"The unexamined life is not worth living" Socrates

- - scatterings of ideas sent to my younger self, a sensitive girl who was fooled into believing she was a boy because of anatomy - -

Wednesday, 5 January 2022

It seems that you've been living two lives ...

We who live two lives, for at least some of our life, understand the reference right away. It is from 'The Matrix'.  In that film, Mr Anderson has another life online as Neo. I don't imagine every transperson creates an online persona in the gender other than the one assigned, but I had several over the years, including a lady who was my avatar in a golf game that my son and I played on the computer quite often. He has never mentioned that ... hmm.

When the character Morpheus said “What you know you can't explain, but you feel it. You've felt it your entire life, that there's something wrong with the world. You don't know what it is, but it's there, like a splinter in your mind, driving you mad.” some of us got it right away. We related strongly because we knew there was something terribly wrong with our world. 

So you can read the rest here then click the link at the bottom or, of course, you can take the blue pill ...You take the blue pill, the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill, you stay in Wonderland, and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes.

I didn't see 'The Matrix' when it came out in theatres in 1999. It was in the early 2000s via VHS tape that I heard the Oracle tell me, as she told Neo 
"Sorry, Kid. You got The Gift, but it looks like you're waiting for something.

What I was waiting for I had to find for myself. This article has reminded me that without the computer, and the internet, I likely would never have been able to put all the pieces together. I might never have used my gift to discover that one of my lives did have a future. 

The article is called 'I, too, was living a double life': Why trans fans connect to 'The Matrix' and it is on the NPR site in the US.

Friday, 24 December 2021

A Christmas Wish

Hopefully, I can keep this short. 

I know some who read here are not on a path for transition. Please use your imagination and empathy, and believe what you read. For those who are wrestling with transition and are worried about their future, I know how you feel. 

Only a few years ago, gender dysphoria was tearing me apart. I had no idea how friends and family would react if I transitioned. When I came to the conclusion that a life of resisting transition had no future, it was clear that ending up living on the streets was a very real possibility. Some lose everything. I had no illusions that I was somehow special.

If you know the author of this beautiful photo,
please let me know so I can attribute it properly.
When you see someone doing their best to keep warm over a vent on the sidewalk, with only a donated sleeping bag to keep them from freezing to death, please don't judge. Assume they did their best in a world that is hard and that they need your help now. 

If you can manage to make donations, please remember that the folk who will use food banks or shelters for the homeless didn't choose to be so badly off. They are likely very embarrassed to have to take such help.

I wish you all a wonderful Christmas. Let's hope that, somehow, in 2022 we find a way to make the world a kinder, more loving place.

Be safe. Love yourself and others as yourself. 

Thursday, 18 November 2021

Autophagy

As I understand it, you pronounce the word "awe-toph-uh-gee" with emphasis on the "toph" part. The word literally means "eat oneself". No, not cannibalism, but the process of removing old dysfunctional material in order to make room for regeneration. 

Relating to my previous post, autophagy involves the recycling of body cells that are old or damaged to make room for healthier new growth. It is an expected result when one goes onto a two-meal-a-day or less regime. Quoting a study from 2017 by Nuria Martinez-Lopez and Marina Garcia-Macia et al, : "Our studies suggest that consuming two meals a day with complete food restriction in between the meals is sufficient to lower blood glucose and lipid levels. This simple dietary approach activates a cell “cleansing system” called autophagy in liver, fat, brain, and muscle that helps prevent obesity and diabetes."

I have heard claims that this same process can prevent dementia, reverse hypertension, and remedy other age-related conditions. I will likely never know if any of this is true for me. I do feel really well, but that might have to do with other factors. 

Since I transitioned, basic attitudes I carry toward myself and others have thankfully undergone some autophagy as well. A lot of old worn-out ways of dealing with the world have been shuffled off to the bin, much as the façade was so many years ago. Memories that have haunted me for years - of interpersonal interactions gone wrong and friends or family lost because of those interactions - while not forgotten, have been put to new, more productive, purpose. It is as though a distillation process has removed toxic, hurtful feelings, allowing lessons learned to be retained in a more positive way. In the past others could manipulate me by making me feel sorry for them. I now know that it is possible to have empathy while at the same time maintaining firm personal boundaries. 

It seems likely that the ability to alter my emotional responses has to do with hormones. So often we are lead to believe that women have emotions that rule their lives. In my experience - what a unique position to make a comparison I have - my range of emotional response has widened considerably yet at the same time a tendency to allow emotions to overrule good judgement has been flushed away along with the testosterone. 

Another use for the concept of autophagy describes a process that clearly needs to take place in the world as a whole. Old and inappropriate animosities among nations or among religious groups have, in too many cases, stiffened to become hatreds. Media, social or otherwise, is full of vicious accusations, and, in some cases, bold lies designed to dehumanize or demonize the opponents. Within nations, political differences which at one time would have resulted in debates in the house of government now seem to have a tendency to harden into hatred as well. In the not too distant past, bitter political rivals might have been friends away from the debate. In important matters of state, they would even have agreed, putting forth joint motions with unanimous consent.

In the next decades, it seems inevitable that more people will be displaced from countries where the climate no longer supports food production. In some places, scarcities are causing bloodshed.  The way other nations respond will determine whether we have a future of peace or of endless war.

When a body has diseased cells that are not removed and recycled, death is the inevitable result. If we choose a way of life that involves clinging to what is toxic, we must expect to live with the consequences. 

"And so, while the end-of-the-world- scenario will be rife with
 unimaginable horrors, we believe that the pre-end period will be filled
 with unprecedented opportunities for profit."