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.