Thursday, January 31, 2019

Emergency Room Angst

Having your nails done, in color at least, does represent some sort of no turning back as far as a transgender transition goes.  Here are a couple of stories. One from me and one from Connie. Mine was less painful.

Years ago, I was in a hurry to make a payment on my car and I forgot my nails were done. It turned out I was short on time and needed to make the payment before I was penalized with a late charge, so I decided to pay it anyhow. I was already on HRT and my hair was tied back in a pony tail. In those days, I was relatively androgynous looking anyway, so why not.

The woman who took my money sort of smiled when she saw my hands but that was it. It turned out not long after the day, I was able to pay my loan off and moved away, never to see her again anyway. It was during the winter and I didn't forget my gloves when I went in to make my final payment. Through the whole affair, nothing was said.

Connie's story is a bit more complex and refers to the Cyrsti's Condo post "Burgundy Dreams."
"Well, since nail polish has no gender, I guess it's for whomever wants it! I often see couples getting pedicures together - even whole families. I have yet to see a man by himself, though. 

This reminds me of when I was still but dipping my painted toe to test the waters of transition. A number of years ago, I had an experience that was seminal to my finally accepting myself for who I was. Because my cash flow had become so sporadic (I only worked as my male-self, but was only presenting that way about 15% of the time), I was behind on paying my water bill. The utility company sent out a technician to either collect or shut off my water, but I was afraid to answer the door with my female presentation. By the time I "undid" myself to stop it, the tech had done his work at the meter. I was told that I could pay with a credit card over the phone, and the tech would return to unlock my meter that afternoon - but I had to be there when he was. So, to make sure I wouldn't miss him, I decided to do some work outside. I was up on a ladder, that I had put up in haste, when he showed up, and so that worked out OK, and the water was back on. Not long after he left, though, the ladder slipped out from under me, and I crashed to the surface of the deck, hitting my head on a ladder wrung. My neighbor heard it, and ran over to help. 

Long story short, I was rushed to the hospital in an ambulance because I had concussion symptoms. The first thing they did in the emergency room was to remove my clothing, and when they got to my socks, there were my freshly polished toenails, exposed for all to see! I joked that I was outed now, but the nurses were completely ambivalent. 

So, I learned a lot that day. Painted toenails are nothing compared to a serious injury. Had I not been afraid to answer the door to pay a bill that wouldn't have been overdue in the first place, if I'd just been living my life earnestly, none of this would have happened. Within weeks, I had secured work as my feminine-self, and I never hesitated to open my front door again. Eventually, I also learned that, although coming out requires the opening of a door, keeping it open allows for others to come in, as well."

Very profound! Thanks :)

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