Sunday, 24 May 2015

What a difference a day makes…

Its been a while (again), sorry.   Things have been very busy and work and other charitable interests have kind of taken over my life for months now.   To be honest, I’m always up and down, but I’ve been in a downward funk for a while too.  You could probably tell that from my recent posts - its all been a bit half hearted.  Over the last year and a bit, the issue I’ve had is diminishing confidence.  You will recall that last time I went out publicly in Rhiannon mode, I was sirred for the whole night by the waiters.  This set me off and together with spending increasingly less time as me, I just gave up on myself.

Of late, the desperation and longing to stop pretending that I’m male has grown.  The internal voice that reminds me that my outside doesn’t match the inside, has been bellowing louder and louder.  Several months ago, this voice caused me, almost without thinking to make a very out of character hair related decision.

Since I began presenting as Rhiannon, I have had a succession of relatively inexpensive, lower quality wigs.  They have been perfectly serviceable, but I obtained them in the least obvious way - i.e. not going into a shop and saying, “I’m trans, give me hair.” but more either on eBay or when I was visiting the lovely Tracey at the now defunct Trans-Femme.

About 8-9 months ago, the very lovely Ruth from the blog Ruth’s Odyssey, who also lives in this part of the country, recommended Andrea’s Hairroom in her blog.  I went once and got new hair - as featured here previously.  Despite it being a big step up, it wasn’t my forever hair (!) and I wanted something that matched more closely to my eyebrows and that fitted my head a little better.  Andrea is genuinely joyful to visit - an amazing ball of lively and engaging Trans-friendly energy.  I started talking about what I was looking for and Andrea responded that what I probably needed was something that was fitted properly for me so that it was more difficult to tell that it wasn’t my real hair.  We discussed the options and I decided to really go for it to get a very high quality human hair - from the right sources - wig specifically created for my head.  I knew that it was going to be expensive and in the aftermath, it seemed very frivolous.  What had I done?  I don’t even present as me very much before.  But she was right, it was what was needed, so I went with it.

Three and a half months past and last Monday, the date for my fitting arrived.  I was excited and scared at the same time.  Excited to see how I might look, but nervous because it could be that despite spending all of this money, I might still not look that great.  Would it really make any difference?  Even nice hair doesn’t change the confidence that you feel inside, surely?

So I went along for the fitting.  The first challenge for someone with my confidence levels was that this time it needed to be in Rhiannon-mode.  To properly see the effect of it, to make sure it worked with me as a woman, I needed to be presenting correctly.  I haven’t been out publicly since I can’t remember when.  The thought just terrified me and I was tempted to welch on the appointment.  So I did what any girl would do, I sought moral support.  I asked a girl pal, A, to accompany me to and thank goodness, she graciously agreed.

I arrived early to work, got ready and spent the day very happily working as me.  Its amazing how my whole mood and countenance changes when I get the chance to present in this way.  Then after several telephone conferences, at 2pm, the time arrived.  The toughest part for me is always ‘the walk of shame’.  Getting from my office to the car is the most difficult part - will I be seen by people who otherwise see me as a boy every day?  Will they put two and two together?  With A there by this stage, I was calm and a grumpy stare from one man didn’t phase me too badly.

Once I was in my car, I was ok.  Surprisingly calm and by the time we arrived for the fitting, I was relaxing.  Andrea was her usual amazing self and I was immediately sucked into a time of acceptance and happiness.  But more than that, new hair.  I’ve never really thought of myself as the type of girl who has epiphanies.  But at that fitting I had one.  To say that I walked out completely different is probably overstating the case, but its not a million miles from the truth.

I messaged a few friends that evening with a text along the lines of: “I got my new wig today.  Felt amazing. Very happy.  I don't think I've ever felt so amazing, relaxed, unafraid and happy. So exhilarated. x such a big smile.”  I will do another blog about the mechanics of the new wig at another time (with more, better photos!), but for now, I want to focus on the effect of it.  I’ve never worn a wig that wasn’t in some way flawed.  It never quite looked, from all angles, like hair should.  It never really passed as hair.  In the last week, just simply having something that looks like it grew out of my scalp and that it has always been there has almost, in one go, restored my confidence to where it was before I lost it.

Immediately following my fitting, A and I had discussed going out for dinner which I never for a moment thought I would actually do.  I thought that I would chicken out.  Whereas actually, this time, I felt so lovely that I wanted to go.  So we went.  I’m sure I got clocked, but actually, I didn’t care, I just was floating on a cloud of confidence.  So much so, I went shopping afterwards in Rhiannon mode too.  I’m not sure what’s happened, but something just clicked into place in my head.  Two days later, I spent the whole day in the office in Rhiannon mode again and usually when I’m like that and we have visitors (e.g. deliveries), I scuttle out of the room and hide.  That day, I felt happy with how I looked and just smiled sweetly and stayed at my desk.  The next day I was desperate to be me again.  The weekend has disappointed because I’m at home and can’t be me.

I just can’t wait for the next chance to go out publicly as me.  Maybe you could argue that I’ve just found a new crutch that has helped. but if that’s the case, I don’t care.  I’ve not felt like this for a long time, I’m enjoying being me, again.  I’m excited to push the boundaries, again and finally, again, it starts.