Sunday, November 10, 2013

I've Got a Feeling

One of my FB friends recently had FFS and is recovering.  She is writing about her struggle to reconcile her "old" self with her "new" self.  I find is fascinating that we use these significant milestones in our lives to try to put what seem like rational boundaries around portions of our lives.  I suspect she'll come to realize that she's already got dozens, if not hundreds, of "old" selves and equally as many new ones.  It is the progression, and the overlap, of these selves that define a lifetime.

I suppose there is a natural tendency to logically minimize the number of "selves" we become over a lifetime.  It provides some semblance of continuity, or stability I suppose.  I realize I'm not the same person now as I was a year ago, or five years ago, or a dozen years ago.  There aren't any specific anchors to define starting and ending points, but that doesn't make it any less true.

I don't try to fight the natural progression of change.  It's going to happen whether I/we like it or not.

I've got a feeling things are about to change in my own life.  I can feel it.  There is about to be a disruption in the force.  I can't explain specifics yet, as I honestly don't know what's going to happen.  Gears are shifting.  Winds are changing direction.  But there's change, and there's CHANGE.  The fact that I'm feeling it as acutely as I am implies to me it's closer to the second kind than the first.  Some of it I will bring about, and some of it will happen external to me but affects me.

I can feel myself mentally and spiritually getting ready for it.

In the meantime, life has been relatively quiet for me lately....

I've written and posted photos of my pups here before.  They are my "family" here...we eat together, sleep together, and their unconditional love each and every time I walk thru the door is truly something to come home for.

They're no small responsibility, and they require significant effort and $$$ to take care of, but.....well....they're family.  That's just what you do.

They have established a unique dynamic between themselves.  A sense of doggie "politics", if you will, of attention, guarding perceived territory, and other things.  Maggie is the "smart" one, although the fact that she happily munches on the little turds in the lawn left by the many rabbits in the area makes me wonder sometimes.  Oh well.  It doesn't seem to make her sick.

She doesn't have a tail.  When she's happy she wags her entire but, and watching it sometimes can still make me laugh out loud.  Codie, on the other hand, has a tail that curls up and around and is a barometer of how he's feeling.  When it's up and curly - very happy.  When down and straight, he's a little concerned.  He's the sensitive one...

Their life here is fairly uneventful.  Most days are the same for the....Codie sleeps in my bed, but when Maggie hears me moving he hops up.  We go out for a bit of a walk so they can do their business.  I take a shower while they eat.  I get dressed and ready to go - goal is to be out the door by 7.  We go for a bit of a walk just before I leave.  They do whatever they do all morning long.  I come home at lunch if I can for an hour.  Then they do whatever the do all afternoon long.

When I get home we go to a trail where they can run and there are no people.  Here are a couple of photos looking forward and backward along our usual stroll....

Usually it's dark by the time I get out of work, but it's still pretty.  Then dinner, then....well...then it's my time.

It's not heaven, but it's not horrible.  They seem happy, they're healthy, I'm still enjoying my job, and we're doing ok.  All things could be lots worse.

When I drove back from Charleston several weeks ago I brought a number of things I've wanted back with me.  One of those things is my guitar.  It's here in my apartment and I pick it up at least a couple of times every day.  I'm trying to build up some calluses on my fingertips so I can only play for 20 minutes or a half hour at a time.  Current songs I'm learning to play are "Wish You Were Here" by Pink Floyd, and "Night Moves" by Bob Seger.  I'm enjoying being able to play, and I'm glad to have it with me.

I also brought back my blood pressure gauge.  My blood pressure was a bit high a few years ago after during and after a difficult time and I always assigned the blame to the stress of the time.  Eventually, after it didn't go down, my doctor suggested that we do a low dose of something to lower it and I reluctantly agreed.  It was under control for a while, and I weaned myself off the meds to see if it would stay down without them - I don't like meds.   My mom takes her blood pressure a couple of times every day and although I'm not that crazed about it I do have a blood pressure cuff so I've started doing that, too.  I just took it a few minutes ago and it's pretty low - 106/65 with pulse of 65.  Sunday morning is a pretty chill time for me, so I'm good with it all.

Change.  It's in that context that the big news of the day is that ENDA passed in the Senate this past week.  Some would say it's purely symbolic since it has little likelihood of passing in the House.  I do not share that view.  This was a big deal.  I'm not sure whether it's a good thing or a bad thing that we become de-sensitized to how monumental it is when federal legislation containing trans specific language gets passed in that kind of forum.  The reason that gender identity was pulled from the Bill in 2007 is because it was deemed unlikely to pass with it by the bill sponsor.  It had no chance of passing then, either, - regardless of whether we were on it or not - but the fact that we got chopped from it was a big deal.  Ergo - this is a big deal.

One article in particular is interesting (read it here).  I remember back almost a decade ago, in 2004, when a group of trans leaders was invited to speak to the HRC Board about inclusion in ENDA (story here).  I believe that group of people in that room having that conversation changed hearts and minds that day.  It was simply another step on a path that started long before that day and will continue beyond our lifetimes.  SO - the passage of a trans-inclusive ENDA in the Senate IS IS IS IS IS a big deal.  

We all realize that it's only a matter of time before it passes.  Maybe not this year, or next year, or the year after.  But as trans people get more and more engrained into our culture it just becomes less of a big deal.  We're not going away and it's not going to happen all by itself.  But at some point the phrase "Liberty and Justice for all" will mean a lot more to some of us than it does today.

1 comment:

Sophie Lynne said...

I see my life as a continuum (did I misspell that or what?)

I mark spots along the way: HRT, anniversaries... but at no point has my life STOPPED... well once, but that's another story.

I like to think that I'm growing. That every day, new experiences add to who I am, and make me a better person.

Better or not- every day I am different from the day before.

And that's comforting.