge manifestation of my anxiety and C-PTSD is stomach pain—it’s all knotted up and burns with awful acid feelings. (When I was in 4th or 6th grade, I was asked that question all the time, it was horrible, i was relentlessly bullied, this instance reminded me of that.) On the drive home after school, flashes of the movie Boys Don’t Cry started playing in my head—the place where I live is not the most open-minded or understanding, and if outed I could lose my job or be assaulted or worse. That’s a very real thing for me to be aware of. It’s one of the hardest things about living here along with no transgender community.
I have also applied for a position at the local cable access place and I deeply hope to get that part-time job so I can have a stable income. Subbing is really sporadic–it pays well but it all depends on if you get a sub job or not, and you only get paid once a month. Fingers crossed I get this job too.
GRE studying has burnt me out but I’m still pushing on as best as I can.
I have been making it a priority to enjoy the Autumn weather by taking nice strolls in the evenings.
Next month will be my one-year re-birthday! Looking forward to writing some reflections about that.
Happy Fall everyone.