Thursday, December 31, 2009

relationships

No, I'm not in a "relationship." But I'd like to talk about different kinds of them.

I've written before that I'm really lonely. I believe that's due to two different kinds of relationships that I am missing in my life. The first is somebody to do stuff with. I don't mean dating. I mean somebody who would call me and ask if I wanted to do something in particular with them. Or somebody who would come over for fun: "we'll think of something to do." I'm tired of doing everything alone. I told my sister that I wasn't going to bring my Wii into my bedroom to hook up to my new home theatre. She pointed out that I'd have nobody to play it with. That is quite true. It's a group thing. And I've had a friend over exactly once since I moved here at the end of July. I just realised that today and felt sad.

The second is somebody to talk to. I could talk to my ex about anything save the topic of this blog. I am however, pleased to know one person that "knows all my secrets" and whom I can talk to about anything. But this isn't somebody that I could just call to go out for coffee to chat or whatever.

I've lost my best friend and I'm not ok with it. There's just nothing there any more, relationship-wise. I don't say anything personal to my ex even if she asks. I'm not going to share with her.

Now you might say, "oh, just get some new friends." That is easier said than done. I made every effort during the last semester to do things with my colleagues. These things were all drinking related, but I had fun. But there isn't one whom I could call for no reason. There's also a gender-related component to it, naturally. I don't connect emotionally with guys. Sure, I'll go camping or hiking. But you can only talk about trucks for so long. So I'd rather get some female friends. But I'm aware of the connotations. I act as male during daily life, so if I call up a female and suggest doing something, that sends a message that I wouldn't want to send. This is why I don't do things with the aforementioned friend I can share anything with. It would be difficult to relay the message that I'm not interested romantically if I call a girl to do something.

On a romantic relationship note, I made a small decision. My next relationship (probably not for some time, of course) is going to be more equal. In my marriage, I didn't get to help make any decisions. Where we went for our honeymoon, vacations, which house we bought, these things were not my decision. We got a dog (and later a stray dog) that I explicitly said I did not want. Nobody would have ever said that I "wore the pants" in the relationship. I'm ok with that, but I think it would be better to be more egalitarian. I suppose I am a pushover. I'm concerned with making people happy.

all for now!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

I'm so glad Christmas is over

I haven't liked (or looked forward to) Christmas for the past few years. I particularily hate the dinner. I've actually done two in one day before! I don't really like Christmas dinner type foods, which makes it easy to not over-indulge. I think it's silly to have exactly the same thing each year, cooked in exactly the same way, "just because." I had a customer who exclaimed, "but it's not Christmas without cocktail onions."

I also dislike the "act" of the Christmas dinner. Normally, I'm a patient person. But these seem to drag on. And the anticipation of starting it is really annoying. You just sit there and make small talk and be useless. (I did bring the tapioca I was requested to make) Then all the food's ready. But wait! Let's take a picture! Oh, nobody knows how to work the timer on the fancy SLR. Let's just sit around and let the food get cold. Then when you're done eating after fifteen minutes, (since I don't eat lots at these things) everybody still has a plenty of food on their plates and is having seconds.

Company and table talk is another thing I dislike. This year my parents invited my grandfather's second wife. (he died in August, so this is my step grandma.) They also, as usual, invite this "family friend" of theirs whom they've known for twenty years. This guy is really annoying. He's on welfare/disability and spends all his time doing research on the intarwebs. I got really upset when he asked, "Where's H____? She wasn't at the Thanksgiving dinner either." I said nothing, just held up my left hand in front of my face. I almost started crying. I really felt the need to leave and go home, or at least hide myself in the bathroom. It was only through careful breathing and trying to clear my mind that I was able to get through it. The rest of the conversation around the table revolved around who had other Xmas dinners where and with whom, as well as the slight variations in the food. "So and so used an oven bag for the turkey this year."

This dinner happened on Boxing Day. On Christmas Eve, my parents came over for hors d'oeuvres. That was tolerable, although my sister had "set the ambiance" by playing Xmas music. I had just listened to it for eight hours at work. I stayed up until about 3:30 watching Love Actually. I watch that movie every year at Christmas. It always makes me cry. This year I cried more than usual.

Christmas Day, I had waffles in the morning with my sister and brother-in-law. Then my parents called and suggest going for a drive. They like to do this. We went on a 350 km round trip, and were going almost four hours. I've previously wrote about how my family has never really "shared." This is still the case. Number of personal questions asked in four hours: zero. This is annoying. (I'm not about to suddenly start sharing with my parents un-asked.) You'd think they'd have stuff to ask me about. It bothers me that I have not gone to church in years and that they have never asked why. I'm aware of their beliefs. They should be concerned for my soul. (No such thing!) Other than occasionally suggesting that I do something with a youth group, they don't bring it up. The same goes for my gender identity. It just is not discussed. They have not asked or made reference since I told them. I would tell the truth if they asked. "Hey, C____ you know that stuff you told us about almost six months ago? How are you coping? What is going on with that?" That would seem like denial, except that's what my family's like, and that's how I grew up. I've been asked exactly once how I'm dealing with the separation. That was back in August, by my mom. We went out for Indian food and when I pulled up to drop her off after, she asked, very "shyly." After the drive I made some simple food and had Christmas day dinner by myself.

Boxing Day, I got up at 3:30 for Boxing Day shopping. I bought a TV and a Blu-ray player, and have bought the rest of a home theatre set-up over the last few days. Watching movies and TV on DVD is very enjoyable for me. I had a nap, then went the the "Christmas" dinner at my parents'.

Sorry for going on and on as usual. But I am glad it's all over.

Monday, December 21, 2009

bitter

Over the past few days, I've been feeling bitter toward my ex. Since I've been working lots (we work at the same store, remember?), I've had to see her occasionally. I've been thinking way too much about how I got fucked over. (figuratively, of course...) I'm upset with her for doing the fucking, and me for feeling guilty, bending over, and taking it.

To move away from the metaphor, basically I blamed myself for the marriage ending. But the reality was that she had this boyfriend lined up which made her start thinking about her future. Anyways, I should have held out for much more money.

Other than that, my mood in general is decent.

Not too much to say today...

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

I'm lonely

Like the title says, I'm lonely. I don't mean in a romantic sense. Logically, of course, being involved romantically would be unwise. Today my new teacher at my new school for my new practicum starting in January asked me if I had any "obligations" at "home", so I pretty much had to tell her "no, I'm separated." Oddly enough she didn't seem really comfortable speaking French with me. She said it's the first time she's had a "boy" student teacher. I did not say anything other than to point out that that is obvious; French teachers tend to be female. Hopefully she does not treat me differently because she thinks I'm male. (hey, I was wearing a really nice shirt in between pink/purple that I bought at H&M yesterday)

Anyway back to the loneliness thing. I wish I had friends that I could reliably call up to do something with. The weekend before last, I invited my best male friend (he happens to be single) to come over to play Guitar Hero. This was at six o'clock. He said he was too tired. WHAT THE FUCK! this guy is so flakey. Plus I would never try to talk to him about emotional stuff. Jesus, it was Friday night, what the fuck did he have to do the next day? I just went through my cellphone phonebook. Not including duplicates, I have 15 people listed. There is no one that I could call just to do something. This makes me sad; I just started to tear up. Either they live to far away or they are female. Obviously if you are reading a trans blog you are probably aware of gender issues, but a genetic male *can't* call up a female to ask to just hang out. I wish that weren't the case. On Tuesday, I saw New Moon alone again for a second time. There is nobody that I could ask to go with me. (I suppose my sister might've, but she's a youth leader. Yeah, all my family is religious except for me, the heathen. oh you think they know? I have no idea. They must know that I don't go to church but they don't bother asking me why not. Do you think my parents or younger sister have talked to me about my "trans"ness since I came out to them at the beginning of fucking JULY? of course fucking not. They don't know I've had three laser treatments at that I've been on hormones for six weeks or so. I'm not exactly going to share that shit out of the blue. "what did you do today?" "oh, I got my third laser hair removal treatment, I'm taking steps towards transitioning." Yeah fucking right. I'm sure they'd judge me, but it does bother me that they don't seem to care. I was fairly clear that my being trans was the main reason for my failed marriage. (well I didn't say any word starting in "T" I just said that "I have gender issues and described it a little") Goddamn. None of my family or "friends" even bothers to ask why I do not go to church. Aren't they supposed to be concerned for my "soul"? (yeah of course there is no such thing). If somebody would ask me a direct question I would not lie, such as if somebody asked me, "why have you stopped going to church?" Do you think anyone ever has? Nope. I guarantee that I'm on tonnes of prayer lists. But why doesn't anyone talk to me? No idea. I suppose they don't know what to say. So fucking what. I will be honest in response to most questions unless they are from my ex. She is sort of under the impression that I'm trans due to hormonal imbalance(I said I had been to an endocrinologist.) Well little does she know that my hormonal balance is improving due to my medication! Like I'm going to share shit with her! Fuck, it's horrible working with her there. (Today, at a mini-meeting type thing our company has she was sitting beside her new fucking boyfriend. Earlier this year we would have been sitting together. I'm glad that I will only be working there five days a week until January 4th. ) I wish I had friends. I wish I could call someone and say, "Hey, I'm watching Hackers, wanna come over?" But I don't have anyone like that. My school friends live far away. I tried inviting people over (I copied six people in an email) to my house because my sister and bro-in-law weren't going to be home that evening/morning. I think, my reader(s), that you can guess how many people came. I got five "sorry, can't come" and one non-response.) Over the past few months, I've been trying to go to as many parties with the "party" crew from school as possible. This is an attempt to quell my loneliness, which is partially successful.

Basically most of my loneliness is just wanting "friends." I would prefer female friends; I can only talk about trucks for so long... But the other 30% is physical contact. The spironolactone and hormones have removed my normal "libido." However, I still crave physical contact. That's another reason I have been going to these bars with my new friends. Drunk hugs from friends/girl I have a crush on are better than hugs from family on holidays/special occasions.

Fucking "sigh."

Yes I am fucking drunk.

Monday, December 14, 2009

third laser treatment

I had my third laser hair removal treatment today.

I don't think six weeks was enough to wait between treatments; I didn't have too much growth. Obviously there's no way to know for sure, but I scheduled my next one nine weeks from today.

My first two were with one technician, and this one was with another. The first tech was much more slower and methodical. She had me hold ice packs on my face before and after she did each section. She also frequently asked my pain level on a scale of 1-10. This second tech was more casual and friendly. She didn't offer any ice packs and she didn't ask about pain much, although she was impressed that I did not use EMLA. (I haven't tried it because I always take transit to downtown Vancouver; I hate driving there. I'd have to have the Saran wrap on my face for the entire trip.)

Pain was mostly a lot less than the last two times. I think most of it was that I didn't have to much growth. At this point, if I miss two or three days shaving, it isn't really noticeable. I'm not sure if this is due to the fact that I'm not the down side of a hair cycle, or if the laser hair treatment is particularily effective on me. I did show the technician a picture of me from two years ago when I had a beard, and she was impressed.
That was from about two years ago.(also, see how long my hair was then. If only it was that long now.) I was working nights, so I didn't need to be presentable. I'm guessing that's a couple months' worth of growth. Sorry, about pain. This time the part that hurt most was the upper lip, especially near the nose. The other times didn't hurt on the upper lip as much. This time left lots of those exploded little hairs under the surface of the skin, but only on the upper lip.

I'm really happy that the laser hair removal seems to be working well. My next treatment nine weeks from now is already paid for. If progress thus far is an indication of effectiveness, I'll probably only get one or two more treatments after the next one. Hopefully I will not have to do too much electrolysis; that's much more inconvenient. I also think it's a wise thing to do as much hair removal as possible before transitioning at work or school. Obviously electro would be tricky if I had to keep up appearances.

Speaking about keeping up appearances, I tried something after the last treatment. (not today's) I tried not shaving for a week to let my skin heal. I found that I had a lot less skin irritation and acne than I did after the first treatment, when I shaved after one day. Anyways, my professor who came to observe me when I was teaching gave me shit the next time I saw him. I had also not tucked in my shirt that day. (I was rather well dressed aside from that) And he gave me a lecture about shaving everyday and dressing better, saying that "oh yeah, khakis are cheap." Well I was dressed well, although it was true I had visible beard growth. This guy happens to be gay. (he has a husband) I am very glad I did not come out then and there. It would have been convenient to explain exactly why I hadn't shaven. But I'm glad I didn't; as I wrote in my last post, the LGB people aren't necessarily T friendly. This guy has power over me. He might have been cool with it, but who knows...?

Sunday, December 13, 2009

fortnightly check-in

Honestly, I don't mean to do this only every two weeks. But somehow it just works out like that.

I don't really follow LGBT blogs that closely. I hadn't even heard of this Bilerico project place until this recent drama hit. Some activist that I'd also never heard of apparently posted something controversial that was somewhat anti-trans. There are reactions about it all over the LGBT blogosphere. They even pulled that post.

Anyways, something happened last week that reminded me of all the above. At my university, we had a couple presenters in to talk to us about educating homephobia. At the beginning, they wrote "LGBTQ" on the board and asked if everybody knew what that meant. One of them identified as "homosexuelle." (That word is declined to the feminine) The other one didn't identify herself as "LGBTQ" but specified that she had a female partner.

A big gripe I had was that they only paid the "T" lip service. They barely mentioned anything "T" related at all, other than boasting that one of their posters mentioned transphobia as well as homophobia. They, of course, did indeed mention that gender identity =/ sexual orientation.

The second issue I had was that the workshop was based solely on ways to educate students about homophobia, using ways such as comparing homophobia to racism or sexism. I think they should have mentioned ways to make the LGTBQ students in our classrooms to feel safer and more included. For example, something I do in my classroom is never separate boys/girls, or choose groups that way. Obviously, I'm more sensitive than most teachers, but I think sensitivity on this matter is something all teachers need to develop. I know I dislike having to choose, so I'm sure it's just as difficult for a trans student, or a questioning student.
Another thing I believe in is avoiding heteronormativity. I remember this one game we played in Grade 6 French Immersion, « veux-tu m'├ępouser ? » or "will you marry me?" The goal was to make another student smile when you proposed. Obviously this was a very heteronormative game; I'm sure nobody would have dared to propose to someone of the same gender.

---------
Hormones are still making me feel awesome. I haven't taken the anti-depressant (it was a weak one anyways) for two weeks. I just feel pretty happy in general, and the feeling of awesomeness is still there. I'm probably doing a horrible job of describing it, but it's a completely different thing for me.
-----

Non-trans related: My practicum is over. I have another one starting in January. It was a pretty good experience for the most part. I think I learned a great deal about teaching. I know I improved a lot during the roughly four weeks. Now I have three weeks off from school, which means I have to work more and earn some money. I was a little upset today at work. Not only did I go on my break at the wrong time (my ex was in the lunchroom) but then her new boyfriend came in to the lunchroom and started talking to her. Finally her father was in shopping and said hi.

I've been turning into somewhat of a party animal. I swear I'm at a "party" party every week-end. Last weekend I went to one on a Saturday night even though I had to work the next day, which meant for a really rough drive to work. (I slept over there; I would never drink and drive) Then on Thursday I was in quite the hedonistic mood, I guess. Not only did I get drunk at the pub on campus at lunch(hey, it was a shortened day), but I went to a club in Surrey with the usual party crowd from my programme. Let's just say I have no idea how much I drank, but I spent the $100 I had brought... I also danced, which is apparently only something I've started doing in the last two weeks or so. At the end my friends cut me off. This kind of drinking is much different than I would do before. Before, I would often get drunk alone after work. (no matter what the time of day!) Now, I seem to "only" binge drink socially once or twice a week(end). I don't seem to have any interest in drinking at home, aside from maybe a beer with food.

oops, I blabbed on yet again.