Along with everything else that goes with living a "normal" life now, mine revolves around two things:
1. Let those around you know by your voice, clothing, hairstyle, makeup, gait, posture... the list goes on... that you are female.
2. Give expression to those things which defined you as a unique and interesting person for those previous fifty years.
Getting called 'sir' while out and about interacting as myself not once but twice this past week affected me. It bruised the ego naturally, but mostly though, such a kick in the butt provided a huge incentive to work harder on all items of list one.
At the same time, I am not normal... repeat, I am not your average person. Oh, physically I'm fine for a woman. Yes, I am five inches taller than the average Canadian woman, and ten pounds heavier too (but that makes sense since I'm taller) so I do stand out in a crowd a bit, but not much. My shoulders will always be a bit wider than the average, but it is possible to dress to emphasize one's positive qualities.
Where I am really not normal is in all those other areas that matter to me most - list two. My attitudes and feelings are unique of course; everyone's are. Nothing of who I am screams male, but it does scream DIFFERENT. Let me repeat: I am NOT normal. I get ideas that need to be let out. In fact, in these past few weeks, my mind is feeling freer and more flexible than ever; like a butterfly discovering its wings and figuring out what to do with them.
So, being true to myself is always going to be a balancing act that will slowly become more natural to me as time goes on. What I must avoid is that thing which brought me here so long ago. There will be a spontaneous person here; no façade ever again. Maybe I need some red hair...
All of this reminded me of a TED talk by Rosie King. Here are some salient quotes:
It could be that people don't want to associate with anyone who won't or can't fit themselves into a box labelled 'Normal'.... If you think about it, what is normal? What does it mean? Imagine if that was the best compliment you ever received:
"Wow, you are really normal."