Christmas Update

Merry Christmas everyone. I hope you have all had a fantastic time with the people that you love and who love you. It has been a really good month for me and I want to share my joy with you all.

Transition stuff first. Progress is being made. I have received the referral forms for Charing Cross Gender Identity Clinic in London and will be sending those back to them filled in very soon. Then it will be a 13 month wait for an appointment, but at least things are moving forward. I’ve had a response from my GP about starting hormone treatment too, I have been referred to an local Endocrine clinic and should expect to have an appointment within a month or two. I am very excited and can hardly wait to start taking the hormones to begin my transition fully, not just socially.

Socially this month has been excellent for me. I have entered into a relationship with an amazing girl who totally gets me. I feel like there is nothing to hide with her and I know she feels the same way. First time I saw her I thought she was cute and that there was more to her than meets the eye. I wasn’t wrong, because second time we went out on a group outing. A fantastic girly night out followed by a sleepover after party. I learnt more about her then and she about me and I was hooked instantly.

I wasn’t sure if she liked me too the same way until two weeks ago when she messaged me on Facebook to let me know that she does feel that way about me and hoped I felt the same about her. It was a beautiful moment. I of course did feel the same about her, and we both agreed that we wanted to pursue the relationship with each other. We met up then week ago Saturday and for the better half of the day we couldn’t keep our hands off each other. Her kisses were so sweet and tender. It has left me longing for more. We are in contact every single day now, even though we live miles apart and cannot see each other as often as we’d like at least we can still hear each others voices and say how much we miss each other. The  days will go by slowly until we see each other again, where we will spend the weekend where my focus will be making her very happy.

Love, hugs and kisses,

Rhiannon.

Just a girl.

I am here
Just a girl like any other
Singing to the radio
Dancing to the MTV

I am free
Living life authentically
Wear the things that I desire
Loving the real me

CHORUS:
Sing it to me my Trans sisters
Let your stories light this world on fire
There’s nothing wrong with who you are
Or who you Love

What you see
Isn’t always what you get
Don’t you ever judge a book
Just by it’s cover

There’s this girl
I’m not sure if she wants me
But if she said so I would
Always be her lover

CHORUS

BRIDGE:
I think about the years gone by
I cannot help but wonder why
I spent so long surviving
Instead of living

CHORUS

FIN

Why I write..

..and why I haven’t written much lately

Writing for me is a way to organise my thoughts and feelings in a way that I cannot do around those I love, either for fear of rejection, or fear of hurting them, or both. There is a conflict between me and my mother and It’s not going to get better while we are still living with each other. We love each other, but we have very different political views and that is causing a huge strain on our relationship.

Lately I have been attending support group meetings, which has been another outlet where I can express myself without fear of repercussions. I have met a fantastic group of women who love me just for who I am and I love them too. After meeting only a couple of times we have very quickly become best friends. It is great. I don’t have to hide who I am in front of them. And I’m not just talking about being Trans. If I want to be childish. I can. If I’m sad I can show it and they will comfort me. If I am happy they will share in the joy. I have only one other friend like these ladies and unfortunately she lives so far away now. I miss her terribly, but I am grateful to have found more friends, not to replace her, because nobody can do that, but they do soften the pain I feel sometimes.

A bit of an update on what I have been up to though:

The biggest thing was an event I attended Saturday 26th November called Swansea Sparkle. An LGBT event which was a lot of fun. During the day I was allowed to bring my own guitar and sing a couple of songs which was great. I fumbled at least half of the chords, but I enjoyed it anyway, and I could see smiling faces in the audience which made things much better. I took a photo with some firemen and got a free travel mug in return for filling in a quick fire safety questionnaire. My friends were there too and we had a look around the various information stands together, before heading back to one of the girls’ apartments so we could fix our makeup and change into our eveningwear.

One of my friends took this photo of me which I am very pleased with: 15179190_288157841579713_946645256210948320_n

The evening event was a lot of fun too. We all thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. Took loads of photos of each other, some more hilarious than others and a couple were outright scary. Note to any aspiring photographers: Turning the flash on during evening shoots will make those wearing light makeup look like zombies and/or vampires. Fine if that is what you’re going for, but otherwise you’ll probably want to turn the flash off. Near to the end of the evening there was a beauty pageant for Miss Sparkle, which I entered, and I was extremely happy to be announced third in that.

In other news. I still haven’t started HRT or had the referral to the GIC in Charing Cross, London. The Unity LGBT charity is trying to put pressure on my GP to get me seen by a local Endocrinologist though so I can start taking hormones safely because I am at risk of self medicating. If someone was to give me a box of Oestrogen pills today I’d start taking them. Or if I could afford to buy them myself I would. So yeah. I will hang on as long as I can and I do hope my GP will allow me to start treatment before I go to Charing Cross, because I could be waiting 2 years or more before I get there. And that is far too long.

I’m still writing songs. I have half completed a few. But nothing is in a state I am happy with yet. My volunteering is going really well. I have started a new project alongside another volunteer where we are helping people who are recovering from Stroke to get involved with a device called Fitbit. Fitbit is an activity monitor that measures steps taken in a day, heart rate, amount of exercise done and can monitor sleeping patterns also. It’s a lot of responsibility, and there have been some teething issues, but it is going well so far and I am really enjoying it.

That’s it for me for now. I’m probably going to switch this blog to just monthly updates for the time being for reasons stated at the beginning of this post. What I was getting out of writing here I am getting more of by being with my friends I have made at the support group.

 

Love, hugs and kisses,

Rhiannon.

Last refuges of Dysphoria

I am a much more confident woman than I was 6 months ago. There is a saying “Fake it til you make it” which I have been going by while I go through my transition. Acting confident even when I feel like running for the hills and hiding out in a cabin for the rest of my life. Lately though things have been a lot better.

I look in the mirror and I no longer see a man’s face. I see me. I’m not going to be auditioning for any modeling competitions but I think I look alright. My voice is passable, It’s not where I want it to be yet, but it is suitably androgynous at the moment. There are still some areas that trigger dysphoria for me though.

No.1 : Every time I go to the toilet I am painfully aware of my genitalia, and know I have the wrong set. I have had no problems with entering a women’s bathroom though. I even had one woman say to me once that she saw a man coming into the bathroom and she wasn’t referring to me, at first I thought she was, for half a second, but I then realised by the way she was looking behind into the toilets area that she was obviously referring to someone else.

No.2: Facial hair. I hate shaving my face every morning. I cut myself almost every other shave. It is very annoying, and when I do go even one day without shaving I can see and feel the difference and I really don’t like it. Even on the days I do shave I can see the shadow of hairs that haven’t poked out of the skin yet. I cover it up sometimes with concealers but it’s a pain. And I wish I didn’t have to do this.

No.3: Breasts (or lack of). I wear padded bras most days, but this is another thing that I wish I didn’t need. The reason this isn’t higher on my priority list though is that I am already feminine even without them.

I am grateful for all the support I have received thus far. Support from my friends, and family. from the people I work with, and the people I am working to help also. I am receiving help from a wonderful organisation here in wales called the unity group and I cannot thank enough all those people who call me miss, ma’am, young lady, and everything else that reinforces my femininity, like complimenting my clothes, shoes, nails, hair and anything else. Thank you all.

 

Love, hugs and kisses,

Rhiannon

I cut myself today (Trigger Warning: Self Harm)

I’ve never done that before.

It all started with a radio news report about 80 refugee children coming over to the UK from Calais. It actually started way before this we’ve had the same argument since before the EU referendum, but todays event started off this way. My mother remarked that we should send them back. Because there is no room. I said we’re not doing nearly enough and that we do have the room, but are not building enough new housing in this country, and not making the most of the housing we do have.

If there was zero empty properties in the uk, she may have a point, if there was zero flat land to build on she may have a point. But none of those things are true.

We were on our way back from having a meal out together. There was me, my mother, a friend and two siblings. The friend also holds the same anti immigration attitudes and was the one driving. MY mother was the only one of us who had a key to our house and wanted to stop at the friends bungalow before heading back to the house. I wanted to go straight home because of the argument we had in the car about how to treat the immigrants, and she would not let me have her key so I could let myself into the house.

I refused to enter the bungalow anyway. Asked her to let me have the key please, and she twice refused.

So. I walked away, called her a bitch under my breath as I walked away towards the house, with no key, and carrying a bag of shopping that we did that day. Nothing much in the bag, but there happened to be a glass in there. I was very upset at this point. I took the glass out of the bag and smashed it against the wall. With one of the shards of the shattered glass I ran it over my wrist a couple of times. 5 times to be exact. Not enough to cut deeply, but I did break the skin. I felt better in the moment that I was cutting. I felt much worse though after I saw what I had done.

My sister came round after a while with the key, I think it was about 15 minutes after I cut. I didn’t want to go inside until I had permission to do so. My mother shut me out of the house, she has never deliberately done that to me before. So I tried to call her using my mobile phone, and she just hung up the call. I asked my sister to call using her phone instead and my mother spoke to me, then. She said I was just upset for losing an argument, that I was welcome in the bungalow, and should not have been so antisocial, the irony, of her wanting to shut out people who need help, and then calling me antisocial. I told her on the phone that it wasn’t because I lost an argument that I was upset, I said I was pissed off because she is a racist bitch.

She said she hopes that I get a flat as soon as possible because she is fed up of all this. She’s not the only one who is fed up. I cannot understand how, or when she became so full of spite that she would rather a refugee starves to death, than we build a house in this country to give them a home.

I will apologise for calling her a bitch. I’ll try to explain that I’m very passionate about this subject and that I believe all people deserve a home, and to live regardless of whether they were born in this country or not. And things got out of hand. I’ll try to live peacefully with her until I do get the flat I need so I can move out and be free from this poisonous atmosphere, after that I will probably never want to see her again.

I have this one friend.

One friend which stands out more than any other. She is strong, beautiful, caring, intelligent, funny, and at times annoying, but I love her, and feel very comfortable around her.

I can tell this girl anything. There are no barriers, nothing is out-of-bounds, she will tell me everything that’s on her mind and I can do likewise and neither of us judge the other for doing so.

When I spend time with this friend I feel happy, and think that things cannot get better than this. If I could I would spend every minute of every day with her.

When I touch my friend in any way, even something as simple as holding her hand it sends shocks through my entire body.

I would do almost anything for this girl. I love her.

1 year ago today

This was me a year ago, no thanks to Facebook for reminding me:

This is a difficult post for me to write, and not made any easier due to having been awake for 19 hours and unable to get any sleep, and not because of a lack of trying either. I’m not unhappy with the way I look here. Or at least I wasn’t then. I liked the beard because it made me look closer to my actual age, and because it made me look more like the man I was trying to be. I felt like I was fitting in well with my friends in university and I was feeling positive about starting fresh on the second year (repeated) of my degree scheme, feeling like I could do this. I felt like I could take on the world, and I was just starting to get competent at playing the guitar around that time too.

Even then something wasn’t quite right. I was happy, and not happy at the same time, but I didn’t know why I wasn’t happy. I knew I should have been happy, because even though I had just failed a year, things were otherwise going well. I was secretly wearing girlish things under my regular clothes at the time, but that wasn’t new, that had been going on, on and off, since puberty, I thought it was a fetish and I was afraid of what people would think about me if they knew but I know now it was more than that, ironically my biggest fear then was that people would think that I was less than a man, and now I don’t want people to think of me as a man at all.

I remember at the time it was the first time for a long while I tried to look after my body better. I was getting private dental treatment to fix my teeth, work that still isn’t finished yet, but I will continue with that as soon as I am able to afford to again. I quit drinking fizzy drinks, at least while out of the house for a while, and I tried to cut down on snack foods, and also stick to a more regular sleeping pattern. It wasn’t long though before I was back on the fizzy drinks, playing video games all through the night and snacking on junk all through the days. The only thing I stuck to was looking after my teeth better.

This is me now, after 4 months into transition, and not started hormone treatment yet:

Now I am genuinely happy. I am taking antidepressants, which might have something to do with it, but I think the biggest factor is definitely my transition. I no longer see myself as weird, or perverted, and my wearing of girls clothes is just normal now because I am a girl, and always have been, I just didn’t realise it before. My family loves me for who I am. My friends also love me for who I am, and I am doing part-time voluntary work in an environment which is also completely supportive, and I am just me. I wish I realised this while I was still doing my degree, or even before that, but it cannot be helped now. I just have to move forward and explore all the options available to me to get to where I want to be and I am doing that. Where before I felt like I was failing, now I feel like I am raising myself up and writing a new story on a clean slate. Whether I succeed in my goals or not is irrelevant. the only failure is if I stop trying.

So my message to those reading this is, if you feel like something is wrong, you need to ask yourself the deep questions, and maybe, what you think is wrong, is really very right and you haven’t realised it yet. What I think is wrong is our current societal trend for girls to be ‘girlish’ and boys to be ‘boyish’, a lot of people will try to fit you into the gender stereotype they see you as, and that needs to change. Things are changing slowly but I believe there needs to be a lot more Trans awareness, especially in schools, and it should start at primary school age. kids need to be told that it’s ok for boys to cry, and it’s ok for girls to be tough. And it’s ok if you don’t feel like either a boy or a girl. There is nothing wrong with you. 1’s and 0’s are for computers. For us humans, we have all the fractions in between, and we can handle it, if we just allow ourselves to do so.