The Chronicles of Lily Jane Part Two

Sometimes it’s so freaking astonishing to me how far I’ve actually come. For many years I was way too terrified to go out in public presenting as female. It’s coming up on Halloween and one year since I finally began to force myself to deal with my inner turmoil. I still struggle with RA and Bipolar Disorder. Sometimes immensely. But ever since I realized that I had been absolutely suffocating my inner self and just let go… Things have been gradually improving. So allow me to bring you up to speed on the latest happenings:

I have one more session with the nice Gender Therapist I’ve been seeing in Pinellas Park and I’ll have a Gender Dysphoria diagnosis letter to take to the Endocrinologist I’m scheduled to see in early December. I really like this therapist and may continue to see him after I’ve gotten my hormones started and whatnot. For some reason we’ve just really clicked right from the start and believe me, good therapists are worth hanging on to.

I’m doing alright healthwise. Still having breakthrough flares since quitting Sulfasalazine. That stuff just made me too damned ill. I’ve been on Plaquenil for about a week but my Rheumatologist told me it’ll take a couple months to start working. Kevzara injections are pretty effective but they weren’t quite covering me for the full two weeks so hopefully Plaquenil will help me get slightly better mileage than I was.

I should have said my PHYSICAL health has been decent. In the magickal Bipolarcoaster of my head things frankly haven’t been so cheerful. I woke up a couple days ago to a New York Times article saying that the current administration is trying to legally erase transgender rights and protections and define us into nothingness. I’ve been hysterical for days. I feel sick and absolutely demoralized. I’m getting by on little snippets and scraps of absurd laughter and it’s somehow sustained me this far.

It freaking figures. Barely make it through my twenties and early thirties and when I finally find the courage to assert my femininity the federal government decides to wage war on LGBT people. I’m still living and breathing and existing. I’m just terrified by hearing our President openly call himself a Nationalist and calling people like me an angry mob as they begin to systematically strip us of our rights and protections and civil Liberty. Everything might seem normal to you, but in the queer Community the fear is very real and tangible. I carry pepper spray and a knife whenever able, I don’t go out after dark alone, I’m afraid to lock eyes with strangers, I don’t go off the main roads and by all rights I guess I got my transitioning wish. Living as a woman and everything that comes with it. That includes mortal terror.

Still, things could be far worse. I’m becoming more politically active (mostly out of a sense of survival imperative) and I have a fuckton of support in my life. My amazing friends as well as my family have been as supportive as humanly possible. Except for my Dad. I’m scared of that conversation. But I won’t stop living my truth. I just have to hope for the best. I fucking refuse to go back. The psyche of Lily has become like a hospital for the tortured wreckage of Thomas. A name and an identity I never had a say in. I still have many elements of my old life or precious memories or whatever that I carry in my heart. As profoundly difficult as it’s been, since I began living as Lily I’ve been doing my best to heal my being, to let go of Thom without resentment or shame. To forgive him for being so miserable all the time he was hiding out not being able to comprehend what was happening to him. I’ll never forget the time a few days after coming out where I had a moment of reflection. As I grappled for the words tears began streaming down my face and all I could manage to say to myself was ‘Thank you so much for letting me out of my cage’.

I don’t intend to stop now or in the near future 🤘

Advertisements

The Chronicles of Lily Jane Part I

Things have been more than a bit perplexing of late. I’m moving forward with my transition as well as I’m able to currently and despite the passage of time seemingly coming to a crawl…. Stuff IS happening. I’m not sure what I should go into first here so bear with me as I struggle to articulate my thoughts.

I’ve been socially transitioning since I came out as Transgender in March so about five months now plus some change. I’m building up a new collection of clothing, working on makeup skills and doing my best to alleviate my sometimes crushing dysphoria. I have been seeing my longtime therapist again since coming out and he’s been really great and supportive. He is not a gender Therapist though so I referred him to one that I’ve been in contact with about figuring out what the standards/criteria for the gender dysphoria diagnosis letter. After that I’ll go to an Endocrinologist and hopefully begin hormones soon though I think Florida may require a year of social transition first.

Not crazy about living in Florida. Many of the people are mean and paranoid and I feel like I have a target on my back here, even in my most confident state. I’m working on facing my fears and doing my best to be strong. People I know tell me they think I’m brave or something and while I appreciate the sentiment I feel compelled to confess that I am frequently overwhelmed and absolutely crippled by fear and anxiety. I’m okay for the most part being out in public but strangers and crowds are really starting to freak me out sometimes. I’m usually okay at a concert or something but I’m finding myself getting really perturbed when I go pretty much anywhere. I know it’s not fair on my part because most people are totally cool but I’m seriously developing a bit of a social phobia and it’s been making me really have more of a sense of urgency about keeping myself together.

While I’m much happier day to day since coming out as trans, I’m also finding myself having to handle far more anxiety and apprehension than I have ever had to shoulder. The Rheumatoid Arthritis has been it’s usual capricious self so I’ve been riding my bike obsessively recently. I’m usually okay as long as I keep myself steadily burning all this bipolar energy. But sooner or later I have to slow down or stop. That’s where things get challenging for me to deal with.

I get into a lot of awkward situations and look for unisex bathrooms wherever. Not that feminine looking so no matter where I pee I’m gonna get dirty looks and perhaps worse but… Whatever. Hopefully things improve for future generations.

I miss the outlet that I used to have in Theatre. But I feel like all I could do at this stage is help behind the curtain. I don’t want to play male roles and I’m not confident in myself enough to seek out female ones yet. I’m not saying that I never will be, just that I’m not there and it distresses me. I’m hoping I face this soon as I feel like this part of my soul is withering.

Really doing the best I can to be a good Lily. I’m plagued by self doubt and this ugly part of Thom’s emotional baggage that refuses to let myself take credit or pride in anything. I know I’m a fairly decent person but I constantly juggle bipolar disorder with an autoimmune disease (RA) and the stress of transitioning and….. I can’t properly put into words how exhausting it sometimes is being Me… I keep pushing forward because at ever so slight a pacing…. Things are improving. I don’t hate the sight of myself any more. There are things I can and will change but…. I’m mostly okay with my meat skeleton.

I still have flashes of absolute spiritual agony from time to time. Believe me, those abrupt shifts can make you completely mad. But I’m learning that somehow I still have a friend in myself. We’re even closer than ever since I allowed her to reveal herself 😹

I still haven’t come out to my Dad. I’m afraid of how he will react. I know he doesn’t have a particularly high opinion of trans people and I’m afraid but…. I know I’ll have to deal with it eventually. Just not today.

I keep moving through the various systems like I have some idea of what I’m doing. Sometimes I’m not even faking. The closer I’ve become with my inner self the more determined I am to never retreat. Lily has a name, a close confidante in herself, and amazing support network. The thing I’m becoming super adamant about is not letting my emotional or physical pain turn me into a jerk. I know who the fuck I am and who I want to be and….

I’m here for the Long haul 😘

It feels Lovely to spill my guts in the form of a Planet Berserk Post. Swear I’m going to try to be more prolific.

Love-

Lily Jane 💜

Second Awkward Teenage Blues

This is something that keeps occurring to me lately, that I’m basically going through a more appropriate form of learning to be yet again. I try to not look goofy but sometimes I like to have a bit of fun with my outfits. I’m 35 going on 36 and I’m just now finally letting my guard down enough to let myself just be a girl. I spent my teenage feeling repulsive and hating most of the available clothes. I wasn’t even close to having myself figured out in those days but it was certainly in the works. So now I find myself out as transgender with most of my friends, family and work people. It’s been a little scary at times but largely a really good experience. A lot of really awesome people have revealed themselves as allies and my existing friends have been really incredible and supportive. My Mom too, bless her heart. Even though my Death Metal style kind of irks her 😛

So now where I find myself is….looking for an Endocrinologist and inquiring about beginning HRT. Building up a wardrobe and working on makeup skills which are still honestly pretty modest. Managing the RA as well as I can and getting lots of time on the bicycle because it helps me maintain a nice figure.

Aside from that, seeing my therapist, going to work, and immersing myself in music I’ve been rather laid back lately. Perhaps content is a better word. I had a neat experience getting ready for work yesterday. Got kind of zoned out while looking in the mirror while thinking of doing my makeup and hair. Looked myself over and had a few brief words with myself. As joyful tears began to drip all I could manage to say was ‘Thank you for letting me out of my cage’. I tear up just remembering it. It was one of the most unbelievably happy moments of my life. I’m still afraid. It just isn’t enough to stop me anymore. I’m coming into my own, I know who I am and I wouldn’t trade it for anything under the Sun.

All across the board people are astounding me with how cool they’re actually willing to be. There was a drunk couple at my work last night that I thought were making fun of me at first but wasn’t sure, turns out they were totally cool. Had a nice chat with me as they left and ran into me after I got off work and bought me a beer. I get nervous and apprehensive at times but…

The world is changing for the better. It may be hard to see at times, but I feel it in my heart and it’s beautiful and liberating and exciting all at once. That’s food enough for Me.

The future is so bright I need shades 😘

Love-

Lily Jane 💜

Full Speed Ahead!!!!

Things are gradually getting back to being a thrashing good time. The Beach is picking up and my income is better than it’s been in a long while now. Planning to buy some pretty clothes and makeup soon. Nothing too major, I want to spoil myself a little for being a good Lily. I got a raise at work! I caught my section up long enough yesterday to escape to the office with a plate of fish and veggies and beans and rice. My boss was typing something up at the desk and I managed to get a word in as I feasted. I was just like ‘This is the two year mark here for me, I’ve been doing my best and I’d like to ask you for a bit more money.’ He was pretty easy to sell on the idea. So that made an already pretty good day all the better.

I still have RA of course. I’m a bit concerned because I’m out of xeljanz and my insurance company wants new prior auth paperwork on it so I may need some samples. Over due for sppointments with my internist and my rheumatologist. Still doing the methotrexate injections weekly. Not crazy about it but those are the breaks. Back to the time of year when I pack prednisone and ibuprofen in my backpack for work. Luckily my boss is being cool about scheduling and giving me a few upstairs shifts (easier of the two floors) to relax a little and still make money. I can work on injection hangover day, I just can’t do a crazy hard day but upstairs I can handle on that particular day.

A bit of dysphoria of late. I’ve always kind of hated body hair on myself. Luckily I don’t get much facial or body hair to speak of. What I get I maintain carefully. I know it’s stupid but one of the reasons I’ve never really felt like a Man is that I’m mostly smooth as a baby and can’t grow a beard at all. I know it sounds goofy but it’s true. I’ve never liked body hair on myself. I just find it icky. A lot of the reasons I feel more female than male are more emotional than physical but there’s quite a bit of both. Dysphoria aside, I’m really enjoying my Instagram lately. I follow so many beautiful and inspiring trans people and some of them are just so sweet and amusing as all hell. I like it better than Facebook these days. My Facebook is in some sort of strange limbo from a ‘security issue’ that they won’t tell me anything about and I’m locked out of my account. I’m really puzzled by this but we’ll see I guess. I haven’t changed, really. I’ve just largely stopped censoring myself to make other people comfortable. I’m being open finally about this shit because the weight of my silence was suffocating me. I’ve worn panties or booty shorts under my boy clothes almost every day for years. I have a manic obsession with tights and thigh highs and over the last year or so I’ve just ever so gently been letting my guard down. It doesn’t mean I’m not frightened. It just means I’d rather be who I am and take whatever comes with it. I do have a lot to learn though. Particularly about makeup and hair care. I’m not totally clueless, just vastly inexperienced. Growing my hair out too so it’s gonna look like hell for quite a while. I’m excited and scared. I don’t know how people will react as I slowly find myself. I worry about what transitioning will mean for job prospects. I’m afraid of getting jumped and beaten. But I have to do it. I’ve never wanted anything more deeply. I’ll never forgive myself if I don’t. Having said that, I’ll be back with more soon 😘 Love, Lily

I’m still here and stuff is happening!

It’s been a rough few months and I’ve been kind of in the weeds mentally. I’m doing my best to keep my moods in check and deescalate them when necessary. So then, I have a lot to tell you about which I will attempt to keep as concise as possible.

My RA is under control and I’m doing fairly well in the that regard. Relatively low pain and inflammation as well as minimum fatigue. Xeljanz plus the weekly methotrexate injections seems to be the magic bullet. I still have some troublesome days but overall doing quite well.

Shannon’s Mother just left town after staying with us for about a month. She would have been on her way sooner but her health issues complicated her plans and she stayed a little longer. It was a pleasure to have her and she helped us fix up many things around the house. That said we’re happy to have our privacy and whatnot back.

I’m hopefully scraping enough $ together soon for a trip to Alaska in the summer. Shannon is directing a Shakespeare show and wants me to join the fun. I’m really nervous about acting and he’s pushing me because he knows that I kind of have a complex I need to break. Should be good fun.

Aside from that I’ve been doing some really heavy duty introspection lately. Halloween, as much fun as it was brought some things to the front of my mind that I have repressed the hell out of since… Honestly since I was a kid but very much so in the last twelve years or so of my life. I’ve honestly never been particularly comfortable with being male. I know this may come as a shock to some but it’s honestly how I’ve felt most of my life. When I present as a woman I feel at peace and whole. I feel comfortable in my own skin and right.

Some folks seem puzzled by this, but I’m not particularly masculine. I was the sensitive scrawny kid who always got picked on. I never told anyone until years later, but when I was a kid going into my teens I used to try on my mom’s clothes when she was shopping or at work. I wasn’t sure why, I just knew it made me feel nice and pretty. I didn’t think much of it initially but when I had my first girlfriend (before I figured out i was more into Men) she used to get so pissed at me for stretching out her Clothes. Anyway, being Harley Quinn for a day brought all this stuff back to the surface and well, I don’t think I’m a drag queen and i don’t think it’s a phase or fetish. I think I’m transgender and after first realizing at the age of twenty two I’ve finally admitted it to myself nearly thirteen years later. Just every time I’ve dressed like a girl I’ve quietly wished I could do it full time. I mean, If its a phase its a pretty freaking long one 😂

It was no surprise to my best friends. Many friends and my boyfriend have told me I have a feminine brain and they totally saw this coming. Mind you, I realize there’s a whole lot more to being a woman than just dressing like one.

I’m not sure about many things right now but I’m just carefully feeling the situation out. I don’t know to what degree I intend to transition and anything I do will be in baby steps. I know people will bring my mental health into the discussion. I am not delusional or confused. That’s what people said all those years ago…. That i was just being manic. But I’m not manic now and i still feel this way now. I just don’t want to constantly live in a state of hiding out. It’s robbed me of enough of my life force as is.

People who think I’m such an average guy, acting like one has always been a matter of survival. I’m a stage actor. I fake things well, even convincingly at times. But that’s all I feel like I’m doing as a ‘Man’. I’ve always found subtle ways to feminize myself somehow. The world may not see it, but I know 😇

I’m not going to pick apart all the reasons I don’t feel comfortable being a dude. But believe me, there are a great many. I’ve spent a great many nights crying myself to sleep trying to figure out which end is up. I cry a lot sometimes when I look at my body. I hate how muscular I am and how the veins in my arms are all prominent. I have some gender/body dysphoria and I’m tired of having to act like this isn’t happening to me. I know I’m not unattractive, I just don’t enjoy or identify with being a dude. It just hasn’t ever felt like anything but a role I’ve been trapped in.

I feel much lighter already having said what I have. I’ve already hinted at this enough over social media that one night my mom asked me ‘Who’s Lily? (My Tgirl name is Lily Jane, partial homage to Lilith as well as deliberate flower symbolism)’ and I told her. It was really awkward and I don’t even want to think of having this talk with my Dad. But my Mom was awesome in her way. My Boyfriend was the one who first asked me if I was having a trans issue. I totally denied it at the time but a few weeks later I said ‘Yeah, I may have lied about that…’. I was scared. I still am. But my Boyfriend and friends have been so amazing and supportive.

So that’s what I’ve been dealing with. If nothing else I hope it makes for a decent read.

Love,

Lily 💜

Variability

The holidays notwithstanding things are ever shifting. Time distorts, and it seems like nothing is happening yet everything is somehow different or altered. Some for the better, others not so much.

I’m feeling sad lately and I don’t always have the ability to put it into even the most basic of words or terms. Not all the time, mind you. I actually almost have an idea of where I’m going with this line of thought.

Often I say that I’m X (Sad, Depressed, Morose, or whatever) and ‘I don’t know why’. I’m choosing to point it out because it’s nearly always a misrepresentation of the truth which eventually emerges. Granted there are times when words utterly fail me, but it really doesn’t happen much. Point being that I am almost always blowing smoke when I say things like that.

I’m also feeling quite happy in some respects. I have a lot to be grateful for and I’m fully conscious of this. I mean, there are the usual stressors but my romantic life is unbelievably fulfilling despite my Darling and I being on opposing schedules. I’m excited about Christmas, and seeing my Sister as well as the rest of the family.

I’ve just been shifty lately. It’s the nature of my illness, even when it’s well controlled. I’ve been having occasional flashes of intense sadness, sometimes in the middle of talking to someone. Or anxiety. Either way I feel icky as hell almost instantly. It seems to worry people who see me like that. I try to explain that it happens and I just sort of have to let it run its course. Doesn’t usually last that long.

That, of course is the easiest way I can sum up bipolar disorder. It’s not the highs or lows that get you. It’s the back and forth shit that really drives a person berserk.

Any time I’m sick or my joints start flaring up I tend to get weepy and blubbery. Today is one of those days and I’m on the couch with my Pikachu trying to take it easy. I’m hoping the dreaded work bug I seem to have goes easy on me. I don’t want to have to go off my RA meds when I just got things under control.

So yes, I am a bit frustrated and feeling icky at present. But instead of staring at the walls and wandering around in my head I decided to write about it. Did I achieve anything? I suppose that’s purely a matter of perspective. Whatever. It made me feel a bit better, that’s all I really care about right now.

That’s all I have at the moment. Be well and enjoy yet another obnoxious selfie.

-Tommy Boy

The adventures of Tommy Boy

It’s been a good, albeit an odd fall/holiday season thus far. As I laid out in my previous post, Halloween was a dream come true. My income hasn’t been great but my awesome Grandmother gave us a publix card so we had an amazing Thanksgiving dinner at home with my best friend Matt. Had a blast but more importantly lots of leftovers 🙂

Rheumatologically I’m doing a bit better since switching up my meds. I’ve been on Xeljanz the last few weeks and it seems to be helping quite a bit so that’s awesome. Off the prednisone and back to sleeping relatively normally which I’m quite pleased with.

Mentally I’ve been a mixed bag but I’m holding. I’m a lot more relaxed now that I got a very helpful early Christmas present. Been a bit frantic and anxious lately but its mostly under control. Excited about seeing my big Sister soon too, she’ll be here a whole month 🙂

I don’t really worry much these days about dressing or looking like a bit of a Nancy boy. I mean, I’m not doing anything ridiculously over the top. I’ve just let my guard down a bit. I’m not cartoonishly such but I am a guy who is deeply in touch with his feminine side and not afraid to express it occasionally. I realize that I might get jumped for looking like a homo but I don’t really give a fuck. I dress the way I do because it gives me joy. I don’t really care if other people don’t like or approve of it.

All I’m really doing is finally being comfortable enough with myself to not give a shit what people(especially other men) think or say about me. Yeah, I’m a bit crazy and a big fairyboy. I know who the hell I am and it only took me well into my thirties to figure it out and to be okay with myself.

I sometimes feel like an oddball in both the queer and Metal communities. I’m Death Metal as fuck but I’m the only Gay Death Metalhead I know except for a dude I follow on Instagram (I’m on there as rainbowbritethedestroyer) 🙂

I don’t care if I fit in or if people approve. I’m the Death Metal Faerie Boi and I like myself this way, damn it.

Whatevers. It’s almost time for Christmas. All I want is more time with my darling and LOTS of wacky knee high socks. The more insane the better. That is all 🙂

Happy Holidays!

Tommy