Thursday, August 26, 2010

Two feelings

The first one, I forgot to write in my last post. The day or two after the Lady Gaga concert, I realised that I hadn't cried once during the time I spent with my friend. This is surprising to me since normally when I talk about serious things like my family, my wife dumping me, etc I tend to get upset and cry. I figured out that I hadn't cried at all since I had been super happy during that time. I remember having a permanent smile on my face.

While I've posted before about getting more in touch with my emotions, I still have a ways to go. I can't always predict in advance how upset I will get and if I will cry.

The second feeling is that I keep feeling less close to my immediate family. It's most likely related to how I feel they've not been supportive. As an example, my dad just "lent" me three books that he suggested I could read. One's about going from atheism to religion, the next on male sexuality, and the last on male depression. To me this seems like a "fuck you." He claims to not deny that I'm trans, but this seems to. Anyway, this lack of closeness I feel makes me want to spend less time with them. For example, I was in my room surfing the internet and I heard my parents upstairs. I thought, "oh great, now I can't go upstairs to make myself supper until they leave."

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Lady Gaga!!!

Last night I saw Lady Gaga perform at Rogers Arena in Vancouver. (Formerly GM Place) This is where the major hockey games of the 2010 Olympics were held.

I went with a friend from high school whom I had not seen for years. Two weeks ago at work, I mentioned to my ex, H, about the concert. At first she lied and said that she didn't think we were still going and that she'd made plans. Five minutes later, she approached and said she didn't want to go with me since I made things awkward when we hang out. This is probably accurate. Hanging out with her is awkward. In the past, when I hung out with her, I felt upset with how she treated me when she dumped me. But I avoided ever mentioning that because I still wanted to hang out with her. When we hung out, she'd always expect me to share personal stuff without wanting to tell me about her new life without me. But she still should have informed me that she had changed her mind about going with me.

To find someone else to go with, I set my facebook status asking if anyone wanted to go with me. I got one offer, another girl from high school whom I hadn't seen since 1998 and that I'd never stayed in contact with. I noticed that the girl I ended up going with regularily posted links to Lady Gaga videos, so I facebooked her and asked if she'd go. She's a mother of four, and was so excited at the chance to see Gaga. Incidently, she was also my high school graduation banquet date as well as the sister of my first real girlfriend. But we were only ever platonic friends.

The concert was awesome. I'd pretty much characterize it as a production rather than a mere concert. It wasn't just two songs, a tiny bit of talking, then 10 more songs. It was twenty songs over two hours and five minutes, with many costume changes and set changes. Lady Gaga is very LGBT friendly and made several comments about that. She said something about coming to terms with our own LGBT identity. (Or something to that effect.) I felt like she was talking directly to me. Why?

I went as me. I told my friend all about me and she was cool with that. She's a relatively liberal Christian, so I knew there wouldn't be a problem. This is my second "outing." It felt great. I got a couple looks from two girls on the Skytrain but literally nothing else. We even got called ladies by a woman handing out Pantene samples on the street. I also used the ladies room for the first time as an adult at a restaurant we went to before the concert. My therapist indicated during my last visit that she wants to "see me all pretty," so I will go as me next time.

Somewhat unrelated, but I learned something that made me happy and I feel slightly guilty about it. Apparently the guy whom H left me for is a chronic cheater. I don't live in a "small town," but someone from Vancouver would consider my town "the boonies." Anyway, my point is that it's funny what kind of unexpected connections there are. H's boyfriend apparently dated my high school girlfriend the year after I did and cheated on her with multiple girls after being her "first." H's boyfriend then had an eight year relationship with another girl whom he also cheated on. This ex-girlfriend of mine is the sister of the girl with whom I saw Lady Gaga last night, so that's how I found out. So basically, H's boyfriend is a serial cheater and takes my "sloppy seconds." Part of me is pleased she's going to get fucked over and is glad she's going to feel some emotional pain. I don't believe in karma, but I like the idea. But I hope he cheats on her before they have a kid together. A couple weeks ago, I saw him talking to a girl outside at work and the body language seemed flirty not friendly. We'll see.

Monday, August 2, 2010

It made my day

I just came back from a trip to Alberta with my mom. On the way home, I saw this graffiti on the back of a bear-proof garbage container at a rest stop. I ran quickly to my car to get my cellphone to take this picture. (my camera broke)

I just thought it was so awesome.

That would be my car in the background. You just don't expect to see that kind of thing near Salmon Arm, BC.

I also went to see Salt on Saturday night. I didn't expect to see a group of ten queer women standing outside a cinema in Calgary, AB. The interesting thing about Salt is that it was written for a male lead but was adapted for Angelina Jolie. Not too many female actors (avoiding the word actress here) are allowed to carry a big budget action movie without an opposing famous male actor opposite them.

My mom didn't mention my pierced ears, and there's no way she didn't notice.

all for now!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

End of school

On Thursday, I met about twenty of my colleagues from the teaching program at a pub near the university to celebrate. Most people had just finished their last class. I came right after work. Many people were impressed that I took a relatively long car ride to see them. I didn't state that I would have driven three hours instead of just one and a half to see them.

My school colleagues are the closest thing I have to close friends. During the program I tried to do as much as possible with them as I could. I went to parties and even clubs and did had new experiences such as dancing and playing drinking games.

I was there from about 5:00 to 9:30, when they left to go do karaoke. Of course I would have gone, but I had to work at 7:00 a.m. and leave for a weekend trip to Alberta with my mom after work. I'm responsible, so I slept in my car until one, since I'd had a lot of beer. :)

When one of my favourite colleagues left, I really started crying a lot. (oh great, now I'm starting again) I'm so sad that the program is over. I like these people so much and I won't see them often if I do see them. Later, I was also talking to one girl who I'm not super close to. I started getting upset when we were talking about the future. So she had me come sit with her outside and talk to her. I asked if she'd heard about my presentation. She said she'd heard that there had been a big announcement involving me but not the details. So of course I came out to her. She said that she had a cousin who used to be Christine and was now Chris. She promised that we'd get together for coffee.

Yesterday I facebook chatted with the colleague whose leaving made me really cry. She's 40 with three kids. She was one of the people in my class who was very supportive when I came out. She said she'd take me clothes/accessory shopping.

All of the above is my attempt to describe how much I love these people. It's been really fun learning and laughing with them.

But what I don't understand is why they don't actually do things with me. We'll see if these last two promises end up being fulfilled or not. Between the two people that I feel closest to, I have seen them socially (individual, not a school related or a group event) a total of three times. Twice to celebrate the semesters' ends with my carpool partner whom I came out to in December and once to see that play a week ago with my lesbian friend whom I came out to in October.

There's been over five other people who've promised that they would contact me to do something but haven't. I don't get it. I know I'm fucking awesome. I'm easy-going. I'm fun to be around. I'm a good listener. I'm always up for drinking. Is there something wrong with me?

I'm going to keep trying, of course. I really need people to hang out with and talk to that are accepting and who like me of course. (I am super-likeable, I swear!)

Of my local friends, I have a married couple that I've known for over ten years. The husband was my best man. I'm out to the wife, so I'm sure that means he knows too. I see them maybe every three or four weeks. It's always the same - I come over on Friday night at 8 p.m. (after their two year-old is in bed) and bring board games. We don't really talk about deep stuff. Then I'm friends with the brother of the husband. But as with his brother, he's not into talking about anything personal.

I've been working alongside the same four people at work for four weeks now. I've never done that at my job - I usually just work alone. They did actually invite me to join them for a movie a couple weeks ago. Anyway, last week I was driving us to Triple-O's for lunch and I reached into my glove box to get my sunglasses. The woman in her forties saw my cigarettes and was surprised because I'm not a smoker. (every two weeks, maybe) She said, "what other secrets do you have?" I said that I had many. She said that I had to tell her something personal about me every day. So now, every morning, she asks me to peel another layer of the onion. An example of this was that I've only every slept with H., and for the first time on our wedding night. Obviously I have to come out to her at the end of summer.

I just don't know what the deal is with me and friends, and why I have no close ones. I know at work I just assume that everybody doesn't like me anymore because H. dumped me. (we work at the same place.) At school I tried really hard to make friends.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Two steps

I'll try for brevity for once.

Yesterday and today, I made two steps toward transition.

The first and more significant is that I made my first public appearance as C___. C___ is the female name I've been leaning towards for about a year. I chose a safe and friendly environment in which to appear as me. I invited my lesbian friend from school to see a play called Tiny Replicas, which is about two men who have a baby together. She also brought a couple friends, also lesbians. After the play we went to my friend's apartment and another lesbian couple came over as well. Near the end, my friend's fiancée came home. I was wearing makeup and Joe fresh clothing. I would have liked more time to get ready to go, but I live far from East Vancouver, where the play was "montée." Shit, I'm forgetting English.

I felt completely safe. It felt right to be out as C_____. I was only a tiny bit nervous. My friend introduced me to her friends as C_____. (I hadn't met any of them before). The name "C____" seems to work, and I like it. The only minor snafu was when my friend's fiancée came home and said, "Hi, malename!" I'd met her once previously. Since I'd only decided to come as C____ that day, she didn't know better. My friend corrected her. So that was only a bit awkward. I am really thankful to my friend C for giving me this chance. Her friends were all awesome too. I thought to myself, "Holy shit, I'm here as C____ hanging out with six liberal lesbian Christians!" Not the kind of people I usually get to spend time with. I wish I knew more LGBT people that I could hang out with. C is awesome but I don't get to see her much. (This was the first time I'd met her socially outside of school.)

Second thing that I did yesterday was getting my ears pierced. I asked a coworker with several ear piercings where I should go to get that done. She suggested this hair salon/tattoo parlour/piercing place. So I went there and got it done without waiting. Since this was done by a piercer, it was done with a needle, not with a gun. It didn't hurt very much. Laser hair removal is much worse, and it lasts longer.

Speaking of laser hair removal, I have my seventh and last session scheduled for next week. I called today and had no problem getting an appointment. The technician I spoke to on the phone said that it hasn't been too busy because people are getting tanned by the sun and hence have to wait. I said I wore sunscreen even when it's cloudy and she said, "I've trained you well."

Sunday, July 4, 2010


You know, I am worried about moving. I'm going to be moving to a town with a high Christian/Sikh population. Also, I will be transitioning at two jobs. One at the grocery store should be less difficult since it's a large company which probably has policies in place. I will be transferring stores in September, but luckily the HR manager is the same person for both stores. Although I don't see her often, we seem to get along fine. I asked for a transfer a week or so ago and she acted as if she knew me. I am a bit more worried about the school district, since it is known to be conservative. I do have the email of the BCTF (that's the teacher union, basically) person regarding LGBT issues. Still, it's a concern.

And I'm worried about not knowing many people. I know one couple that I haven't seen for five years, and a cousin who has three sons in their twenties. Other than them, I only know the teachers at the school at which I had my practicum. Hopefully it will be fine, and I'll make some friends.

But it's not like I'm moving far away. Moving "away" is something that appeals to me, but not now, and not without a partner/spouse. (Yes, I want to get remarried eventually.) So I'll still see the people I see now occasionally, like friends from high school or from my teaching programme. But I'll still be pretty much alone. I think I'll have to practice my hobbies and just fill my time. I'll be working two jobs, but I'd make time for any friend who wants to see me.

why yes, I'm drunk, how could you tell?

conversation with my dad

On Friday night, my dad really wanted to watch a movie called "Bergman Island" with me. It's a documentary about Ingmar Bergman, who is the most famous Swedish film director. My dad had already seen it, and this was the second time he'd mentioned wanting to see it with me. Naturally, I was suspicious. My parents don't like to bring things up, and watching a movie would be the perfect excuse to discuss something. So I read those two links I posted, but didn't find anything other than that Bergman became an atheist at the age of eight. I couldn't find any info about a deathbed conversion.

If you haven't seen any Bergman films, one recurring theme is death, and the fear of it. I'd only seen one Bergman film, "Wild Strawberries" as well as clips from a few more of his films. (If you are interested, some of his films are available to rent at Videomatica, which is Vancouver's best rental store for foreign and indy films.)

Sure enough, at the end of the film, Ingmar shares a confession. Before, he believed dying was like a flame going out - essentially nothingness. But apparently since his fifth and last wife died, he can't imagine there not being an afterlife.

Of course after the movie was over my dad said that it was almost like a religious conversion. I said, no, that that doesn't fit any religion, that it seemed more like a spiritual experience. During my last therapy session, my therapist suggested standing up more for myself when it comes to talking with my family. This would be a part of it. So I completely disagreed with him on everything. I pointed out that Ingmar Bergman would go to hell because he doesn't believe in Jesus.

Then my dad brought something up that really surprised me. He actually remembered that right about now is when divorce is possible. I told him I was really impressed. I had assumed that nobody in my family would mention it.

Unsurprisingly, my dad did not mention why H got rid of me. He did imply (as have other family members) that H didn't keep her marital promise. When my family says something like that, I don't know how to react. I don't really want to defend H, but at the same time I want to say, "um you know why she dumped me, right?"

A bit more about family. My sister and brother-in-law were away for the long weekend until an hour ago. So we weren't able to have pizza night on Friday like always. My mom and dad came over instead. Somehow, saying grace got left out of the supper. I've noticed that's been happening more in the last couple months with my sister and brother-in-law, but this is the first time I've noticed it with my parents. Awesome. I wonder if it's about respect, or if they just feel awkward.

Being an atheist is a big part of me. I don't ever pretend not to be anymore.


I'm scheduled for M-F day shift this week. That's really amazing. I think I mentioned before that I wanted summer to be over. That's still true, but on the other hand I'm scared to move out on my own. It's necessary, but it won't be easy.

I am more of a loner than lonely. Other than my parents coming over, I haven't seen anybody I know since Thursday morning at work. (that's three whole days) I've been more bored than lonely. Still, it would be nice to spend time with people. For example, I'd like to see Eclipse, but I'm sick of always seeing movies alone. But it would be a lot harder if I couldn't stand being alone.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

I got served

A bailiff visited me this evening to bring me a "writ of summons" a.k.a. divorce papers.

If I'm reading everything correctly, I can file paperwork within seven days to fight it. I think if I do nothing the divorce will happen.

I'm surprisingly not too upset about it right now. I realise I'm totally not over H, but I'm at about 50% acceptance of the fact that it's over. But I still get upset. A couple days ago I was looking at my boxes of children's books and I unexpectedly found flash cards that I had made in 2007. This made me cry. H had helped me study for the final. This is also significant because it was my last semester in my BA and also when I discovered my trans nature. (before H knew about it)

I am pleased to be getting over her, but it isn't easy.


On an unrelated note, I wish summer were over. I'm looking forward to being able to move out in September. I'll be working as much as possible on the night shift to help make this happen. I didn't bother to book vacation this year - first time since 2003. Since I'm part time, I don't get paid vacations, I just get a lump sum in January.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

came out to a whole class

Yesterday morning, I came out to an entire class on the last day. This class was about diversity in education. If you aren't familiar with the world of education, diversity is a current buzzword. This class was disappointingly only about diversity of colour, (ethnicity, "race") although there was a tiny bit about linguistic minorities. (Yes, I complained about the lack of anything LGBT on the course evaluation - it's a huge area of diversity.)

We were doing a presentation about a certain conservative school board being afraid of gay curriculum. At the beginning we put up LGBTTQQI on the powerpoint and then asked how many people here know five or more people who identify as one or more of those things. I was surprised that about fifteen put their hands up. At the end of the presentation, I read something that I had prepared, basically about how if the whole class knows well over a hundred LGBTTQQI people, that these people are going to be in our classes when we teach, and that they are often a fairly invisible minority. Then I said I was an example of this, and that I was transgender. I was only out to the two other girls in my group. I was nervous, even though I expected a positive reaction. One of the girls in my group said she had just come out (she's gay) to her parents a year and a half ago, and if it was that hard for her, imagine how hard it is for a student with unsupportive parents. After the presentation a few people made a beeline for me to hug me.

I got home in the evening to drink the six-pack I had bought on the way. During my first beer, somebody else in the class who hadn't been there chatted with me on facebook and said I was courageous. One of the women in the class had told him during their afternoon class. This kind of news will spread quickly in our 40+ program group; only about 10 were in the class. During my second beer, I got a supportive email from that woman. That made me cry for 3/4 of an hour, because it's amazing and sad that people that I've known since September are more supportive than my family. Through the third through sixth beer I drunk-chatted on facebook with another woman from my class who is also supportive.

I feel relieved in a way. Now these people that I really like and have already started to miss know a bit more about me. I never really pretended to be a guy, but I like that I can pretend less and that they understand me more. For example, I never told anyone why I was separated.

My sister was talking to me today. It was actually sort of rude. I was in the kitchen on my laptop and she was in the living room on her back on the couch playing some game on her iPod touch. First she started by asking how therapy was last week. I'm always pretty hesitant to say much. Then, she seemed to be sort of asking where she could learn more about me and being trans. I suggested the Vancouver Coastal Health site, but she said it wasn't specific enough. She suggested seeing my therapist, but I obviously said that my therapist is not going to share stuff that I've told her. Now I'm trying to think how to help her. But I do think this demonstrates the fact that at least some members of my family are actually trying to deal with it now, which pleases me.

I just looked at my therapist's new website. It looks like she does offer family therapy. I'd have to think about suggesting that to my family.

Friday, June 18, 2010

why I should think about moving

Yesterday, I went with a friend to Shopper's Drug Mart. (one of the big drug stores in Canada) A couple weeks ago, I had closed the bank account that from the bank where we had our mortgage. I was slightly surprised that there was $300 in there. So I asked A if she would take me makeup shopping.

We spent $250. (there's still a few more things we forgot.) Unfortunately, we hadn't communicated well beforehand. She was under the impression that I would be too embarrassed to say it was for me, and I was under the impression that she would be too embarrassed. So when the beauty department ladies were helping, A asked what would work for her. She's fairer than I, with pinker skin. So they tried the foundation on her. But foundation really needs to match your skin tone. So she asked, "just for fun, what would work for him?" And then we had the right tone. (although they didn't have the right tone in powder - I'll have to get that later.)

Today A gave me a lesson. It seems tricky, but it's all practice. Right after I removed the makeup and put everything all back in the Shopper's bag, my sister walked in the door, home from work. Luckily, I thought fast and hid it with A's stuff.

There's only one bathroom here. I can't stay here for a while and then expect to instantly transition when I move out. I should really have my own place.

Saturday, June 12, 2010


My bad - it's been so long since I last updated.

Well, still developping. Constant soreness and occasional itchiness. Let's just say I won't be able to go topless this summer. My chest doesn't really pass as a male chest: the profile and shape is all different.

What I'm concerned about at the moment is where to live and where to work. There are so many variables to consider. It's frustrating. Right now I have a decent paying job (very high paying for a part time job) with benefits. I don't want to give that up. I also got hired in May in a certain Fraser Valley district. I was hired as a T.O.C., or subsitute teacher. There aren't actual positions; it's all just The problem is that this district lies within what's known as the Bible Belt. I wouldn't want to transition there. This district tries to avoid teaching about the gays, so I'm sure having a tranny would be undesirable; I wouldn't get any work. Finally, I'd like to get out of this town. It's hard working with my ex. My family isn't very supportive. This town is also conservative. However, I only pay my sister $250 for rent. Can't beat that anywhere.

I'll be done the bulk of school in a couple weeks, although I'll only be a fully certified teacher in August. So basically, I really need to think about what is best. I have an appointment with my therapist next week which will be a good opportunity to discuss this stuff. Here's what I think are my options. (in no particular order)

1. Stay here. It's cheap. I could save up some money by working both jobs and paying little rent. However, I need to be preparing for transitioning, and living with someone who says she will be disgusted being in the same room with me when I transition is probably not helpful.

2. Move to the Fraser Valley town where I got hired. It isn't too far away. I could transfer stores. Rent isn't super-expensive. However, I think transitioning in that school district would be pointless.

3. Move to Metro Vancouver. I can transfer stores. However, it would be difficult to work in the Fraser Valley district due to distance. Getting another job as a T.O.C. is tricky; most districts are not hiring. Also, rent is much more expensive.

I can also decide to work only in the Fraser Valley district until I transition. Whether I start my teaching career there or not, I am concerned about getting hired after transition. Optimally, I'd get a job in a more tolerant school district (Vancouver would be awesome, but they are always having layoffs, so they are not hiring) during the summer and I wouldn't even have to start work in this other district. Continuity at one district makes names and references not matching up after transition a non-issue, in the same way that it won't be an issue at my other job.

Sigh. So many things to consider.

Monday, May 3, 2010

ooh, physiological changes!

Well, like the title says, I've started to notice physiological changes.

My endocrinologist believes in moving up dosages gradually. I'm taking Estradot 37.5 right now; I started with Estradot 25 almost six months ago. Estradot 50 will be next.

Anyways, a couple weeks ago I noticed my left nipple was sore. It sort of felt like a bruise. Since then, it's become something that I can feel under the surface. It's a breast bud! Right one just feels a tiny bit sore so far.

Also, I just noticed in the shower today that I don't seem to have dark hair around my nipples anymore. I didn't need to shave my chest at all!

So it's great that hormones are starting their effects. Hopefully even though I'm almost thirty they'll have the effect they would on a younger body. I did develop relatively late. (pubic hair at 15, for example)

And hopefully the timing of everything works too.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Why I'm awesome

It's funny. Life has never been so complicated, but my self-esteem has never been this high. Why? Could be because I'm actually dealing with stuff instead of just ignoring it. Could be the hormones. Anyways...

I've mentioned before that I'm awesome. In no order, probably leaving stuff out:

- I can deal with a large amount of shit at once, more than the average person.
- I don't really get stressed out.
- I can fix a wide variety of things.
- I have good spelling.
- I can get along with anybody if I want to.
- I am good at board games.
- I am much more athletic and coordinated than I should be for somebody who has a sedentary lifestyle.
- I eat unhealthily but don't put on weight. Somehow I lost 20 lbs last year without trying.
- I have thick skin.
- I'm smart.
- I can usually learn something new fairly quickly.
- I'm strong.
- I have a higher than average pain tolerance.
- I don't panic in emergency-type situations.
- I can be organised in some situations.

There are probably more that I can't think of at the moment. Next time I'll do a flaws list. I wonder if that one will be shorter.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Yay, done another semester!

I just finished my practicum semester of my teaching program. I'm very pleased. I've only got one semester left now. I will be applying to school districts next week.

I hope I can get hired in a district on the correct side of the Port Mann. I could more easily get hired in certain other districts that are growing, but then they would be less "accommodating" and supportive of me when I transition.

So really, it's less important for me to get a full-time teaching job than being in a better school district. I will be keeping my job at the grocery store(I can transfer to another one) because I get paid well and I get benefits, which I won't as a teacher on call.

I am out to my Faculty Associate at the university. She's completely cool with it. She is going to find out how it will work with me changing my name. After all, my references and evaluations all have my current name.

Speaking of names, I had to renew my driver's licence recently. I knew that BC had changed the style of licences, but I had never seen one. Not only are you not allowed to smile, but the picture is in black and white and fuzzy. But the worst part is that the gender marker is now on the front.

My plans are to completely restart almost everything. I want to get a subsitute teacher position perhaps in Burnaby or New West. I plan to move for September of this year if I get a job. Moving would be necessary working as a sub since I wouldn't be able to make it to the school on time after getting called since I live so far away. I will transfer stores which will also make it easier to actually be at work. Right now it is hard. I will start practicing make-up, voice etc. I don't feel safe here doing that. I am not sure when I would start RLE, perhaps over Xmas break.

For some reason I am optimistic even though I know it will be hard. I'm usually the pessimist type. But hey, it's hard now.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

an interesting question

I had coffee with H, my ex last night.

She wondered whether I was transitioning in order to make our separation have meaning.

I said I didn't know. I think that's a part of it. When I moved out, that's when my mindset changed. I remember feeling that "now I can do something about my GD instead of repressing it." But I don't think that would be a good enough reason to transition. I'll have to think about this; I'll bring it up when I go to therapy next.

I do know that I don't like living in a world where somebody that's been with you for six years can leave you one week after meeting someone new. That fucking hurts.

I bought Lady Gaga tickets this week they day they went on sale. H wants to go along. I'll take her. When I bought the two tickets I knew it was a big risk. After all, it would be easy to find somebody that would want to see Lady Gaga. Finding somebody that wants to go with me and I with them is another matter. H is still good company.

Which brings me to my last point about her. I'm not really sure why she wants to remain friends. I can't see how I can be good company if I'm always on the verge of tears when we're talking. I think I'll ask her at work today. I'm thinking it might be pity (she knows I have zero close friends) or maybe even a little guilt.

Finally, now that my entire family seems to know all about me (atheism, depression, transition) I don't seem to feel relieved or anything. I was expecting that it might be easier but it isn't. I don't really care that they know. They aren't supportive at all. At least I know not to count on anybody except myself. That's both depressing and empowering at the same time.

It's my birthday this week. :( What I'd really want is to somebody to plan something for me, but I know that isn't going to happen. (H didn't even mention it; I assumed she wanted to have coffee to give me a card or something.) I'm pretty much planning the only party I will have. I already had to decide what I wanted for supper and for dessert, as well as the present my parents are giving me. Now I have to decide what sushi that my parents should order for my birthday meal. This is one of the things that is supposed to be about me but that I'm really doing for everybody else. I know I can keep it together for the party though.

I'm not sure why my mom chose to tell me that my entire immediate family is getting therapy because of me. Perhaps this is why I never told my family anything voluntarily; now I feel like an asshole for making it hard on everyone. I think that's unfair, really. I'm the one going through shit, not them.

Sunday, March 14, 2010


I am doing better! It was mostly just feeling depressed and suicidal from about Thursday to Tuesday including last weekend.

Consensus seems to be that I am finally starting the grieving process about my separation. Clearly, I avoided dealing with it until now. I obviously was hoping that it wasn't real; that we'd get back together. Now I see that's unlikely. :(

On Thursday I spent about eight hours with my dad. We went for a long drive - about 600 km round trip. We talked about most things. He asked lots of questions. Some of it was about my marriage breakup and some was about my GD. We aren't close in the sense that we rarely talk about anything personal. That experience didn't really make me feel any closer, it was more like an interrogation. I was a little shocked after I told him that I had just been more suicidal than I'd ever been in my life. He did not react to that at all, not even to say, "that's too bad." Talking about my GD, we didn't find any common ground on any point. He asked me about "aggressive homosexuals." I assumed he meant gays that are "out and proud," but he really seemed to believe in gay recruitment! He compared it to people who try to get other people to behave or think in a particular way in order to "normalise" their own behaviour or opinions. And he also said that as a society deteriorates that more things become acceptable. I tried to point out that that's not necessarily bad; mixed-race marriages were frowned upon very recently. He also claimed that repression wasn't harmful!

Then he asked why separation from my wife was when I felt I could start moving toward transition. This is where we reached an impass. I couldn't get the point across that you take your spouse in consideration when you make decisions in a bigger way than your family. He seemed to think I was saying that family love is somehow worth less than spouse love. But what I mean is that your spouse is indeed much more important when you make decisions. I would never have considered moving out of town away from my wife, for example. Yet right now, when I'm thinking about where I want to move to, my family plays a much smaller role in the decision. A married person would not always confer with family when buying a car, but would always make a joint decision involving the spouse. A person's decisions have a greater effect on their spouse than on their family. So we stopped talking about it before I could explain.

I went to therapy yesterday. It was useful. I don't think I should wait multiple months before the next visit.

I'm gonna be ok, it's just gonna take time.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Not doing so well

Things have been rough for the past few days. I have never had such intense suicidal ideation. I have had plenty of suicidal ideation, but not like this. Usually, when I'm having it, suicide seems like an option, something I can do later. When I've felt suicidal during the past few days, suicide seems more like an immediate solution. I'm not feeling suicidal at this very moment, but when I do during this period I feel like it's something to do right away, as if I should take my laptop, drive somewhere, write a note, and slice my throat open.

The trigger was hanging out with my ex on Thursday. We went to a shopping mall called Coquitlam Centre, where she'd never been and where there's a store I knew she'd like. I've mentioned in the past how I didn't really have any friends to hang out with or talk to. H. is the exception; she doesn't seem to mind my company. When she dumped me last year she said that she still wanted to be friends and that she would be there for me. (meaning through transition) At the time, I just thought it was some bullshit you say when breaking up. But she meant it. I ending up telling her that I was on hormones and that I'd had some laser hair removal treatments. I also told her that I was upset and lonely that I didn't have any friends. But what really bothered me is her life. She's moved in with her boyfriend and renting out her (our old) house. She's thinking about trying for a baby in a year. After the mall, we went out for sushi with some work people. But there was some time to kill, so we went to her place to watch a bit of the closing ceremony and so I could say hi to the dogs. Well, I didn't make the connection that it would be at her new place until we got there. And then I cried when I was playing with her dog.

So basically her life is pretty good, except for her mom and cat dying last fall. I've suddenly realised that I miss her so incredibly much. I miss having someone to go home to. I miss having somebody that's there for me. I miss having someone that wants to cuddle with me. I miss having my best friend. I miss somebody that likes to spend time with me, either hanging out or doing something.

It suddenly hit me that she's not coming back. It hasn't bothered me much until now. But now, I'm incredibly unhappy about it. I've spent so much time crying. In a moment of weakness or whatever, I actually prayed last night, something I haven't done in years. On Sunday, as soon as I walked into work, H. saw me. She instantly knew that something was wrong, so she made me talk to her. I said that I wished I had died during that time in 2007 when I drank a lot after work and she came home to find me lying in bed in my own vomit. And then later she cornered me at work and I mentioned that I was suicidal. So she facebooked my sister, who was waiting to talk to me when I got home from work. She was worried, and I told her everything. I even came out as atheist.

I don't know how to get past this feeling of "my life sucks," especially since I really believe it. At the same time, there are two reasons for hope in my life. One is that I'm well on the way to becoming a teacher and the other is that I'm making progress toward transitioning. But I feel that everything else is shitty. I feel like a loser living in my old room in the basement, imposing on my sister and her new husband. I feel fucking lonely, with no good friends.

On the friend front, yesterday after supper I decided to go see Alice in Wonderland in 3D. So I looked up showtimes and then thought, "hey, I might as well try to find somebody to go with." I went on Facebook and asked my male friend to go. He wrote, "no thanks, I think I going to stay home tonight." Last week I tried to do something with him twice but he didn't want to. This guy has always had "a hard day at work," or some other reason to not do anything. We're not close, but this is somebody that I've known for over ten years. So I went to the movie alone, but it was sold out anyways. The only other people that are local are my married friends. They have a two year-old, so it's very limiting what we do together. Basically I go over once every two weeks and we play a game. I feel closer to the wife, like I could talk to her, (she's a good listener and is sympathetic) but I don't see her alone. Then I have my new friends from my program. Since the program started, I made the decision to try to attend every social event I could with anyone from the program. The last event was watching the opening ceremonies of the Olympics. I've never watched any opening ceremonies; I only went because of the social factor. But these social things are infrequent, and they are usually alcohol-based. I wish that I could just call up one of these people to hang out. But I've heard the guy who usually hosts the parties say homophobic remarks, so he's probably not a person I'd want to share things with. The girl I have a crush on does know that I'm fucked up and lonely. But if I facebook her and suggest hanging out, she will see that as me trying to initiate a romantic relationship.

Things are depressing on the friend front. When I was spilling my guts to my sister, she said, "I don't know how people meet except at church." Obviously, I won't be going to church anytime soon. I'm not going to start going to bars to meet people.

I have to make a decision about where I want to work. I would be able to get a substitute teacher job in several school districts. I'm having a hard time deciding which one(s) to apply for. I'm guaranteed a substitute teacher job in the school district I'm doing my practicum; they've already inquired as to when my practicum is over. But it's outside of Metro Vancouver, as am I at the moment. People are noticeably more conservative/church-going. I don't know if I want to stay living here. But if I get hired and move to say, Surrey or Coquitlam, then I won't have any immediate family in the same town. I worry that I'll just be sitting depressed in an apartment, doing nothing. If I don't do things regularily with my new friends, there's no reason to thing that would change just because I move to Metro Vancouver. I'll be applying for jobs in three weeks, so this is something I really need to think about.

I did leave a message for my psychologist yesterday; I clearly need an appointment. I should not have let shit get so bad before seeing her.

Somehow I need to get hope back.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

overdue update

Sorry I haven't been keeping up on here.

School has been going well. Teaching in my practicum re-affirms to me that I should be a teacher. I find it rewarding. Sure, it's challenging, but I find it rewarding. I don't know what I'd do other than teach. I am not going to keep working at the grocery store for the rest of my life. If I fail my practicum, I "won't make it." I'll kill myself. But I'm a "natural." I just have to not fuck up for another month or so.

I don't like being called "Monsieur _______". But it's a necessary evil. A couple weeks ago we had to pretend to be a T.O.C. (a.k.a. subsitute teacher) for a day. I did Grade 1 instead of 10. I loved it. I think I'd consider doing it for reals. (the young ones also called me Madame by accident. :) )

I had a pro-d day during this week. (that's a non-teaching work day). I was in four workshops, and there were at maximum 3 men in each one. Teaching is a fairly woman-dominated profession. Languages doubly so.

I am on the next level Estradot patch. Since the lowest one didn't do anything physiologically, perhaps this will start something. I had fucked up and not made an appointment for my endocrinologist early enough, so I had been without anything for two weeks. It was not nice having a sex drive again. I explained it to my carpool partner as being like the trailer for "40 days and 40 nights." You just sort of feel antsy. There was a recent post in the blogosphere of somebody saying transwomen were happy to lose their libido because it isn't feminine to have one. I don't feel that way; I feel it's just annoying to have it. I know women can have a strong sex drive; I remember fondly one part of my marriage during which my ex-wife would bang on the wall when she was in bed trying to get to sleep (because of working early) when she wanted sex.

A week ago I had my fourth laser treatment. Now, the hair is starting to shed. I bought three more treatments. I hope that's enough to deal with all the dark hairs so I only need electrolysis for the blonde hairs. I find facial hair to be really unpleasant. (and dysphoric..)

Valentine's day wasn't too horrible. My parents actually came over to check on me; I thought it was pretty sweet. It's just more the everyday stuff. As I've mentioned already, it isn't the marriage being over that bothers me; it's more the lack of my best friend.(or any good ones for that matter)

I fucking hate weekends for the most part. I don't see my carpool partner so I have nobody to talk to. I don't usually see friends. Ok sure, last night I did see this couple that I've been friends with for over ten years. But we aren't close. I can't talk to them about stuff I want to talk about. It bothers me that nobody that I have known before my separation knows that I'm on hormones and that I'm beginning transition. Last night there was a free deadmau5 concert at the Livecity Yaletown site in Vancouver. I really wanted to go. But I had nobody to go with. I tried unsuccessfully to convince my ex to call in sick for work and come with me. I don't have anyone else to ask that might have gone.

I've fucking been home all day. I haven't fucking done anything today. I'm fucking lazy. I was outside of the house for about 20 minutes. Fuck. I've had three Maudite strong beer. Weekends would be harder without booze. I think getting through my program is what is keeping me alive. That's not enough. I need to find something else in life that is worth it.

I told my mom I'm atheist. Of course she was upset. But I stated that that issue is nowhere near the top of my list of important things in my life. Perhaps one day I will be able to tell my family and old friends about my plans for transition. I suppose it's sort of convenient that I don't have anything holding me down anywhere.

Goddamn life.

Monday, January 18, 2010


Nothing super exciting to share - just a few random things.

On Friday I had a Professional-Development Day at my new practicum. For those of you who don't know what that is, it's basically a day off school on which teachers go to workshops. I went to a French as a Second Language meeting for secondary FSL teachers in the district. (since I'm a student teacher, I must go to those as well) I made it through the morning without anybody saying anything, but right after lunch, a teacher asked how I felt "being the only guy there." I said, "um, no problem." Then she made a comment about all the estrogen in the room and I had to refrain from saying, "well, actually..."

Which brings me to the next item. I fucked up by not making an appointment with my endocrinologist early enough, so I made one today for Feb 15th. That's two weeks after my girl pills run out. I will get a blood test this Saturday so that he has the information when I see him three weeks later. But it's still annoying. I also hope to get on a much higher dose of estrogen. He believes in "ramping" up the estrogen, in an attempt to simulate puberty. However, after three months on .025 mg (daily) hasn't provided me with any noticeable physiological change. (This is Estradot 25, btw) So it would be nice to be taking something much stronger.

Right now, I'm in three Grade 9 classrooms. These kids are all around 14. It is funny to see them separated by gender. They had to do review for the final exam today. They were allowed to choose their own group to a maximum of four and in no class did a boy sit at the same table as a girl. This is probably the last year they will separate themselves like that.

I'm a bit concerned about transitioning and getting a job. I will be able to apply for jobs starting in September. (likely a job I could get as a rookie would be as a TOC, a.k.a teacher on call, substitute teacher, supply teacher.) I will not be full-time by then. So let's say I do that for six months or so. When I've gone full-time, I'll basically have to worry about the tolerance of many people, the school adminstrator being only one. My most important references at at that point will be from the "real" teacher I'm working with right now and from the woman from the University that will come to observe me. I'm not concerned with informing them in a year, "um, you may get some calls asking for __ ___ instead of ___ ___." But I'd still be relying on them to be cool with me.

Some more facial hair has entered the growth cycle in the last week. Obviously, I find it disgusting, but it is a good thing because that means it will be able to be killed at my laser appointment in mid February. Last appointment, I don't think there had been much growth.

I'm still pretty lonely. But being back at school and in a classroom means I at least get to see people. I don't like coming home. I don't like the weekends. The only thing to get excited about is my home theatre.

Two weeks ago I got drunk and bitched on Facebook about how my life sucked to someone in my program. Then I was embarrassed so I ignored her all week. Then I apologized for that. Sigh. This is the one I have that crush on. (yeah, it's harmless and I would never mention it; it's not gonna happen.)

Monday, January 4, 2010

Media done good

Normally I don't post or comment on current events on this blog. But I was so impressed with this article on CBC, about a boater who is causing trouble in Vancouver. In my opinion it was as respectful as possible.

Some quotes:
first paragraph:
"Olympic security officials say the arrest of a female boater off Vancouver's Jericho Beach on New Year's Eve shouldn't raise concerns about marine security during the 2010 Games."

further in:

"The boat Tiny Dancer is registered to a Sam Coates, a man from Grand Forks, B.C.

Police said Coates is transgendered, and now is known as Samantha Coates.

"She is known to police," said Vancouver police Const. Lindsey Houghton.

"There were two incidents last year where Ms. Coates relinquished a starter pistol to police."

So the impression I got is that the only reason her trans status was mentioned is that her boat was registered. Also, she's only referred to as female by the police.

Ok, I don't have anything more to say about that.