The Small Things

Sometimes your day can be an endless barrage of bad news.  Sometimes we can’t wait to make it to Saturday and leave the frustrating week behind us.  Sometimes the year never ends.  

And that is life.  It is riddled with peaks and valleys, rainy days and sun.  

When life is harder than normal I try to tell myself that whatever is stressing me out will pass.  And sometimes I listen to myself.  Of course I also tell myself that the other stiletto will drop when things are going well.  I seem committed to sabotaging my happiness.  

Life is big.  Being alive means we are subject to whatever is happening in the world.  Things outside of our control impact us and can greatly and irreversibly affect our lives.  We are at the mercy of the world, at the mercy of others.  It is disheartening when other people make decisions that affect us.  Sometimes elections don’t go how we wish and laws are passed that hurt us.  Sometimes companies issue new HR guidelines that make our jobs more difficult. To be clear, I am not necessarily speaking about girls (and boys) like us.  Yes, being trans (or at the very least, non-binary) does mean our community has a target on our back in many circumstances.  When I am in boy mode I never have to think twice or worry about using the restroom that aligns with my gender presentation at the moment.  But when I am en femme the fear that SOMETHING could happen is always there.  

I try to focus on the small things, on the things I can control.  I try to remember the good things in my life and the good things in my day.  Thankfully I am blessed in ways I never could have dreamed.  I am thankful for the significant things in my life.  A strong marriage, a nice little home, a soft bed, a fulfilling (albeit often frustrating) career.  But there are the small things, too.  Sometimes at the end of a long and difficult day I pull back the covers of my bed wearing a nightgown and just process the day.  I try not to bring the stress of whatever transpired during the day to bed, but anxiety doesn’t always cooperate.  What I tell myself (and it isn’t always easy to do so) is that if I can finish the day in a pink nightgown in a warm soft bed, well, perhaps it wasn’t such a bad day afterall.  When I wake in the morning and drink coffee in leggings wrapped in a blanket I am reminded that it’s probably the best way to start a day, regardless of what I have going on.

These small moments, paired with small things like panties, leggings, and nightgowns, make the day a little more tolerable.  Sometimes life can be overwhelming and the cutest pair of panties isn’t enough.  When life is toooo big it’s wonderful to be able to take a break from it and spend the day en femme.  To totally change who you are for a while.  Wearing a new dress while getting a makeover before heading to the mall is about as far from my normal day of meetings and daily reports as it gets.  I need that.  I need Hannah.  

I know this side of us can be a burden.  I know that this is a part of us that causes a lot of stress and fear and confusion.  Some of us feel cursed and wish that we didn’t feel the way we do, or think how we think.  And I get that.  Although I can’t relate to wishing this side of me wasn’t there, I can understand how someone like us wishes they weren’t who they are.  I feel sad when I hear someone say this.  Being ashamed or stressed about yourself or wanting to wear what you want to wear is a painful way to live your life.  I know t-girls who prayed they would grow out of this.  Thankfully many girls stop denying this side of themselves and embrace who they are.  A weight is lifted and a burden is set down.

I hope you find comfort in small things.  A new shade of lipstick, heels that fit, wearing a cute bra and panty set under your boy clothes.  We can’t stop life from happening and the days are stressful enough as it is.  Being tormented by your gender identity doesn’t help.  You are who you are and I don’t believe you will grow out of this side of you.  Nor do I think you should.  Most people in my life could never understand how spending the day in a corset and stilettos is how I relax.  Most people in my life would never get why I am spending money on lingerie.  I need these small (but often expensive, lol) things in my life, in my day.  

Take care, girls.

Love, Hannah

Hiding in Plain Sight

So!  Yesterday was Halloween.

I’ve heard Halloween referred to as the crossdresser’s Christmas aaaaaand that’s not wrong.  As a t-girl I look forward to the MN T-Girls‘ annual Halloween party and love to daydream what my costume will be.  I admit I could spend a little more time and energy into it but for some reason I put it off until the last minute each year.  I always promise myself that NEXT YEAR I’ll do a better job planning ahead and finally get an *amazing* Disney princess dress and live out my princess dreams.

But Halloween was ALWAYS like that for me, particularly before I was embraced who I am.  When I was in high school I would try to work up the courage each October to be a girl for Halloween.  I mean, I could play it off as a costume, right?  No one would REALLY know why I was a French Maid, a princess, a cheerleader, or a dozen other options for the night.  Of course I would always, always give into fear and never actually go through with it.  Similar to now, I would always promise myself that NEXT YEAR, I would do an AMAZING costume.  But I never did.

Halloween is a wonderful opportunity for those who aren’t out of the closet to test the waters a little.  Casually suggesting to your partner that you are thinking of dressing up (and I really mean DRESSing up) for Halloween is one way to gauge their reaction.  I am not sure if Halloween is really an opportune time to have “the talk”.  I mean, gender identity is pretty serious life-changing (and relationship-changing) stuff.  Going in drag or as a schoolgirl for Halloween is fine for a fun costume, buuuuuuuuuuut is it the best way to open the door to having the conversation about identifying as transgender/bi-gender/genderfluid/non-binary/crossdresser?  Probably not.  There’s a difference between dressing up for a fun costume and having a side of yourself that is soooo important and personal and intimate.  Your significant other deserves to know that this side of you isn’t a costume.

But I get it!  I totally and absolutely one hundred percent get it.  If your spouse isn’t thrilled with you strutting your stuff as a French Maid for Halloween it may give you pause about coming out to them.  Of course, coming out to them before committing to each other is another conversation for another time.  But if they love the idea, well, that changes things a little.  Let’s face it, we WANT our significant others to like this side of us.  We want them to like the idea of sharing makeup or being besties when we are en femme.  I love it when my wife borrows my lipstick.  

Some of us dressed for the first time for Halloween.  And we never forgot it.  It opened us up, it pushed us out of our comfort zone.  It gave us an opportunity to walk down the sidewalk in heels, an opportunity to have our makeup done, to live in this world as a side of us that is a secret to everyone.  We are, in a sense, hiding in plain sight.  “This cheerleader outfit?  It’s just a costume, lol”.  But we know differently.  

If my wife and I are invited to a Halloween party I never dress en femme.  This side of me is not a costume and to be honest, it would make me uncomfortable to be Hannah but have to be the boy, if you know what I mean.  When I am en femme, I am Hannah.  I introduce myself thusly and I expect female pronouns.  Were I to visit my friends that I know in my boy life, they would see me as the guy they’ve known for years wearing a dress and eyeliner.  I just… I just couldn’t be dressed as Hannah but interact with my friends as if I were a boy.  Of course, my makeup being a LITTLE too good and being able to strut in stilettos MIGHT cause SOME suspicion.  I can imagine the endless questions about how I was able to have a curvy body thanks to my corset and forms as well as where I found heels that fit.  

Halloween (like everything else in my life, lol) has always created anxiety in my life.  Before I was who I am today I would agonize about dressing up (and I mean dressing up) for the holiday.  The anxiety has shifted a bit these days but it is still there.  For the last MN T-Girl Halloween party I needed to stop at the costume store to pick up a small accessory for my costume.  I strutted into the shop wearing my latex dress and knee-high boots right after my makeup appointment.  I looked fierce.  I had hoped that the other shoppers and salesclerks saw me as a girl buying devil horns, instead of as a boy dressed as a girl for Halloween.  Of course, I don’t know what they thought.  We don’t know what anyone thinks of us when we are en femme but I wouldn’t be surprised if someone thought EVERYTHING I was wearing as a costume.  It wasn’t.  

Even today, I am, in a way, hiding in plain sight.

Love, Hannah