Since I have approached the root of my wounds in life after being used to putting a bandage on the issues, sometimes it feels even harder to live in my own skin, hear my voice, write down my words, and feel comfortable and safe. I haven’t seen myself as a woman in years and years. Not since I was quite young. I think I began to dissociate from feeling “like a girl” sometime during fifth grade. Time in the queer community validated this feeling as innate or normal, and so I have been living detached from important aspects of myself for quite a long time now.
Yesterday it felt like so much was spilling out of me. I haven’t had that kind of anxiety in years. The fear seemed to invade my body and by the end of the day I felt like I had the flu.
Perhaps other women have also felt overwhelmed, too.
I remember having a similar kind of anxiety before I wanted to start T. I had spent so many years obsessing over my body shape whenever I felt the pain of being me. The fantasy of being a man kept me thirsty and hungry for a new, better future. Like I could float above the pain forever if I could keep reaching away from myself in those moments. I could just keep reaching away, imagining the real me, and maybe one day I could create that “real” person, that safe, strong, happy man.
To not take the anxiety I sometimes have and move to a mirror and examine all the “too girly” parts of me like I have too often done is a challenge. To stop the episode of hate termites from gnawing at my mind is nearly always a serious feat that I always, always realize I should practice more for before it happens. To allow the grief in my life to color my world when it needs to be seen but not to overtake my world is another important skill. When the grief is too much, I don’t have the fantasy anymore of being a man in a man’s world. So much of my pain is of a woman. That acknowledgment has done so many wonders for my healing. To sit and think about where all of these feelings really came from in my life, what their history really is, is hard in a way I’m not always so comfortable with. And to get up and greet the day, to remain curious, to draw, to cuddle, to go outside, to make music, to meet friends, to try a new recipe — that’s just about as important as the archaeological dig.
I can’t float above the pain with my fantasies right now. I just have to sit on the ground and be there for myself. Renewal takes years but it also happens now.
Last night ended up being okay. I settled down eventually. I made dinner and the cat and I enjoyed our evening routine of playing with her wand toy on the steps. I listened to S talk about her social work program. She has her own anxieties in life, too. I’m not the only one! And so it was important to listen to her and get out of my own little matrix of Problems. I rubbed her new “kind of” shaved haircut. We fell asleep like we often do, with our backs touching. My cat meowed at the door. The summer bugs sang. I found love for myself.