Monday, 29 August 2011

Time - 15.5 hours

Tomorrow, I have a doctor's appointment. It's an appointment I have been trying to get for the past three years, and been looking forward to since January. When I heard about it, I booked the day off from work, phoned my family and told my friends. I drank to it at symbl.

I'm really fucking terrified.

I realise that there's no need to be, of course. I am just finally, roughly three years after first asking, going to see somebody who can talk about gender issues. Of course, in that time, my need for someone to talk to has sort of diminished. I had counsellor after counsellor, until I got the counsellor who refused to talk about my identity at all but suggested that he teach me coping techhniques to better hide the effect that the issues were having on my life. I had anti-depressants for a while, then I didn't, then I did again (and thank gods I did, since it was about six months after I went to the GP with severe depression that I got to see a counsellor). I've spent those years finishing a degree, job hunting and working. I've been role-playing and reading philosophy books. I've moved house four times and started and ended relationships.

And I've been reading about gender. Thinking about gender. Talking (or strenuously avoiding talking) about gender issues. Learning about trans issues. I don't think that a single day has passed without me thinking about it, whether it's cajoling myself into going outside or getting frustrated that I didn't correct someone's pronoun use AGAIN (really, I am very bad at that). I sometimes look back and wonder how I managed to get anything else done with this huge obsession taking over my life (my degree? Sheer luck and the determination of my partner at the time).

At this point, when I'm out as trans to friends, to family and to work, there's not much that I need to relate to them. Yes, there are parts of my life which are really difficult, and they have been difficult for a long time. And this is how I cope with them, and this is how I need to not have to cope any more. A lot of the terror and pain has been and gone - I couldn't keep it up for that long (hur hur). I have a job, I'm headed back to uni, in fact to all intents and purposes I have a stable, functioning life. A model of social transitioning. And just when I think that, I start to worry that I am far too competent and they will see that I clearly am coping so well that I don't need their support. I used to have this devil's bargain with my GP, who wanted me to be so upset and depressed that I clearly needed anti-depressants, but calm and capable enough to be trusted with them. He generally agreed to the prescription after I started crying. So I can see where this fear comes from, but it doesn't stop me tying myself in knots about tomorrow.


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