Uncomfortably Numb

I am going to ignore the crushing anxiety I am feeling about tomorrow’s election, but rest assured it is consuming every moment of my life.  Please know that I am thinking about it, I am feeling it, I am terrified about what may happen as I write about other things that I am thinking about.  Okay, well, maybe not ignore, but you know what I mean.  


Being who we are pushes us out of comfort zone and it’s not unlike being pushed out of an airplane with a parachute praying to God everything works out.  When we first step out of the house (whether it is with shy, trepidation or with the confident strut of… a dominatrix, I guess, we are out of our familiar world and entering into a new part of our lives.  It is a enormous change to go from wandering around a mall that we visit in boy mode to the same mall in heels and a skirt.  All of a sudden we are looking over our shoulders, we are scanning the area for anyone who might know us, keeping alert of anyone who may want to harass us.  We have to do this.  We have to be aware of who is near us, who could harm us. 

Acknowledging our gender identities is also necessary for survival.  We can only keep this side of us suppressed for so long.


After a little (or a lot of) time, we become used to this new world.  We are pushing our boundaries, we are expanding our lives and it is wonderful.  There’s no other way to describe conquering the fear we had for too long and enjoying and experiencing life en femme.  It builds confidence and for me, it inspires me to think about what I could do, or where I could go next.  Ten years ago the thought of Hannah going to a coffee shop was akin to walking to the moon.  These days I think about how amazing it would be to do a photo shoot at an art museum or model lingerie.  


I think many of us marvel a little at how different we are when it comes to how we present.  Hannah compared to me in male mode are pretty different.  Hannah is chattier and more open than the boy is.  The boy tends to be a little more introverted.  The boy doesn’t really have comparable goals to Hannah.  We are miles apart in some regards.  Hannah is more ambitious and confident and, well, a little full of herself if I am being honest.  The boy is a little more down to Earth and happily lives in his little world.  


But Hannah needs to be these things, I think, to do the things she does.  It takes a lot of confidence (among other qualities) to model pretty dresses.  It takes a lot of confidence to write posts like these.  It’s bold to lay my heart on the line, along with all of my inner-most secrets and heart’s desires online.  The boy is more private and reserved, but when Hannah is around, he gets out of the way.


I think a girl like us contributes to the world, even if we don’t mean to or don’t want to.  I believe every time a girl like us leaves the house and goes out into the public we are showing the world that we exist, we are alive, and we are doing boring, mundane things.  We are showing that we are not as scary as certain groups would like the world to believe.  Every t-girl out there that blogs has something to contribute.  Being online allows us to open up more compared to opening up to the people we know in the real world.  We all write a lot about the same things (accepting ourselves, the frustration of finding heels that fit, why society has such a hard time with us), and I believe that these relatable experiences allows girls like us to feel less alone.  We can all identify and relate to the anxiety and fear and joy that this side of us brings.


It makes me incredibly happy to hear that some random thought or experience I write about helps someone.  I’m so glad to hear that, especially because I know how happy I am to find something that I can relate that another t-girl wrote.  I feel I am contributing to our “cause”, so to speak.  You know, our big cause of just wanting to live our lives.  But of all I’ve done, I am most proud of the MN T-Girls.  This month we celebrate our anniversary.  I THINK it’s 8 years (and I am too lazy to look it up) and over the years we have done some pretty amazing things.  Photo shoots, private shopping nights, makeup lessons, going out to dinner, attending plays… it’s been so fun and incredibly rewarding to hear from the girls about how much fun they had or how nervous but excited they were.  It reminds me that although organizing events takes a lot of energy and planning, it is absolutely worth it.  To be honest I enjoy planning events, I like figuring out the logistics and organizing and everything that comes with it.  


There are close to 300 members of the T-Girls these days.  That’s not to say that all members attend every event, but they are all out there and welcome to anything that is planned.  I have met so many t-girls over the years and we are all so different but all relatable.  I have met girls who do all sorts of traditionally masculine jobs in their boy life, people who you would never suspect are likely wearing pink panties under their work jeans or expensive suit.  I love getting to know others.  But these events push me out of my comfort zone, too.  Even though Hannan is less introverted than the boy, Hannah holds her cards pretty close to her breast forms.  She tends to be…. well, maybe not vague, but sometimes won’t answer directly to a question.  I am not trying to be rude, please understand.  If someone asks Hannah where she lives, she will usually answer ‘Saint Paul’ as opposed to something a little more specific.  If you ask Hannah where “he” works, she’ll say in her male life they work in education as opposed to something a little less vague.  


In both of my genders, I tend to be the first to arrive to something and the first to leave.  Of course Hannah needs to be the first to an event that she planned, but once the event is underway she’ll leave after a bit.  Despite almost one hundred MN T-Girls events over the years social situations can easily give me a little anxiety and really drain my energy.  Hannah has a lot more energy, it’s like she is powered by pink and eyeliner, but that energy starts to deplete once an event has started and the planning stages are finished.  I am trying to get used to being a hostess and become more comfortable in this part of my life but it’s not going tooooo well.  It’s an anxious world, to be sure.  Between the pandemic and the election and everything a girl like us experiences, I am exhausted… in both of my genders.  


I am trying to just through EVERYTHING day by day.  Many of the things that would bring my joy and comfort are gone.  When the boy life become too stressful I could get dolled up and spend the day at the mall.  And yes, I could still do that, but wearing a mask and not being able to try on dresses makes this a lot less fun.  Hannah going to dinner used to be a lot of fun, but that’s not a good idea right now.  Seeing friends is so different, too.  It’s depressing knowing that the small creature comforts aren’t really an option these days.  I am doing what I can to avoid plummeting into despair.  And yes, I know that is SO dramatic, but it’s the truth.  My medication helps, but goodness, it’s doing some heavy lifting.  


I want to be more comfortable with social situations than I am.  I want to be as confident and relaxed as I appear to be.  Being en femme IS a comfort zone, chatting with someone at a party (in either gender) takes a lot out of me and I get to a point where I need to leave.  I wish I wasn’t this way, but I am.  I try to ignore the thoughts of needing to leave a party after it’s started but it’s not easy.  Sometimes it is, but I can only ignore that anxiety for so long.  Please know I am enjoying myself and I truly love meeting girls and catching up with her friends, so to the MN T-Girls out there, please don’t take offense to this.  Ask my wife how I am at parties in male more and you’ll see that both of my gender identities are the same in this regard.


I have been trying to maintain my life/lives that I knew before the pandemic.  But that’s not possible.  I can’t pretend that everything isn’t… weird.  What both Hannah and the boy need to do is adapt.  Learn to live in this stupid reality.  This world is not going to go back to normal.  I miss 2015.  Whatever reality this world moves into this week is unknown.  Not knowing what tomorrow, what next month, what the next four years will be like is incredibly nerve-wracking.  I need having things to look forward to, but you can’t plan anything anymore.  What will be open?  Will we be in another lockdown?  Will I get COVID?  Will girls like us become more of a target than we are now?  You think I am being dramatic, but ask the women in your life if they feel they have the same rights and freedom as they used to.  
The awkwardness I feel in social parties has taken over my entire life. 

Every news notification I get on my phone automatically makes me wonder what happened now.  Staying up to date on current events is terrifying.  It’s hard to be optimistic.  


I want all of (gestures around) this to be over.  I want to feel comfortable in this world, at a party.  I want to plan things, to have things to look forward to, and enjoy them.


On a related note, please for the love of God vote Biden.
Love, Hannah

6 thoughts on “Uncomfortably Numb

  1. To put it mathematically: Biden/Trump. Or, more exactly, (yellow dog)/Trump. And here I must stop before I really start to rant.

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  2. I hope the election goes in your favour, Hannah. I understand politics is deeply personal. I would add, as Brit looking in, vote for a party that has your acceptance, rights, and wellbeing in mind. The evidence on the current POTOS shows backtracking and erasing trans rights. Rights that women like us – part time or full time – need to be safe.

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  3. Like Lynn above, I can only look in from abroad. I live in Italy and the experience here of Mussolini, the original usurping abusive fascist, makes me worry for you. But the consitution here has been made stronger to try to counter such threats and the US constitution is also very robust so even if Trump were to defy the polls, predictions and pundits and win, I think he would be hampered as he has, in fact, been these last 4 years. Don’t expect Trump to go quietly, though. Wishing you well, Hannah, you who do so much for the trans community, not just in Minnesota, but worldwide. Sue x

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  4. I’m feeling a lot of anxiety as well over… well, everything. It’s the pits dressing up at home and only meeting with my trans friends online. It’s hard to feel joy over the uncertainty of the virus and the election. I am hopeful that things will turn for the better after November 3, with (hopefully) much better leadership. I hope we all stay strong, too, no matter what the future brings.

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  5. On the events of tomorrow, fingers crossed.

    As to your post above, I appreciate your honesty (along with your previous post regarding your past drinking habits). Takes a great deal of courage to post such introspective thoughts, and I commend you.

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  6. I wish the US well in this election.
    I am gripped to the tv watching history unfold from Auatralia and I am anxious. It is not the landslide I had hoped for.
    Solidarity with you Hannah and with you Allison.
    Geraldine

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