A whimpering pug rousted me from my ill-conceived dreams at 2:30am. I’m dog-sitting in Hillsborough for Jessica and Ed, and their tiny walrus of a canine snores and snurfles louder than I do in the wee hours. Even my beloved sea-foam green ear plugs cannot keep the sound of slobber at bay.
Mind you, this is largely because my brain is on hyper-hum anyway, and is reaching brains-length across the bed to find something to disrupt my horrible sleep.
I had heard a tiny tidbit about an ex who is a recovering alcoholic, and it was enough to dislodge some grave old hurts in the usual way. I found myself opining, at 3am, which is never ever a good thing, about this future and that past, and that an assured superiority of one’s spiritual path probably means it isn’t very spiritual. I had a lot of very dire predictions and pontifications, build mostly on the shifting sand of my own hurt feelings.
So much for humility. Someone else’s “spiritual shortcomings” are, he sighs wistfully, good indicators of my own.
I recalled two things: 1.) I tripped over my ego’s attachment to my own recovery and fell in a forty ounce and pipe-load of crack. 2.) I have a pact with myself: whenever I get caught up in an ex’s biz I need to remind myself of my transition.
Obsessing about another’s behavior is a delicious diversion from any quakes and tumult I may be experiencing to my own foundation, and when you’re both sprouting and losing hairs in unfamiliar places; when you can’t get your own wardrobe to fit like it did 6 months ago, or even 6 weeks ago; when people keep docking on your mammaries in an attempt to anchor to some gender, since you are clearly confusing them, and they persistently choose the wrong one, you know you’ve got plenty of your own to dwell upon.
I also sense that part of my brain’s fixation on lost relationships is its grief state. I’m grieving Samantha. Even as I’d recently come to a more relaxed, loose-fitting jeans style membership of the Tranny Club, it’s impossible not to observe that certain behaviors I regard as innately Sam may have to go.
I hug on guys like a girl. I stretch up on my toes and wrap around ‘em like a girl. Most of the guys I hug I really love and my flavor of love displays itself pretty maternal. I call people “honey,” although I know some men that do that too, usually dads who are comfortably maternal themselves. I have feelings for men that sometimes feel, well, womanly. I was sharing this with one of my tranny mentors (men tors!)and his comment echoed my own conundrum. “I never know when I’m attracted to a guy if it’s because I want to have sex with him, or I want to be him!”
Typically, if I want to make sexy times with a man, he’s got something I want, and that’s not just in his low hangin' Luckys. Guys I’m attracted to are generally very stereotypically male. They tend to be the type of man that clomps on a tightrope above obnoxious alpha and a gentle and sweet paternalism. I can almost see myself in that caricature, drawing women to my tent with a deft and acrobatic kindness, a promise of patience and presence, and then clubbing them with my unrepentant clownish surety and Know-It-All-ism.
My mentor-friend recalls how he used to watch his father’s clothes spin in the dryer, and how he wished they would shrink to fit him. My favorite pastime was taking everything out of my father’s jewelry box - a richly oiled, handsome, Danish wood cubbyhole and drawers - and pretending it was mine: the Army pins and medals; myriad cuff links; broken watches; sock garters. They held mysteries, were alchemical; in my dreams the correct amalgamation of these man–ful artifacts would transform me into the man I was. How frustrating to be the frog and wait for the kiss of the princess! It never came, or when it did, the princess fell for the frog, and nothing changed, nothing ever changed.
My ass has been kicked all up and down the block in 2008, often with my own shoe. For me to join the human race means doing a lot of face-plants. My thing is not graceful, is what I’m saying to you. Someone tied my Reeboks together while I was telling you how smart I am. Nothing has brought me closer to other people than changing my sex. Who knew? It has given me a new depth of consideration and compassion for others - because I am so often nursing my own inventory of pratfall induced cuts and bruises I can see yours better too.
Thank God for my birthday I got a whole pack of Beef Band-Aid strips. If I got to sport hurts and owies, at least they’ll be dressed like men.