Where I’m at

When I decided to come out and make the first steps into finding my true self, I had a lot of ideas of what I assumed my future would look like. I just knew I wanted to feel like myself. I wanted to look like this imaginary picture I had of myself, but really didn’t have a clue how or when that would happen. I got caught up in the day to day parts of transition and coming out, rushing from the therapist to the hair salon to the electrolysis appointments, all the time keeping up with my friends in real-time about the progress I was making. So many daily victories. So many seemingly huge setbacks. My future seemed like a distant place where I’d be this new, beautiful, gorgeous female. I’d be loved and cherished. Men would fawn over me; women seek out my sage advice. I knew it would happen. It would just take time.

It is July, 2018.

I came out to my spouse back in 2004. I came out to my family and friends in the next few years. Then came therapy, hormones, moving, name changing, surgery. The years flew by in a blur of ever-changing circumstances, battering waves against an immovable object of my coming out. So many new learning curves. So much time and explanation.

So now here I sit. My life before coming out is just a history with little or no real context in my world. I am the person I am. In the years since I came out, my kids have grown up with me. My real life has taken a very normal cis-style bent to it in that I have no real connection to other transgender people. I live and work in a small rural community where I’m pretty certain I’m the only and perhaps first trans woman anyone here has met on a personal basis.

My spouse and I made it through the years of turmoil. Our relationship is much different than it was years ago. We learn and adapt. We’ve found friendship stays even if romance leaves. I guess that applies to my other friendships. Slowly and without notice, my friend group began losing men. I have a few male friends now but most of my friends are other women.

Every now and then, I’ll get a piece of junk mail with my old name on it. I take that as a sign that some people out there still haven’t gotten the news. At this point, I have no interest in letting them know about my personal status. I do the same with anyone I meet. I’m  comfortable with myself. I’ve grown into myself and my style (or lack thereof).

Somewhere along my path, I was able to find my dysphoria. I resolved those feelings. I came to that space where I could recognize myself in the mirror. I was me. Being able to see myself allowed me to understand where my personal dysphoria lay. It was my body. The sense of freedom from dysphoria let me move past my inner conflict of not fitting in my own body. And so I found myself.

Life…just went on. And still does. Physical transition ended years ago. Social transition slowly grinds on. I look at myself in the mirror. At age 60, I love my body. I joke about my style (Vermont Hobo). It’s real. I’m real. My life is real. Am I that beautiful young debutante I thought I’d once become? No, but as I move through my day with no doubt or second thought of who I am, I can own that feeling. I’m here. And I’m back for my seat at the table.



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Tessa Cee

Just a trans woman trying to make it through my day!

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Davida MaeDanni ThompsonTeri MyersTami CKimberlee LaShuk Recent comment authors
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Davida Mae

Putting it out there. Good on you!

Danni Thompson


Teri Myers
Teri Myers

I love your article Tessa. There is so much that we all need to take into consideration.
Thank you so much for sharing your story

Tami C

I loved your story Tessa! I’m standing, at 55, at the beginning of all of the transition turmoil you wrote about and I envy your having it in your past. I also really appreciated the observation that “Life…just went on”. I don’t know how far I’ll be able to transition but it is a comforting thought that “Life…just went on. And still does.

Thank you so much for sharing your story!


Kimberlee LaShuk
Kimberlee LaShuk

Great share Tessa! I fear both! Social and physical transformation. I have this image in my head that I’m gonna end up being a super sexy, confident, outgoing , and no BS kinda woman… I don’t LOVE how I look when dressed, and I HATE the way I look as Steve! I am a bit socially awkward, but that comes from me not being comfortable in my own skin yet… Right??? I will be starting HRT next month and starting my journey. When it started, I was young and beautiful… I’m mad I waited this long

Jasmin Sweet

Ddo u have any advice on a place i can go and they will make me over n show me tje proper steps of transitioning into a lady forever n would help pick my outfits n teach me to be more feminine

Carla Roberts

So good to hear of your journey Tessa. Thank you for sharing your story.

Winter Clark

Hi Tessa

Thank you for sharing. I am so glad your wife stood by you and accepted. I am happy to be able to read your experience and learn a little more about a fellow sister on the more mature side.



Thanks for the insperation and your great story keep it up for all of us

Deborah Myers

Hey Tessa, It is a long and difficult road to travel. I am in the process of Transitioning and my surgery is next summer. I have been ridiculed and mocked, told I did not matter, and called a freak. But I found myself finally and I will not quit. I was even in a spot of trouble many years ago and had I not had a pistol in my purse, I would not be here. But it is worth it as you well know. So as they say ‘You go girl’. Debbie


hang in there tessa,it can be hard at times,yes people can be mean,when they should know you need love,because they prey on the weak in their eyes,they are cowards,and afraid of their own demons.

I relate to your comment about the gun,I also had an encounter like that,and the person who threatened me never knew how close they came to being taken away in a body bag,I being a veteran i was no stranger to using a gun. as I said,be strong as only a trans woman can be

Isabella Muell

Well said Tessa, it is a very well written article

Stephanie Rigoni

Thanks for sharing all that Tessa. It is so reassuring to see folks like you and others so comfortable in your life. You write as one with a lot of maturity—and I’m not talking age. Ha! Yours is a road I long to travel. Thanks for lighting the way.

Cloe (CC) Webb
Active Member

Hey Tessa! I love hearing your story. Our many chats have been inspirational and I felt like I already knew most of this, but to see it come from your own pen is moving. To look in the mirror and say that is the woman (or man) I knew was hidden and say she/he fits in this world of CIS people is a seemingly unattainable holy grail, but yet again you’ve proven it can be achieved. Thank you for sharing this with us.

Hugs, Cloe

April King

Lovely to see you writing hon. And lovely to see you embrace yourself and your life as you move forward. So we’re both age 60 – wow, time does move on.


Victoria Frederickson

You truth is inspirational to me. Thanks for being my first friend


Thank you for sharing your journey and thoughts Tessa…As someone who is more or less on the same road I found the insight and emotion totally relatable.
Thank you also for being a mainstay in chat..Always there to support and guide our little group..And to give us a kick when needed too.
Wouldn’t be TGH without you…Love you hon xx

Dame Veronica Graunwolf

Hi Tessa! Well sweetie……..that is some road you have traveled. I admire your perseverance and dedication to achieving your goal. I salute you.
Dedication is never easy and costs will be incurred along the way, but in the end…..you can look back and say to yourself…..damn that was hard but look where I am now.

Girl….I am proud to call you….friend.


Dame Veronica

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