Probably there are as many ways to complete a gender transition as there are transgender women and
Darius Cotoi on UnSplash
trans men. We are like snowflakes, no one is alike. Over time I have thought I was everything from a gender rat in a maze to someone climbing a steep set of stairs. As it turned out, many of the steps were steeper than others.
Very early my first steps were basically quick and painless. I snuck around and acquired a small collection of women's clothes, added some of my Mom's makeup and I thought I looked just like a cute girl. My time on this stairstep didn't last long because fairly quickly the realization came to me I just didn't want to look like a girl, I wanted to be one. A huge difference I didn't realize was the earliest precursor to living a transgender life. From the point forward I decided my time on the step would be limited and I climbed to the next step.
The next step involved me finding a paper route and doing odd jobs around the house and neighborhood to earn my own money which would go towards buying and expanding my small feminine stash of clothes, makeup and even a pair of shoes. During the process I was scared to death to do my own shopping and couldn't believe the bewildering selections of especially makeup there were. Undeterred though I still shopped and finally achieved a level of success. The success would just encourage me to climb another step. By this time I was frustrated by two main things, the first was the fact I had no way to afford a nice wig and the second was I couldn't do my shopping cross-dressed as a girl. What happened was I needed to spend years on this stairstep before I could advance to the next one.
The years I waited mainly was because of about this time I was waiting to see what the Vietnam War military draft would mean to me and yes the wait was hell. The wait nearly went on as that god forsaken war did and finally I was drafted out of college and chose the Army due to their offer of the job I was interested in. Little did I know, the lessons I learned in the military would serve me well in my life and encourage me to climb another very steep step. An example was the day we were on a very long and hilly forced march in basic and I learned to never look back and look forward to the future if I just kept pushing forward. Many of you regular readers know also during my time in the Army was when I first came out as a transvestite to a few close friends.
After I had successfully completed my military service, the steps appeared to be less steep and easier to climb. Encouraged by several very successful Halloween parties when I appeared as a feminine person, I found I could possibly climb the ultimate step and transition to a full time transgender woman. The problem was I soon tried to climb too many steps way too quickly and even had to retreat back a time or two and refocus on exactly what I was trying to do. Major decisions on sexuality, friends, spouses were just a few problems I had to face. Plus, once I had climbed this many steps fairly successfully I had to decide if I wanted to take another giant step and begin hormone replacement therapy. Once I finally took the step I found HRT was one of the best steps I have ever taken in my life. Finally my inner soul had another chance to sync up with my testosterone poisoned exterior.
All I can hope for at this time of my life for a good as possible health and a chance to pass on with dignity as my chosen authentic self. The final stairstep.