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From Jockstrap to LipGloss Part 2

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From Jockstrap to LipGloss The Chronicles of a Bewildered Mom II

On this matter of transitioning…

Why is it perfectly acceptable to tummy tuck, lip plump, boob enhance, and botox until you look like a parody of a human being sans multiple psyche evaluation/counseling/therapy sessions? You just charge it and reap the (questionable) benefits of photoshopping in real time.

You’d think, after nearly thirty years of inhabiting the wrong body, after countless hours, days, weeks, months, years contemplating how nature managed to fuck it up so badly, that when you decide to do this thing… well, you kinda know the drill.

Yeah, yeah, there are a few gotchas you need to understand, so that preliminary visit with a specialist who can lay out the options is certainly a good idea. And so what if another year has to pass while you jump through hoops and convince people who don’t know you, who have never walked in your pumps, that yes, this is indeed what you want.

You’ve waited this long, what’s another year or two or ten?

You’d expect Firstborn to be expressing some pique about a situation that’s been dragging on interminably, right?

You’d be half right, because it’s Mom saying yo dude, it’s no longer optional, it’s out-of-pocket, the waivers have been signed, let’s do this thing.

Mom’s growing. Mom’s learning. Mom’s being… a mom.

Estrogen? Oh honey, got that one covered. It worked a treat during menopause. Lemme ‘splain what you’re up against.

Wardrobe/sizing? You ain’t never gonna be a 00, eat your pasta, it’s good for you.

Shoes: She’s discovered the joy of catalogues. Larger sizes, wides. Hey, give that back! I’m shopping here.

Discrimination in the workplace? Check. Um wait, let’s give that one a few more checks (you’ll understand soon enough).

We go out to dinner. She dresses to kill, the servers call her “ma’am” and there’s no question there are two “she”-persons in the booth, and that tickles me no end. Not because the illusion was successful but because it is no longer a façade. It’s who she wants to be, who she is. The physical adjustment is finally working, and I no longer have to fish for compliments to lay on her. The oh that’s a nice outfit just pops without artifice or that mental reminder to re-adjust perceptions and try to get it right.

That wee success took a year for me to make the leap from simply loving as a parent to finally accepting the adult person, the one now packaged somewhat differently.

Baby steps, for both of us. I’m sure she wishes I’d get it right more frequently. That makes two of us, though I’m happier dealing with this now, when I truly don’t give a hoot anymore what people think, rather than earlier when opinions (sometimes) mattered and there were lines in the sand to breach.

Timing is everything.

Right now the process is in stasis. The wardrobe has changed. The actual “outing” proceeds apace, without much fanfare or backlash. Friends remain friends. The riding community has been uncommonly accepting, but they would be since the passion centers around horsemanship, not the presentation of the rider (George Morris aside, of course).

The step toward beginning hormone therapy is on hold because apparently it can jigger high cholesterol levels, so hello statins. And some dietary changes.

This process is not exactly a gender-enhancing buffet of easily interchangeable items. There are protocols to follow and choices to make. Nature does not easily relinquish her territorial rights. Some of those choices (facial re-sculpting and breast enhancement) will require surgery and a possibly painful recovery period. Muscles with decades of training won’t go nicely into the goodnight.

But those are concerns TBD. For now, I prepare for emo-time to commence. I’m thinking Mom could rent a beach house down the shore and hide out until it’s safe. (I wouldn’t, but it’s a thought.)

I was invited by friends to join them at this year’s LGBT Community Leadership Awards celebration. Of course, I said yes. The invitation included a plus one so I asked Ro if she’d like to attend. Another yes, then a bit of a conundrum. Of a rather odd sort.

The organizers needed a name in order to prepare the ticket.

Head scratcher…

Le daughter had selected “Rowena” as her new name, but legally she is still “he” and changing that is going to be a major dust up because you can’t just walk into the DMV and fluff your hair and say, “Oh, by the way, I’m so and so now.”

Well, you could, but…

Multiple that by as many ways the government and all your social, financial and other connections have you listed, and you have a… headache.

Back to the more immediate problem. And this was something we hadn’t really talked about: what surname did she want? For lots of reasons, the family surname wasn’t happening. I knew that, and fully expected her to come up with a unique last name.

She didn’t.

She thought about it, then said, “How about I just use your maiden name? Will that work?”


This is me, all weepy and feeling somewhat gobsmacked.

Change can be monumental, it can be incremental. It can sneak up on you or it can evolve over time. Change is about choices and weighing alternatives.

But mostly it’s about love and respect and knowing you are still family.


You can read part 1 here


Diane Nelson

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