Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Out of the Closet... into ... life

~ Written by Adarabeth Veau

This message was developed for those individuals who have not ventured from their world of secrecy because of shame or guilt, not so much for those that have faced their fears and walk more confidently, whatever their journey may be.

It is a brief synopsis of contributing factors to my own level of spirit and in no way is intended to pull someone kicking and screaming into something they do not dream about...

For me, I have a dream ... it is of a place called anywhere...

"Haven't you wanted to be free my dear? I can't keep pretending you don't exist... that I don't know you. You do, in my mind, in my heart, in my reality ever time I look in the mirror... Come... take my hand... I will take you there... We will leave tonight… there's no need to tell anyone, they will only hold us down... so by the morning light we will be halfway there, halfway to anywhere, a place where you and I can be – however, whoever – without shame or guilt, without fear... So unlock your heart, drop your guard, I will take you there... Where honesty no matter what we wear is paramount... where we are safe to just be..."

I have a dream...

Seven of nine...

This is the number of lives I have used up. Why nine you ask? Because like a cat, I always land on my feet.

When I was 6, my 8 year old brother and I went swimming in a fast moving aquaduct about 2 miles away from my grandparents rural farm in Southern Alberta. I got carried away and carried under. My brother saved me. Life one.

When I was 7, my now 9 year old brother took me skiing for the first time. In his infinite wisdom he decided he would take me to the top of the mountain (at the time 2 chair lifts and 1 t-bar to get there). All the way up I cried how scared I was. At the top, he was so frustrated with me he told me I was on my own and he would see me at the bottom. I never saw him until the end of the day. My first run was nearly my last one ever as I did not know how to stop and literally flew into the trees. Life two.

When I was 8, my brother (see a pattern here) decided we should go fishing about 3 miles away from our home in Southern British Columbia where we lived in a small community surrounded by mountains. Oh, we caught some fish alright, and the attention of the first of 3 bears I would have the pleasure of seeing up close and personal over the next 20 years of my life. Life three.

Flash forward 11 years. Not to dismiss the close calls in those 11, but one knows when they are kissing death just what it feels like.

Bear number 2 was my closest kiss of death yet... life four.

At 20, I had already well begun my addiction to epinephrine – adrenaline. I had been to 12 countries, 32 US states, 5 CA provinces on my own, skydived, para-glided, skied double black diamonds, encountered much more wildlife up front, and a wide host of other adrenalizing events.

Most intoxicating was going out as Adara for the first time totally public. I had my nails, hair, and makeup done professionally at malls and salons close to where I lived. My clothes were new and in style. And I was transformed from the 5 year old playing with mom's stuff – through an adolescents FULL of fear of discovery by tough brothers, and girlfriends who loved it or hated it – into this very pretty, if not awkward young woman.

There were no near misses as I discovered my new drug of choice – exploring my dual gender identity in the public realm. But my previous close calls had given me more reasons for, rather than against, this exploration. My feminine side refused to be silent. Life was too short to keep her stifled.

Life number five, at 22, confirmed this very loudly. When one rolls a 14 ton picker truck over, crawls out of the shattered windshield, they get a new perspective on life. You appreciate it better. You begin to wonder why feelings of shame or guilt or even fear were valid at all. And you begin to believe nothing should stand in the way of just being yourself. Of just loving yourself and exploring all that that means.

At 25, I as Adara or anyone else was quite comfortable expressing myself.

Crawling down an 80 meter cliff with a thawing wet wall of water beside me, constantly reminding myself to stop being so stupid and use ropes next time made me wish I had stayed at home to break in those new heels. Stupid life number six.

At 25, though, living an extreme life gave me the courage to be myself and to dress up and go out with pride whenever I could ...

Then at 27, I was in Dominical, Costa Rica. Here, number seven finally taught me once and for all, life is too short. It was the most dramatic and closest time I have ever come to know this life ends with finality. Riptides, 7 foot waves and darkness. When you face the reaper, your life does not pass before your eyes, the ones you love and the things you love do. And after, if you are lucky enough, you hold all those things dear.

And because of that, I will never put my identities into a closet again. None of them.

Now to ruffle some feathers...the purpose of my rant...

From my view of life in general, transgenderism specifically - it is all like a rodeo. You have the crowds, the bull rider and the majestic bull. The crowds are safe in the stands – like a closet. No show from them. No fear of pain, rejection, or risk. They are behind the stands. Holding their emotion away even from themselves. Safe.

Than you have the rider. Bold enough to be on display and get into the action. They are living freely and with courage. They have faced some of their fears, and good or bad, right or wrong, they get out there. And they live for the ride.

And finally you have the Bull. It does not care who is looking at it. Its one purpose is to give the rider the ride of their lives. Or to die trying. It is the boldest creature that will buck and kick and always try to be free. If you can hang on you will have the ride of your life. Or you can be that ride...

The question is which are you?

The `cause' of having our community not just tolerated, but actually accepted within the greater community comes from those who have stepped from the confines of the closet and into the real world. Some of us are far more comfortable keeping their identity hidden from everyone else in their lives. Perfectly fine if you are truly comfortable there... there really is no 'cause' in this form of safe.

But if you are not, than what is stopping you?

If you want to be open, liberated and to freely express yourself, whether you cater to the definition of CD, TV or TS the only thing stopping you ... is ... you.
Sure, you may have to face down a plethora of reasons, fears or objections... but is it really circumstance or will that holds one back from just being themselves? The liberation of self, in accepting self, and finally celebrating self, is what life is really all about.

Don't you owe it to yourself to discover this?

Of course.

You do.

It doesn't matter the clothes you wear... we are all draped until we shed the confines of shame, fear or guilt. In that, our nakedness frees us. It is the confidence of realizing, accepting the strength of yin and yang energy within oneself that one becomes liberated.

You do not have to face dying to know this.

So, come, take my hand, the hand of all those who have walked before you...

Explore my dream...

Adarabeth

Monday, November 14, 2005

The Biology of Belief

(by Stacie Ku)

Just read an interesting article in today’s (Nov 14, 2005) San Francisco Chronicle about a new book "The Biology of Belief” (http://tinyurl.com/bsdu7) which triggered this train of thought. It is the author’s belief that our beliefs, not our DNA control our biology. Taking that premise to the extreme, might it be possible someday for someone to change gender simply by thinking about it; to change that little chromosome back to xx or xy??

Gender (external biology) and femininity/masculinity (internal psych) are not the same. Western society says our external dictates our internal, so doctors have been known to surgically chose a baby's gender when a baby is born with dual sex organs, or say a baby was a girl when it was really a baby boy with undescended testicles. The baby is then raised consistent with their external gender.

We are in this group because regardless of our physical gender, we are different inside. Could the simplified cause of transgenderism be that our mothers subconsciously want a daughter when we were conceived or during the early stages of pregnancy when our cells were still asexual?

I can remember my mother saying she wished she had a daughter when I was young. Perhaps she was hoping for a girl after I was conceived since I already had an older brother?? But because she didn’t know enough about it, or how to really do it, she was only partially successful, affecting ony my psych but not my biology?

While the mind body connection does exist, it has not been fully explored or documented to Western scientist’s satisfaction, so they disparage it. Yet remember at one time, it was accepted that the world was flat and that the Sun revolved around the Earth. How would ancient scientist explain the Internet, radio, television, the microwave over and so forth? Would they believe what they could not prove or duplicate with their ancient technology? Would those things not seem magical to them?

Was the Delphi Oracle a myth or an unexplained way of communication with unknown forces to predict the future? Is our present day weather forecasting the modern day equivalent of the Delphi Oracle?

I guess the point I am trying to make is just because we can’t understand it or explain it, does not mean it did not exist, or can not work. Our minds and subconscious works in ways we still do not understand. We have not learn to write programs for our subsoncious, we just barely know how to operate our minds. Imagine what we could do if we could reprogram our subconscious?

In the early 90’s, I did a fire walk with Tony Robbins. I actually walked barefoot across about a 15 foot bed of hot burning coals. Yet it felt like I was just walking on cool popcorn. Talk about reprogramming! It was a signature moment in changing my beliefs about what was possible.

So, while currently in the realm of science fiction, perhaps some day we can learn enough about the mind body connection to change our gender through thoughts alone.

Stacie
Working on her mind body connection

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Ever so foolish...

(by Alysyn Ayrica)

Forgive me if this is something that seems ridiculous, but the closer it gets to the anniversary of Jenn's death, the more I find myself dwelling on her.

Throughout the year I've been struggling with this loss, but no amount of crying dispels the hurt.

I wrote this letter, which I plan on setting on her gravesite November 30th, the day before, as to avoid any chance meetings with her mother (a whole different set of emotions...don't get me started!):

Dear Jenny,

When you left, you took a promise with you.

You married me to escape a life, and, instead, found someone in whom you could hide. You said that you didn’t love me at first, but, in time, learned that I was worthy to be loved. I can’t find it in myself to agree to that, but you never failed to find your way back to me, and I could never let you go.

The pain we experienced in the short time we had together was excruciating, but somehow it performed as an adhesive to bind us in ways that confounded the rest of our family, and even many of our friends. They saw the closeness we shared, and knew without a doubt that I worshipped you.

We fought a battle that exceeded the bounds of fairness and consideration. In the end, we discovered that we were strong enough to put aside the concerns of our families and only see the truth of what must be done in each other. We knew that the happiness of our children was more important than our pride and anger.

We made a promise to each other…for better or for worse, in sickness and in health...we remembered that there were more important considerations in this life than our own desires. We remembered why we stayed together all those years, through the difficulties that seemed to plague us. We found each other again.

Sitting in that courthouse, the hardest thing in the world for me was sitting there, looking into your eyes, and telling you that I missed my Jenny; and your response made void all of the heartache, because you came back to me.

Two weeks later you were gone.

I have tried to tell myself that it is better, because now there is quiet. You can no more cause the chaos you were so adept at creating. You were so sick, and there was nothing that I could say to make you understand that it was something you needed to take more seriously. I knew that, one day, you would die…sooner than anyone else expected; but I always thought I would have the chance to be at your side, saying goodbye. I never even got that much.

I was supposed to see you in a couple of days, and we were going to spend time together with the kids. Why couldn’t you at least have waited a few more days?

Jenny, I have tried to move on. I have dated, fallen in love, and have been hurt more in this last year trying to prove to myself that I can continue living in your absence.

But I can’t. You have become a stone in my heart.

I wake up each morning, the sun across my bed, reminding me of so many mornings when I would turn and just stare at your beauty. Often I would wake you by tracing your hairline with my fingers, feeling your silken hair which fascinated me for so many years.

I still see the often elusive green in your eyes shining up at me, and that smile which forced me to dream of many brilliant possibilities of lives to come. I remember the way your top lip crinkled when you kissed me, or the funny way your mouth would move to one side when you were feeling mischevious. I hear your laugh, and wonder if I can ever share those memories with our children when they are old enough to truly appreciate them.

You stole my heart and will so long ago, the truth is that I never was able to live without you after our vows were exchanged.

Oh, how I miss you. Everyone that has come after you has been merely a potential replacement. Is it even possible for anyone else to fill this space in which you have resided for so long?

Thank you for my children. They have given me so much to live for. Without them I would be truly lost. I had contemplated, for so long, leaving this world so that you could have them without regret or embarrassment, finding a new life in time. Instead, I am left to care for them, as inept a parent as I am, and with an emptiness where you rightfully belong.

I want you to know that I’m doing my best to keep the peace with your family, for you and for the kids. Your dad and I have become closer, and I love him dearly. Your sister is precious and dear to me, and I never think of her as anything other than a beloved sister of my own.

Your mother and I are on tenuous terms, but I prefer not to create problems if none are necessary. I promise that I will try to be as forgiving as possible for the sake of the kids’ love for her.

But, as for me, I’m so empty. I don’t know how to feel about anything anymore. How is it that for someone so sure about everything else, I can be so lost where my emotions are concerned?

I am not so foolish as to wish that you would come back to me. You are, for once, at rest. It is all I ever wanted for you…to be at peace.

I just wish peace didn’t have to come at such a high price.

I still love you, Jenny.

Alysyn


Please God, spare me from having to write such as this next year...

Friday, November 11, 2005

11:11 on 11/11 of 11

(by Michele Angelique)
It is the 11th moment of the 11th hour, on the 11th day of the 11th month, and 11 11 2005 sums numerologically to 11… {1+1+1+1+2+0+0+5}. Therefore, this moment is 11:11 on 11/11 of 11. It is time to talk about the number 11.

At 11 a.m. on November 11, 1918, the "eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month” the Armistice Treaty officially ended World War I. There is great significance in this day, and also in the number 11. A master number, the number 1.11111111 squared = 1.2345678987654321. One encompasses all other numbers, a fact which is mathematically significant. The number 11 carries the vibration of evolution, not only in commemorating peaceful resolutions to wars, but through powerful new wisdom brought forth by the New Age movement.

Today is an appropriate time to open another new door between the Transgender and New Age communities. I have previously referred to the Kryon information of the Venus Transit gift. I will now confer about Solara and the 11:11 gates of human spiritual evolution. The significance of 11, and in particular 11:11, has been presented by both Kryon and Solara. Just as Kryon’s information supports transgenderism, so does that of Solara.


Recall that the Venus Transit is an 8 year window of feminine energy brought to Earth by the energy of Venus in its orbit between 2004 – 2012. Kryon says this is a time where the gender energies of the planet will come into balance. There is potential for great change, assisted by feminine energy of love and balance brought by a stronger cosmic connection to Earth’s sister planet, Venus. The information presented by Kryon regarding gender balance is highly supportive of self expression as a transgender person.

The power of 11:11 also connects to transgenderism, and on this 11/11 of 11, it is time to highlight the connection. I want to share with you the wisdom of Solara, another highly influential teacher who is widely regarded in the New Age community. Unlike Kryon, Solara is a human being alive on earth. Similar to Kryon, Solara’s message is one empowering the human race, of awakening and human evolution.

Solara makes no attempts to convert people to her way of thinking. She merely holds up a new kind of light, and presents it in a way that resonates with a strikingly large number of lightworkers. She is a powerful, influential, wise, gifted, brilliant spirit, and at the same time, she is human. Her messages are presented from a slightly different perspective to those of Kryon, yet they are from the same divine source. Solara describes herself as a “spiritual revolutionary”. She is not a guru, nor does she have "followers", rather she serves as a catalyst to activate us into our own mastery so we may inhabit the Greater Reality. Solara is also not a "channel". She simply embodies her vastness; something available to all of us. To read more about Solara visit
www.nvisible.com

Solara has been highlighting the significance of 11:11 since approximately 1987, around the time of or shortly after the Harmonic Convergence. This was an important cosmic measurement point, where humanity was tested to determine whether to evolve/ascend to the next level… or not. The balance of humanity chose to evolve. As such, Kryon refers to the Harmonic Convergence as the 11:11, and regards it as the occurance of “permission to evolve”. It is around this time that Solar began her 11:11 work.


Solara conveys that 11:11 is our “wake-up call” and our “trigger of remembrance”. The significance of noticing 11:11 can be compared to a lucid dream, whereby the dreamer awakens within the dream state. 11:11 taps you on the shoulder, prompting you to look at the clock at exactly that time, and then winks at you as if to say “remember, this is only a dream”. 11:11 whispers in your ear “it’s time to wake up now”. 11:11 is like a glitch in the matrix that keeps popping up, telling us that something is not as it appears to be.

To make the connection between Solara’s message and transgenderism, it is necessary to first provide a brief background of the signficiance of 11:11. The following is exerpted from Solara’s website.


A TRIGGER OF REMEMBRANCE

Repeated sightings of 11:11 have happened to millions throughout the world. Many want to know why this is happening? What does the 11:11 signify? For many years the numbers 11:11 have been mysteriously appearing to millions of people all over the world. Often appearing on digital clocks, the sightings of 11:11 tend to occur during time of heightened awareness, having a most powerful effect on those seeing them. When the 11:11 appears to you, it is your wake-up call. A direct channel opens up between you and the Greater Reality. The 11:11 is an insertion point for the Greater Reality to enter the present moment. When this happens, it is time to stop whatever you are doing and LOOK LARGER.

You can enter the Greater Reality and travel deeper into the Invisible. You can seed a long held desire, receive a vision, ask for help in some specific area of your life or simply feel the Invisible insert itself into the present moment. The revelations you receive will not come in the form of mental concepts. Rather, it will be an enhanced state of being in which you will see everything as if with new eyes. A deeper understanding of what is truly real will surround you. It tells you that it is time to take a good look around you and see what is real and what is illusory. It's time to pierce the veils of illusion which keep us bound to an unreal world. You have been chosen, because you are ready, to step into a Greater Reality. To lead the way for others into a new way of living, into a Greater Love. To ascend from duality into Oneness.

The 11:11 is the bridge between duality and Oneness. It is our pathway into the Unknown. Each time we see the numbers 11:11, our cellular memory banks are further activated. There's a stirring deep inside, a hint of remembrance of something long forgotten. The appearance of 11:11 is a powerful confirmation that we are on the right track, aligned with the Greater Reality. The appearance of 11:11 is an always beneficial act of Divine Intervention.

The purpose of the 11:11 Activation was to open the Doorway of the 11:11. This Doorway is the transition zone or bridge between two very different evolutionary spirals; our old one which is anchored in duality and the new evolutionary spiral of Oneness. Each evolutionary spiral is aligned with different Great Central Sun Systems. The Doorway of the 11:11 opened on January 11, 1992 and is now scheduled to close on November 11, 2011.

According to Solara’s message, during the period of 1/11/1992 to 11/11/2011, there will be 11 Gates/Doorways of human evolution presented. Of the 11 Doorways, 7 have been “activated” so far. Activations involve performing group ceremony/ritual at a specific time and place. Groups of literally tens of thousands of human lightworkers have made the journey to physically attend at that time/place to assist in the Activation. On seven different occasions and locations since 1992, lightworkers from around the globe have converged for the sake of evolution, with another four yet to come. Imagine a football stadium full of people, gathered together in some remote location, performing a ceremony to unlock an energy portal which will unleash the potential of human evolution. It is an understatement to say that Solara’s work has been revolutionary in the New Age community. In Solara’s words…




Within the Doorway of the 11:11 there are Eleven Gates. Each Gate is a stepping-up station to a new frequency band of energy. These Gates are similar to locks in a canal. Once a Gate is activated and entered, we begin an intense process of transformation and initiation as our beings are immersed in a new frequency patterning. Traveling upon these frequency bands, we master the lessons of each Gate until we arrive at the next Gate. Each Gate has a unique vibratory keynote with which we must align ourselves in a state of harmonic resonance. It is this process of alignment which gives us the needed recalibration so that we may travel deeper into the Invisible. The Gates of the 11:11 can be entered at any time once they have been activated, for we are not all on the same timing within our evolutionary spiral. Hence, you might be currently experiencing any or all of the first four Gates. However, a Gate may not be entered until it has been properly activated.

The First Gate - Healing our Hearts

The focus here is on the healing of our emotions. This requires a constant process of letting go, a continuous reevaluation of our old ways of feeling & loving. With this much needed healing of our individual hearts, we experience an activation of our One Heart. The One Heart is the heart of all. It is the core of our new emotional body. This means that we share the same heart, a much vaster and truer heart than before. The One Heart is the heart which cannot be broken. There is no more "giving" or "receiving" of love. Love simply is, a constant recycling, coming and going and recirculating. As we let go of the experiences of the past, we learn to live our Love.

The Second Gate - And the two shall become One

The keynote of the Second Gate is the two becoming One. This entails an intensive process of reunifying all our inherent polarities: inner male & female, Sun and Moon, spirit and matter, Earth and Star. Our new emotional bodies are strengthened, further anchoring the One Heart. We now embody the Lovers from Beyond the Stars; a deeper, vaster Love than we ever experienced as True Loves. The reunion of the Lovers from Beyond the Stars back into One Being creates the doorway into a new heightened level of Love called the Greater Love.

To read about Gates Three to Seven, visit www.nvisible.com

Solara’s information is relevant to the Transgender community because the Second Gate balances inherent polarities, including that of gender. I propose that transgendered people are evolving through Gate Two, and reunifying their inner male and female polarities. It is due to this balancing of inner gender influence that males are inclined to outwardly manifest their inner femininity, just as females are inclined to outwardly manifest their inner masculinity. Men exhibiting femininity should be celebrated because it is a sign of human evolution. Based upon Solara’s message, a man can not evolve without transcending Gate Two, which includes embracing his feminine self.

The linkage here is that Solara’s influential 11:11 message supports transgenderism. Those who resonate to the message of Solara, must also embrace transgenderism. If evolution through Gate Two requires the balancing of male/female, it follows that transgenderism is actually the state to which all humans must aspire if they are to evolve. A transgendered human is a more evolved human. All who align with Solara and have passed through Gate Two must themselves have become transgendered in the process.

At this precious moment of 11:11 on 11/11 of 11, the light in me salutes the light in you, the beautiful transgendered Ones. Know that you are in the right place, at the right time. When you see 11:11, be reminded that human evolution is quickening, and you are forerunners on this path. As say both Kryon and Solara, the time for balancing gender duality is NOW. Transgendered people are moving in an evolutionary direction.

With reverence,
Michele Angelique








Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Beast and the beauty

(by Marlena Dahlstrom)
In "My Husband Betty," Helen Boyd points out that sometimes the reasons behind crossdressing are straightforward: we want to look pretty. That's certainly true in my case. Wanting to look good and feel sexy at a time growing up when male beauty wasn't openly acknowledged and "pretty boy" was (and still is) an insult made that difficult do en homme. And yet, like most women I suspect, I've always had an ambivalent attitude toward my appearance.

A bit of history. I was a latent metrosexual long before the term was coined. But I always wanted to be stylish but in high school, I was a bit scrawny and unstylish - think "Daria" but more out of a less of skill than ironic intent. After escaping high school hell, college was a change to reinvent myself. I worked out, I buffed up - not out a desire to butch myself out of crossdressing, but a desire to look good. Once a girl picked me up saying she liked my pecs and for that I might have married her on the spot. I got stylish - although always careful to stay this side of the dreaded "G" word. In short, I looked good. So much so that a girlfriend who'd been a model saw my - uncharitably one might call it vanity and exhibitionism - and suggested I give modeling a try. It didn't really go anywhere, but I ended up with some great portfolio shots and my first introduction to the wonders make-up could work. (I had cheekbones, cheekbones!)

But then came graduation. Journalism is a romantic career and publishers are all too willing to use that to their advantage to pay poverty wages, especially starting out. I could barely afford food, let alone a gym membership. I was no longer walking constantly. I moved a lot (switching jobs is often the only way to move up the ladder in journalism) and I was lonely. Food was one solace. You can guess the rest. Soon that buffed out body was encased in a protective layer of fat. My style fell away too. In part poverty, in part no longer feeling attractive.

Once I was finally making enough to afford my own place, I resumed dressing. If I didn't think my real-life en homme self was attractive, at least I could be a ravishing goddess in my fantasies. And my dressing was more focused on the stereotypical "CD dress-up": lingerie, short skirts, tight tops, etc. The mind is great at seeing what it wants to see. The love of crossdressers for mirrors and cameras is well-known, but I think it's more than just narcissism (although I'll admit to a bit of that). Rather I think it's in part because we've bought into the beauty myth just as much as any woman, and yet we've got so much further to met that utterly unrealistic ideal. So we look and look in hopes seeing a reflection that looks like what we'd like to see. But in the back of mind I knew that frankly I looked bad and frankly a bit ridiculous.

So when the time came when I decided I wanted out of the house, I put a lot of time and practice into looking "realistic." Before I stepped out door, I decided to do an acid test and post my photo on Hot-or-Not. I was rated about a 5. Less than I'd hoped, but better than I feared. I consoled myself that I still looked better than about 40 percent of the women there, plus a few deluded souls actually gave me 9s and 10s. And so I went out into the wide world. And blended in successfully. A bit too successfully.

Those of you who were here when Michele introduced the rewards for participation remember the hissy I threw. What you didn't know is that it had inadvertently touched a very raw nerve. I frankly was intimidated by how beautiful you all are. I felt like an ugly duckling among the swans. (I should be quick to point out, it's nothing any of you said or did, it was my own insecurities surfacing.) But if I couldn't be Daphne from Scooby-Doo, I could at least be Velma. However, with the rewards system now I felt I was going to have to compete there too. (Again I realize this wasn't Michele's intent, merely my insecurities.)

Fortunately, later on I mentioned this to Michele. She pointed out that one reasons I was rated a 5 (aside from the vagaries of Hot-or-Not) was that I was presenting myself as an average-looking woman. And she was right. Partly I think it was that I lacked the confidence to think that I could be not only passable, but truly pretty (not fantasy pretty). And part of it may have been subconscious fear. As Michele pointed out, a pretty woman will attract attention and I need to decide if I was ready to handle it. For a crossdresser in particular attention is a two-edged sword. Is someone staring because they find me attractive, or because they see a guy in a dress - or both? Thankfully Michele pushed me to get a new, longer and far more feminine wig. I did some more makeovers and instead of just focusing on a daytime look, for the most recent one, I told the MAC make-up artist I wanted something more glamorous, something suitable for clubbing.

The work paid off. When I got my haircut last week, I let slip that I'd gone in drag for Halloween (that's my story and I'm sticking to it). Naturally, I had to share the photos. Cries of "Oh my god" went up as the photos got passed from stylist to stylist. One actually thought it was my "sister" and it took awhile for the other stylists to set her straight. Everyone complimented me on how pretty I looked and needless to say I was overjoyed.

I once tried to explain the feeling I got from dressing to those episodes of "What Not to Wear" where the fashion victim is someone who's often a bit overwhelmed by life and her frumpy exterior reflects her worn-down feeling inside. But after the makeover, they not only look more stylish, but often feel revitalized and sexy and confident. (They'll actually comment on how they know it's silly that a seemingly superficial thing as a makeover can have such an effect, but it does.) Well the push I got from Michele, has really felt like that. I feel pretty and witty and bright. It's a good thing I'm not wearing mascara right now, because I've been crying as I've been writing this. It's a good cry, but talking about this definitely has touch on some deep emotions.

A reflection of my new self-confidence came after putting up the new photo up on Hot-or-Not as a comparison. It was rated a 5.5 - up a whole half-point. Feh. I realize I'm older and fatter than the nubile young things who post there, but if they can't recognize a MILF when they see one, then they're the ones who are out of luck.

The funny thing is my attitude toward the sexual side of dressing has also come full-circle in a way. Yes, although I've always felt I had a "feminine" side, there was also an auto-erotic component, more prevalent at first, but (like a lot of others) declining in importance as I got older. But when I started going out publicly, I kind of renounced that side or at least looked down on it. I wanted to be a "respectable" woman, not someone wearing hooker-wear to the mall. But as I've come to accept that I can be sexy without being slutty (unless I choose to be the latter), I've been willing to acknowledge again that being sexy and dressing for pleasure is part of it at times.

But best of all, it's helped re-spark my confidence that I can be attractive en homme. I'd been moving in the direction already. With a different career and more disposable income, when I moved to the Bay Area two years ago, I took the opportunity with the help of a fashion-forward friend, to re-invent myself as a snappier dresser. About six months ago, my hair stylist talked me into getting highlights and I haven't looked back. But somehow until my en femme makeover, I never quite felt fully confident in myself. I still don't think I'm as attractive as I am en femme -- after all guys don't get the advantage inherent in make-up and other enhancers. But somehow that shot of beautiful glamour as a woman has convinced me that I can be a handsome man again.

Monday, November 07, 2005

The Inside Image?

(by Lauren Thomas)
A believable image, is how we want to see ourselves and how we want others see us. Whether we are part-time or full-time, each of us tries to create an image that is believable to us, the people we meet, as well as those who only see our image on the Internet. Just how important is our image anyway? For most of us creating a believable image is very important, and is probably the first thing we begin to work on; and also the one thing we work on the most. Creating a believable image is probably the most important part of being Transgendered, regardless of who you are. And for those who actually live full or part-time, creating a believable image is probably more of a real necessity, because they must interact with people face to face. Also, if you have a presence on the Internet a believable image is what really attracts the attention of others. For most of us creating an image takes time and work, and in some cases there are some medical procedures to help us along. Our image is usually base on our own perception of what is believable, and hopefully those who see our image will feel the same. I call this the "Outside" image, the image that people see in the real world, or on the Internet.

If you spend anytime on the Internet viewing the different personal web sites, profiles, and TG listings you will see lots of believable images. So, you might agree that we do spend a lot of time trying to create a believable image. Most of these believable images come from hard work and experience, while a few are the result of photoshop, or are downright fakes. If you have a presence on the Internet then you probably have an email address and if you have a believable image, then you probably receive a lot of emails from total strangers. Most likely these emails will be filled with compliments, and getting lots of compliments may improve your confidence, or at the least make you feel good about the image you have created or achieved.

If you want even more exposure, you can enter contests for GOTM, or get involved with rating systems where your judged and compared to others. There's nothing wrong with rating systems and contest, as they are fun and most of us don't take them seriously. Personally, I rate everyone a "10", and if it's a contest, I vote for someone I know who has probably contacted me in advance and asked me to vote for them. Or, I just pick the person who in my opinion has the most believable image. While most of us probably accept the email compliments, ratings, and contests in stride, and enjoy them for what there worth; I suppose there are some that actually live for this kind of attention because for them this truly validates the believable image that they have created or achieved. I can imagine that there some people that have a believable image, but are so arrogant and self-centered, that the feelings of others really don't matter to them. They are so caught up in themselves and their believable image, that they must have constant validation, and not getting what they want makes them frustrated and angry inside.

This brings me to say, that one problem I find with the Internet at least when it concerns a believable image, is that normally all we see is the "Outside" image. As believable as these images may appear, we really don't know what the person is like on the inside; unless we have the opportunity to interact with that person and really get to know them. The Internet is filled with believable images, some of which are just incredible! However, how many of those believable or incredible outside images match up, or come close to what is on the inside, "The Inside Image"?

Lauren

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Can the Gloves Come Off ?

(by Alexis Rene Jones)
So I was going through some profiles on urna the other evening and stumbled across a familiar looking & absolutely stunning girl !

I mean if this is the height of where transition can go....Sign me up ASAP ! Am only teasing but yes she is that gorgeous ....

Anyway this girl has been a staple in the much talked about ratings at urna for a long while. She still has the same pic up as when Iarrived to the site in Dec. '04 ... Almost a year now.

Long story short I wrote this said girl twice over a three month period, Two very sweet letters not really asking for anything other than to pay her a genuine compliment or two and I heard nothing back from either . I guess my writing wasn't ( Still isn't? ) up to par ... So with this in mind I decided not to waste anymore time with it(her);).

The following month I noticed again she was right at the top of the ratings system and also noticed she had yahoo messenger so I thought....Why not pop in and tell her she is in the top ten or whatever and congratulate her sort of thing?(She hadn't signed infor a couple of weeks) Immediately the next day she signs into urna thanks her gorgeous friends for the votes and again zero response back to me .... Hmph ! Now it is a quest to get this girls attention at least for just a second ....

The following month the exact same thing happens...She is soaringin the ratings and I let her know where she was at with yet another sweet letter via messenger. Again she signs in signs her post op friends books and leaves .... And ya guessed it no response back to me ... This was in May. I gave up writing her....yah yah I got the hint lol

Now I know this all sounds needy but not trying for that aspect at all!... I am just trying to say , well read her latest comment in her bio thingy at urna as it is worth READING !

http://profiles.urnotalone.com/35330

The point I want to make is this .... No matter how many hormones or surgical things one can do .... No one can erase their history of where they started .Also Compassion and being gracious is something that comes naturally and cannot be found through artificial means as previously mentioned !

Yes, while Lany Nicole Kershaw may possess beauty...It is only skin deep and judging from her comment she is VERY HOLLOW and lacks much of the things in life that most seek irregardless of gender !I am sorry to rant for so long(particularly if she is your friend)I just despise when someone takes the condescending position from where they "think" they are !!! GRRRRR!!!!

So now there is the Angel & Devil thing on each of my shoulders....The Angel says leave it alone ...the latter says make/take an issue with her words ....What do YOU think ??? Does a statement like what she poses offend or is she justified ???

Alexis