Monday, August 31, 2009

My Babies!

I’ve been packing up my life alongside my wife who is packing up hers. It has been hard for me. I get down, depressed and run out of energy. I am not making much progress. My wife seems to be doing ok, but she is driven to work and she wants the house down to bare essentials in the next week. Working today through a box my wife put together for me. There were some pictures of the kids when they were younger. One was of my son in a crawling pose double exposed with his sister’s face almost in profile. When I saw it I doubled up in emotional pain and cried, “My Babies! My Babies…! What have I done to my Babies?!”

Monday, August 10, 2009

I hope you Dance...

"When you get a chance to sit it out or dance, I hope you dance" Lee Ann Womack

Last week, on Wednesday, my wife and I had a confrontation about my gender.
What was it I wanted to do? How did I intend to live? It was a confrontation we have had time and again over the last fifteen years. Always, in the past, ALWAYS, when faced with the choice to sit it out or dance, I have chosen to sit it out. The fear of losing her, the fear of her anger, the fear of her hurt, the fears of losing my children and having them disrespect me, all of this went into those many decisions to sit it out. She was very angry with me over the deceit and the money I've spent developing a wardrobe. She used arguments to make me feel bad about my actions and my "desires". She brought up the kids and their friends. She brought up family. She's used it all before and it worked for her. But not this time.

Wednesday, I chose to dance.

I know that I have to leave the house. Whether I get a job or not, I am going to have to live somewhere else pretty soon. She's asked me a couple of times if I have changed my mind. And I have heard the hurt in her voice when I told her, "No, hon, I'm sorry but I haven't."

I have a lot of sadness. I love my wife. I love my kids. But this charade I have played in the past is killing me. I want to be real and available and share who I really am with the people I love. Somehow, I just haven't been able to do that as a man. People tell me I am more real when I am being myself and it's just plain easier. It is easier to be open, to have a sense of humor, to enjoy my life, to be in the moment. I've stopped thinking about when God might call me home. Before, it could not be soon enough. I don't even think about it now.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Saturday's Hike...

I went hiking up to the Big Four Ice Caves off the Mountain Loop Highway on Saturday. It is an easy hike.  Little children do it all the time. [Sow how come was it the guys who all had their big dogs pulling them up the trails???]  I wasn't sure how I was gonna do.
Let me step back a bit.
I had thought about doing this hike for a while now.  This Saturday I had a very good opportunity to do it as myself.  My wife was out of town for her reunion and I was going to have all sorts of time to myself.  I wanted to this hike as myself.  It was a little scary because I haven't done anything outdoors as Shannon yet and a girl alone in the woods is a lot more risky than if I'd gone hiking as a man.  This was to be Shannon's first hike.
But I hemmed and hawed and spent too much time on the 'puter that morning.  It got towards noon and I figgered that if I was gonna go, I'd better get at it and preparing to go as myself was going to make it that much later and I was concerned that I might just use that as an excuse not to go.  I decided to go as "him".  Now Michael has not been out in the woods by himself much either.  Just a few hikes and one camping trip. And Michael isn't any more brave than I am, but he does have less to fear.  [I am seperating myself here for a little clarity. I do not really see myself as twoo people, Michael and Shannon]
I stopped and picked up some ice and some drinks and a couple pieces of chicken for snacks. spent an hour plus cruising up to Big Four.  The parking lot was really busy.  I hit the trail and hiked up to the ice caves.  I had my camera and tripod with me but I didn't stop to take any pictures.  I was too focused on making the hike.  I was [am] concerned about a pain, a knot in my right leg below my calf.  It is almost like I stretched it too much but it doesn't go away.  I was concerned then, and still am, that it might be PAD [Peripheral Artery Disease] What I could find out from the Internet was that until I could see my Dr. I should just go ahead, take some aspirin and keep walking. but I was a little uncertain.  I did fine.  It got humid toward the top, especially when the forest thinned out and all that was left was the mountain ground cover.  I was a bit surprised that there were only 3 small opening s for the caves.  I didn't realize that it was too early in the season for the caves to be of any size.  But there was a very cool, moist breeze coming out of them and I squatted down in front of one to cool off.  I got someone to take a picture of me up there and then started back. 
I was a little disappointed in myself that I didn't get this done as myself. and I thought on that as I was walking back the trail.  It occurred to me that I should think of this as "Michael's Last Hike." As I was heading back down the trail, I started singing to myself the chorus to REO Speedwagon's "Can't Fight this Feeling" :
And I cant fight this feeling anymore
Ive forgotten what I started fighting for
Its time to bring this ship into the shore
And throw away the oars, forever
In the context of my transition, sing about myself to myself, the whole song applies very well.  So, instead of Shannon's First Hike, definitely became Michael's Last Hike.
I saw the doc today and it is not PAD just a doozy of a strain