As usual, I'm late in putting this on the page. The events detailed here happened two or three days ago, but I guess when I'm living my life, I have no time to talk about it. Now that I'm at a lax moment, I can spare a few
minutes to type this into the computer.

This one is actually two events combined, one of which is new, the other of which is just proof of an earlier concept. Both, however, are important, and I'm very glad they happened.

First, I got my new Visa today, one with my real name on it. Officially, the bank that gave it to me doesn't know it's "mine"; they just know that there're two cards attached to this account, and that someone named Kristina R. Davis is now authorized to use that number. I wouldn't think they'd care even if they did, though. I'm not using the card for fraudulent purposes; it's my name, so why would I want to start my new life with a bad credit rating? At any rate, I'd been waiting for this card for over a month, and so when it arrived I went on a bit of Retail Therapy,
which turned out to be a good thing for my spirits.

All of my friends have warned me of the evils of credit cards. I've seen the damage that they can do to people. I have a debit card, and it boggles a lot of my friends' minds that I could prefer spending money I don't have to money that I know is mine. To start, I get bonus points towards my preferred airline with my credit card; I don't get that with my debit card. Second, I don't let balances accumulate; I pay everything off every month and so there's never an interest fee. Third, I don't carry any cards with an annual fee, so I have all the benefits and none of the hassle. I do know that I have to budget myself, and I do, but that's not as much of a hassle as long as I keep current with my bills. The one thing my debit card does that my credit card won't is not charge me fees at ATMs and reimburse me third-party charges at them, so it does have its uses.

Second, related to the first, is an incident that happened Thursday night. I had picked Jason up from work, and we had decided to stop at Starbucks on the way home for coffee. Normally, I would prefer not to frequent such
places, but there are no independent coffeehouses within reasonable driving distance of our apartment, so for coffee it's Starbucks or do-it-yourself, which would mean buying equipment for which we don't have the room right now.

This particular Starbucks is one of those conglomerate stores that has a Barnes and Noble and a Software Etc. attached to it, or maybe it's attached to them, or perhaps they were all just squished together by Dobbs or
something. At any rate, before we got coffee, we decided to look in the software store, and of course being computer junkies that we both are, we found things that we wanted to get. So, without really thinking about it too
much, we picked up our purchases, we went to the counter, and I plopped my shiny new Visa soen on the counter.

The counterclerk diligently rang up the purchases, glanced at the card and looked up at me with placid, cow-in-front-of-steamroller eyes and said, "And could I see your driver's licence?"

Now, I am not an unsavvy shopper. I do know that a few places require a secondary form of identification to help guard against credit card fraud, and I applaud them this action. However, it never occured to me that I would be caught flatfooted like this. My new card is wonderful because I can sign my real name to things. However, I have nothing else that matches it, and so I literally didn't know what to do. I said something mumbled
about not having it handy, and the guy looked at me with that too-bad-not expression and said, "I'm sorry, but I have to see your licence; it's company policy."

At this point, Jason stepped up and, in a calm manner, said, "Let me set this straight. Her driver's licence doesn't match. The state won't recognize it yet, but that is her legal name."

At this, the counterdrone, his manager, and I were all sort of startled into silence for about two seconds, and then this incredible warmth ran through me as the salesclerk fumbled a bit and looked helplessly at his boss. The boss looked at me, then at the card, then at the total, and he shrugged and said, "Alright, just match the signature to the card's."

They matched, of course, though my hand was shaking a bit from excitement. 

Later, Jason said to me he was really excited to see me using my new card. He said it didn't and shouldn't matter how I was dressed or that I hadn't shaved since that morning, that the important thing was that that was the name I wanted to use and that was how I wanted to be addressed and that others should have the decency and courtesy to do so. I felt validated. I felt vindicated. He said to them what I lacked the courage to say at the
moment I needed to say it. 

I felt loved and protected. It's the most wonderful feeling in the world.


Today, I made my first real work faux pas. This being Monday, I spent the last few days out enjoying myself, and last night I finally got around to repainting my nails; I hadn't in weeks and they were getting cracked and chipped. I found a lovely shade of purple, nice and reflective, and it matches one of my outfits perfectly.

I forgot to remove it before work.

Now, I've had my ears pierced. I carry a purse. I've styled my hair a bit differently. Nobody's commented on any of those. Someone, however, noticed the polish and asked me about it. I was caught totally flatfooted. I had honestly forgotten about it, until he called my attention to it with a stare and a comment on the order of, "Whoa, dude, what's with your nails?"

I just said I'd forgotten to remove the polish from them, which was true, and he didn't press things any further, but it was kind of a telling point for me. I had completely forgotten that I'd had it on. I don't even think about cosmetics or things as something I have to remove at the end of the weekend. The discord between who I am and who I have to try to be for work is getting harder to manage.

Thankfully, I don't really have an act through which I'm expected to perform, unless you count the bathroom situation and having my old name on the cubicle wall. The head of Human Resources knows, but I haven't done anything to further things beyond that yet. His response was positive, but I'm admittedly still nervous about it. I work for a military subcontractor, and as such I'm not sure how receptive the personnel will be. I'm not going to let them stop me from being myself, but I'd like to minimize the problems, both to myself and those around me.

Here, my mind slipped a gear.

Someone very close to me has started hormones, and I'm very happy for her and I wanted to take the time here to say how glad I was that she was finally officially on that road, and that I was a bit envious of her, even though I'll be starting myself soon. I wanted to gush about things for a bit and say how proud I was of her.

Only after I thought about it for a few moments did I realize she might not want her name here in that context.

It has nothing to do with not wanting to be mentioned here. Far from it; I know she wouldn't mind me talking about her. I know she reads these pages and I know she'll read this when she gets the chance. It's that I have no
right to say things like that. It simply isn't my story to tell.

When I start them, I'll babble incessantly about them, I'm sure. It's going to make work that much more interesting for a while until I get used to them. That's me, though. I almost talked about someone else, and that's kind of overstepping a line somewhere, I'm sure, especially without her prior consent.

I don't even really think she'd mind people knowing that she had, but it's an odd thing, really, for people in our situation. There's a constant war between wanting people to treat us as we wish to be treated, and admitting
that we weren't born that way. Society still very much sees sex as an either-or proposition, and any attempt to blur the distinctions or cross the line between them is met with hostility, antipathy and resistence. Some people are incredibly supportive, like my parents have been, but most just don't understand and aren't really capable of understanding.

The person about whom I've wanted to gush happily here stands a wonderful chance of never being questioned about her past. Saying here that she started hormones would be an indicator, to someone who knew how to read
what was written, that all was not as it seemed, and while I don't mind if people know about me, it isn't my right to put her in that position.

So, why then am I talking about myself in such detail? I've thought about it a lot, actually. It would seem that if the ultimate goal is to never raise questions, then talking about the very subject that people don't understand doesn't make much sense, does it? Or does it?

I make a very poor liar. It makes me feel sick to my stomach. Ideally, what I'd like is for people to know my past and treat me how I wish to be treated anyway. I want it to be a nonissue. I think it's a quixotic goal, but it's the only one I could try to achieve in good conscience. Time will tell if it's achievable. I hope it is.


So much has happened in the last week. I should post these as they happen, but life is what happens while one makes other plans. Today I decided to finally sit down and cover everything. My life feels like it's moving forward

First, and foremost, Jason proposed to me.

I'm going to put that one in a paragraph by itself, because it deserves it. I was in an emotional slump, and he and I had been cuddling. I said I was upset about how long it would take for me to get where I'm going, and he said to me, out of the blue, "Kristy, I'll be here until you get rid of me, hon. I'll be here however long it takes, and beyond, because I want to be with you." He looked a bit sheepish then, and he smiled and added, "I can't give you a ring, love. Just a promise to stand by you as long as you want me here."

I started crying on his shoulder at that point. It just felt so incredibly good, hearing him say that and knowing how much I meant to him, for him to say that to me. The actual question itself, much more in his style, came almost as an afterthought to that, but those were the important words. 

I said yes.

Right now, we can't legally do anything. It'll be a few years before any ceremony we could perform would be recognized, but that's not important. What's important, to me, is that there is someone in my life that accepts me for who I am and understands who I wish I to be, and is willing to stay with me through all of the trials ahead and beyond.

Having a family is the most wonderful feeling. After my last boyfriend, I thought I would never really feel part of that. I thought I had it with him, but I didn't, I don't get close to people easily; I have a few people with whom I'm very close and then a wide group of acquaintences, but not many "casual friends". Now, though, I have it again, and this time I know it's for who I am and not just who I think he wants me to be.

My life just continues to get better, the more myself I become.

Most of the rest are best addressed as side notes to the above. My therapist cleared me for hormones last Saturday. Hopefully it won't take her as long to get my recommendation letter for that as long as it took for her to get my walking letter. If it does, however, it's not really too much of a big deal; I have to wait for my new healthcare card from my insurance provider to arrive before I could schedule an appointment with the doctor she

Jason also met my therapist, finally, and they seemed to hit it off really well, which I think is a good thing. We went in to talk about sex, because that's been something of a delicate situation, as I'm sure you could guess. Right now, I fluctuate between wanting the contact and intimacy and frustration and unhappiness at the end results of same. I enjoy it right up until the moment I think about what I'm doing, or what I've just done, and then suddenly I just feel awkward and uncomfortable. My therapist made some suggestions, and they've helped though it'll be a long time before those feelings go away.

I went back for my next laser treatment on my face, and I did my neck at the same time. I feel like a lobster right now but I've got aloe vera gel to put on it and that takes a lot of the stinging out of it. Hopefully I should only need one more round on my face, maybe two on my neck, and then I won't have any more problems there. It's too early to tell but I have high hopes. I just wish it weren't so expensive, but it's worth every penny.

My life is proceeding apace, ever improving.


Yesterday was a roller coaster.

To start, I had my first group therapy session. At the moment, there are four of us, but that number will probably change over time. I'm actually the youngest, though I'm not the earliest in the process so far. I actually learned a lot, with one group member who's been on hormones for a while now telling us about what it's like. She didn't really say anything that I hadn't already known, but it was good to hear it confirmed from someone else.

At the end of the session, my therapist gave me my walking letter. As Jason described it, it's my doctor's note saying, "Please excuse Kristina from being male". I liked that description a lot and so I'm keeping it, even if it isn't totally accurate. Actually, it's a note explaining that I'm currently in therapy for gender dysphoria and should be given all the rights and priviledges accorded any other female. Basically, it's a safeguard against people getting frustrated about me being in the ladies' room.

I came home from that on an emotional cloud, feeling wonderful. Jason and I sat around the apartment for a while, then we decided to go out to Souper Salad for early dinner. Here, I have to pause and say how much I like this place. It's cheap, filling and I can have the all-you-can-eat without feeling like I've blown my diet. The waitstaff knows us there; we go in about once a week, maybe twice.

Last night was supposed to be a role-playing game session with some of our friends, but after we ate we had a few hours to kill and so Jason and I decided that we could go out to one of the malls in the area that he hadn't
really seen yet. It was kind of a drive but we'd have lots of time there. 

Now, here let me interject that I've been out dressed before. I'm more or less fulltiming on the weekends. I'd never been out as dressed as yesterday, but I've had on skirts, blouses, femme-cut jeans, heels, cosmetics, what have you. I've been to restaurants, clubs, coffeehouses, out with friends, other malls, out to the movies, generally wherever. Sure, I've had people turn and stare, I've had people comment behind my back, and I've had people act surprised. They've always been the exception, though, and not the rule.

Last night, I felt like I was on display. I think literally half the people in the mall stopped what they were doing as I walked past to look, and I heard a lot more behind my back than I normally do. I don't think I was doing anything different, really. I just chalked it up to the mall itself. Fortunately, there isn't much at that mall that would require me to go back to it.

As we were leaving, though, someone took it upon himself to shout something from the window of his truck as he was driving past. He was technically accurate but factually incomplete. However, it put me in a very strange mood. I wasn't upset. I was frustrated and disappointed. It was the sort of misconception that I would have loved to correct, only I know that the type of person who yelled such a thing wouldn't have listened to reason.

The whole experience, actually, was like that. Anyone there could have said something to me and I would have gladly explained, but nobody wanted to know. All they knew was that something outside their realm of experience had made itself known, and they saw fit to point and stare and laugh. It wasn't that they did it. Other people have done that. It was the sheer number of people doing it, this time.

Jason and I tried to go to the game last night, but that didn't go so well. I was in an off mood, Jason wasn't much better and Mitch wasn't being very helpful. Things went from strained to patently absurd in about an hour and
Jason and I bowed out of it after that. When we got home, we got a hot shower and I pored over the events of the day and ended up ranting at him in the shower about everything.

I do plan on going back to that mall, dressed, partially because I haven't picked the Lane Bryant there clean yet, but also admittedly because I want the peace of mind knowing that I didn't let the negative experience ruin my enjoyment of the mall. I'm not going to let other people control my life. If I choose not to go there because there's nothing there I need or want, that's one thing. I'm not going to let my decision be based on the reactions of others.

Blog Archive