It Takes a Village

Virginia Prince
in her later years.

Does it really take a village to allow a transgender woman or trans man to fully let the world in so they can express themselves? 

For me it did but it took years and years for me to advance to the point in my life when I could live the trans life I always just had dreamed of.  On this blog, I write long and often concerning how isolated I felt during the pre-internet and social media years. Putting it bluntly, there was no village at all to help me along.  Those of you in my age bracket know what I am talking about. It wasn't until the Virginia Prince and "Transvestia" publication years did I feel there were any others in the world with gender issues similar to me. Maybe I had a village after all.

As I explored this new and exciting village, ironically I found I still didn't fit in with the village. Primarily because there were very few who still felt the same as I did. At that time I felt more serious than a casual cross dresser (or transvestite) but not as serious as one of the few transsexuals who attended who were on the path to having their own gender realignment surgeries. Plus, I found out (as I had suspected) there were other than all heterosexual members in the group as too much action was happening behind hotel room doors. The whole process showed me the village I had discovered was quite diverse which continues to this day.

The life I led directed me to be a loner on the gender path I was following. Sadly, my best friend became my mirror or other mirrors I encountered along the way which I wrote about yesterday. It wasn't to become much later in my life that I was able to discover others who I could form a village with and live as my authentic transgender self. It wasn't until I advanced out of the appearance crazy mode I was in as my feminine person and move into a more realistic idea of how a cis-woman has to go through life. It was a very difficult process to change gender gears and leave my old male life behind. 

As I finally let my inner feminine self out of her closet, she essentially did the rest. She chose the friends I am still indebted to for showing me the way to a better life when I needed it most. Gone were my lonely days of staring longingly into the mirror. I wasn't quite confident enough to not be petrified of certain situations but I was getting there thanks to the fact I was learning so much from the small village around me. 

Looking back, it most certainly did take me a village to build a new person essentially from scratch. What I thought I knew I didn't and what I learned was so exciting, I couldn't wait to see what was around the next corner. Anyway I cut it, it took a village to help me reach my lofty goals as a transgender woman and I have so many others to thank for helping along in the process.