"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, 19 May 2010

Halle Takes Charge

Me, Me, Me alert!: I promise this will be the last entry (for a while, anyway) where the word “I” appears more frequently than any other. It is difficult to tell your own story without using it!

When you were left hanging, the lady in me had just made herself known.

As it became clear that this was not a temporary take-over that the lady inside had engineered, telling my wife what was going on (as I understood it at the point) became imperative. This did not go well. I will not detail the events, because you, gentle reader, are not without some imagination and intellect.

To keep it short, the love of my life (literally) had married a man, and a man is what she wanted. All of the concerns of the uninformed were asked and addressed, but the damage had been done to our relationship, and only time has put together new understanding. More than once she has wished out loud that I had never told her. Having no one to talk to about this has been, and continues to be very difficult. At any rate, we have re-established that love is our bond, and we are best friends too. She is a wonderful and patient person. It had never been a picnic being married to me. Maybe things are actually better with Halle in charge. I’d like to think so anyway.

As for the lady inside, like the prisoner she had been, (forty years incarcerated in solitary) she was not a happy person. The amazing thing is how quickly she rallied. Hopefully not getting too ‘split-personalitied’ here, it is possible that a lifetime in solitary gave her time to plot her moves in the event the door opened just a crack.
Once out, she moved me in the only way she knew how, with deep feelings. To be honest about the feelings, I was smitten with myself. She told me that she liked what we had done so far with the old place, and as long as I didn’t slide backward, she was willing to work to make it even better. She even promised to renovate the crappy attitude toward the rest of the world.
The biggest change was the new attitude toward my body. Gone were the days of neglect (or maybe abuse is a better description). As I (Halle) took over we began a new regime of caring about the old ‘display case’.

Whenever the old patterns of behavior such as nail biting, etc. tried to make an appearance, the message went out; ‘Thou Shalt Not Desecrate This Temple’. This might seem a bit biblical in tone, but that is what it took at first. An old friend once told me ‘God does not make junk!’ Until now, I had not really believed it in regard to myself. It took a huge effort to convince my male side that we were worth the effort it took to actually like our self.

Any woman knows, it takes more time to treat our self well. This is part of the change in attitude that is very obvious to my sweetie. Even though there are still days when I can come in from working in the shop, or in the yard and ‘hit the shower’ and be out the door in ten minutes, there are other days when a leisurely full treatment can take an hour; and remember, I maintain a façade, so we are not talking about make-up or fancy hair-styling here.

Nails finally growing past the end of fingers need shaping and smoothing. The ‘guy body’ has hairs growing from places no lady expects to see them. I shave my face more closely than ever before, and moisturize too. It looks and feels so much better, but it is still a man’s face. The other hairs, from the nose, and the ears…YUCH!  If there was a genetic plan, why did it have to include gradually getting less hair where everyone expects it (on top) and more growing from places where it really is pretty disgusting? Such is Halle’s life, and she deals with it!

In the winter, when the façade does not include shorts and sandals on the guy, the leg hair can go. I know, some of you are thinking that even in the summer, a lack of leg hair shouldn’t be a problem for a guy, but where I live, it just pushes the boundary too far, at least for now. I have purchased a small wardrobe of feminine clothing to compliment the new body, but that is only for special times when there is no (or very little) chance that doing so will ‘out’ my sweetie and I.

The above might seem to be superficial and vain. So be it, but part of being able to maintain my façade of maleness in an intolerant world while maintaining sanity, is the ability to convince myself that I am honouring my true feminine nature, in as many ways as possible.

My biggest change was self-acceptance. The effort required moving that ingrained person from self-loathing to acceptance was huge. Remember, since the time when the war was declared, and victory claimed, the armor the guy wore was never taken off. Getting him to accept the reality of a truly kind, loving and worthwhile personality was a very difficult victory. When it was won, I figuratively stripped him of the armor, so he could see what he really was, and grow to like it. Many tears have been shed.

Regretfully, my sweetie does not really appreciate how involved she is in the success of this process. The way she helps is pivotal. She is my best friend, even though we do not relate as women. She did not marry a woman, and I don’t expect her to try that now. She is getting used to the new me, and I try to be the best person I can be every day, one day at a time, for her. If she can ever accept and get to know Halle as an individual, that will be icing on my cake.

I credit much of the success of my effort to others here in www-land and, of course, to my family here in Blogistan; too many of you to mention. Some I will never have the opportunity to thank, but I do thank you all for the sharing that goes on here.

Finally, the reason for “Maintaining’s” existence has nothing to do with bragging, although I do feel proud of the new me, but has everything to do with what you read on the banner. These are letters to a younger self.

My deepest regret, and the apology I make to myself every day, is I didn’t allow myself to know or accept these things long ago. The approval of others should not be a motivation for a lifetime of misery. No one need look for more evidence to prove it, than the number of sisters here sharing angst over the ramifications to children and spouses and family and friends made during our times of denial. While our decisions as to how to act differ, I believe we all agree on one thing; everyone should be able to somehow live true to themselves, one day at a time.

Hugs to all of you,



  1. Desr Halle,

    Perfect. And O so resonant with many of my own experiences. Thank you.

    Don't worry about the "I" word. It is helpful in so far as periodic use helps fend off fissures between your surface and interior parts. The whole package is "you", and methinks your readers will be happy to hear from your "I".

    I do hope though that we have seen the last of the regrets for now. Time runs forward yes?

  2. If you were like me, I spent my first 40 years trying desperately to convince myself that the feminine entity that was a part of me was not the real me. And I did a lot of things to prove to myself that I was suppose to act like a man, getting married was what I thought I had to do. Don't get me wrong, having children was a blessing that is hard to top, but my ex knew from the beginning of my desire for feminine things.

    My first experience being out and dressed happened when I was in grad school and we had been married for 6 years, I don't think she ever knew about that first experience being Sarah.

    I choose to keep Sarah at bay while I spent time with my children watching them grow up while maintaining the facade of a marriage.

    If I could have been changed by prayer, than that would have happened a long time ago, for I spend unimaginable hours praying and beating myself up, hoping that "he" would relieve me of this pain. But I believe now that this pain and path of transition was what 'he' had planned from the beginning. It just took over 50 years for me to accept who I would become and find a wonderful person as Kay.

    We live our lives one day at a time, wishing and hoping that this life is who we should be.


  3. Wow, you told your story so well, you are a very talented writer Halle. It's funny how so much of what you said holds true for me also, it's almost as if you were reading my story. Live true to yourself as I shall try also.


  4. Very well told, and I (like many I imagine) can see an amount of my life in there...


  5. I guess we all have the regret for not coming to terms with it earlier. The main thing to concentrate on is that we have now.

  6. Thank you Halle, an uplifting post, and wonderfully told-

  7. You are on your journey now and It seems you are enjoying a lot of it. :-)

    You are taking sensible small steps and I hope you find the right place for you on this path.

  8. Hey Petra and Jenny, it is about living in the present and only running in forward from here!
    Sarah, having and raising our children is an experience I would never want to have missed, which negates the regrets to a great extent.
    As to the writing everyone, it has surprised me how much better Halle is at expressing herself than the guy ever was. Language studies were some of my poorest subjects as a youth. Go figure that one!
    Thank you all for your support.

  9. I prefer "I" blogs, and this two-parter was a great one. Beautifully wrought, Halle.