I have a tendency to write early in the morning – like 3am. It has taken a few different forms. It started off as journaling when I couldn’t sleep. It evolved into prayer journaling, blogging, and most recently, emailing. Probably about 90% of the emails I sent at this time (I have no idea where I come up with my statistics other than hyperbole polls) were to one particular recipient – “M”.
I suppose that because of the combination of our crazy work schedules and that we met on match.com, emailing seemed like a natural form of communication, especially to my 3am brain. When I’d wake up I was at my most honest, open, vulnerable, and intimate state. The day hadn’t yet weighed down on me, I was in quiet and solitude, and usually she was the first thing on my mind (sometimes I’d even write before getting up to pee). Sometimes it would be a somewhat bashful “I’m thinking about you” type of email. Other times it would be in direct response to the last conversation we had. But always, the motive (whether I realized it or not at the time is debatable) was to move the relationship forward. I’d write a minimum of 3 or 4 paragraphs (usually a couple of pages worth) and I’d get back just a few sentences if I was lucky. Don’t even get me started on her most common text “k”. Really? “k”? She could have at least said “sure” “yes” “alrighty” or “busy now – will respond later” or “I’m totally selfish, by the way, you’ll find out I’m racist too so let’s just not do this”. It wasn’t all bad though, I mean, she did say she loved reading my emails…
Oh my, I’ve digressed. My point is that writing at 3am is a hard habit to break. Part of me misses “M” if only so I could have an avenue to be vulnerable. This morning several hours into my shift, right around 3am I got that urge. Rather than whip out my phone and send a text I KNOW I’d regret, I grabbed some paper and started to write. I wrote it in bullet form as it was a springboard of ideas and will write it out for you just as I wrote it out for myself. This my friends is what’s truly on my heart.
– I still don’t know exactly what my “type” is. I don’t know why it even matters, but it feels like it should. When I close my eyes and try to picture who it will be that I’ll wind up with, I can’t see a blasted thing. Not even what kind of shoes. I’ve been trying to figure it out for close to 2 decades now. I’m not any closer than I was when I was 14. Human. Okay, that’s a start. Do I even need a “type”? I mean… can’t I just be attracted to a person and have it not matter if they’re butch, femme, or somewhere in between? For that matter… guy or chick?
– Which brings me to another thought. Do I have to assign myself to a specific sexuality? Am I actually gay? Sure, there are some guys that I’m attracted to, such as Wolverine (I’ve mentioned him before). However, is that more of a he’s ungettable so it doesn’t really matter kind of an attraction (very similar but in reverse to only liking the gay guys when I was in high school)? Why is this even a big deal? Why can’t I just be attracted to who I can connect with and fall in love with them? I helped a transgender woman tonight named Summer. This chick was awesome. We started chatting and she was really open about who she was. I’ll admit, I had a little crush on her and gave her a nicer car than I should have. Why should it matter that she was born a man? Why should it matter that Summer chooses to live her life in the way she feels comfortable – as a woman? I don’t think it should.
– A month or so ago I had a feeling drop into my heart – to work with the transgender community. I felt this desire to find a way to minister to them. The odd thing is that up until tonight, I had never met one (well, that I know of). Sure, I’ve met lots of cross dressers… but that’s different (which I’m not going to get into here). Connecting with Summer re-sparked that desire to connect with others. Yesterday I was thinking about contacting the Marin Foundation to try to find a church that could be a good fit for me. Today, I’m thinking that maybe I should see what I can do to be involved with building the bridge between Christians and trans folk. I don’t have some delusion that what I do will be of any great help to “them”. It just feels like it’s something I need to do. I’ll probably get more out of it than anyone else. I’m sure I’ll learn love, grace, and true vulnerability just to name a few things.
– There are definitely bits and pieces that I can identify with, or at least understand. I am a chick. I’m a girl who happens to only feel comfortable wearing guy’s clothing (including boxer briefs – bet ya didn’t know that huh?). But, I want to be cute. I may not wear make up, but I do my hair, I take care of myself, I try to smell good, and if it weren’t for Starbucks, I’d also be wearing nail polish. I’m a chick… I just like to wear guy’s clothes.
But when I was little, I wanted to be a boy. I remember praying that God would make me a boy when I’d wake up the next morning. It’s not because I felt I was born in the wrong body, it’s that everything I was interested in or wanted to do, or even wanted to be when I grew up, everything, was classified as “for boys”. I wanted to be a pastor, a mechanic, a cop, a race car driver, a fireman, a mail man, a professional thief… I was told that only boys could do those things (and that no one should be a thief – which I agree with). I wanted to play with trucks and GI Joes. I wanted to climb trees and ride my bike down crazy hills (I’m kind of surprised I didn’t die). Then I found out that girls get periods. Dude, that was enough to make me beg and plead for God to change my gender. When I got older, somewhere around 11, I realized that my gender was set and to start praying differently “God, please let the rapture come before I get my period.”
Spoiler Alert: After a few years that prayer was rendered useless. So then my prayer changed to “God, please make me straight and normal when I wake up.” I finally stopped praying that one in February of this year. My point though, is that I realized that my wanting to be a boy wasn’t something physiological in me – it was more about the traditional gender roles that my parents and society (okay fine, just my mom) were thrusting on me. I was able to reconcile my core identity and my gender. I don’t feel disconnected. I don’t feel that my body isn’t my own. I’m very comfortable with who I am, but for most of my youth I felt like a freak.
I think that is the reason that I’m drawn to the transgender community. Even though, I’m not part of them, I might have a bit of a glimpse into what they’ve had to go through.