Today I was lucky enough to be able to pay it forward. Years ago after I lost my job, financial security, and family, I was out on the streets. I had no income, was evicted from my little apartment in Fairhope and my car was repossessed. But I was lucky in that I had found new friends through PFLAG who reached out to me. One paid up my car loan and enabled me to get my car back. Another paid for a moving company to pick up my few possessions and take them to a house across the bay where she had negotiated a rent I could afford with the student loan that had yet to be approved. Another guided me toward the doctoral program at South and helped me get an interview with the faculty who could approve my acceptance.
Until recently I have been unable to pay them back for their kindness. But instead of paying them back directly, something I will eventually do, I decided to pay it forward today. And I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to do just that.
Along with paying it forward, I made a pact with my friend: we would both invest 20 minutes a day writing in our blogs. And I intend to do just that. So the challenge goes out to J. I’ll help you get a blog up on line and we both will write at least 20 minutes a day and hit the “Publish” button.
Hate to say it trans folks, but this is largely our own fault. Only 26% of the electorate turned out to vote in this referendum. That in itself is appalling. Although HRC and some other trans friendly groups were active primarily in placing ads and holding rallies, how many trans folks actually turned out to man the phone banks, go door-to-door, and/or volunteer to drive friendly voters to the polls or to register to vote? Not very many, I’d wager. We cannot outspend the conservative right with their extremely wealthy donors and the tele–evangelists who are primarily intent on fear mongering, which they did very successfully in Houston. And we trans people have garbled our message and sound all too like greedy children who demand what we want because, well, because we demand it.
A wise friend once told me, confused people always say no. And I think our accelerating push of the now many flavors of unconstrained gender identity selection and gender expression does not help clarify the issue. (I will shortly publish a post expanding on this thought here.)
16th TFS F4E 67-231 taxing at Kunsan
I was stationed at Kunsan AFB in South Korea with the 16th Tactical Fighter Squadron when the Mash Movie was released. We, of course, got one of the first releases (Not). We watched it on a bed sheet hung on the side of a Wonder Arch.
This was in 1970 with the US still reeling (more…)
There, I said it. Today when I was walking at the park, I thought a lot about writing this post. During the walk, my heart rate belt stopped working. And when I finished, my exercise tracker said I had burned 666 calories. I wasn’t sure I would actually write this post. It likely will be unpopular with some of my friends. But I feel I must own my truth. After all, I did redo my website to better (more…)
I think all trans persons experience difficulty with navigating bathroom issues, particularly before they have surgery and get their walking papers. I know some trans-folks do not get any surgery and a few jurisdictions allow trans-folks to use the bathroom that coincides with their gender identity/presentation regardless of whether they have a surgery letter from their doctor. But getting your documents where they should be definitely helps.
After I transitioned in 2001, well before my surgery in late 2006, I too suffered with public bathroom anxiety. Early on, I was not confident in my ability to “pass” and hesitated every time I had to use a public bathroom. I did know that being androgynous was not the way to get accepted in the bathroom, so I always did my best to appear feminine and confident. Until 2004, I was mostly at school where no one seemed to care or notice me. (more…)