"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 - -

Monday 10 June 2013

trust the wind

Sweet love renew thy force; be it not said
Thy edge should blunter be than appetite,
Which but today by feeding is allay'd
To-morrow sharpen'd in his former might:
... do not kill 
The spirit of love with a perpetual dullness.*

So, let's imagine that you and I are a couple of balloons. Filled with some sort of lighter than the rest of the air stuff, (not hydrogen please for hydrogen is explosive), we meet as you are bobbing by.

I have come to you with a difficult issue, and you, like the kind balloon you are, have agreed to listen and bob encouragingly at all the right places as I puzzle through my balloonish issue: 

A long time ago I met this other balloon who was tethered but not completely grounded. We found pleasure in holding each other close and thus anchored nicely to the ground we made a life together. Time passed and change happened. We made new and so very light balloon children, who have since floated off on their own adventures. Somehow, even though I stayed very buoyant, likely to blow away if not tied down, my partner, slowly shortening her tether, became very anchor-like herself; no longer very balloonish. Further, she finds my tendency toward balloonish adventure to be annoying and constantly works to shorten my tether.

Although very attached to her, this anchor~balloon conflict is dangerous, because being anchored is not only boring for balloons, it is depressing. My life partner has come to recognize this to some extent, but has become afraid of flying, or at least sees no advantage to letting go of the ground she is so familiar with to let me pull her up into an unknown but definitely not boring future. 

I would never have met you, or anyone here floating by if not for this tether that gives me some freedom, yet so many have departed, now away upon adventures.

Dying of boredom, anchored to a ground that brings little surprise or joy seems a poor way for balloons to end their days. 
It's possible my analogy is stretched a little (balloon pun?), but if I promise not to try to tie you down, stay with me for a while and, wonder with me,  balloon to balloon… is this fair to ask of my partner, and if so, how do I help her recover her lightness, let go and fly free?

Maybe a love-story for her to read?

"Once upon a time, not so very long ago, ...

*Sonnet 56 - Shakespeare


  1. I think it is fair of you to ask this of your partner, because I suppose it is what I have been asking of my own.

    At times I feel incredibly selfish though. As though I am forcing this person to be something that they are not. But then, I try and remove myself from the scenario, and realize that while yes I do want this change in her for me, I really do love this person and I think that this change is what is best for her, regardless of if she even chooses to be with me.

    I really like the Alice In Wonderland by Tim Burton. I love the message about Alice needing to find her 'muchness.' That is what I want for my partner. I want her to be able to be free to be herself and I highly doubt she has ever felt that sort of freedom and it makes me sad.

    I too think that fear plays a large role in ruling people's decision making process. I know that pretty much every time I dress as a girl I battle with my own fears. But I battle them and have won some fights, not quite the war, and in so doing I have expanded my view of what the world can be. It is through this that I have come to appreciate living in a way I never thought I would.

    And personally, this is all that I have ever wanted for my beautiful balloon partner

    1. Nadine, I feel as you do, and you have put it beautifully, when you write about how when you remove yourself from the situation you truly believing this is best for her.

      Now I need to get a copy of Tim Burton's movie.

    2. I think it is beautiful that you want so much for your partner. Although some days it is hard to have someone else pushing me to be the best, I am whole heartedly grateful that Nadine does this for me. Some where along the way, I did loose my "muchness" and want it back. Yet it seems that having lost that muchness has made it hard for me to see my path forward, and I have been sooooo blessed to have a spouse like Nadine who has been and is still so willing to support me on my journey.

    3. Jules, I hope this recovery time is only an interlude along the way, and you continue your path to "muchness" very soon. :-)

    4. Nadine, after much reflection, perhaps it is my own balloon nature that is being challenged in this post. It may be that the time has come to let go of my own tether. I too live with a fear of who I really am, but why?

  2. I would not wish to be the fool that rushes in where angels fear to tread. Yet I do fear to tread into this delicate problem. I think I would need to ask whether a balloon must always be a balloon, or whether it must change and achieve its buoyancy in some other way.

    I answer in this manner because I cannot easily turn away from a question expressed in such a heartfelt manner. Perhaps in the end, through mutual respect, the problem can resolve itself without being pushed. I have no answers, only questions that I will not ask.

    Perhaps if you listen to anyone, you would do well to listen to Nadine.

    1. I love your reference to mutual respect and do hope that gentle pressure will do. It would be interesting to hear any questions for sometimes it is by those, not suggestions, that understanding arrives as strange as that seems Tom.

    2. So, I have been thinking a bit on your question, 'must a balloon always be a balloon'. It seems to me that circumstance limited our opportunities to exploit our lighter nature fairly soon after we joined up. Perhaps she has forgotten just how buoyant she really was and how together we were able to soar early on.
      Maybe it has to do with how she perceives my lightness now and seeing it as a danger in itself.
      You have me pondering different ways to achieve that lightness so I don't miss an opportunity for her. I do so want her to regain trust in herself and maybe me too.

  3. Here I am with my 'why' questions. Why do I continue reading your blog on a regular basis since I know as much as I want to know about gender dysphoria, why has Tom started to blog recently, why am I so very pleased thinking that you and Tom might start a dialogue? The fact that I trust you both can't be the only answer to my 'why' questions. I'll pretend it happened because of me and that it is a good thing and will feed on that thought to nurrish my almost non existent self-esteem. Amen

    1. It pleases me no end to be able to relate as a person, here and at your blog and thereby get to dialogue with you and now Tom, and yes; all because of you!

      My question to the world at large: Dare I believe my scribbles here have more to do with challenges of being a thinking, caring person than being trans?

  4. Is there a distinction between your being trans, and a thinking and caring person? Two spirits, one Halle. None of us are one layered. We are many things at once. :)

    1. Could not have said it better Dar! Thank you.

      I might look back and mention that being trans, accepting my two sides and all that has meant in my case, has made me think more about the human condition and become more sympathetic for challenges others wrestle with.