Wednesday, January 7, 2009

I want to understand

Since I jumped into blogging and the “Living Transgender…” video project seemingly out of the blue, it occurs to me that it would be great to have a question and answer column on this page. I have no clue (yet) how to set something like that up in the sidebar so in the meantime I am sticking to the standard post-and-comment format. But I do welcome questions about my life – the changes I feel and so on - as well as things about my purposes for being so out and so vocal as a Christian Transsexual. I was asked a bunch of questions by the Producer of the video project (and in that context) and so I thought with a little punching up it would be quite bloggable.

(This picture is from earlier today in Santa Monica - more to be added soon)

Subject: I want to understand

Are you personally telling your story to show how very difficult it is to transition?
Yes, but that also includes showing how healthy and rewarding it is for those like me that must transition.

Does this include showing how much you have to go through to become whole in your body as a woman?
Maybe not in gory detail, but a little of this is the context of my life presently.

Do you tell the story to take people on a journey… to educate, to entertain, to dissuade someone from the same plight of pain, anguish and sorrow?
YES Absolutely! - to educate is absolutely necessary for any of us to be accepted in society, but to entertain? Hmmm... I never looked at this effort from that angle, but I'm down for that too.

But then I must ask, is my life story entertaining? I hope I am not boring or dull, but I am not really the one that can answer that question am I? To quote a character from a Dan Simmons sci-fi novel in his Hyperion series - "death is easy, comedy is hard". I love God's sense of humor and so I can, and do, celebrate in a potentially entertaining way His love and His Character by living as one made in His/Her image. I often am one of the foolish things of the world that confounds the wise, like June Bugs and carnivorous plants (I.E.: God's answer to the Vegans because they have to be careful what their vegetables eat) just to name a few things God has made that are entertaining and humorous, so why not include living a life as a woman in a man's body as entertainment? I certainly have had to laugh at myself and be entertained by the absurdity of my circumstances to survive the worst of them.
To dissuade others from this plight I may not be able to do (and perhaps should not attempt) if theirs is a necessary one. If one must transition they must – this is not a choice! It would be great if I could educate the world and show them that it is OK. It isn't sin, it isn't a horrible perversion if it enhances ones ability to live and function sanely – or is it a sin to attempt to cure cancer or birth defects too? My intent is to help anyone avoid the anguish and pain of remaining hidden away, or conforming to some set of rules that constrict them and keep them trapped in an incomplete or compromised form as I endured for most of my life. But I also would try to keep those that should not transition from taking the situation too lightly by showing just how much one does have to go through. I don't want to see anyone go through all I have and must yet endure only to discover it’s a mistake - Oh how tragic and painful that must be!! In one of my support groups there is a guy who did that - he transitioned into a woman and now is going back to a man. And in public, the LA Times Sports writer Mike Penner came out very publicly as Christine and now has gone back. I can't begin to imagine how these guys feel on the inside emotionally now - but I bet in hindsight they wish they had thought it through a bit harder before they jumped into transition.

Is your point overall to show the journey as such a cross is too large to bear?
Not really, because it is a burden that I can and happily – most of the time - am carrying. That is the aspect of it I would want seen because to NOT transition for me would be too much for me to bear. If it is what one must do to live in accordance with how they are hard-wired on the inside it is not too big a burden, but it could crush those for whom it isn't necessary. Transgender suicides are common among those that need to but don’t (or can’t) transition and among those that do only to discover it was not the right thing to do. This isn’t something trivial like changing one’s hair color! This is also why people that are not trans have a hard time understanding what we truly suffered and must suffer to be complete - the depth of it scares people that have not been forced to this extreme to live sanely, and that is why so many people act in anger and rage towards us – they simply cannot comprehend why we must do this. I hope to alleviate much of that fear.

I'm just being the devils advocate here for a minute, nothing personal… I understand - no problem - it is healthy to examine these things. …But I want to open up dialogue to discover the true nature and dimensions of the transition here. So do I – and I welcome sincere questions from all who have them.

Are we showing that with a little bit of pain or a lot of pain, whatever it takes, it's the only way?
For me it is the only way, pain or not. I found that there was truly no way I could live and be sane without crossing the gender boundary – most of my pain, other than that from future medical procedures is in the past and most of that was from the soul-abuse I suffered by trying to live by rules and standards imposed by people that did not understand my situation - myself included in my younger days.

Are we looking to get sympathy from our viewers…?
I can accept a little sympathy over what I have suffered and have yet to suffer once in a while, but I am not "looking" for it, no. What I look for from viewers and readers is simply tolerance and a willingness to understand me as a person and see others like me in a tolerant light.

…and to get them to feel as bad as you did or do at particular times; the strife, the rejection, the pain, suffering, sorrow? Oh no! I never want people to suffer the depth of despair I did or feel as crushed and cast off and alone as I did. But I would like people to understand the amount and the scope of our suffering because one can't know us or really understand what it means to be our friend without knowing about the depth of our anguish. I also would prefer compassion rather than judgment from those that personally disagree with what I do – God and I can work out the details of my unique journey without those that have no tolerance or understanding attempting to impose their own personal morality on us.

Are we to show others there is hope and they shouldn't hesitate to travel in your footsteps? Absolutely there is hope!! My life and joy and purpose in life is to give other people hope - yes you can be whole and happy and can know yourself as you were created to be and you can know your Creator – that is my message to each person trans or not. However, I am the only one that gets to use my footsteps exactly, but I can share the road and help leave signposts for others that of necessity must take this journey across the gender boundary. But here is a warning: Do hesitate long enough to be sure that transition is right for you. Seek counseling and health professionals. If you are married work things through carefully and openly because transition will change everything in your life!

Do we show the public and this could essentially be anybody to live their life to the fullest, whether it be a gay coming out, a lesbian, a scared little rabbit straight guy or gal that finally makes up their mind that they are not going to 'take it anymore', and begins to assert his or herself to the world, no holds barred, no excuses, no explanations, just be yourself whomever you are, or care to become…?
Perfect – yes! Be you yourself to the fullest you can be - embrace yourself as you were created - be whole, be free, be filled with joy over who you are and live like that in front of God and man! Live in Spirit and in Truth!!

Or are we talking to just the LGBT element here or are we reaching out to the world in general and showing what someone's potential is if we put our minds to a goal.
Hopefully to both! I am here to encourage unity and understanding within the TBQLG community and help that community become a part of the mainstream of human society too. I approach this as one human being to other humans. I think we are able to do reach out to all and show that we can all accomplish understanding and live side by side in peace once we realize that each person is just as unique as I am or you are. In this way we do encourage every person to attain his or her own potential.

And is this goal of yours so different and unrelated to the above? No – I believe this goal of telling my story is why I exist - to tell the story of one LIVING transgender, Christian and human. This particular me-ness correlates to someone else that is living lesbian or living straight, or living polygamous, or living Buddhist or living life after a horrible car wreck - living with whatever makes one unique. It is in the fact that I am unique that I am most like every other person.

My goal, to tell what it is like Living Transgender in American Society Today isn't something that can be captured in a sentence or a paragraph - yet I am living it daily and my life tells the story. Where we go from here isn’t written yet, but I can invite you to watch along with me.

Thanks for coming along this far too.

Warm regards,



  1. Lovely picture and blog, Eva! I was just there at the pier over a week ago with the kids (posted a pic of me at the pier in my own blog). I hope we can show the world that being trans AND a Christian is possible, and that we can spread His love and not the hate of man.

  2. Hey Lori - Thanks!
    That is my hope too. It appears to me there are so many trans-folk that are Christian it is disproportionate with the rest of society, but we all seem to keep fairly quiet while God has been silently building us up for something that we may be on the brink of in these days of National change - I guess we will see what He does with a few people of Faith. After all Jesus with a handful of others turned the world upside down. I am hoping that maybe through us - in God's amazing and mysterious (and often ironic) ways - we will be able to spread His Love and help end a lot of the ignorant hatred. I for one feel that I have been given so much of His love and Grace, how could I not want to spread it around.
    Have a blessed day, sis