One Day You’ll Wake Up

During my last voice therapy session, my therapist told me, “One day you’ll wake up and realize that you have lived as a woman just as long as you’ve lived as a man.” Today is not that day for me, but it called to mind all the “one days” that have already passed:

  • One day I will come out.
  • One day I will start hormone replacement therapy.
  • One day I will go full time.
  • One day I will complete gender reassignment surgery.
  • One day….

As time rolled past, all those “one days” turned to yesterdays. One of the scariest places on my transition journey was when I realized that all my “one days” were behind me. The planning and saving. The daring and heartache. The pain and emotional turmoil. All the tangible stones on the transgender pathway had been trod.

There was nothing to look toward with hope. No event in the future when I would finally be whole. There was only now. There was only life.

The epic drama that is the transgender journey had come to a close. All that remained was “happily ever after” and then the credits roll.

The hardest part is what you look forward to

If you had asked me before I stood at the end of my “one days” whether it was going to be great, I would have enthusiastically shouted, “Yes!” To discard my past as a snake sheds its skin and connect my physical body to my authentic soul stood as the peak of my Everest. Surely there can be nothing harder than summiting the highest mountain? Yet we forget that those who perish on the literal mountain journey rarely do so because they couldn’t make it to the top. The danger lies in whether you can navigate safely back down.

Once you have removed the largest obstacle, you can better see the caltrops strewn in the road of life. Dating. Marriage. The inability to conceive. Poems have been written and stories penned about any one of these. Compared with the daunting specter of gender dysphoria, they are merely pale shadows. In the light on the downward slope of the mountain, however, they loom large and ferocious.

Why we are here

Recently, we brought Transgender Heaven to life. A home for those walking their own transgender path. A place to discuss and examine each of the stones along the path. Hormone therapy, surgery, counseling, coming out and so on. Each one of these stones are worthy of the thoughtful discussion that can precede many a sleepless night.

We are also here for the time after that path has ended. When the “happily ever afters” aren’t so easily or joyously expected. When doubt and heartache and loneliness creep in. When the reality of being a woman in the workplace finally hits home. When what used to be effortless is a struggle. We are here when friends are needed most. Through the journey, and especially on the other side.

Welcome to the community! If you haven’t already done so, I encourage you to join Transgender Heaven by creating an account and getting involved. I look forward to seeing you around here!

 

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18 Comments
  1. Amelia 1 month ago

    Thank you Vanessa. I have read and re-read the articles and the conclusion I have come to is that for all the doubts and fears, justified or not, I have to be what I am, to do otherwise would be a life wasted. The personal sacrifices made by others in following the path are in many cases heartbreaking but I cannot recall anyone on the forum having regrets that would cause them to retreat from the path and return to the life they had (maybe there are). I am inspired and emboldened by fellow travellers such as yourself and although the fear of losing my job haunts me at times I know despite the doubts and fears that this is a journey that I have to follow hopefully to its ultimate conclusion (my dream).

  2. Cynthia S 2 months ago

    Vanessa,
    As one who is not certain yet which of those “one days” will be my mountaintop, I loved your article. Cloe said it well in a conversation we had in the last year- everyone(not just transgendered folks but every single person ) is constantly transitioning from one phase of life to another. To do else wise is to lose the reason to go on in life for if there is no growth then we wither away and turn to dust. After years of sacrificing for my (now ex) wife and my (now grown) kids, the last few years have been about exploring my feelings, spreading my wings, and trying to figure out who I really am. Still working on that but I hope one day to figure it out and move to finding someone to share my life with who loves me for all of the often-confusing, but full-of-Love-and-caring person I am and doesn’t care what the wrapping paper looks life but cherishes the gift within. It’s a lonely quest but I remain hopeful that one day that person will appear in my life and I will be aware of it(even if they have to whack me in the head to get me to see them.
    Cyn

  3. Jackie Wild 7 months ago

    Darn you Vanessa you brought on a tear in my eye this morning. Wow how beautiful this article is. It will definitely hit home for many and warm they’re souls as well as help reinforce and assure people that there is light at the end of the tunnel and it’s not a train! Thank you for sharing this Vanessa, it’s warmth will continue to sooth some hearts throughout this new day, Jackie…..

  4. Joanna Knight 7 months ago

    The one thing I fear the most at this time is going out in the day time when people can see me and judge me! I do go out only at night when there ant so many people around to see and judge me! I haven’t even told my family about being Joanna they only know my meal side! What to do or not do ?
    I do love being Joanna for she is part of me and I love her as my self! I wish I could be me all the time!

  5. Cloe (CC) Webb 7 months ago

    I admit I had to look up caltrops. People keep asking me about some of these such as dating and preferences, career, RL community. The over-thinker in me gets to churning, but then I chat with a friend or 10 and I’m brought back to a grounded state. Some things are improving and I’ve been blessed to enjoy some, others remain frightful places to go. But, I have to say I’m already enjoying a full rich life that I couldn’t have even dreamed in my wildest dream. Thank you Vanessa for sharing with us who you are through personal stories and this site itself.

    Hugs, Cloe

    • Author
      Vanessa Law 7 months ago

      💞💞 I love the lens of gratitude you already see the world through dear. I know all the rest will fall into place with time!

  6. Tessa Cee 7 months ago

    Thanks Vanessa for those heartfelt words. I look forward to sharing thoughts and insights on how we all move forward in the coming months and beyond.

    <3 Tessa

  7. April King 7 months ago

    Very well put Vanessa. As always.

    April

  8. Damion Knight 7 months ago

    This was an amazing article… You have no idea (but you do!) how much I needed to hear those words in this moment. Beautifully written, thank you! 🤗💞

  9. Rachel 7 months ago

    A beautiful piece. Right now I am not even thinking about my distant future. All that matters to me now is what I am going to do about my situation tomorrow. The day I can say “you have lived as a woman just as long as you’ve lived as a man” would definitely be one of my fondest days of my life.

    Thanks for the lovely article.
    Love,
    Rachel

  10. Another Gem for your crown Vanessa……….Hail to thee!

    All my love…..

    Veronica

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