Wednesday, April 29, 2015

   Former Cream bass player Jack Bruce?  Nope...
   Cincinnati Reds right fielder Jay Bruce ("The Beaumont Bomber")?  Nuh uh...
   Former TV & screenwriter Bruce Vilanch? Uh, no...
   The shark from "Finding Nemo"?!?  The shark from "Jaws"?!? No way...
   Former Buffalo Bills defensive end Bruce Smith?  Er, nope...
   Former oldies DJ "Bruce "Cousin Brucie" Morrow?   OK, now you're being silly...
   Well, then who could the above capitalized, bolded, italicized, and underlined title possibly represent, Olivia?!?!?

    I am talking, of course, about the person whose name has been on more lips lately than Chapstick, none other than the winner of the 1976 Olympic gold medal in the decathlon, Bruce Jenner. I've not been actually asked for my opinion on the whole media circus this story has become; but, damn the torpedoes, you're gonna get it anyway!!! It's MY blog, and that's what this edition of it will talk about!!!

    I first remember cheering Bruce Jenner on in his aforementioned decathlon victory. I was ten years old. I was one of many millions of Americans who rooted for Bruce Jenner in that bicentennial year. Time passed, and I grew older and so did Bruce. And I had no way of knowing that he and I were going through the exact same thing... gender dysphoria. We both maintained that "macho" facade (he was better at that; and indeed, most things, than I was...), but the underlying problem remained for both of us. In the late 80's, he had begun to receive treatment for his persistent gender dysphoria, where I had not even begun to understand mine. (Everyone transitions in their own time... even heroes.) He ceased receiving hormones during that time though, for fear of hurting his family.

    More recently, I'd known that Bruce Jenner was on a popular reality TV show (not having ever watched the show I've alluded to, I hadn't known he'd separated from Kris until about a week ago)...
Due to the pervasive tabloid news coverage surrounding him, I and many others had begun to wonder and speculate about him. Last year, I finally began to understand that I was transgender. Some of the rumors floating around about Bruce Jenner had suggested that he might be as well.

     Finally, the long-awaited day of the big interview came and went. I think it answered some questions, but it also raised a few... Was Bruce an idiot? Was he immoral? Was he faking being transgender just to get attention? Would he ever be considered a "real woman" without vaginoplasty? Would this interview set the trans movement back an entire generation?!?

    Initially, I had been worried that a badly handled interview would, indeed set the trans movement back 20 years; but from what I've seen, (links to interview posted on my Facebook profile) it was handled with a quiet dignity, and was not sensationalized in the least. 
Bruce is definitely not an idiot, nor is he (using his requested name & pronouns until he tells us different) immoral from what I've seen... The concept of this whole thing being used as a promotional gimmick was raised in the interview itself, & Bruce laughed it off. I don't think Bruce needs any more attention... He was on a top-rated reality show, and is still an American Olympic legend, so pretty much EVERYONE already knows who he is... As far as "never being a 'real woman'  without vaginoplasty", who's to say that that's not exactly what he's looking to do? (& isn't it considered invasive for anyone, even other trans people, to ask questions or make assumptions about a person's genitals, anyway?!?)

 I'll sum up thusly: I saw the interview; & to me, Bruce appeared to be genuine. (as far as the tears and the like; as anyone who's watched the final season of "CHiPs" can attest, he's not that good an actor...) It is that perception of this whole affair that leads me to throw my support firmly behind Bruce Jenner. (for what little my, or anyone else's moral support is actually worth) He said he wants to do some good & change the world... I support him in this aspect as well. As to what will happen in the future, that's anyone's guess...I eagerly await the next occurence in the saga this has become; and dearly hope that trans people of color; and who are other otherwise unfairly discriminated against are helped by not only the exposure, but the education it may provide.

    #teamjenner    Go, Bruce!!! Let's do some good!!!

    How about that, kids?!? I unknowingly had something in common with the athlete I'd rooted for long ago...  Bruce Jenner's story, his vulnerability, and his honesty has already done quite a lot to raise dialogue and recognition of transgender people worldwide... and others who might not have been Olympic medalists are coming forth to tell their stories as well. This is wonderful, because it could lead to a huge positive difference in the way transgender people are viewed. We're not all perverts... we're not all freaks... we're not all "abominations before the Lord" (as some Bible-thumpers might lead you to believe...) We're all just people; and so is Bruce Jenner. 
He was a hero then, and he's got the opportunity to be a hero now. I'll be cheering for him to be victorious yet again.


Sunday, April 19, 2015

     Update City
  Population: me

    It's April, and the medical stuff is glacially progressing towards Estrogenville!
    I saw a doctor regarding my transition back in December, thinking that I would have to get OFF of the Warfarin (aka Coumadin) that I had been prescribed for blood clots. (I had a couple blood clots in my upper right arm in May 2014... see first blog entry for more info) She referred me to a hematologist. I talked to him, and he said that due to a mutation in my blood that makes me more prone to clotting, that I would most likely be on Warfarin or its like for the rest of my life... HOWEVER, this hematologist saw no reason that I couldn't have the estrogen I've wanted since I realized I was transgender. My heart leapt!!! He said that my taking estrogen would only increase my risk of a blood clot by five to ten percent... I LIKE those odds!!!
    So I spoke to my doctor again, asking when I could FINALLY get the sweet nectar of estrogen... She said that the level of Warfarin in my bloodstream would have to be stable for them to start me on estrogen. However, I was assured that this would be the last hurdle I'd have to surmount to obtain what I've been searching for. (Or if not the absolute last, then damn close...) I've been having my blood tested to check the level of Warfarin in it (they call it an "INR", which I believe stands for "International Normalized Ratio"), and my last INR was exactly where they wanted it!!! I'll get another test (I wish I could study for these things! lol) in a couple weeks, and if all goes well; I think that I may FINALLY reach the city limits of Estrogenville!!! Fingers, toes & eyes crossed...

    Now comes the part where I admit my failings-  I had a job... A good job... But I done screwed myself out of it because I had... more feelings to push away, apparently...  In November, I was ticketed for Use of Intoxicant... I was inhaling computer duster to get high. Irresponsible, I know; but these are the things addicts like myself do (or DID... More about that in a moment...) You'd THINK that this would be a BIG wake-up call... Guess again. I began to steal computer duster from my job, using it to get high with; and they caught me stealing it, and rightfully fired me. ("What a dumbass!" "I know, I know..." "SO irresponsible..." "Right." "And stupid..." "All RIGHT, already!!! I KNOW I fucked up!!! <heavy sigh>" {This was just some of the dialogue I had with myself...} )
     The resulting court appearances, probation, and loss of money were the wake-up call I needed to FINALLY get the help I needed to stop getting intoxicated! As of this writing, I have over 2 months CLEAN AND SOBER!!! I never thought I'd be glad about something like that, but I really am... Plus I have met some good friends who are also in recovery; both through the AA meetings (granted, more of my problems stemmed from chemicals other than alcohol, but the lessons I've been learning are universal) which I attend weekly, and in other places. And just for today, I'm not going to use drugs or drink... Tomorrow's looking good on that score as well... After that? Well, I can't guarantee anything, but the PLAN is to NOT get intoxicated... Ever again...

     Because I got fired, I'm searching for another full-time job. So far, all I've found is temp work, but I'm diligently searching for gainful employment. More on this as it develops!

     And now news from the romantical front... I am engaged!!! Yes, I; Olivia Hope Woodstock (last name soon to change- more on that in a later installment of this blog) am engaged!!! My fiancee's name is Wynter (for now... she's thinking of changing her name, but I'll love her no matter what...), and she is a trans girl just like yours truly. We have been engaged since January... I've not actually physically MET her yet, but I really don't give a rat's ass what she looks like... (I do KNOW what she looks like... We chat every day...) I'll avoid saying too awful much about her here to protect her privacy; but rest assured, we are in LOVE!!! My plan is to leave Minnesota (that sound you just heard was the collective gasp of thousands of incredulous Minnesotans... lol), and to be in her arms by Christmas 2016, or sooner if I'm able!!!

     So: to sum up...
     Livy is thisclose to her blessed estrogen, and a VERY large step in not being "the boy" anymore!!!
     Livy has over 2 months CLEAN AND SOBER, and intends to remain so in perpetuity!!!
     Livy needs a job... and is searching high and low for work...
     Livy is head-over-heels in love with, and engaged to a beautiful trans girl like herself!!!

     There's your update, kids... I'm sorry it took me so long to do this one!!! I really should blog, and write (poetry, fiction, whatever) more often... Apparently, I seem to have some kind of talent for it... [I try not to brag, because I hate people who do... but my therapist posed an interesting question last week... "When does it stop being bragging & become self-confidence?" So, I'll have to admit to myself that I can actually do something (other than breathe, eat, and take up an insane amount of space) reasonably well...] And I do find it kind of enjoyable, so I really will try to do it more often.

     Until next we meet here, on the road to Estrogenville (Population: millions of women), this is your friendly neighborhood Olivia, signing off!!! Peace, Love & Music to all!!! I wish you Happiness, Health, and Success!!!