I recently hit my 6-month anniversary of starting hormone replacement therapy. I felt like this warranted something personal; a post that not mean a whole lot to a lot of people but means a whole hell of a lot to me. I’ve been struggling to find an idea to center this post on. Once I found it, though, the words just flowed out.
Lately, I’ve been revisiting the music of my youth. I’m not entirely sure if there’s a reason for it. Maybe I’ve been feeling nostalgic lately. Perhaps I was searching for a new connection with the artists I held dear as a teen.
Yes, you read that title right. I finally told my old school, Mexican Catholic father about my transition. I’m happy to report the world didn’t end and I still have a loving father. You’re probably thinking…
Apparently, for me, it did work that way. I couldn’t be luckier or happier.
My amazing little brother (who’s known for a while) and I hatched a plan to give him the news. Having a decent meal first seemed like a logical choice, so we took Pops out for a late lunch at our favorite taco shop. (Sidenote: honestly, if you’re not full of love after street tacos, you should probably see a doctor). After a lunch that consisted of way too many adobada & carne asada tacos, we went to a nearby marina for some privacy.
After a walk for about 10 minutes down a boardwalk, we found a bench with no one around. We sat down & chit-chatted for a bit. I could feel the weight of the world bearing down on me. For a minute, I sat in nervous silence as I stared off into the setting sun against the horizon. Once I found a break in the conversation, I took a deep breath. With a heavy sigh, summoning as much courage as I could, I told him there was something important I needed to talk about, and it’s the reason for bringing him out for the day.
I choked up at least twice, and the second time came with you don’t have to say it if you don’t want to” from my father. I think he sensed that I was coming out as gay. I had come this far, though, and I had to get it out. I explained, through heartfelt words, about my journey thus far. I paused towards the end and, with the entire world fading into nothing behind me, uttered the words that I’ve been struggling and agonizing with for so long: “Dad, I’m transitioning genders.”
A hush fell over us. After a minute, his initial reaction surfaces.
“Did you get the surgery?”
“No, that’s not even on the table yet”
I don’t think he fully understood the extent of what 6 months’ worth of hormones would do, essentially not requiring the surgery. For some reason he pleaded not to have the surgery. I reluctantly agreed.
In the end, after a couple more questions, we shared a big hug and a few tears. He pulled me in close and said to me “I’ll always love you, and you’ll always be my son to me.”
It’s a start. More than that, though, it’s as best an outcome I could’ve hoped for. The world didn’t end, and I still have an incredible, loving and remarkable man I get to call my father.
This weekend will undoubtedly be one of the most difficult of my transition, and likely my entire life.
In just a few hours, I will be boarding a flight back home. The purpose of my trip? To finally talk to my father about my transgender status and my transition. I am a nervous wreck, to put it mildly. I’ve replayed every possible negative scenario out in my head, and I’ve shed more than a few tears already.
I will thankfully have two very caring people by my side – my brother and his girlfriend, both of whom have been incredibly supportive of me. However, part of the tension comes out of trying to anticipate his reaction, good, bad or indifferent. I keep swinging back and forth between wanting the support I’ve come to see consistently among the friends and few family members, and simply asking for him to respect my decision and to remember that none of this means I’ll ever stop loving him. I’m also having a hard time dealing with the possibility that all of my accomplishments in life will suddenly become meaningless to him and I’ll be seen as nothing more than a freak or an outcast, one that will bring shame to the family.
However, through any and all of the possible scenarios that could play out, nothing changes (aside from the fact that I’ll be completely out to everyone in my life). I’ll hit 6 months of HRT on Tuesday. My name & gender marker change are legal and binding in less than 3 weeks. This isn’t happening, in the sense that it’s something I can be convinced out of with enough pleading – this is a done deal.
As a reminder of that, I only need to do one thing – look in the mirror. In front of me is the woman I’ve struggled and fought my entire life to become…
…and no one, not my father, not a relative or stranger, not anyone can or will ever take that from me.
I’d love to ask these people “Wait, have you actually met a trans-person? My only concern in any restroom is to do my business and leave as soon as I can, because public restrooms are gross. Never mind the fact that the ‘predator’ argument that’s so often used can just as easily be applied to same-sex predators, the likes of which is equally unlikely to ever happen. Why not just come out and say ‘we want to exclude all heteronormative people from public restrooms’ and be done with it?”
Here we are again. After a few weeks of switching things up on my blog, let’s get back to basics with another weekly update on my hormone replacement therapy.
I seem to have hit a growth spurt of sorts. Things I hadn’t felt since a few weeks after starting hormones, like pain in my hips & sore chest, suddenly came back. More importantly, I seem to have finally reached the point a lot of trans-folk refer to as “second puberty”. Aside from STILL being constantly hungry, I’ve noticed a sudden change.
That change? ACNE!!
Not only did it sneak up on me, it hit me with all the force of a sixteen-wheeler. The breakouts are more than a little embarrassing, and now I have to kick my skin care game up a few notches to ensure my face doesn’t feel like a pizza.
I’m REALLY hoping this subsides in a few months. Meanwhile, aside from proper skin care, I may need to slow down on my performances just so I don’t abuse my face with heavy makeup.
And I had such a nice complexion too. Ugh. Well, until next time friends!