It was the year 2004 when I revealed to my primary general practitioner physician that I had transitioned from male to female at age 19. I told him I was unhappy living as female and wanted his assistance with male hormones so I could return to living as a male. He asked me if I’d mind before we took any course of action if I’d allow him to do a chromosomal test on me so he could just get a baseline on what we were dealing with. I posed no objection. My results came back XY/XO. I was completely unaware I had an intersexed chromosome pattern as during my transition two decades earlier not one single health professional had suggested such a test. Personally, after what I’ve gone through I think every trans person should be required to take a chromosome test as part of normal standards of care for anyone who experiences feelings of gender dysphoria.
Finding out I was intersexed and not just your regular self-identified transgender person was a shock to my system at first. I wondered if I’d had this information as a teenager would it have changed the path I took? I shrugged it off thinking I should not waste time thinking about such now because that was the past and now I have to deal with my present decision to live as male again. I spoke with the South Dakota, USA geneticist Virginia Johnson who worked on my case. We did a few more tests over the next few years at her suggestion and she explained to me that it appeared that the extra X’s in my chromosomes were probably more populous when I was younger and transitioned and now later in life the number of extra X’s were decreasing. She said it would explain my first transition as well and my second transition. All I could do was listen to what the geneticist told me like all I could do is listen to what the doctors who monitored my teenage transition were telling me about being a transsexual.
Upon telling my grandmother about the chromosomal testing results she opened up and told me about my birth and how I had surgery 8 months after my birth to fix me from being a hermaphrodite to looking like a normal boy. While just calmly accepting this I thought of it the same way as the earlier revelation of my XY/XO chromosome pattern. None of the information mattered now and would not deter me from my desire to leave the disappointing male to female transgender life behind and return to living as male. Yes, I went through stages of shock, anger, grief, but stayed cool about it. What good would it do to get mad at my mother for not just leaving my body alone and allowing me to make my own decisions about my own body when I was old enough? What was done was done and it had no effect no who I was or how I felt now.
So, basically I transitioned again in 2005. This transition was rather simple this time as there wasn’t much to do but to get a haircut, a mastectomy, and take male hormones so my appearance would not be so soft like a female. At first it was just a haircut and binding my breasts so the basic transition from female to male only consisted of one hour. I had my haircut, came home and strapped down my breasts, and popped out to work in my garden without missing a beat. Of course I was in a mindset about being male, but nobody saw me as male at first. A lot of the towns folk and neighbors were shocked that I’d cut off my knee length beautiful hair and had a boyish looking haircut, but they had no idea yet what was really going on with me. I didn’t shrink back from being very open and talking about what I was doing as I felt like I was being unshackled. After my mastectomy in May of 2005 I felt so relieved when those huge triple D Jersey milk cow breasts were gone out of my way.
Fast forward after 15 years of living as a male and what have I learned? Can I say I lived “as” female and lived “as” male, but maybe I don’t know the luxury of knowing truly what either of the sexes feels like because I’ll always be somewhere in between the sexes? Is this understanding I have part of my journey as a soul? If all people where honest would they say they can feel the sex of their soul or would they say they don’t if they have a soul or even if a soul can have a sex? I know a lot of people have no believe in such a thing as a soul, much less a soul that can reincarnate into different sexed bodies many times. We all want truth, but will we ever get it? All we all can really do is say all we really know is we don’t know and live life as best we can by being kind, compassionate, loving and helpful to others.
Living as male takes a lot less maintenance so it is so much more convenient. I know what it’s like to live a life that is influenced by testosterone as well as a life influenced by estrogen. Both hormones have their merits, but testosterone makes one feel more aggressive and estrogen creates a more gentle state of being. In 2016 I decided that living as a bearded male that takes estrogen instead of testosterone created a nice balance. Without testosterone my face looks too pretty without a beard that says male to my audience.
Life is constantly an experience of change, self-inventory, and more change. Life is not stagnant. If it is then are you really living? Don’t be afraid to live, to take chances. You might learn something about yourself. Speaking of learning something about yourself I often ask myself what I’m learning or understanding when I watch a romantic movie. My heart always melts with joy when I see a happy couple acknowledging being in love with each other. I try to imagine who I might identify with when I see a man and a woman romantically entwined. I really don’t see myself as the man or the woman, but only a happy observer who always cries at weddings lol. All I know from my experience of living “as” male and “as” female, I am a gentle soul with a tender heart, who sometimes feels hurt by how harsh life’s experiences can be sometimes, but I gather strength and soldier on.
So, what am I? What wants to answer that? Who wants to judge me? Who wants to discriminate against me? Who wants to hate me? Does it matter that I’m an honest person? Does it matter that my life’s career was nursing because I wanted to help those who couldn’t help themselves? Does what kind of person I am outside of gender make any difference? Is it not good enough to be a person who has a moral compass? A person who is kind and compassionate towards others?
Maybe I will continue my thoughts on this subject again one day. I know those who are interested know how to set alerts for updates. Have a beautiful day and be safe in our new Coronavirus world. Remember the history of the Spanish flu that only took a few million lives on it’s first wave. When people let their guard down the 2nd wave killed 30-50 million. Wear your mask and be mindful till there is a vaccine.