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Hitaru

Captain Taru's Log: Out of the Fog

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I have been doing great mate, and I am glad to see that your vibe in your journals is more upbeat and much more positive. Sounds like you have made some great mental decisions which has lifted a lot of pressure/concern for you.

When I have a bit more spare time it would be great to chat more in detail.

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Update with "today's" developments later

"Later", yeah right.

It's been a wild ride. For real. 

It bothers me a lot that, since I write from time to (a lot of) time, there's not really a feeling of progression between posts, only these "jumps". I'll come one day and say "I'm feeling great!", then next month I'll say "I relapsed!", then the next "Hey guess what I'm transgender!" and so on. In my life it makes sense because I'm focused on living it (or rather at this point, just getting through this stage works fine for me), but for any potential reader it may look like... "Dude, what the f*ck. Or gal, who knows what's going on anymore". On the bright side, reading my journal lately must be a constant surprise (?) 

 

Some key points from these last 2 months:

- Today I made 77 days without computer at all! I still get distracted a lot because apparently I simply can't be left alone with an internet connection, but I consider it a personal victory. Taking notes and studying overall is harder for me without the technology, but so far I'm managing only because I'm smart.

- Did most of the assignments and some mock exams for the semester and my teachers are showering me with compliments! I found a place where talking pedantic to the point of flamboyance about something you don't really know about is not only not frowned upon but ENCOURAGEDIs this Heaven

(The guy from History (the "cool" one, then there's the "normal" one) seems particularly enthralled with me. Thanks 15 years of 8+ hours a day of Grand Strategy games I guess...!)

- A brief, weird, mildly dangerous and frankly stupid story with a middle-aged man was the source of unnecessary conflict between me and my boyfriend, to the point I'm seriously considering ditching all that free love talk and settle down under a conventional Triple H setting: Home, Husband and Hegel. And some cats of course. I was mistreated by that stranger, not to the point of violence but high quality bullshit nonetheless. 

- I came out to practically all the people that ever cared about me and my father (who now seems to care so I'm going to have to tone down a bit what I said about him in the past, not to hurt his feelings. He deserved criticism, but I was also bitter.)

- I presented feminine for the first times and confirmed all my feelings and suppositions, which led me to... 

- ...coming out at Uni and using their inside protocol to change "common use name" to my chosen name. My legal name is still the same and my degree would reflect it, changing it requires another process. This change at university level will take place this week. 

 

And honestly, I'm terrified since I picked a girl's name and now I feel compelled to maintain a clearly feminine presentation everyday. More than 30 pages of intermittent journal must have proven that I'm terrible at consistency. On top of that, I've been also feeling more comfortable with my masculine presentation, now that I consider it a choice (actually emergency measure when I cannot present as girl, but at least it doesn't feel imposed.) So I would say those are my 2 main concerns: keeping a presentation (also adding the fun fact that I'm balding) and the potential harmful effects of HRT in my body, should I go that way. 

And if I calm down and think about it, those worries are not ultimately about 'who I am', but rather 'what am I doing here'. 

If I was alone in this world, I would not have a need for a name, or pronouns. Clothes, hair, accessories, would have no meaning for me beyond looking pretty. I would be in practice another part of the scenery, like the wind or the ocean waves or, you know, that thing that is not a rock or a plant and has existential anxiety at night while the other animals sleep. Here and now in this world, I don't think I've ever really felt that sense of "belonging". At school I was an outcast, at home I was alone; all my hobbies (and addictions), I did them either in secret or just by myself. Most of them through lurking online, with only brief periods of being part of a physical group of people. No sob story, just facts, context. Even with friends I have this fantasy or daydream in which, rather than spending the evenings with a trusted circle (still appealing sometimes), I'm more of a wandering sort, just dropping by and healing people in need with kind words, cold (no, better 'calm') logic and support. I get tired from people's presence easily, or at least moodily, with a lot of swing between social highs and lows, and that doesn't help long-term connection. It has hurt me, more times that I'm consciously aware of. 

At Uni I feel (very) comfortable, but I'm aware of the fact that, unless I dedicate my life to academia and flamboyant writing (which wouldn't be a bad choice), it will be temporary. Classmates and teachers will come and go. Me as well. And yet, it's the place I've ever felt most 'at home', so I really don't want to screw up, come back home ashamed and defeated and hide behind video games for the nth time.

(Yet) I feel like doing just that a lot of the time because, I still can't cope with either living or (and) dying. I don't think I'll ever will, unless perhaps at the very end (I truly hope so). But that's a fallacy. It's all a fallacy. Why do I feel so invalid when I think about dying in pain or emotional anguish? I mean, you're dying, it's not like they give you bonus points for stoicism at the end of the performance. And why this obsession with living a lot, thus being skeptic of anything that would be potentially (self)harmful? I've wasted 25 years of that life. I'll be becoming older now. I'm still unsure about what to do with the rest of it. I get the self preservation, but what's the point of living a lot? Why am I so attached to it? What is it that I want to do here so badly?

It feels sometimes that transitioning would be the vehicle or metaphor to represent this conflict. Ultimately it doesn't matter if I "am" a man, a woman or an idiot in a wig, at least that's not really my concern. In any case I would be taking full responsibility for living as who I honestly feel I am. So far existence for me has been a given. I just wake up every morning, realize I'm still alive, and to be honest, I kind of decide in the moment if I'm going to carry on with the day or not. Until now I didn't need to take pills to regulate my hormones or shave every morning or do this or that to keep the image of myself (for myself, not for attention) I want to live my life with. I didn't have to take full responsibility for living, I just did. Every day. Just here, wandering, lurking. Lost...?

Facing that commitment terrifies me. The idea that I have to consciously maintain myself. Even if I wasn't transitioning, I still struggle with everything related to grinding: sleep habits, diet, exercise, study, work, relationships. Me. I don't give two bucks for me and my well-being and that's sad, sad and unfair. I realize the absurdity, it's easier to take care of myself than others, but I neglect basic things anyway and then I also can't face the rest of humans as well. I know that, but... 

Would I take the skittles if I was alone? Yes. Would I take them in a fully supportive community? Yes. It's settled then. My problem is not the skittles, or dying. It's... the feeling that it's pointless I guess, no matter which direction I take. Without the values of God, Country or Family it's partly understandable that I'm finding issues in grasping my arbitrary individuality, can't really complain about it, just the times I'm living and I'm OK with them. There must be something I can do to free myself from this feeling of emptiness. Dresses and makeup help however, so I'm not giving up those (?). 

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I remember I "wanted" to be some kind of genderless entity since almost as long as I have memories. If it's a sign of dysphoria or a projection of that subconscious wish of eternity rooted in judeo-christian imagery would be impossible to tell at this point but, would it matter that much anyway? In the process of finding and also building myself, I refuse to be defined by gender, which is nothing but the social narration of who is (and 'must be') privileged and who is (and 'must be') oppressed. I want to escape that dichotomy. Even if it was biology. Which is not. 

You know what bothers me? I think I mentioned it before. Since I was little I somehow knew I'd study Politics. Who knows if I'll finish it but here I am. I knew I wouldn't settle with "being a boy", here I am. I knew I would majorly screw up if I didn't have absolute confidence in myself and some kind of providential ability to somehow sense how my future in general lines was going to unfold. Then theatre school happened. And of course in the end I find myself following that schedule, the only ramifications my pathetic tries to avoid it (which, surprise, ended in major screw ups.) And lastly, I knew I would ultimately be unable to cope with the pressure of closing time and end my days completely insane, à la Nietzsche I guess. Well fuck, thanks I hate it.

If it happens, please world don't give me that "HE lost HIS mind because he was a tr*nny" or similar bullshit. If anything it would happen because smart people do that, lose their mind and die. So I should really, REALLY focus in enjoying every day. Infinite reminder to myself. May sound weird but openly speaking about my magical/supernatural/irrational thinking and my doubts about my identity or purpose help me a lot to keep them in check.

I'll be staying at home (back home) for a week or so, going to medical appointments, putting my university notes in order, hanging out with my parents and boyfriend, disconnecting for a bit in general. I think it'll do me good but I don't want to be at home with the laptop. At this point I'm 99% certain I'll relapse if I'm left alone with it, but I can't bring myself to ask my boyfriend to some kind of saudi guardianship. I mean I could, but I don't think he'll accept and it's also kind of a toxic dynamic. May do the trick for an emergency or two so I'll take it into consideration. 

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6 hours ago, Hitaru said:

I remember I "wanted" to be some kind of genderless entity since almost as long as I have memories. If it's a sign of dysphoria or a projection of that subconscious wish of eternity rooted in judeo-christian imagery would be impossible to tell at this point but, would it matter that much anyway? In the process of finding and also building myself, I refuse to be defined by gender, which is nothing but the social narration of who is (and 'must be') privileged and who is (and 'must be') oppressed. I want to escape that dichotomy. Even if it was biology. Which is not. 

You know what bothers me? I think I mentioned it before. Since I was little I somehow knew I'd study Politics. Who knows if I'll finish it but here I am. I knew I wouldn't settle with "being a boy", here I am. I knew I would majorly screw up if I didn't have absolute confidence in myself and some kind of providential ability to somehow sense how my future in general lines was going to unfold. Then theatre school happened. And of course in the end I find myself following that schedule, the only ramifications my pathetic tries to avoid it (which, surprise, ended in major screw ups.) And lastly, I knew I would ultimately be unable to cope with the pressure of closing time and end my days completely insane, à la Nietzsche I guess. Well fuck, thanks I hate it.

If it happens, please world don't give me that "HE lost HIS mind because he was a tr*nny" or similar bullshit. If anything it would happen because smart people do that, lose their mind and die. So I should really, REALLY focus in enjoying every day. Infinite reminder to myself. May sound weird but openly speaking about my magical/supernatural/irrational thinking and my doubts about my identity or purpose help me a lot to keep them in check.

I'll be staying at home (back home) for a week or so, going to medical appointments, putting my university notes in order, hanging out with my parents and boyfriend, disconnecting for a bit in general. I think it'll do me good but I don't want to be at home with the laptop. At this point I'm 99% certain I'll relapse if I'm left alone with it, but I can't bring myself to ask my boyfriend to some kind of saudi guardianship. I mean I could, but I don't think he'll accept and it's also kind of a toxic dynamic. May do the trick for an emergency or two so I'll take it into consideration. 

I'm very new to your journal so the only things I really know are the past few pages. I apologize. My question for you is does your boyfriend know about your gaming addiction and also the gender transition you have been mentioning? 

Do you even like theater school? It sounds like something you sort of love, but also tragically hate towards the end of the day. Can you imagine yourself doing something in this field for the next 30+ years? The third paragraph almost sounds like a swan song, like you're preparing to die one day from insanity and unhappiness so you should enjoy your days as you never know what might happen. I don't know if I interpreted this correctly, but I don't think that's a healthy way to live. I think it sounds very stressful and could lead to you trying to balance out the stress with things like porn, fap, and video game release.

Once again I apologize if I misinterpreted anything you said on here. I just read part of the third paragraph and got a little concerned is all.

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On 12/1/2019 at 4:08 PM, BooksandTrees said:

I'm very new to your journal so the only things I really know are the past few pages. I apologize. My question for you is does your boyfriend know about your gaming addiction and also the gender transition you have been mentioning? 

Nothing to apologize for friend! Yeah, he knows about both. Apparently there were some hints early on in the relationship, to the point that he outright asked me about my feelings last year or so. I said I'd thought about it then put it back in the box until I broke down crying during a surprise visit to some (also queer) friends in Italy. I wasn't sure about how to 'proceed' back then (I mean it's not like I'm confident about my decisions now either) but he was supportive from the start (and still is, fingers crossed that he will be forever). About the video games, I told him almost at the beginning and he even reads this journal from time to time. I may even say and he may learn I had a conflict with him sometime even before we talk about it IRL just because I talked about it here before lol (so far that never happened).

loved theatre school and I cannot stress it enough. Loved it. But I quit it because I was scared to commit and took refuge in games until I was on the verge of starvation or suicide. That was the lowest point of my life. It felt like breaking up with a genuine significant other that was absolutely there for you but you treated them like shit and now you can't stop blaming yourself for being stupid and taking things for granted. Exactly that feeling. I can't go back to acting (yet) at least until I have my life in order because I feel it would bring back a lot of memories and trauma. It's the first time I admit that so openly in this journal. I'm learning to express myself more plainly. Anyway now I'm studying Politics and I love it as well in a slightly different way, so I have a second chance. I'm absolutely terrified to fuck it up by giving up.

Totally a swan song and your analysis is correct, probably even more than mine. I can't shake off the feeling that it will happen at some point so I just can't relax and wait for life to simply unfold. I can do so many things in life and those are my responsibility (beyond unavoidable social and economical structures, etc.) But some other things, they'll just happen. Some of us will have accidents. Some of us (eventually all of us) will develop this or that illness. Some of us will have dementia or Alzheimer's and of course one of those could (or could not) be me. Then? It's not like I can predict if or when will it happen. It's not like I can avoid it if it does happen. And yet I cannot just fucking live in peace, I can't accept inevitability and move on. 

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I arrived home... and relapsed.

These were some really intense days for me. I had the endo appointment and everything health related came out ok as it should, so I'm cleared to start HRT, most probably in January. I spent some time with my boyfriend and mother and they physically saw me in my feminine presentation for the first time (they only saw me through pictures; remember how I used to hate taking pictures of myself?) We even went to meet some friends that already knew me and it went much better than expected. That's the thing. It's going well. Yet I still don't feel comfortable in my own shoes, and it'll probably be something that goes beyond what I see in the mirror, or how the wig still feels like cosplay.

Something happened though. Perhaps I grew comfortable here again. More probably, the comfort made me scared again of going out and living, specially as "another/new person" even if it's a truer me. So I've been stuck playing video games during the last week until I grew tired and frustrated and deleted them. Now I'm in this shitty withdrawal mood and I even jeopardized my studies. Even when I'm not repressing my feelings like now, it still feels like I'm about to burst all the time. So angry, like some kind of primal fury that I need to get out. Feels like wanting to run until my legs give out, or punching someone I hate to death. When the horror, the anxiety and the sadness pass, that's the emotion that remains, and the one I'm most scared of expressing.

Spoiler

I mean, how I'm supposed to do it? I thought about boxing, hah. Or starting a hip-hop/death metal trans-related parody band. Or give up everything and go being a monk in Nepal, that's always on the table.

I'm not struggling with presentation as much as I'm struggling with the fear of people's judgement of me. My native language is gendered, pronouns fuck me up every time. I don't feel entitled to use feminine pronouns, feels like some sort of trespassing. Of course I don't feel other trans folks are, and specially I don't feel trans guys are trespassing in my "old gender" or some bullshit like that. And of course if anyone came to tell me how much of a fake ass trender aspiring pedo drag show I am, I would fucking jump at their throats like a rainbow-sprinkled cornered cobra. Only the fag in the wig is allowed to diss themselves, get that right. 

But even with saying that, actually going out there and living feels like too much. Nothing I haven't complained about before, cooking, cleaning, studying, socializing, being "normal". I just need to breathe, calm down and do it somehow.

Update: I was able to get out from my mother's house and took the laptop with me. My plan is to format it tomorrow (it's already empty of stuff) and place it in the living room of my shared apartment as common property. I'll ask my mates to put a password on it and open it without telling me when I need it, or make some system of weekly passwords. If it doesn't work, I'll throw it out the window and pretend it was an accident.

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I could return to my studying place but I haven't been able to bring myself to class so far. I now recognize my mental health is not in a good state in this moment figures but I'm not sure what should I do to fix it. Right now I can only panic to be honest. I see the similarities with last time and before letting that happen again I could do something really stupid in any direction. I don't know who's the right person I should talk with about this and I have this feeling of not wanting to be a bother. I'm sorry. 

(I'm not ok, but I will be fine.) 

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This friday was the Christmas dinner with some classmates and even a few teachers.

I used the opportunity to officially come out as Celia 

my Batwoman alter ego 

and the response was very positive. The look I chose was very high-maintenance so now I'm about worried about the high bar of stereotyped femininity I may or may not have set (because I'm a lazy one, and even I don't expect to wake up every day an hour early to properly present myself as I'd like everyone, including myself, to see me. Attachable womanhood, the way of the future...!) In any case, I do me. As long as I continue to deliver good results at class, teachers should be fine with me. Ironically it's me the one who feels insecure and people keep telling me it's fine, so maybe (?) I should take their advice for once.

Dysphoria hits in those intimate moments when I'm alone with myself removing my wig, makeup and clothes, but I'm sure I'm also learning a lot about myself. Like, it doesn't feel as a charade anymore, or at least any different from my usual imposter syndrome. The man I see in the mirror in those moments doesn't look like an enemy now. He looks... fragile, vulnerable maybe. Someone I know, and to be honest, I empathize with, someone who needs to be protected and told 'It's fine, don't worry'. The woman I see is strong, navigating confidently among the chaos that is the world and my fears and embracing them, but deep down I know it's the front I'm slowly accepting I always wanted to show, though that doesn't make her less real. Deep, deep down, perhaps I'll always be that genderless child who was scared, and still is, of death (of the body or the spirit) and loneliness.

That is the ultimate acceptance. Boy, girl, never mattered. Masculine, feminine, I always preferred feminine. But [beyond that] I have this task, to accompany this frightened child hand by hand to their deathbed. Sometimes it feels like too much. Some other times it feels like so much that I'm completely absorbed, to the point I can't even be bothered or hurt by whatever nonsense others may say or think about me. It's funny; in those moments is when I advance. The ones that feel insurmountable. Perhaps I'm fooling myself and I actually like to be alive and fight. Still it's tiresome and the soul grows heavy; specially for the ones with certain and overdone melancholic tendencies.

Next up, some boring chores and a panic on Monday by not knowing what the hell wear to class. Forward we go.

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Today was the day! In the end I chose masculine jeans with a neutral sweater, no make-up and the wig. The no make-up part was intentional; I don't "pass" in any case so I rather show them a more casual appearance and make everything else look like an extra. "I don't owe femininity", I stan that idea.

The reaction was positive. I'm not sure everyone put the pieces together but I told casually about my identity to the ones who did ask, so the word is out. It's done. Phew. I arrived home and literally collapsed in my bed for hours, emotionally exhausted. But I'm happy. Happy. More than I initially expected. Weird, huh? Who could tell good things could take me by surprise. 

Nothing much to add. I'm busy with some assignments. I feel I can finally focus on my studies again, but I won't be fully relaxed until I have a relatively diverse wardrobe of clothes, new social media and work accounts and have a more or less fixed average day schedule. The endless struggle, specially the last one. Busy but content. Thank goodness.

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On 12/16/2019 at 6:09 PM, Hitaru said:

Today was the day! In the end I chose masculine jeans with a neutral sweater, no make-up and the wig. The no make-up part was intentional; I don't "pass" in any case so I rather show them a more casual appearance and make everything else look like an extra. "I don't owe femininity", I stan that idea.

The reaction was positive. I'm not sure everyone put the pieces together but I told casually about my identity to the ones who did ask, so the word is out. It's done. Phew. I arrived home and literally collapsed in my bed for hours, emotionally exhausted. But I'm happy. Happy. More than I initially expected. Weird, huh? Who could tell good things could take me by surprise. 

Nothing much to add. I'm busy with some assignments. I feel I can finally focus on my studies again, but I won't be fully relaxed until I have a relatively diverse wardrobe of clothes, new social media and work accounts and have a more or less fixed average day schedule. The endless struggle, specially the last one. Busy but content. Thank goodness.

I feel like we often worry so much about how people will react to things and we stress ourselves out way more than necessary. That relief is probably exactly what you needed. Now you can just live your life a bit more comfortably now. I'd definitely do some relaxing for a few days to regulate a bit after the stressful, yet very successful day (good things are stressful, too!).

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18/12/19

@BooksandTrees You're right! People stared at me of course, but it wasn't as I had anticipated. And, here's the key, even if it was, in reality I can handle hostility much more... gracefully, than what I picture in my head. After this week I'll be on vacation so I'll be able to relax and focus on studying for January exams and hanging with my folks.

Today I took it farther and chose feminine clothes with short hair (no wig) and without shaving my 35-ish hour stubble. It was a much more aggressive look and people were more shocked, but I felt I owed to myself that much. Like, I couldn't live in constant fear of how people was "reading" me, so I decided to step out of the box and outright challenge it. The day hasn't finished yet but daring to it felt pretty good. I'm much more capable (of rebelling and standing up for myself) than I think I am.

I feel that I'm focusing a lot on this particular aspect of my life lately, but it's the novelty I guess. My social transition was fast (even forcefully so) and emotionally intense. The rest of my life (studying and such) is fun but maybe dull to describe (I could regale you with my personal impressions on Political Philosophy and Policymaking Theory if you're really interested lol). Feels like the closure of an act of this particular stage. End of the year, of the decade, of the assigned identity... like, it gives off a strong psychological and emotional vibe.

Other people would call it "magic", right? It certainly feels like it. In December 2010 I was a 16 year old incel (both sociologically and ideologically) on a steady, no brakes course towards becoming a high-school dropout NEET. Today I'm a gallant university student and your most lovely resident queer (?).

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20/12/19

Yesterday I finished the bulk of my assignments against all odds, then in the evening I hosted a classmate and friend reunion at home (my apartment). We did this 'invisible friend' thing (I think it was called 'Secret Santa' in English) in which you get randomly assigned a person to gift and then we had dinner. It was a pretty simple thing and yet it filled me with joy. I don't want to sound cringy or like a victim because it's in the past now but, growing up being bullied and lonely, now being able to fill a table with friends that appreciate me for who I am is... it warms my heart. The spirit of Christmas, who knows. I know better now, I understand these people may be very temporary in my life because of our circumstances; I can't expect them to be my soul mates, but I do can appreciate that right here and now their feelings are sincere. I've always struggled to keep a tight group of friends, but it's clear(er) now the issue was more about "bad luck" (friends having to move away looking for work, life happening in general) and isolation from gaming addiction rather than specific, individual, social skills impairment (my 12 yo self would be thrilled to know!). 

On Friday I assisted to my last compulsory session, then I rested and went to a birthday dinner. Saturday was mostly wasting time, I wasn't really in the mood for anything, good or bad. I did speak with a long lost friend, and I must have surely made a terrible impression on him because I was dozing off during the call (my sleeping hours this week have been almost purposefully negligent). Then today I've been spending the day resting and tidying up the apartment in order to close it for the holidays. I'm proud about my newly developed housework skills. I may be procrastinating the time to return home, but also I'm a bit malnourished right now so I do everything slowly. The moment I arrive home it's my time to focus and commit for 2020 and the beginning of the process of literally building a new, improved person. It's doable even if it's hard, but I need to cherish the process and keep the end goal in sight. Whatever that may be. 

There's another thing I realized. Youth is ableist by nature. I keep thinking I may have strength to go out indefinitely but that is far from the truth. Every day I spend at home now has begun to feel like a wasted opportunity under my new mindset. When I'm old, if I ever am, I'll have plenty of time to sit down and spend my days leisurely with a book or the TV. I'm doing things in the wrong order. Now it's the time to get out and do stupid things, and I should be doing them if I don't want to live in regret later. I'll try my best to remember this.

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30 minutes ago, Hitaru said:

20/12/19

Yesterday I finished the bulk of my assignments against all odds, then in the evening I hosted a classmate and friend reunion at home (my apartment). We did this 'invisible friend' thing (I think it was called 'Secret Santa' in English) in which you get randomly assigned a person to gift and then we had dinner. It was a pretty simple thing and yet it filled me with joy. I don't want to sound cringy or like a victim because it's in the past now but, growing up being bullied and lonely, now being able to fill a table with friends that appreciate me for who I am is... it warms my heart. The spirit of Christmas, who knows. I know better now, I understand these people may be very temporary in my life because of our circumstances; I can't expect them to be my soul mates, but I do can appreciate that right here and now their feelings are sincere. I've always struggled to keep a tight group of friends, but it's clear(er) now the issue was more about "bad luck" (friends having to move away looking for work, life happening in general) and isolation from gaming addiction rather than specific, individual, social skills impairment (my 12 yo self would be thrilled to know!). 

On Friday I assisted to my last compulsory session, then I rested and went to a birthday dinner. Saturday was mostly wasting time, I wasn't really in the mood for anything, good or bad. I did speak with a long lost friend, and I must have surely made a terrible impression on him because I was dozing off during the call (my sleeping hours this week have been almost purposefully negligent). Then today I've been spending the day resting and tidying up the apartment in order to close it for the holidays. I'm proud about my newly developed housework skills. I may be procrastinating the time to return home, but also I'm a bit malnourished right now so I do everything slowly. The moment I arrive home it's my time to focus and commit for 2020 and the beginning of the process of literally building a new, improved person. It's doable even if it's hard, but I need to cherish the process and keep the end goal in sight. Whatever that may be. 

There's another thing I realized. Youth is ableist by nature. I keep thinking I may have strength to go out indefinitely but that is far from the truth. Every day I spend at home now has begun to feel like a wasted opportunity under my new mindset. When I'm old, if I ever am, I'll have plenty of time to sit down and spend my days leisurely with a book or the TV. I'm doing things in the wrong order. Now it's the time to get out and do stupid things, and I should be doing them if I don't want to live in regret later. I'll try my best to remember this.

The secret santa stuff is great. I used to host these parties all of the time. It's difficult now that I deleted social media so I don't really do it anymore, but I really loved doing events where we'd get each other 6 packs of beer (you choose the 6 individual beers to build a 6 pack) and it's fun. I am glad you're enjoying people and having a better perspective on community, etc.

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@BooksandTrees Absolutely. All these years I thought I didn't like social gatherings. One of the (actually many) pros of being adult is you get to choose your own conditions. I just had to find the folks I was comfortable around, the setting, etc.

You know? I'm actually an optimist at heart (really...!). For instance I don't agree with these people who say birthdays, Christmas and the sort are sadder each year because of the ones who're not with us anymore (be it because they're not around or usually from the context of the sentence, because they're dead), and I'm old enough to have lost a few of my own. First of all, most of the dead would slap anyone with that attitude if they had the chance. And second, each year you have the opportunity to gather a new family, one that you choose. Perhaps since I'm LGTBI+ I do unconsciously share this groupal idea of "chosen family"; perhaps it's because my family gatherings with my father's used to be very dysfunctional and my family is a nuclear one (Mom, Grandma, recently our cat and I) at core, so there are not many folks to lose there, maybe it's my and my family's installed mindset of avoiding being a downer at all costs (this is a bad thing guys, you gotta let go of that negative feelings, trust me), or a mix of everything and all.

 

This reflection is not casual. Something happened these days. I was planning to return home for Christmas but I had something of an emotional breakdown and cancelled all plans. I've been hiding at the apartment without eating or showering for several days. Last night I was lying in bed silently screaming what the actual fuck am I doing with my life and this morning I had enough and put some things in order. Basic things: whashed clothes and myself, shaved, ate a little (it will take time to recover, my metabolism is unforgiving). Today's plan is to save a fellow sister from her apparently obnoxious family, hence all this thought about chosen families and the idea of perhaps turning this into a tradition, some kind of social gathering scheme for misfits and rejected folks. I'd still need to visit my mother during the holidays tho, she's chill(ish, probably because I'm mostly chill myself). And I genuinely want to see her, boomer mindset (slowly in process of deconstruction) and all.

It's been a few rough days in fact, but I don't want to dwell on them. I'm looking forward now, towards the new decade. I have several things in mind I became aware of during this time of isolation but they need to crystalize in the form of words yet. Good things, I reckon.

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These days have been a mess, but I think I'm finally getting through. 

 

At first I relapsed and I was gaming pretty heavily since I didn't have the willpower to reset the laptop and hand it over to my flatmates as some sort of shared/under surveillance property, my initial plan. I could do it in the end and I feel very proud for it. I haven't been playing since and I'm handling it ok. I have cravings tho. 

Then, I finally began HRT. I was very nervous and had to make some serious, very existential decisions (such as deciding if I wanted to have biological children), things you wouldn't expect from a spanish 25 year old youth in this day and age, but I did regardless, sorted myself out and well... It's a strange feeling, taking paths you can't return from. I'm not used to it at all. But it can't be helped. And it's not such a bad thing either. 

I skipped 3 exams due to anxiety and poor organization, but I got maximum scores in the one I did. I have the last one tomorrow, and then a second chance in February for the ones I left behind. I can do it. I just need to tone down my unrealistic expectations of perfection. 

All in all, I survived the first semester of university (at least I'm not getting expelled) and I took a definite step towards achieving who I really am. The problem was never the meds, but the effort to assert myself and committing to a life of never giving up. Instead of the usual surviving or perpetuating continued existence at the most basic level. 

I'm feeling very emotional as well, because yesterday I went to visit an elderly transgender activist and the experience was pretty intense. In her notes about her self-reflections I could clearly see the same questions and doubts and ideas that I have, yet... me being 50 years younger. I could witness first hand what could possibly be the final stage of the life of an introspective trans lady. In other words, what could be me, in the future. 

All my existential angst came from somehow believing I could do something to avoid a future I imagined to be grim and terrifying. I believed there was something I could do, or think, or feel; to avoid the dreadful feeling of impeding doom, of being slowly and violently pulled away from this world I suddenly appeared in, the fear that has crippled me since childhood. 

It turns out, I can't! Boo hoo.

My 'worst' assumptions about how it would feel have been always true, it was just me trying to escape and avoid facing reality. I will feel sad, lonely and scared in my last years, if I'm lucky enough to arrive to them, because that's what being old is about, getting ready to die, sit down and reflect on what you did, and hopefully scare some fool youngling like me into avoiding making the mistakes you did. This woman wasn't an irredeemable ball of sadness either, in the slightest. In fact she is still devoting all her strength towards researching and writing, two things I love to do as well (when I am emotionally stable). So yeah, it's one day suddenly feeling very sick and inevitably horrified and then eternal darkness BUT it's not like I must be such a fucking pussy about it. I'm serious despite the bullshit tone. 

In conclusion, I don't need to have all the answers, because there's no answers. Second, I should use my body all I can, even if I wasn't spending a lot of money and perhaps risking my health to make it in tune with my inner identity. 

And I should be kinder with my loved ones. I really should. I can start by insisting on how much this community means to me (even if, figures, I'm always too busy or stressed out to actually interact with the vast majority of you). Writing here saved my life. So I should do something interesting with it.

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February 1st, 2020

What was supposed to be a brief visit by my bf took a turn towards the unknown, when he was called with the news that he got the job he applied to, some time ago, in the same city I'm currently studying at. After 3 years of long distance we were very enthusiastic about the idea of living together, and in any case single person flats in this city are absolute garbage, so we were left with a week to look for a new place to stay and find a new roommate for my current place. And we made it! So at least for the next year, starting today, I'll be living the Fully Adult Experience© 

 

February 2nd, 2020

So yesterday was the first day of the fabled, socially expected, adult life. Nothing too fancy: We woke up at my now old apartment, finished moving, went hilariously overboard buying groceries and then I finished organizing my stuff and started studying while my bf cleaned and put everything else in order. House still looks a bit empty, and I have the impression it's going to become cramped when his stuff arrives, but looks kinda more homely now. Had lunch and also dinner, my stomach got upset, then we went to sleep for the first time in our forefathers style, then I had an anxiety attack and my body was shaking for an hour... The usual and expected. 

After all I was dreading this moment for years on end and my journal is good proof of that, even if I picked the best person I know and probably will ever know for the job. He is also anxious about it so we've been hugging and trying to emotionally support each other from the start, maybe like two scared kids at one of these "enchanted houses" from amusement parks. The scary house theme keeps up it seems. I feel I need to keep my spirits high not to make him believe I'm suffering, or give this moment in our lives a sour note as I usually do, so I'll try my best at that. To be honest I was never sure I'd reach this far, even if I fuck up spectacularly in the next months (which also seems unlikely, to be even more honest). I am going through my best yet most feared thing with all the grace and stoicism I possibly can, as I always believed was what I was supposed to do. I don't feel specially proud. I'd rather cry and scream and roll around in the floor as I really feel the need to. I just might one of these days and it will feel great, even if my boyfriend will be unaprecciative of my... emotional expression.

 

And don't get me wrong, I actually am stupidly happy

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I survived this fateful week, settled in the new home and finished my first quarter's exams. I even got one of those fancy honorary commendations in one of my courses (History, the irony of it), could have gotten two more with a bit more planning and luck. Anyway my grades were pretty good and I did it in the middle of changing homes, starting HRT and getting out of a relapse so, phew. I can chill for a bit now. Trying to get a bit more involved in the city life in the meantime. 

Also my chest has gotten sore and it's early for that, which is good news, but bad news. Ouch.

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I've begun the next quarter at Uni, I passed 4/5 subjects and today marks one month in HRT. I feel moody and tired lately, but things are going ok. I'm currently in the middle of stablishing a stable study schedule and getting more accustomed with daily life. The latter is my worst area right now. It always was so, nothing new.

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Good things happened, including a now hilarious story involving an unrequited crush, a soft punk concert and crying and vomiting in the bathroom while bantering about it via phone. Ah! Girlhood! Delayed adolescence, what an experience. I constantly joke about how the Estrogen pills are making me do weird stuff, but I actually believe I'm using them as the "excuse" (in a good way) to humor myself (if that makes sense) and cope with handling this... finally feeling able to express lots and lots of repressed identity. 

I'm getting closer towards picking my full name which will probably and semi-unintentionally sound quite princess-y like, even tho my mother surprisingly approves. I might have broken some internal circuit of the universe. My relationship with her is much better now and her own process of discovering and accepting has been amazing, so I'm bound to review dozens of journal pages, editing or putting in context lots and lots of mean things and exaggerated criticism I awkwardly spurted over the years. It feels embarrassing now (awkward and embarrassing are understatements, I don't want to use slurs about the intellectually diverse even if my internet background made me think of those kinds of words for myself) but, in hindsight, I was projecting a lot of shit considering how much we are alike on the deep levels, no matter her actual defects, or mine. I'm sorry mom. I love you.

Been feeling very disconnected from my studies lately and the pressure of being a functional wi- erm, having a "harmonious cohabitation" with my SO is really shaking me up. I'm on my second warning now and honestly, I don't know if I can make it, or at least if I can make it in a matter of days, few weeks at most. 6 months ago I was still relapsing, stuck at home and couldn't even go to a store by myself, to name just the first thing that crossed my mind. Many times I feel the only people who'll be fully aware and appreciate my progress is this community, but then again, you don't have to live with me and take my worn clothes out of the living room, hah.

I think difficult and stressful times are coming, and somehow I feel I'm on my own to confront them. I can't help but think that I'll fail but that won't stop me from trying. No matter if no one ever notices I did my best.

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It now looks like a foreshadowing, because I completely broke down crying for real on Tuesday night (last week was more like, a mild drunken sobbing you know). But, hear me out, it was actually a good thing. I felt so relieved after. 

I have been holding back crying since my puberty. At first intentionally since I used to cry a lot as a kid, then there was a point were I couldn't do it anymore. I would feel this painful void in my chest and nothing would come out. For years I felt I would eventually burst and literally die. I was reaching my limit. I've noticed, gender roles jokes and stereotypes aside, that I'm more sensitive to pretty much everything lately, and honestly I don't have a logical explanation for it (yet). So I knew it was finally bound to happen sooner than later. 

I was very late on a deadline for a voluntary assignment about civil administration during the francoist era (I actually liked the topic). I was supposed to study it, make a PowerPoint presentation and give a brief lecture in front of the class. Nothing big despite the dull material and not the first time I spoke in public either. But I had been delaying the PowerPoint thing because I kept procrastinating on my laptop until I decided to leave it at mom's home (last weekend). I don't have any more devices around at my reach aside from the smartphone (and it's a handful, in more ways than one) so even if I'm physically unable to relapse, I'm still heavily handicapped compared to my peers. I have to take notes by hand when the lectures are not adapted to that anymore, and rely on the painfully outdated library services. Worst thing is, I can't just work at home on a whim when I feel like it, I need to actually go out on a certain schedule and be very disciplined and plan ahead, unless I intend to rely forever on my boyfriend's supervision while using his laptop, and he made clear that would not be an option. Then of course I also gotta deal with dysphoria any time I think about going outside (formerly known as "being-outside-gives-me-anxiety-dunno-why-surely-I-must-be-a-loner" feeling). 

I also have a house and life to maintain so I kept myself busy that afternoon with several things (including making homemade sandwiches for dinner) until I borrowed the aforementioned laptop at around 10pm. At 10.30pm it was clear it wasn't worth it, also considering I was using open source and wasn't sure if it was compatible. Not to mention I haven't used PowerPoint since middle school. So fuck it, I said.

I came back to the living room and explained the situation but my bf was insisting that I should keep trying. I felt completely ashamed and guilty even if it wasn't his intention and decided to just leave and go to bed. Then I changed my mind and decided to give him a hug and apologize for... not sure what. I was probably thinking I was worthless for not being able to do everything right. Then it happened. I was at it for 20 minutes straight bawling and short of breath while my bf was hugging me and laughing nervously (it seems I make the same sound while crying than laughing, in hindsight it must be very unsettling).

But it felt so good to let things out. He was worried but I was feeling better and couldn't really explain why it happened, so I just calmed down, shaved and took a hot shower and slept great that night. I've been in a bright mood since. Bf has been acting a bit down lately but he assured me it's coincidental. He also said he's been feeling more relaxed, since I'm apparently more focused (I haven't felt that much of a difference but not gonna complain!). Said sorry to the teacher the next day and asked for advice, she told me about student orientation services. They're understaffed but I'll give it a try. I'll also make use of the extra therapeutical support the university is offering me (coming from the LGBT+ section, great guys). I'm in a quite safe environment I think, also thanks to my choice of studies being quite progressive-leaning. It took me a while to arrive here, but I'll do my best to enjoy it to the fullest and make something useful for my life.

 

Things to improve; find and commit to relaxing activities, learning to cook and start exercising. 

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On 3/6/2020 at 8:29 AM, Hitaru said:

I have been holding back crying since my puberty. At first intentionally since I used to cry a lot as a kid, then there was a point were I couldn't do it anymore.

I touched on this last week in my journal how I haven't cried since I was 17 and before that when I was 7. I explained the emotions behind replacing sadness with anger and how it changed. That is very limiting and I think crying is very healthy for everyone. Most people associate healthy crying with a woman crying once per week. I even read an article promoting women to cry once per week. You never hear about that with men or people transitioning. So there can be a stigma about it for sure.

I think crying/emotional expression and release is very important. Bottling up our emotions causes us to do unfamiliar and irrational things. 

I'd try exercising once a week and meal prepping two days per week and see how it goes. Meal prep doesn't need to be a body builder thing either. It's just cooking food you enjoy and storing it so when you're too lazy to cook during the week you can heat it up and not resort to fast food.

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@BooksandTrees Well doesn't Sadness and Anger come to our doors dressed in each other's clothes. I heard that sentence mentioned in a theatre play I went to the other day. Kind of stuck with me.

As far as I know, people transitioning are either completely stoic because they're carrying issues from the past, and inevitably explode from time to time, or are huge balls of unfiltered emotions. I'm leaning towards the second group, but I'm trying to learn to express myself more efficiently (like, being able to express the little things instead of letting them grow into bigger things). Before I became the Italy of gender (?) I was in a prison. I was already bi and a bit queer so traditional masculinity wasn't expected from me, but old habits die hard, I think the saying goes. It was awful. I even feared I was just escaping from that by "becoming" a woman. That was exclusionary bullshit I internalized, but I still recognize how there's no shame now in expressing cheesy emotions, specially among fellow women. I wish men could do that. They have the potential to listen and support, I experienced it in my past. Now they just have to drop the Victorian act. 

Either way in this house and journal we don't gender things. We just do things (?). The exercise and meal prepping suggestions are great, I'm getting into the second and when I'm able to handle it I'll go for the first. 

 

On Sunday it was Women's Day. In Spain it's a huge event, specially since 2 years ago, so we went to the streets and held a massive march. I was with some guys from a LGBTI assembly who were chanting some... inventive advice to the alt-right party. This year's focus was LBT women and there was added controversy for the recent expulsion of a terf party from the left coalition on the grounds of hate speech. Terfs are mostly entrenched in the bigger cities' academic environment (and the internet), so turns out I'm living in a pretty safe place. That's what the people made me feel at least.

I had a blast. Since apparently I was the protagonist, they asked me to help carry one of those big banners that go from side to side of the street. A lot of people were holding transgender flags and smiling and waving to us, showing support. Other feminist groups were chanting about how welcomed we were and must be. I got really emotional. I have a lot of social dysphoria coming from internalized transphobia; which is a fancy way of saying I still subconsciously hate myself because other people hate their own ignorant idea of myself. I'm still excusing myself for existing and trying to keep a low profile in women spaces. It's like I fear someone will suddenly stand up and start screaming nonsense about bathrooms and 8th grade biology and that sort of thing. Instead, yesterday I felt true happiness. It was the first time I could really feel happy and proud of who I am, and shout that I, too, am worthy of respect and not some sort of nihilistic creep. And I can fight too. Not just for my own "selfish" reasons, but for all women, in all our shapes and sizes. And for men as well. I will never forget how I felt when I assumed I was one. We will smash patriarchy and bullshit gender expectations folks.

 

After that we will still be able to burp and wear our checkered flannels; but only if and when we want to (?) (and not like, as a male or lesbian flag. I like both my dresses and my flannels. Some of them at least.) 

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In a twist of ultimate irony, the Government has decreed to stay home JUST when I was beginning to get used to behave like the rest of humans. Even mom found the joke funny, because honestly, the timing truly was strange. 

My bf commented this may be a turning point for an entire generation of kids who will remember "that time when we were stuck at home". Well, I'm not so sure I would have noticed a month of quarantine not so long ago... The adults like me (yeah, I'm getting used to use those 2 words together) will surely remember the fascist undertones of the whole thing. The president, standing stiff as a tree trunk (and conveniently zoomed in for dramatic effect), looking right through the TV screen, pronouncing the fated words: "Victory will only be achieved through social discipline"; and then, it was done. It gave me all the V for Vendetta vibes and then some. Will the "Southern Fire" be trans-inclusive this time? Nah don't think so. Never is, for some weird reason. 

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