As much as I hate the term “journey” to describe our progress when it comes to our gender identity, I have to begrudgingly admit it’s also the most fitting. Like any journey or adventure (hmm, maybe adventure is a better word?), our paths are fraught with peril, milestones, setbacks, and accomplishments. Some aspects of our journey will end, some never will. Sometimes the destination itself changes.
I believe in celebrating milestones. It could be a birthday, an anniversary, a promotion at work, the first time a girl like us leaves the house en femme. I acknowledge small milestones and large ones. I believe in moving forward on our journeys, even when it’s hard. I believe in rest. I believe in self-care. I know life is often two steps forward, one step back. I believe in looking back to see how far you’ve come. You may not have made any progress compared to a month ago, but I wouldn’t be surprised if you were further along than where you were a year ago.
And progress, moving forward on your journey, isn’t always visible. Yes you may have been working up the courage to buy a pair of stilettos for months and perhaps it hasn’t happened yet, but remember, at one point you were in denial about wanting to wear them.
We may feel alone on our journey, and we often are. But in a grander scope we have each other. We have our trans sisters cheering us on, encouraging us, believing in us, even if you’ve never met them. I don’t know everyone personally who visits my website, but I am your biggest cheerleader (and not because of the cute, pleated skirt).
Many of us are celebrating, or at least, acknowledging that today is Christmas day. All across the world a t-girl is celebrating the holiday for the first time in a sparkly dress. A teenager who is transitioning is being told by her parents they have legally changed their name and gender. A crossdresser was given a pair of panties by their supportive, albeit overwhelmed and confused wife.
However, there are just as many of us who are wishing Santa brought us a new skirt instead of a necktie. Wishing that we could have Christmas brunch in a dress instead of an ugly Christmas sweater. Wishing we weren’t in the same room as our transphobic uncle. I am your cheerleader, and I am also your sympathizer.
Whether you are spending the day en femme, or wearing panties with candy canes all over them under your boy clothes, getting through the day with family, or spending the day alone, be kind to yourself. Our lives are journeys, and sometimes holidays are the most difficult time of the year. You may not be where you would like to be on your gender adventure (it IS a better word), but you are making progress. Our adventures are visible achievements and they are also mental and emotional achievements. Our gender journey isn’t always about walking more confidently in heels compared to a year ago, sometimes our achievements are accepting who we are, even if our closets are filled with only boy clothes.
I wish you peace and happiness on this day, and all the others.