Bombarded with TG dreams, today

It’s taken me a while to get around to even writing this, but:  I’m feeling all right, right about now.  For a bit I was thrown off by a couple of dreams about gender transition, and myself as male.  I am guessing…this means that my gender identity is still fluid?

I think I actually had three gender-related dreams, over the last 24 hours.  I can’t remember all of it, though, save a reflection of myself with my hair down and my face dark and barely visible, with an eye partially blocked by blood.  The second was an insight that the major thing blocking me from testosterone (in the dream) was the idea that if I were male, I would have cultural limitations imposed on me (like not being permitted to wear dresses [without ridicule]) which would then require other manners of expression which I did not yet know.  The third thing was the insight that even if testosterone administration made me go bald, I’d still have extra facial and body hair to cancel it out…so I’d actually be growing more hair.  😉  (I was assuming that I’d eventually gain a full beard…which I shouldn’t bet on.)

And I am not sure about this, but…I found an old post relating to getting a casual linen blazer…for $60, which (at the time) I thought was too much.  (On top of this, it was dry clean only, and too casual for job interviews; and I wasn’t planning on going on any dates.)  It’s probably a good thing I didn’t pick it up, because it would likely not fit me, right about now.  But I’ve got an idea to go out and pick up something like it, plus an actual nice tie of my own.  I’ll have to have D show me again how to tie it, but it will be nice to have a (personalized!) dress shirt, jacket, and tie which I can wear with slacks.

I’ll have to remember to measure my neck and shoulders before shopping for a Mens’ dress shirt, though.  I wonder if my neck has now reached at least 14″ in circumference?  (This is the smallest size in Mens’ dress shirts in my country.)  Or — it is possible that there will be something comparable in the Womens’ section.  I just have not tried on too many Womens’ button-up dress shirts — they can be really expensive, and they tend to limit movement because of the shoulder construction; plus, they’re not made to wear with ties (meaning I can’t properly tighten the tie), and they fit closer to the body than I’m comfortable with.

Yeah, I should try for Mens’.  Especially as I now wear a Mens’ M from the store I’m planning to visit, and have sized out of their Womens’.  I haven’t mentioned it, but I’m hovering around 161-162 lbs. right now.  (Though most of the belly weight which I have been concerned about, doesn’t look bad when I’m standing with good posture — it just looks terrible with poor posture.)  I’m sure that if I exercise more than I need to in order to simply stop the weight gain, and keep drinking water instead of sweetened drinks, I should actually go down in weight.

I’m starting to wonder if some of it is hormonal — I do deal with hirsutism (the reasons for this [other than a naturally high testosterone count and apparent predisposition to high testosterone sensitivity] have never been explained to me, but other people with hirsutism whom I’ve known, have had PCOS [polycystic ovarian syndrome]…which apparently, I don’t.  PCOS can cause people to become overweight [insulin resistant?], grow extra facial and body hair, and have acne, like myself).

The medications can’t be helping, though, either.  One of the major factors in my gaining weight, has been an unchecked amount of sweet drinks.  Eating ice cream and a conscious, sparing, mindful amount of candy will actually have less effect on me than drinking two or three sodas a week — or one Frappuccino — even though that sounds ludicrous.

I also have found older postings here related to working out for muscle mass…which sounds pretty good about now, as I do have a bench and weights, and it would be simple to add in upper body exercises to my routine.  It would be nice to have a couple of set days of the week to do this, though, so it isn’t just “whenever I feel like it.”  I started out working out about every other day (sometimes every day), but now it’s just like “whenever I see myself getting out of shape.”

Hopefully, I can get more motivated on gaining muscle mass, at least, even if I’m not going down in weight:  my fasting glucose numbers were fairly excellent, considering the medications I’m on.  So I shouldn’t have to worry too much about insulin resistance or diabetes, for now (to which weight gain from my medications can predispose one).  My counselor also wanted me to get out in the fresh air.  It would be nice to go walking or running, and it would help my cardiovascular development, as well as likely helping me get to sleep and feel better in the daytime.

And my hair…still hasn’t been trimmed.  I found that it is long enough for me to braid most of it back, however…which I haven’t done in a really long time.  I may do it more often, as it allays the fact that my ponytail insulates my upper back.  It will probably keep it cleaner at work, too.

I’ve found a trick that helps me braid my own hair as well:  basically, putting loose ponytail holders around two out of three bundles of hair, and sliding them down as I braid, eventually sliding one of them off and using the other to bind the end of the braid.  It’s not easy to braid my own hair without seeing it–! and it doesn’t help that it doesn’t get regularly taken care of, either.  Maybe I can have M actually straighten and trim it, if I’m going to wear it braided!

But anyhow…I’m doing okay.  If anything, I’ve found that my gender identity kind of wobbles, and it is nice to have a fully intact body.  But I super would like to get back to the version of myself with big muscles, and the physical power that goes with them, without trying to appear stereotypically male.  I think that — and wearing more clothes which fit, allow movement, and are masculine (whether from the Mens’ or Womens’ sections) — would actually go a long way toward helping me feel better.  Right now my hips are the biggest thing disallowing me from wearing long-hemmed Mens’ shirts easily, but I kind of like my hips.  I also like the long hems.

Yeah, that’s getting into TMI, but, well, you know–!

It isn’t as bad to gain weight there as it is to gain weight, some other places…

And I really do want to get back into running, as well…I’m missing the speed and agility of my youth…

Exercise log: July 2, 2017

The parts of my workout that I can recall today looked like this:

  • Exercycle:  1.2 miles in under 10 min., ~7.7 MPH avg. speed; 10 MPH top speed
    (compare lethargic day at 5-6 MPH avg. speed, and 8 MPH top speed)
  • Push-ups:  15 straight!  (Women’s version)

I would write down something for abs, too, but unfortunately it’s hard to keep track of how many crunches (etc.) I am doing.  With those, I’m basically just trying to correctly do as many abdomen exercises as I can think of, to reach all my muscle groups.  Counting is extra.  😉

And…my belly is really getting pulled in.  I’m still kind of thick there, but the distension is going away!

And I was only 161 lbs. when I weighed myself today!  (this is down from a high of ~165+, though I have been mostly hovering around 162, in the pre-breakfast weight check.)

Today, also, I started lunges, though I was doing them incorrectly (angled back foot).  I know how to do them correctly, now, though (both feet pointing straight ahead, and lowering myself on the ball of the foot, where it comes to the back one).

I still wish to go out walking and running, more.  Working on the exercycle doesn’t seem to strengthen the muscles used in walking (or stair climbing, for that matter), and I could stand some sunshine.

Exercise, today, was a break from homework.  I did get everything successfully accomplished.  (Three assignments!  And they all have good effort!)  Unfortunately, this did mean some upper back stress — I probably shouldn’t even be sitting at my computer terminal now — but I was able to dissipate this somewhat with exercise and stretching.  Of most concern is sitting improperly, and keeping my mouse hand extended for too long.

I’m not as experienced with upper-body exercises, though I know that yoga stretches (cat-cow, downward dog, child pose) do really help with the tension around my spine, and in my shoulders.

I used an excess of caffeine today, so I’m not certain I’ll be going to bed anytime soon.

I ended up drinking about two pots of tea (different kinds of green tea), both of which were the first brewing (meaning a full dose of what caffeine they had:  green tea is relatively mild in this regard), and I had a little chocolate earlier, too.  (Normally, I would have eaten chocolate chips so I could get a little buzz and not mind doing the homework so much; but I went with tea, this time.)

I was working on three assignments under a deadline, and did not have the option of going back to sleep in the meantime; so I figured it was OK to splurge a little.

And, I haven’t had a nosebleed yet.  This is good!  (?! — caffeine excess can sometimes cause me to get a nosebleed from heightened blood pressure, even though my blood pressure is normally low.)

Anything else I want to write, I should probably organize into a different post.  🙂

Nonbinary thoughts…

Been a while since I did an identity post, eh?

I really should be working on homework, but for the majority of the day, I’ve been working…so…more work is not high on my list, right now.  Something did come to mind, last night, though — as I was attempting to fall asleep.  This is the fact that California has recently legally recognized a gender status other than F or M.  This information came to me through the following blog:

California recognizes legal non-binary status

This, in addition to the fact that I have been invited to a gender non-binary group (I have yet to explore this), and was thinking about alternative body modifications last night…plus the fact that I’m back in Library School (we’ll see for how long) and have recently found pay scales for library work…it’s just something that opens up a lot of possibilities.  Particularly so, as the Library community is really, really liberal where it comes to minorities.

My attention has been drawn to my embodiment, recently, as I am back in Library School, and thus have to watch out for eating too much out of stress.  If I weren’t on medications, it likely wouldn’t be an issue; but small changes in my diet — like one sugared beverage a day — can cause me to gain weight, now.  Last night I was also paying attention to this because of my birth control:  my cycle has become so light on this, as to almost be nonexistent.  (Sorry, half the planet goes through something like this; so far as I’m concerned, talking about it should be considered normal.)

Last night was particularly tough, too, because it was hot, and I had ingested so much water (in addition to the problem of water retention, from my cycle) that it was causing a bit of pain.  I mentioned Spiro to M and D, who are relatively liberal on other medications, to the response that I don’t have to take a pill for everything (trust me, they take pills much more freely than I do).  Spiro is spironolactone; it reduces the levels of androgens in the body, but is also called a “water pill” because it causes one to have to use the restroom a lot.

Right now I’m still fighting with my acne and shaving my face at least once every two days.  I’m sure I wrote about this before:  I have a condition which causes my androgen (tested blood testosterone) levels to be high, which (along with feelings of security that I can’t be impregnated) is the main reason I’m on birth control.  The acne and the facial hair follow the high androgen levels; it doesn’t help that I seem particularly responsive to androgens.

I am not certain what is going on with my hormones, at the moment; I do know that no one besides me wants to test my testosterone again, even though my levels came up abnormally high when I had it done before I started birth control.  The facial hair hasn’t spread, but it’s still there, and will be there until I start doing something like threading or waxing or electrolysis (I think my skin is too dark for laser).

Given how many women I’ve seen go through permanent hair loss (lack of eyebrows) through plucking, though, waxing is a viable option.  The problem is becoming secure enough with having substantial hair on my face to give the wax something to stick to.  Before now, I haven’t touched it, because I have never really been certain I’d never go on testosterone, and if I went on testosterone, I’d want a full beard, not one which is thin in patches.

I know that if I do rev it up a bit and start exercising, this will increase my androgen levels…though that, in this case, with a higher metabolism and reasons to bathe more frequently, would likely be healthier than where I’m at right now.

The ideal case would have me working out to the extent that everything tightens up (in a good way) and I get a bit of muscular hypertrophy.  That is:  big muscles.  This, in addition to mens’ clothing (which I’d be able to wear better with less fat), and…maybe clearer skin and eyeliner…that would be ideal.  And at that point, facial hair wouldn’t even really look out of place.  It would be nice to be able to braid my hair back and be seen as a beautiful young man.  (It lasts until I talk.)

I know how to do this; the problem is getting it from the point of being an idea, to one of being a reality.  Right now I’m a little over 150 lbs — which is a weight that, at least, I feel secure at — though I’m told I don’t look it.  I’ve been told by members of the local Female-to-Male transgender community that working out for big muscles is stereotypical and doesn’t come close to actually living as a man.  The thing is, I’m not a man, and I don’t really want to live as a man.

I don’t really see myself as a woman, either, but it’s gotten to the point that I don’t correct people when they see what they see and it doesn’t match what I see.  I don’t need everyone else to agree with me.  What I need is some way to find my own way in the world and skirt the homophobes (some of whom are trans) and transphobes (some of whom are lesbian and gay) so that they don’t overly impact my life.

But wouldn’t it be interesting…to appear as a muscular and strong female in mens’ clothing, long hair, eyeliner, with multiple piercings and a non-binary license?  If I didn’t have to worry about negative repercussions, I could also do low-dose testosterone and go off of it after the voice drop:  but I have enough issues with body hair (and acne), already.  That stuff doesn’t go away, and it’s tough enough to empathize with other people who have it more profusely, without realizing I’d have to manscape if I did go on T.  Right now, at least, it’s manageable.  But I wasn’t blessed with the almost-no-body-hair gene.  Not to mention the party that’s going on, on my face.

And, my voice is already fairly low.

Then there’s what to do if I traveled out of state, or out of the country.  I’d think that being obviously genderqueer would kind of restrict travel options.

Changing tracks, a bit:

It was just recently that I realized that a significant number of abnormal reactions I’ve gotten from others on admitting I was attracted to them, may have been based on homophobia.  I don’t see myself as a woman, but it’s likely others see me as such.  In that case, I’ve got to be prepared to be a target of homophobia if I’m interested in someone of my sex, for more than friendship.

It’s apparent that, at least if I’m operating in a heterosexual mode, I have close to no sexual attraction to anyone.  But have I ever truly operated in a mode where I was both unafraid of and considering possibilities of being together with someone of my own sex?  It’s gotten to the point where I’m not even sure if I’m bisexual or pansexual anymore.  My interest in males is minor, and I used to get mad at them for assuming they could flirt with me, while I felt barred from flirting with everyone to whom I was actually attracted.

On top of this, I’ve found that I am really only marginally attracted to genderqueer people who were assigned male at birth.  I don’t know what is behind this; I know it’s politically incorrect to have one’s set of attractions include female people (binary [cis and trans] women, female-assigned genderqueer, and female-assigned transgender people, excluding binary transsexual men), but not male people (most binary cis and trans men, most genderqueer people who were male-assigned).  My feelings toward transsexual women [included above in “women”] are more complicated, because in many ways I feel a commonality with them.  I don’t know why.

I don’t know why any of this, really.  I know it isn’t quite politically correct, but for me it’s a biological tendency that I don’t understand, and which can’t comprimise for the sake of politics.

Outside of being attracted to the above group…I’m pretty much asexual.  In the pursuit of discovering or recovering the above sexuality…I’m (tonight, at least) seriously considering again identifying as gay, so I can focus on healing this rift in emotional connectivity that began to tear loose when I was 14.

I wouldn’t be a binary gay person (I identify with the term “gay” over “lesbian”, even though I’m primarily attracted to women, because to me “lesbian” implies womanhood) — most of the time, I have seen the mainstream L and G communities represent themselves as comprised of binary (cis and trans) men and women…I’m not a King either…I’m just…genderqueer.  I’m who I am.

And if people are going to outright assume that I’m lesbian instead of what I actually am, maybe then I do have something in common with lesbian people — and can gain from that community, even though I am not binary.

As a last bit:  a post came up on my Reader recently about otherkin; particularly, the wolf subtype.  One commenter directed a different commenter to the following TEDx Talk (which I had little luck sifting through the TED website to find).  I did find it easily on Google, however.

I figured I should watch it, before writing this post.

As regards the otherkin thread, I’ll leave that where it lies, for now.  Granted that the otherkin and transgender communities do overlap a bit; I know some people who fall within this range (though not many in person).

The above Talk was somewhat…interesting, though the speaker only really went into “trans”-anything as feelings of being at home (or not) in one’s body.  In this way, he could have been using the term “transgender” as a synonym for “transsexual” (as I’ve seen to be common practice).

There is another level to this, which is one’s sense of self:  gender identity.  He really didn’t go into this level at all.  So for me — I don’t really know what it’s like to be, probably, most of the women I’ve met.  I know I don’t identify primarily as a woman.  My roles as creator and thinker and writer come first.

My body isn’t my biggest problem.  Though I do feel like I would have been better off as a (cis) man, I’m not even a trans man at this point — and I’m sure most people would think themselves better off as cis men!  Especially if one could wish for and be guaranteed comfort in performing a gender congruent with their changed body.  I am leery of the thought of transitioning to male and hoping everything will fall into place after that, really.  I don’t think who I will be will change, and I’m to the Yin side of things as they stand, anyway.

And anyway, who says that being a man is better than being me?  🙂

I am intentionally not doing homework right now.

I think that the homework and study thing is decently under control.  I have about two to three days to complete this next round of work — most of that is reading, but there is some writing as well.  And, well, database stuff.

It just seems that for the past week, the vast majority of my waking time has been either going into preparing for this semester, getting used to the user interface, reading for this semester, or doing homework.  To be honest, I’m not even…really aware of whether I am (or will be) qualified to be an Art Librarian after I get out of this program.  It seems like a narrow goal.

And…you didn’t see that, but WordPress is telling me that I just spent an hour crafting an email to one of my old professors, between this paragraph and the last.

One thing that I’ll have to keep in mind is that if I’m going to be sitting down at this computer for long periods of time, I’ll also need to factor in time to move and stretch.  I actually exercised yesterday for the first time in months, because all I did otherwise was sit in one place and eat.  Yes, it gets boring after a while, doesn’t it?

And I want to prevent another round of that weight-gain that I got in my first semester.  I noticed that I had a lot more energy at work, today, though.  Maybe the sit-ups and push-ups and leg lifts increased my metabolism that much?  I don’t know, but I did shelve an Adult Nonfiction cart in 15 minutes, whereas it normally takes me 25.  Usually, the only carts that can be shelved in 15 minutes are the A/V carts, New books, or Picture Books.  I guess I was just kind of ebullient, today.  It kind of makes me wonder what would happen if I actually did go for a walk.  I didn’t exercise enough to be noticeably sore…except when I stretch.  Then, it hurts!

I’m sure that eating tons of fresh produce helped, too.  Pretty much the only unhealthy things I ate today or yesterday were candy corn (sugar + corn syrup + shellac D:) and brownies (after the brownies had been baked, that is:  I didn’t make them, I just ate them).  It actually is worth it to go to the produce market, because then we get a ton of fresh food; and when there is a ton of fresh food, I eat (most of a ton of) fresh food.  Not to mention that preparing fresh food (like the salad I did last night) is a good excuse for getting out from in front of this computer.

I have also discovered the little wonder that is a Manzano banana.  “Manzano” means “Apple,” and appropriately enough, Manzano bananas taste like apples but have the texture of firm Cavendish (normal) bananas, with a tiny bit more seediness.  It’s a little addictive!  Not to mention that they’re only about 4″ long.

I would have picked up some baby (Niño) bananas last time (about 3″), which I’ve heard taste like guava; but they all looked a bit bruised up, and possibly refrigerated.

Anyhow, I came back to write in the blog because of needing to get away from the homework.  HAD TO GET AWAY FROM THE HOMEWORK.  In any case, I’m feeling a bit better, now.

Maybe I should work on my homework for the Vocational program, instead of working more at this LIS thing, for now.  I can also transfer my files so I can work offline.

And I really don’t want to deal with any more tech stuff, right now.  I think I’ll go read a book.  Which is made of dead trees.

Alterations…

Now that I’ve actually published that last post, I’m feeling a bit better.  One of the things I can do when I get into a spot like that — not wanting to talk or write or draw or do anything but sleep — is exercise.

I was able to get in a good set of sit-ups before dinner.  Burned like crazy, but at least it’s something, and my belly stayed tucked for a little while.  If I can utilize my gender dysphoria to alter my body so that it is closer to what I need, at least it would be adaptive.

The only drawback to this is that I shouldn’t exercise right before bed.  If I do it in the morning or afternoon, though, it should help me stay awake when I need to, and sleep when I need to.

Things to do, other than sleep…

This post is going to focus on what I can do in the daytime, other than sleep.

I was cleaning out my desk the other day and found multiple pads where I’d begun to practice writing in nihongo (Japanese language).  I have so many Japanese learning resources now that it’s not even funny.  In addition to what I have, we just inherited a bunch, as well.  It would be worth it to work at this immediately after I wake up.  To start out with, I can practice my kana (syllabary), given that I’ve lost most of my katakana, and there are a few hiragana that I consistently confuse, misrecognize, or forget how to write.  (mu, anyone)

As I was thinking about this tonight, I was regretting not having gotten up at 5 AM for those two semesters in order to get to Japanese class, in college.  Maybe it felt like too big of a risk for me at the time…or I saw no future in it, as a mixed-race female queer nikkeijin.  Probably, both.  Plus — should I not use the Japanese, it will leave…and I was afraid that three years of training in nihongo would be like my six years in español, where I’ve forgotten — or was never taught — most of the language.  And then how much is the degree worth, if you forget what you learned?

Even as a writer in English language, though, it would have been of benefit to be able to read Japanese Literature.  Did I need all those long classes on English Lit and Creative Writing?  It’s hard to say.  I know that my critical thinking and analytical skills have very much been honed, in contrast to some of those around me, and I can write fairly easily now.  I can also detect bull much more easily now.  But I still don’t write to forms well (a reason why Screenwriting didn’t fit me), and I have yet to determine how I can use my writing ability in the working world…given that all signs pointed to “keep your day job” in University…and what that day job would be, I’m not sure, if I can’t use my degree towards it…

Unless, that is, all they want is to see a BA or BS and that you made it through Undergrad work.  I know that I could pull a Library Assistant position with this — but do I want to?  I could also be a Clerk, which would probably be a less intense job for me, if I could get out of the Public Library system.

In any case, I do remember — from my youth — my sibling saying that one of their video game magazines wouldn’t even consider hiring writers who did not have a degree in English.  I want to say that this was around the time I was 12, though I’m not sure.  I was young enough to think that it would have been a viable life option to work for Electronic Gaming Monthly Magazine…ah, kids’ dream jobs.

It would have been sweet to work as a pro video game reviewer, though, right?  I don’t think I was off the mark on that, but the difficulty lay in actually making any money other than with freelance work, and what is my “real” (or “steady”) job aside from said freelancing?  I know one person who writes for a video game review magazine, and it certainly does not pay all the bills — it’s more like extra money on the side.  On top of it, I have largely stopped playing video games because I see no gain in doing so.  Sure, it’s fun, but how have I advanced in my life or psyche once the game machine is off?

There is one other thing that I think can get me out of bed, and that’s reading books on making art — which is less intimidating than actually making art.  I have one which I just began, tonight, despite having had it out of the library for several weeks, now.  If it turns out to be as good as it seems, I may buy it.  (What I’ve seen so far focuses on mindset.)  There are actually two books in this category, which are probably good bets.

I’m thinking that if I’m going to sell my skills to an employer, the soft skills I will have trained for in Art (tenacity, self-starting [when I get that down, it would be great], attention to detail, abstract thought, attention to process, pattern recognition, etc.) would probably be worth more, monetarily, than the ability to make art — at least, at first.  Given that, though — the soft skills I’ve trained for at the Library (patience, attention to detail, discerning the nature of questions, toleration of stress, etc.) will probably be worth more than what I physically do — or did.

I don’t expect to get a job as an Illustrator in a year — I have way too much more ground to cover before I will become quite that good (at least, so I think — but maybe I’m doing myself a disservice, given that black and white painting I did last semester).  What will happen in the meantime between the Art AA and working in some way in relation to Art is probably going to be some type of Clerical work, because that’s all I can think of where I could use my Writing skills.  (But maybe I shouldn’t be overly focused on the writing?)

I’m also already mostly-a-Clerk at the library I work at.  I just need to get more secure in dealing with patrons (in the vein of “I won’t get upset today, because only I control when I get upset”), because if I become a Clerk in the library system, about half of my time (if not more) will be spent staffing Circulation.  Which, now that I think about it, in no way takes advantage of any of my inclinations, or skills that I actually want to use.  It’s an easy advancement, but it’s an advancement into a job that would at times be less than pleasant, and which — I’m learning — constantly has people attempting to cross my boundaries.

I have What Color is Your Parachute? 2013, and You Majored in What?, though I’m having trouble looking through the latter because of the electronic format, and the fact that it’s a workbook which builds on itself and its activities — and I keep stopping and restarting.

I still haven’t begun looking through job postings.  I probably should, just to get an idea of what’s out there.  Especially since I got help from the State this last time…this time, I can try and do some of my own research.

And then the last major thing that I can do:  exercise.  If nothing else, I need to tighten up my abs, though I also want to go walking and running.  I’m not sure this necessitates a special outfit, but given that I’m heavier than I used to be…it might be worth it to look for at least one jogging outfit.  I just hate to go out and buy more stuff when I have clothes that will work — they’ll just be uncomfortable.

We’ll see, tomorrow…

Tired of real life.

Right now I’m listening to a song from Ghost in the Shell:  Stand Alone Complex OST 3.  Unfortunately I don’t know its name, because its name is written in kanji, and I can’t read most kanji yet.  From what I can make out, I think the title is “Mikansei (Incomplete) Love Story” (“Love Story” is written in katakana, so I can read that — Google helped with the rest).

I really love this song — it sounds like the main portion was played on one or more acoustic guitars.  I’m wondering if I should just forget about what skills are salable and not, and just do what gets me out of bed in the morning.  (I was in bed until fairly late in the evening today — probably out of depression.  There’s a lot of stuff in my life which doesn’t directly have to do with me, but which is going on around me.)  I’ve wondered if it would be worth it to play guitar, just to have something to do to occupy myself when I wake up in the morning.

The issue with playing guitar is that I still can’t read sheet music.  There are alternatives in place, like learning through tabulature — or writing my own music — or playing by ear.  What I had been doing was putting my hand in place to play a chord and then picking out single notes from those chords, in an attempt at Classical finger picking…

Anyway, though.  I’ve found that I’m getting back into the place of preferring dreams to waking reality.  If you could see and translate/understand the content and references of my dreams, you would understand why.  🙂  I have some really cool dreams.  🙂

And…again, I’m sounding kind of transgendered.  When I have to live this reality in this body…and I can live in a perfect world in my mind where it doesn’t matter and I’m free of this culture…(oppressive @#%#ing culture…)

When I was asleep this last time, I dreamed that I’d had a hysterectomy.  Which, aside from the rather painful healing, was all kinds of great for me — you mean I won’t have a period anymore?  I don’t have a need to worry about getting pregnant?  I don’t have to say I’m “female” anymore?

When I was waking up at about 5:30 PM, though, I realized that it was just a dream, and I was disappointed.

Right now I’m also listening to a song that I remember from the 1990’s called “La La La Love Song”.  I haven’t been able to find the original version, which Naomi Campbell helped sing, but there are tons of different cuts of it online.

It’s reminding me of when I was at my first University and taking Japanese classes…and was successfully able to use the “boku/kimi” forms of “I” and “you”…basically, this is the way a speaker would respectfully identify himself as a man to those around him, in the course of speaking.  Wikipedia says that these days, it can be used by feminine speakers as a status thing, though back when I was learning, it was definitely a more gendered thing…and a way to disclose that I was transgendered without having to explain myself.  Probably the big muscles and short hair helped, too.  🙂

I’ve realized that there has been something affecting me where it comes to core beliefs.  I probably mentioned it in backposts here — the idea that if anyone/everyone were to know who I actually was, they would hate me for it.  I mentioned this recently and was told that the opposite was also true:  I could open myself up and be loved and respected for it.  This possibility is obviously not stronger in my mind as things stand now (especially with all the information about anti-trans* discrimination coming across my feeds), but at least now I’ve realized it’s a core belief.

If I could really get back on it with working out, I think it would help a lot.  I don’t mind appearing as a female bodybuilder, and identifying as male.  The problem comes with all the fat accumulation and growing hips and chest and belly and shoulders, which then happen to dictate what kinds of clothes I can wear while avoiding looking like a slob.  Unfortunately, most of these clothes appear in “feminine” styles because corporations assume that people with female frames and fat distributions want to look “feminine.”  (WHY?!?!)  When male clothing only rarely appears in Small sizes and even those may be too big (read:  every Mens’ jacket I’ve ever tried on), it kind of limits the &$*@ options.

The truth is that I’d rather be physically male, but nothing is going to get me to the point I want to be at without massive disfigurement.  I was born about 25 years too early to be able to have the opportunities that are being granted trans* children now (like having my breast buds cut out before they ever grew, or going on hormone blockers to delay puberty).  The best I can go for is breast removal and a hysterectomy and still be short, with genitals too small to do much of anything.  I’ll always be marked as having been female; I’ll have to take shots for the rest of my life for my body to continue to work at all.

Is having a perfect and intact and exercise-altered female body better than having a surgically and hormonally altered trans* male one?  When your mind is more male than not?  And people question why you would ever want to do weight training?  When random men ask for your name, like it’s theirs for the taking and surely you won’t mind?  When your body is continuing to put on weight and it’s enhancing your body’s feminine image?  When your breasts won’t stop growing?  When you can’t stand people calling you by your given Anglicized name because of its status as false cognate to something sickly sweet, but you know that if they tried to call you by your actual name, they wouldn’t ever be able to pronounce it?  When you’re afraid to dress femininely because you know it will attract unwanted male sexual attention, which may cause you to have to fight for your own safety?

I know that the safest long term path I can think of has me exercising to get my body back tight and muscular again, along with yoga for flexibility (avoiding ruptured tendons is a good thing) at the same time as I build strength and bulk, and meditation for my mind.  This avoids all surgery, has me looking like a quarterback, and is compatible with both masculine and feminine presentations.  But when I don’t do it, I remain stuck in the same place of continuing to get fatter, which causes me to feminize in both the clothes I wear, and in the way my body appears without clothes.

At the same time I have these issues with not wanting to face the world as a feminine or female person, because I know it makes me a target.  It would be nice not to have had to research martial arts to the point of finding some obscure internal martial art to try out.  It would have been nice not to have had to take five years of martial arts in order to train myself to be alert and aware of the possibility of an attack at any time from anywhere.  It would have been nice not to have to be trained as to where male weak points are (like I really want to touch any disgusting @*$% who tries to put his hands on me — but I can’t count on others to protect me).

I kind of feel like the variant of martial arts I majorly trained in is actually not a real martial art.  It focused more on discipline and spirituality than on what to do in an actual real-world attack (other than shock/disable and run away), and I still have some resentment over that.  At this point I have so much anger built up over the years, that I think anyone who attacks me is buying into a lot more than they can handle.  (Yes, I was taught how to enucleate an eye…eventually.  This was when I got into an actual real martial arts program which taught us as though it were a possibility that we would actually have to defend ourselves and maybe even *$^@ someone else up.)

I shouldn’t have to know this.  I shouldn’t have to walk around knowing that any day could be my last because of what I happen to be.  I shouldn’t have to feel that if people knew who I was, they would reject and hate me.  I shouldn’t have to deal with the question of what would happen if the neighbors saw me walking down the street as a gender other than the one they’ve come to know.  Or what would happen if I was seen as a male person who dared to look like a woman (WHICH WE ALL KNOW IS NOT MY BIRTHRIGHT BECAUSE I HAPPENED TO BE BORN MALE…oh, wait).

I just kind of feel like I’m on the outskirts as regards what’s known about gender, and I’m so far out there that no one has any recommendations on what to do.  What I know is that using testosterone will likely lead to my early death from cardiac complications.  I also know that my head is shaped weird, so if I went bald, it probably would be worse than it otherwise could have been.  Getting rid of my breasts and curves (and hair) would be getting rid of the only good things about this body (other than that it sustains life fairly well right now).  And testosterone wouldn’t replace this with much, other than facial hair which would probably be patchy, and the ability to get much stronger much more easily than I can, as things stand now.  Regardless of this, though, my frame is small, so I’m stuck with having to fight “smart” instead of fighting with brute force.

Maybe I should be training to run, as well — my body type is normally small/light/lithe, and so running is something that I can do well — at least when I’m not carrying a bunch of extra weight.  It will give me something to do in the daytime, too.  I’ve just got to time it so that I’m not using the track at the same time as the kids…who should be on Summer break right now, yea?