rey (ben), these are your first steps.

I am having all these dreams since the appointment.

Sometimes I have the opportunity to say out loud “I am transgender” to my late grandmother and she just hugs me. Sometimes my face contorts in the mirror before my eyes and I look as handsome as Adam Driver. Sometimes I am brave and truly wholly myself.

(This is like the day of a haircut times A THOUSAND.)

(… I need a haircut.)

Because this time my face is going to change, you know? Things ARE GOING TO CHANGE. And I need to talk about it today, because the waves of self-doubt and imposter syndrome are crashing over me again and my fucking stomach hurts about it.

So, I have to remember being a child who was so enraptured by the description of Ron Weasley- gangly and broad-shouldered- that I asked my mom in a McDonald’s drive-thru if I was gangly and broad-shouldered. I remember being privately delighted whenever my name and short hair in middle school got me mistaken for a boy at school, even when Eric Sutherland accused Chris Peckron and I looking like two boys kissing in the hallway. I remember how I have spent the past four Halloweens SO FUCKING HAPPY to be dressed as a vaguely-male-shaped-entity. (Hello, Bert Macklin, Pennywise, Owen Grady, Aziraphale, my darlings.)

(Fuck, why do I dress up like Chris Pratt all the time? I need some Hemsworth in my repertoire.)

(… I did re-watch Ragnarok over the holidays and maybe I’m going to start working out. Goddamn.)

I remember how happy it made me this past month to receive Christmas cards from my friends addressed to “Daniel.”

I am not making this up. I am not wrong about this thing I want. I need to keep saying it, because 31 years of not knowing I could make myself feel better is a long fucking time.

(It is not too late.)

I haven’t driven to the pharmacy yet. I’m so nervous, so I’m just sitting in bed still and eating my oatmeal. (Fuck chia seeds, by the way.) But it’s happening today. I watched all the videos the doctor sent me and I kind of think I know what I’m doing. I’m scared about it hurting. I’m scared about doing it wrong.

I’m scared of being wrong. I’m scared of the changes happening and of only hating myself anew.

But… and I’ve been reading about this A LOT… I don’t think it usually happens like that. I really, truly suspect deep down in my bones that this has been an unnamed source of pain in my heart for a really, really long time. I just didn’t think I could help myself in this way. And the only thing I want anymore, after an entire year of punishing myself, is to feel something like good. And all I can think is… well, why wouldn’t I try this?

“It’s enough that you want it.”

I want it.

(I mean, fuck, if only for the Halloween opportunities, right?)

I am fighting today, sort of like with haircuts, to remind myself this won’t change who I am, even if it does actually change the shape of my face. I was good before and I will be good after. I was enough before and I will be enough after. This is not to validate myself, because I was already valid. This is to feel something like a sort of joy that I never thought I could have. This is to, fingers crossed, walk into the first day of grad school in the fall and feel so explosively like myself that I can’t even handle it.

Becoming who you want to be shouldn’t be a practice that is only come to through years of suffering. Becoming who you want to be should be a playground. We should have the freedom to explore and to discover and to follow each unmarked trail in our hearts as far as we want to follow them. (PACK A SNACK.)

“No one’s ever really gone.”

I’m not going anywhere. I think maybe I’m finally showing up.

May the Force Be With Us.

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