This morning as I finished another VA doctors visit, I stopped at a Walmart to pick up shipping supplies. While I am the first to say I think Walmart has single handily done more to rip the economic heart out of this country, I will say I am a hypocrite and buy boxes/shipping tape at about one third of what I pay anywhere else.
As I was walking through the store, I couldn't help but remember the women walking with me I barely recognized. On one side was a woman from my past I called Karen. Karen was named after a middle school crush I had. To me a "crush" was wanting to be her. My Karen really blossomed in the 1980's. She did fairly well with the big hair, over sized sweaters worn with short skirts and flats. In fact, Karen gave me the courage I could present well enough in the world to get by as a cross dresser. But, essentially, I out grew her the more I searched for my "fit" in a feminine world.
On the other side of me, came Roxie. As the name would lead you to believe, Roxie was much more adventurous than Karen. Roxie did a lot of crazy stuff in short skirts,heels and blond wigs. Many times "over the top" would be a kind description of her. In many ways Roxie was the antithesis of Karen in that she was too showy-especially for Walmart.
In fact, I tried to judge my "pass-ability" by heading for Walmart. I never was the sharpest tack in the box and kept going back for more punishment from the hillbillies in this town. After a while even I understood my long blond wig and black jump suit really fit in well in downtown Columbus and really bad at my local Walmart.
Fast forward to today. Basically, no one gave me a second look. As much as I wanted to break out my "happy dance"-the fact remained the place was nearly empty at that time in the morning (10 AM). On the other hand, my hard earned belief in myself as a trans woman plus the effects of HRT brought me to the point where I am today.
Roxie and Karen were smiling.