A journey to San Francisco to become no less than Me. (BLOG REBOOT: Former site of Hairy Legs.)

Severance.

I’d like to say right now that I’ve passed a milestone.  Just a few minutes ago, I had the first female in my life ever to tell me to put the toilet seat down.  Aside from the slight embarrassment (and huge flush of relief that came to realize that she saw it up before her mom did), I felt a sense of… becoming– not quite pride, but accomplishment; the feeling of passing on into being not just a boy, but maybe even a man.

My 21st birthday is in 3 days.

I’ve been thinking about it for about 5 months now, and I’ve finally decided that I am, in contradiction of everything I’ve said before, going to cut my hair.  Yes, I’ve said before that I don’t:

1)  go around wearing what I wear or looking what I look like just to make things easier for everyone else.  I do this for ME.
2)  follow gender stereotypes, because if I think that’s what makes me a man, then I might as well just pack up and go home.
3)  want to go through transition for the sake of being a man, I do it for the sake of being MYSELF.

I still hold to those standards, but the funny thing is, I feel like a completely different person today than I did five months ago.  I feel that short hair would suit me better as I am, that I’m really not trying to live up to that scruffy biker/metalhead image anymore, that I want a softer, shaggy, more boyish cute faggy look as I settle into my male self.  (Plus Hilary Swank looked awfully cute in short hair in Boys Don’t Cry.)  In fact, I could go on listing a thousand reasons I’ve changed my mind- it doesn’t matter.  I will never abandon my resolution to be myself, and if I tried to hold to an image that I was before but not now, just to prove something to anyone else, then I’ve lost sight of that.

This cutting of my hair will also mark the passing of another landmark, no matter how I try to downplay it.  I’ve had long hair for my entire life, as long as I can remember, and losing it will almost be a point of no return.  I may grow my hair long again, in the future when my features have masculinized again, but for now, this is my aggressive visual act of manhood to those around me.  It says, “this isn’t just something I’m saying, or a phase.  I’m serious about this.”  If nothing else, I hope that it will be a constant reminder of what pronoun to use.

So, I’ve decided that, the night before I get it done, I’m going to make almost a ceremonial gesture, an act of severance to the female life behind me.  My friends and I are going to go out for a night on the town, and I’m going in full drag as a female.  There will be nothing questionable about it- I’ll be gussied up in every way possible, from corset to makeup and hairdo, head to toe.  It will be very symbolic as the last time I ever don the female garb, and at the end of the night I’ll remove every piece and say goodbye to the life behind me.

I’m calling it my Severance Ball: my rite of passage from a female body into a male one, and I feel that at the end of that night, I will have no regrets and will never look back.

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Comments on: "Severance." (2)

  1. I hope that the event you’re planning takes on a lot of meaning for you. I’m sure it will be intense.

    I had long hair like yours before but I cut it about a month before making my decision to transition. Like you, I didn’t see my long hair as inherently feminine. But at one point, I realised I was hiding behind my hair. And it had gotten quite ugly anyway with years of damage. It didn’t suit my face and made me look . . .heavy and burdened. Cutting it freed me.

    Sometimes I miss it and I think I may grow it back at some point. But you’re right, you’re allowed to change your mind about your hair and it doesn’t mean that you’re contradicting anything you’ve said before about gende stereotypes. Good for you for going with your gut!

  2. joaquinjack said:

    It will be intense. It will be.

    It’s almost more for my friends, I’ve come to realize. My best friend got more excited about the prospect of helping me dress up than anything else I’ve shared about my transition process, and I realize that she probably really misses having me there as a sort of weird sistery-type fashion designer figure. (Not to say the fashion designer is gone, my fay sense of style pervades all and will reign forever.) But I think she never got to say goodbye to that, and this will be a big night of closure for her, too, almost like an excellent funeral-slash-party. I think once we take this act of putting the past behind us, she might be able to be a little more excited about the real me taking the place of the person she grew to love.

    I’ve come to realize something important about this. Transition, for loved ones, can’t always be about celebration. If I don’t want to be selfish, I have to allow them time to mourn as well. I can’t expect to become someone else overnight, in a sense killing someone they thought they knew, and expect them to get over it instantly. So with a new lesson learned, On to Victory!

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