Its been a rough few days here. I haven’t been as talkative as I usually am and last night, I just had to log out of SL and shut down. It wasn’t anything anyone did to me. Its just one of those downs that comes with being on this journey.
On Friday, I went and had a visual field test done to see if qualify for an eyelid lift my eye doctor believes I need. If I failed this visual field test, which I do believe I did, then insurance will pay for this surgery due to the need to just improve how much I can see and get rid of this bokeh effect I get when I drive at night because my eyelashes are literally blocking me from seeing clearly. I’ve already met with a plastic surgeon and he believes I will qualify as well. And if insurance does agree to pay for the surgery, the plastic surgeon is going to include some soft tissue reshaping of my eyes to help them look a bit more feminine. Ultimately, it becomes a win win for me because while I never had plans for much, if anything, in the ways of feminizing surgeries aside from SRS, due to just the sheer costs…insurance paying for this could open the door for me to have this and a couple of other feminizing procedures done…at little to no cost to me.
Anyway…I got sidetracked…
So after my test on Friday, I stopped by 7-Eleven on my way home to grab a drink. It was rush hour, which meant gridlock at the toll booth and I was already parched. I went in, paid for my drink and sat back in the car. As I was getting myself straight before driving off, I saw this cute elderly gentleman walk out of the store. I have no idea where this thought came from, but as I watched him walk to his car, all I could think was, “I wonder what it’s like for him to live every day of his life actually feeling congruent in his own body?”
As soon as that thought hit me, I started crying in my car.
Its really hard to describe what it is like to feel this complete disconnect with your body. I know everyone wishes they had a different body at some point. More fit, better curves, fewer wrinkles, bigger or smaller breasts, etc. But that is a far cry from feeling what I go through. The cis people I have spoken with who seem to have the best grasp of what I go experience are those who suffer from Body Dysmorphic Disorder. That’s a psychological condition where they have this belief that something is massively wrong with their body, even though there isn’t, and they would do anything within their power to change what they see as a deformity. Its not the same as Gender Dysphoria but its the closest thing I have found to compare to what I experience and the emotional response of these individuals is very similar to what myself and others transitioning experience.
I go through these spells every now and then, and when they hit…they hit hard. In talking with others who have transitioned, I often hear the same thing from them. We get the thoughts under control and manage them well for a while. It doesn’t mean the incongruence has gone away…we just have a grasp on the emotional response of it all. But then something triggers it…and it feels like an elephant is sitting on your chest. For me, it means a lot of crying and it can make it incredibly hard to be productive. Sometimes, I end up spending a significant amount of time curled up in the fetal position in tears with a box of tissues close by as I try to get the emotions and disgust with my own body under control. Its not a pretty picture and thankfully, no one has ever witnessed me going through this in person. I also am known to withdraw from others when this happens.
When those spells hit, I just get to a point where I don’t have the energy to put up the front that everything is ok to others and, in those moments, I can’t even handle the thought of having my fears and anxieties dismissed by others. In the past, I would reach out to some and I would hear about how strong I am and that everything will be ok. The crazy thing is though is that in those moments, I don’t want words of encouragement. Those are the moments I just want someone present…someone who will not run at the sight of me crying or try to push positive talk on me. I just want someone to sit with me…maybe give me a hug and let me cry on their shoulder. Someone who will just let me experience the emotions and process them all.
I think it scares people to see me not holding up well at times. I have friends who are great and listen, but a lot of people don’t know how to react to to me or others transitioning in those moments. I think part of it is because they have no real way to relate to what we are going through. I think part of it is a lack of understanding. I think part of it is we live in a world where many struggle with others not being happy and being real about their problems. Could be a lot of reasons.
I will say I did manage to get out and socialize some today. I got another collab done that I will post tomorrow and made it out to a friend’s birthday party. So I will count those as achievements for the day.
I guess I share all this because sometimes, even the strongest among us become tired and weak. We all have something that triggers us. We can’t mask or run from the emotions though. Believe me…my eyes are still puffy and burning from all the crying I have done. But how am I ever to rest and recoup if I’m not allowed my moments of weakness and breakdowns?
Thankfully, I am too damn stubborn to let them keep me down for long.
See it on Flickr.
Diversion – Lowkey 2