Acknowledging my privilege

I am sure in the ensuing days that I am going to rant, rave and cry here about my transition. There is so much that sucks, so much that isn’t talked about that you could fill a book (and I probably will).

That being said, with the debt/transphobia/dysphoria and other problems I want to acknowledge my privilege at the outset. I am in a much better place then many of my trans and non-binary people and I don’t ever forget it.

There are multiple areas where I have privilege starting with my skin color. I am white, which starts me at the top of the privilege pyramid when it comes to transitioning concerning ethnicity. It is still absolutely dangerous for me, I could be stabbed, shot, beat up, fired, etc. However, the statistics show that out of all of my trans and non-binary people I am the least likely to suffer that hatred. It still can happen, but I start out with a weighted advantage.

The second area I have privilege is access to credit. I do not have money to pay stuff outright. I don’t have the ability to just buy things and walk away with no consequences. I do however have an education level and a professional field that gives me better access to white collar jobs, and much better access to credit.

I will still have to pay this all back. Right now we are at approximately $32,000 for my face left after paying back almost $8000 already. I have spent more than $10,000 in electrolysis on credit card that I have been able to pay back (and just dumped another $1500 today for flight down to Phoenix). There is an additional $25k I will be spending as we move forward (not counting my portion of the cost of SRS if I get it) for lip feminization/facelift/tummy tuck. I can access that credit right now if I wanted, but I really can’t afford the payments.

That being said I do have to pay this all back, but I am in a much better position then a lot of people transitioning who can’t even get access to credit. In the end maybe they are better off if their not hitting $50k in negative value, but the depression and dysphoria I suffer from is only worse for others who can’t touch it, so no I don’t think they are better off even if they aren’t in debt.

I have another set of privilege, I have insurance (this goes with the white collar work/education privilege). I still have to pay, but having the insurance gives me access to doctors, HRT treatments, surgeons and lab tests along with a very good therapist to work on my childhood PTSD.

Finally, and the most important privilege I have is my husband. I am married to someone who dedicates their life to me (as I do to them). They are devoted to helping me through transition. They are there when I cry, when I laugh or when I am just confused and scared. Wolsey is the highest point of my privilege and without him I would be dead (and that isn’t hyperbole). Too many of my trans people do not have someone else (whether they have class/ethnicity privileges or not). For this last privilege I am the most grateful and without it I couldn’t do this.

I know I have privilege, and I know even with that I am going to have hateful days of crying. I will come here to cry, just understand that I realize this privilege even if I use this platform to vent.

Rough Day

I haven’t shaved since yesterday because I go to electrolysis on Saturday, most people at work have either not noticed or have been nice. However…

I was upstairs at work getting tea and I am standing there. This old guy (not a coworker) stands up next to me, not more than 6 feet from me (probably closer).

He is staring at me, as in glare/stare. He literally looked at my tits and the. Up to my cheeks and then back down. Getting more upset as he watched.

I turned and smiled at him, I was at work and all I could think of that wasn’t aggressive was ask “Do you want to touch the stubble?”. I was expecting a freak out, but I couldn’t stop the words.

He looked poleaxed, then walked off in a huff. The other person standing on the other side almost spit coffee out her nose.

Today is rough . I hate the stubble but I sure as hell cant let someone get in my space without responding. (Oh and the lady was super cool with me).

#trans #translife #confrontation #ihatethebeard

Morning Ritual

Before I decided to transition, I had unknowingly suffered from white boy privilege. I would give my girlfriends, then wife a hard time about how long it took to prepare. All the while not realizing how long it did take to prepare, and the expectations of society on it.

Fast forward to now, and I realize what a douche I was. Not an intentional douche, but a douche nonetheless. Now that I have a morning ritual with makeup, and not even that heavy of makeup (I am still scared of that, will post later on it).

So every morning I double shave (that is until I finish electrolysis) then I put on makeup. I realize I am not winning any beauty pageants, and that a lot of women forgo this (rightfully so if they don’t like makeup), I can’t. Being transgender means I need to try and use every tool I have to give the indications of the gender I am presenting. Every little bit helps.

Here are some photos of my makeup, actually it isn’t much and maybe I will do a more in-depth later, but this is it for now.

Also I am learning to eat crow as I realize all of the microaggressions or at least the unrealized privilege I judged women and undoubtedly minorities with. I am trying to change that.

Surgery Trip: Day 1

Our first day of surgery was fairly exciting and long both at the same time.

We arrived at the airport at 5:00am. Surprisingly both the hubby and I were both fairly good mood. We were pretty excited because this is the first time we had ever flown first class (was done because he doesn’t need to be in coach when he flies back post surgery). The airport security line was short and we were in and getting our coffee before we knew it.

We sat and waited for the plane, and when it arrived we found out it was an Embaer 175. I have never flown a non-Boeing plane before so it was a new thing for me. It turns out the plane itself is some sort of commuter type plane, about half the size of a 747. Even so when we sat down in first class it was pretty good. The seats were bigger than I had sat in, and it was the first time I could sit by the window (my legs are too long and shoulders too wide to fit in coach that way).

Way more leg room.

We were amazed at the difference of treatment between First class and coach. I am not used to an attendant focused on us. She talked with us regularly (enough so I was uncomfortable), and kept asking if she could get us stuff (also enough to make me uncomfortable). She did seems slightly annoyed we didn’t have our food trays out, until she realized we had never sat in first class before and then she was happy to tell us how to do it.

We got off the plane and went over to the Alamo rental car kiosk. We sat in line for awhile and listened to the sales rep try to talk this family in front of us into extra insurance, satellite, etc. Seriously made me cringe because it was excessive and long winded. I did not look forward to dealing with it.

When we got in, he started in on the same diatribe. Telling us how Arizona is a pay while its out of action state and we need to consider paying the $25 a day walk away insurance. The rough part is we are only paying $45 or so a day as it is, I don’t want to almost double my cost for an extra $250. However, the hubby did something wonderful, when we were talking he referenced me as “sweetie” and the representative immediately looked at us, stopped any excessive sale and barely said a word as we finished up. It is the first time that homophobia worked out for me that I can tell. He just wanted us away.

On our way out, we ended up going to the Papago Park, located in Phoenix. First I need to say it was too damn hot. The dryness I think is better than Atlanta humidity, but I still couldn’t live here. We saw bicyclists (and it was almost 100 degrees) and I was in awe. So the hubby and I wandered around for about 15 minutes, then we called it good.

Oh and evidently there are “active bees” in the area, what the fuck are active bees?

WTF is an “active bees” area? Is this an AZ thing?

We then went to the Scottsdale Museum of the West, just follow the link for that write up. Although I will say you should go.

After the museum we went to Lo-Lo’s Chicken and Waffles. I have avoided eating chicken and waffles up to this time. I am very glad I relented. I had my first chicken and waffles ever, and it was pretty darn good. Of course I paid for it with indigestion later, but it was definitely worth it.

Best damn chicken and waffles.

The rest of the night we planted ourselves in the hotel room, ran to the grocery store, and watched Shark Tank marathon.

 

My First Trip to Phoenix

The hubby thinks 4am is too early

We flew down last Sunday, at a very very early morning hour to Phoenix, Arizona. We started by leaving the house at 4am, much to Wolsey’s chagrin.

We arrived at the airport, with no caffeine in our system and with only an hour to wait until we fly out. Fortunately I went to the local Starbucks to get my caffeinated fix. Trust me, no one wants me uncaffienated.

We got down to Phoenix and for the first time ever I was in Arizona. I stepped off the plane and was hit by a wave of heat that was unexpected. While it was in the high 30s in Seattle, but they were having a heatwave in Phoenix and it was in the mid-90s and unlike Atlanta, it was a desert. The last time I had been in a place that warm and dry was when I was 15/16 and we were homeless as a family, living in a car and making Lake Tahoe our place (it was when we went down to Carson City/Reno).

Yes that is me on the left

We finally got to the hotel (a La Quinta which I have liked, not sure why my coworkers hate the chain), changed into short’s and decided we were hungry. There was Mimi’s Cafe just a block and a half up and we thought it would be a great place. There we ordered lunch (well actually I ordered some sort of specialized waffles).

It wasn’t bad at all, the prices were Seattle average (11-13 each). I probably wouldn’t recommend it for locals though, we didn’t realize that Seattle prices are high in Phoenix, and I wouldn’t recommend paying top dollar for a not top dollar place. The waitress was nice though, and we found out she had lived in Everett for six years.

We then  headed back to the hotel, where we promptly laid down and napped.

Sleeping prince/husband

We got up, decided we were still hungry (we hadn’t eaten large meals at Mimi’s) so we hit Red Robin and found the food to be extra greasy (unlike our normal Red Robins we live next too, oh and yes I realize in general the food is a bit greasy, but this was above and beyond).

Finally we just hid out in the hotel room, the temperature was spiking even hotter.

The next morning was pretty simple, we got some waffles from La Quinta’s breakfast bar then went to the doctor appointment (to read about it at https://accidentallygay.wordpress.com/?p=1057 ).

We then went to Tia Shorty’s and I had the absolute best tacos in my life. The shredded beef just melted in my mouth, the spices were wonderful and I am glad I ended my Arizona food sampling there as it left it on a really good note.

Tia Shorty’s, really good.

We then got back to the airport for a later then we like flight (didn’t leave until almost 7pm) and we got into town after 10pm. With the Lyft ride back to the house we were in bed by midnight.

Overall the trip was a stupendous success, not because we went and saw a bunch of things, but rather because Wolsey gets his surgery 14 months earlier then normal (end of May/beginning of June 2017). So this trip was fantastic!

If you want to go see the photo gallery from the trip, go here.

Passing and Sexism

jellocar
Jello’s 2012 Kia. He was so excited to get it.

Today we had to buy a certified Kia for Jello. He got a temp job and needs to get to it. While we were getting the car however, an awkward situation arose.

We were in the car when the salesman (a young kid) was talking about taking other people out on test drives. Jello was driving, he was in the passenger seat and I was in the back. The guy started joking that when he takes women out driving how horrible they were as drivers.

This absolutely horrified me. I have never thought differently about a woman driving, and I don’t understand why stupid assholes think that way. This is probably due to Jello being the first person who could drive decently in our group of friends when I was a teen. Jay and Warren, the other people who drove cars were absolutely horrible drivers, but Jello was always good (and at the time presenting as a woman), so maybe I never made that sexist connection.

Jello and I met eyes in the rear-view mirror. It was incredibly misogynistic/sexist and we were both horrified by that. On the other hand, it meant that Jello had passed 100% in close proximity with the guy. This pleased me greatly, I know he has been passing more and more. Now if we can only get his top surgery.

So it ended up being an incredibly awkward, but rewarding situation. I feel torn about it, both unhappy with the sexist comments, but overjoyed for Jello.

Oh, and this is cross-posted to Accidentally Gay.