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Shouldn’t I be over it by now? I’ve consciously made the transition to presenting as Lawren about 96% of the time. So it should NOT be such a big deal for me when I go somewhere for the first time as Lawren, right? But, that doesn’t seem to be the case.
Yesterday was the first in-person meeting of the HR Roundtable, a friendly conversation around corporate culture and HR issues (especially the Human part). I knew it would be a room of over 100 people. I left home with 10 minutes drive time to spare, but I lost that in a mad search for a friendly bathroom stop. So I knew I was late as I wound my way through the halls of the venue building.
Stepping through the door of the auditorium, it seemed that ALL EYES turned to see who it was – me. For once, I was less concerned about being late than making a spectacle of myself en femme. Thankfully I was conservatively dressed in black crepe elephant pants, a salmon collared sleeveless shirt, and a black summer sweater.
As I stepped into the room, I was entering from stage left, and saw a chair in the back row that I could slip into. Someone was talking at the front of the room. But before I could make a dash for the chair, the group facilitator, who I had emailed the week before about my transition, whispered, “Psst! Lawren!” and pointed at the sign-in sheet. So now I had to go to the table at the front of the room, sign in with my butt facing the 135 sets of eyes, put my name on a name tag, and try to gracefully stroll to a seat. Someone was coming in behind me, so when I eyed the lone empty chair, a man stood up quickly and offered me HIS chair (a small victory right their!).
No further notice was made of my gender, including in the breakout session. Just as I had B.C. (Before Covid – and before Lawren), I networked and setup meetups following the gathering. I felt accepted and equal.
So grateful that so many people are accepting or at least tolerant.
A comment I saw once said that coming out is not an event. It happens again and again, day after day. Wouldn’t it be nice if all of mine go as well as yesterday did.
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