26 August, 2009


i'm glad i've been able to blog more this month - i've been enjoying writing more frequently. yesterday was the three week mark from my revision surgery on my chest. my chest is looking really good so far. i'm feeling alright - it's sore and achy every so often because i'm probably pushing myself too hard. the photo to my left is what my chest looks like as of yesterday. i only have one small scab over my left nipple.

i went to the dmv yesterday to get a new picture on my driver's license because the picture i had on it looked nothing like me. when i went to change my license over to a vermont state license last year the woman who was helping me automatically changed my sex on it to "m" with no questions asked (the sex on my previous license was marked "f"). i was surprised this had happened, as i was anticipating having to have an "f" on my license. so back to yesterday and getting my new picture - i handed in my old license, got a new picture, waited two minutes and received my new license, very pleased with my new picture (the woman helping me never said anything about my sex). when i took it out to look at it later in the day, i noticed that my sex had been changed back to "f"! i'm wondering if i was listed in their data base as "f"? this is the only thing i can think of at the moment because i am read as male all of the time now. i guess i'll just have to make another trip back there and let them know they made a mistake.

and some interesting stories in the news regarding sex and gender i thought i would pass on:
sex verification
related article


22 August, 2009


check out this article on pfox (parents and friends of ex-gays and gays)

this "article" simply baffles me. i most often view other peoples' life choices as choices that they have made to suit their interests/needs...and that because they are the person who should know themselves the best in turn the choice they have made is what is best for them at that moment in time or for that circumstance. though, after reading this article it seems like this person did not fully consider what his choices would mean for his future (sure the article is short, but this person never really stated that they felt like a trans person...). overall i think there was a lot missing from this story and that it was pretty badly written. to me, it seems to serve no other purpose than to send the message that if your life is really fucked up, some higher power can save you.

for me making the choice to transition, in any and every aspect, was something that i thought about long and hard. i educated myself on trans issues and considered how each part of my life would change because of one choice i would make. while it was very difficult to constantly question myself and my identity, i am happy i took the time to reflect on possible future changes. i hope that those in a position now where they are contemplating transition will also take time to reflect on how our choices will and can effect the rest of our lives.

of course i am in no way saying that people who chose to "de-transition" are unintelligent or make bad choices - i'm sure there are a variety of reasons why people decide to "de-transition", those of which i could only speculate about - family, love-life, religion, well-being...(the process of "de-transitioning" is actually something i'd like to look further into...anyone have any neutral resources?).

anyone want to comment?
-what advice would you give to someone who was beginning to think of themselves as trans and contemplating transitioning (social/medical/legal...)?

just thought i'd share some perspectives. peace.

19 August, 2009

role models

i was at an interview for my americorps position early this week and the director of the program mentioned to me that i'd be the only male working there, if i were to accept the position, and there are several male adolescents that i'd be working with. it occurred to me that i would be in a position to be these young men's male role model - if i were someone they looked up to. i never thought i would be in this position so early on, relatively speaking, in my transition. who knows how this will all end up - the guys may very well end up hating my guts. i guess being a male role model has never been in the forefront of my mind. though, when i think of being a male role model, i think to myself "can't i just be a non-gender-specific role model?" i have thought of myself of this in a few, very specific circumstances, but i think part of myself is too modest to think that someone would look up to me.

so all of this made me think back to my childhood and adolescence and who i looked up to and to the people i considered my role models. from a very early age i remember looking up to my father and have since then. we've most of the time gotten along well, we share many of the same interests and overall he is an incredibly understanding, accepting and compassionate human being. i remember also looking up to two uncles of mine during my teenage years - they were and are active, healthy, fun to hang out with and easy going men. it wasn't until high school that i had female role models. one was my english teacher who was simply an amazing teacher and made teaching applicable and fun - i looked up to her as both a righteous human being and as the educator i hoped to one day be. the other was ani difranco - i was completely enamored with the politics of her music and the power of her voice. these people today are still my role models, some have taken the backseat to the others and the new role models i've brought into my life, which seem to mostly be bold and honest activists and advocates, where gender seems to be irrelevant.

i'm curious to hear about your thoughts and experiences with role models - please comment and share!


12 August, 2009

background checks

i have been fortunate enough to have been offered a job through americorps recently and have decided to take it. i was filling out some of the paperwork yesterday and some of it deals with backgrounds checks. the paper explicitly stated that you had to list any other names you went by within the last seven years, which means i had to put my birth name on my paperwork. i was not and am not happy about this. while i understand the importance of knowing someone's legal history (especially if they are working with youth), i felt a bit violated that i had to out myself to my director and possibly other co-workers when they had only taken me in as male before (as i am perceived as male all of the time). when i handed in my paperwork my director briefly looked through it - i waited for some type of physical response (possibly wrinkled forehead muscles) and saw her momentarily look at my old name, but she didn't flinch. it's my hope that i will be treated with the same respect i was treated with before and that she will keep my private medical information private.

i guess the most frustrating part is that i am forced, in this situation, to be connected to an old identity i don't identify with any longer. putting the trans issues aside, i think most people would find this piece frustrating - marking someone with something that was part of his/her old self, which is no longer applicable.

i am curious to know if anyone else has any experiences with background checks - please comment and share your story.


11 August, 2009

1 Week Post-Op Revision

today it has been one week since surgery and i'm feeling pretty good. i'm thankfully not in any pain, mostly discomfort when i sleep because i have to sleep on my back, but other than that i don't have any complaints.

here's what my chest looks like today - notice that there's not much bruising or swelling. there is medical tape around my areolas, protecting the stitches and the yellowness in the center of my chest is from a green sharpie marker still coming off.

compare to 9 days post-op from the initial surgery (9 months ago)- lots of bruising and swelling and not to mention my gross areola and nipple. during my revision dr. fischer took a small part of my good nipple and sewed it into the one that had healing issues (i still had a tiny indent left over after nine months of healing on the left side).


06 August, 2009


saw one of the "that's so gay" commercials on tv yesterday. finally! these are long past overdue. check out the website here.

i went to a family wedding on saturday. my mother was worried about me going and i think in some ways didn't want to go - she said i'd make people uncomfortable. we fought a lot about this and along with the fact that i'd see my grandma. i did finally come out to my grandmas and my one great aunt and they were all awesome. so the wedding was totally cool and everyone seemed happy to see me, used the correct name and pronouns. i spent most of my time there with grandma actually, talking, drinking beer and dancing - what an awesome grandma. i had a minor incident with a cousin who felt the need to criticize me and my decisions. it was an odd moment, but a mere road bump in a good weekend.

and this past tuesday was my revision with dr. fischer. i had my consultation on monday and they were impressed with how well i healed and how good my chest looked. she reassured me that the surgery was going to be quick and that she was going to do minor touch-ups (i had both of my areolas re-sized and a bit of extra tissue taken out). surgery was tuesday morning and everything went really smoothly. i was in surgery for about an hour and back in the hotel by noon. the anesthesia i had this time was different and didn't make me feel as sick or groggy as what i had last time. i've been taking it easy - napping, eating, reading, watching tv - but overall i feel good, much better than how i felt a few days after my initial surgery. i am looking forward to hopefully a quicker recovery than last time and being able to work out again and tone my muscles.