Saturday, September 30, 2023

Look Ma, No Cavities!

Although I don't have too much to talk about today, I must mention my visit to the dentist.  Scheduling teeth cleanings 3x/year continues to work for me, and I try to maintain this frequency as best as possible.  This visit was a month overdue, but wasn't as bad as expected.  

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Unlike my Internist, I visit my Dentist in female presentation.  God knows what my dentist and dental hygienist think of me, but I am always treated with respect when I go there.  Today was no different than usual.  However, there was one thing of note that I found mildly interesting....

Both times I had the opportunity to sit in the reception area, I encountered a lady waiting for her husband's dental work to be completed.  She complimented me on my dress, but I was unable to return a compliment for anything about her.  (She looked like life had beaten her up, and she came out the worse for wear.)  When she started talking about her life, she disclosed that her first husband was a drug addict, a convicted thief, and a wife beater.  And there was more that I can't recall.  Needless to say, she did the right thing in leaving this man, as she may not have lived to tell me the tale.  Add to this, she had spent some time in government custody - but only for a couple of misdemeanors.  Luckily for her, she met her current husband 14 years ago, and he finally made her "an honest woman" two weeks ago.

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Once done with the dentist, I took care of a couple things around the house, then took a nap.  Shortly after 6 pm, I got ready for game night and proceeded to Dunkin Donuts for some Munchkins as my contribution to the "party".  Unfortunately, somewhere between the Donut shop and my car, I lost one of the earrings that I was given by the host & hostess of game night, and that saddened me a bit.

Game night itself was inconsequential, with me losing both of the games I played.  Such is life.  I'm just glad I don't have to count on my game playing skills to make a living....

Friday, September 29, 2023

My late wife and I had a lot in common.


After my wife passed, and before I met RQS, I often felt that there would be no one who could fit well into my life.  In retrospect, it is obvious why several exes and I couldn't make things work.  Add my transgender nature to the normal complications of life, and I felt that it would be a fluke to find a woman who felt comfortable with my full and authentic self.  I felt like the woman pictured above - alone, but hopeful.

Yet, after a few conversations I've had lately, including a recent one with TCL, I started thinking of one of my wife's habits.  She was a clothes horse who never pruned her wardrobe.  I, too, am a clothes horse, but one who is pruning her wardrobe.  And some of the pruning efforts have shown me that in my haste, I might get rid of things I really wanted to keep.  To give the pruning process too much thought can result in paralysis - something I've experienced when the contents of my apartment reached a critical mass.

A while back, XGFJ helped me get some order in the corners of my bedroom.  This order was lost during the pandemic.  Lately, RQS has helped me go through the clothing I accumulated and quite a few donation bags have been delivered to a local charity.  Yet, when I look at my closet, I am still finding clothes which are eligible for the next donation bag.

I'll bet that my late wife would be laughing if she could see me today.  She had clothes hanging from the molding over the doors and closets, and I have done the same thing on occasion.  Like her, I accumulated way too much, and couldn't muster enough energy to get rid of the things I no longer need, want or use.  Unlike her, I've had assistance in getting this place into order.

Would she have felt comfortable with me wearing dresses outside the house?  I'll never have the answer to that question.  Would she be comfortable living with someone who was "out"?  Again, I'll never know.  But I do know that she coped with life the best way she could, and wasn't able to reach out for the help she needed when she needed it.  Hopefully, as I get older, I'll know where to find help and be able to get it when needed....

Thursday, September 28, 2023

Another day without leaving the apartment.

The other day, I went to my doctor and my blood pressure had spiked a bit.  One of the things he told me to do was to take and record my blood pressure readings on a daily basis and have him see it when I see him next.  So, when Amazon delivered my blood pressure monitor, I had to try it out to find out whether my blood pressure was under control or not.  And after 4 readings throughout, I consistently got numbers that said that the medicines I take were working.  So I'll have something to say to my doctor when I see him next month.

But this was one of many little things that made up my day....

Given how dreary the weather was expected to be, I figured that this would be a good time for a Jammie Day.  And I stayed in my PJ's and relaxed.  One of the things I wanted to do was find a duster that I could use as a dress like garment worn over a unitard.  Unfortunately, I might have given this away in one of my donation bags.  If so, I will need to look for another garment I can use in its place - but it won't be as pretty.

Late in the evening, I received a long awaited phone call from my ex-GF Patty.  We've maintained a friendship over the years since we broke up, and I think that her husband is a great fellow.  The phone call came just before I was scheduled to call RQS, so I texted RQS to tell her what's up, and that I'd call her immediately after finishing things with Patty.  Patty has had a very busy summer, and hasn't been able to keep up with her correspondence.  So, Patty apologized for not getting back to me sooner, explaining that the house that she lives in is being sold.  Luckily, she doesn't have to move, although her rent may change.  We caught up with the other details of what's been going on in our lives, and agreed to try and get together again sometime soon.

Next, it was my delayed phone call with RQS and I told her about Patty and her apartment.  We caught up on our daily events, and called it an early night.  Knowing me, I'll have trouble sleeping again and only get a few hours of sleep before seeing the dentist.  Hopefully, I'll be wrong and have a good and restful sleep....

Wednesday, September 27, 2023

The day started off with a visit to the doctor


I hate doctors' visits - especially when I receive bad news.  Today, I found out that my blood pressure spiked, and that my doctor wants me to do daily monitoring.  AARGH!   It's hard enough for me to remember to take my medications in a timely manner....

But enough of that.   After leaving the doctor, I went to BJ's to do some shopping, followed by a visit to Trader Joe's to buy some food for the week.  And then, I had time to kill before this month's co-op board meeting.

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Tonight's board meeting would be the first one with the site manager in training, and I was hoping that we could start off on the right foot. First, we had to interview an applicant to buy an apartment, and that went quickly.  And then, we met with the new site manager.  This time, things went quickly, as he understood what we were trying to do, and we understood what he was trying to say to us.  What a change of tome from our prior meetings!  After he left, we took care of some remaining co-op business, and ended the meeting in record time.

Next on my list of things to do would be applying for social security.  As much as I expected that I'd have problems with the process, it went smoother than expected.  For example, when I had to enter data in regard to my late wife, the application form made it easy for me to bypass data that I don't have anymore - such as her social security number.  Now, I have to wait until money starts flowing into my checking account.  Then, I'll deal with fixing the tax withholding on both my pension payments and my social security payments.

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As I've said in other posts: Most of what goes on in a transgender person's life has nothing to do with being transgender.  We still put our trousers on one leg at a time.  But we also have to deal with other issues which would not have been expected for us if we were cisgender.

Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Giving away some wigs - a quick post


The other day, I found a couple of wigs of the style (and quality) I used to wear when I first started going out as Marian.  By the standard of wigs I wear today, these were the equivalent of cheap costume jewelry. Although the style looked good on me, I would have to replace the wig on a monthly (or even, a bi-weekly basis) to be wearing something that looks good on me.

Years ago, I started wearing inexpensive wigs that cost $60 or so.  They served my purpose way back when, but I knew I needed to wear something better.  So, I graduated to wearing wigs in the $300-$400 range, and replacing them every 6 months or so.  (I still can't believe that one of my current wigs still looks OK after 9+ months of wear.  But I will soon be using it as a backup when I take my upcoming Bahamas cruise.)  There's a part of me that would like to try a much more expensive human hair wig that costs $1,800-$2,500 or so (as once recommended by my former cruise partner, FCP), but I am uncomfortable spending that kind of money on a wig when my face still looks relatively masculine - even with properly applied makeup.

What might the big deal be in regard to the human hair wig?  To answer this, one has to understand the psychology of the largest group of consumers (in the New York Area) for human hair wigs - the ultra orthodox Jewish women whose faith prohibits them from showing their real hair in public.  To get around this, they wear wigs in place of their own human hair as a way to skirt around laws of their faith. (Don't get me started about their Eruvs.)  FCP came from such a tradition, and wanted me to upgrade my look.  But, I realized that it made more sense to be able to replace my wigs in the same way that women might try new hair styles and colors until they get one that works - then stick with it for a while.

Right now, I have 4 unworn wigs in my closet, and will be taking it out to replace the oldest wig that I now wear.  Hopefully, I will be able to get as much wear out of this wig as I have its predecessor.....




PS: One can feel the difference between an old and new wig.  And that's how I usually determine when to retire a wig.  So keep a new one around to compare the feel between old and new wigs.  When the old one starts feeling worn out, replace it.  You'll be glad you did.

Monday, September 25, 2023

Earrings and other jewelry


One of the things that women often take for granted is getting theirs pierced as a child or young adult.  It is so much easier to wear pierced earrings, and there is a greater availability of earrings for women with pierced ears.  So, I decided to finally get my ears pierced this past winter, in order to wear the above pierced earrings I had just bought on my Hawaii trip.

Now that my ears have been pierced, I have had occasional problems with the piercings.  The holes are not the easiest to find (which can be a good thing when seeing people who have no idea that I am TG), and this often frustrates me when attempting to wear dangling things such as the earrings in the picture. With a girlfriend who accepts my nature, I feel no guilt in getting ready to go out in front of her, as she wants me to look my best in either gender presentation.

Soon, I will start accumulating jewelry to fit every mood and situation.  For example, I love the idea of wearing pearls with a little black dress on a cruise's formal night.  Not all jewelry has to be expensive or formal.  Yet, the jewelry I buy has to be tasteful for a woman of my age.  Therefore, it has to be both simple and easily coordinated with what I'm wearing that day.  In the case of the above earrings and necklace (and pendant), I made sure that these items looked good with the dress I was wearing.

Unlike most women of my age, they have had decades to develop a feel for the jewelry that works best with their personality.  I'm lucky.  Since my fingers and wrists are too big to wear some of the jewelry given to my by my former cruise partner, I have been able to avoid many of the "loud" items that would draw attention to the non-feminine parts of my body.  In short, the jewelry I wear helps me blend in, not to stand out.

Given what I've said above, I am still surprised at how hard it is to see ear piercings when the piercings are not being used for jewelry.  A while back, I went to see my brother after taking my studs out, and he didn't notice a thing.  My fears of being noticed at the wrong time weren't fulfilled.  So, for any TG readers of this blog who are afraid of piercings, don't be.  Most people will ignore tiny studs in one's ears while the piercings heal, and will not notice those piercings when the studs are out.

Sunday, September 24, 2023

The more I work on cleaning my place, the more it seems I need to do.


My apartment used to look something like this in the not so distant past.  However, when the pandemic struck, everything changed in my life.  One of those things was an incentive to keep things tolerably neat. Now, I'm trying to eliminate much of the clutter that has taken over this place.

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Right now, the space behind the loveseat is being used for storage.  However, it is a manageable accumulation of boxes stored in the least worthwhile area of the apartment.  And most of this will be moved into my storage compartment downstairs when I've cleaned that out.

My closets are showing more open space than I've had in years.  Yet, there is so much more pruning I have to do.  Ideally, I'll only need one tall dresser/chest and one closet to hold each of my masculine and feminine wardrobes.  But until then, I'll have to gradually build donation bags from clothing I haven't worn in a season or two.

When I started this cleanup process, it was a bit overwhelming.  There is light at the end of the tunnel - but it's so far away.  I figure that there is a lot more that I can get rid of before this place starts to feel like the home it was for me when I moved in here 40+ years ago.  But then, like many baby boomers, I thought that this would be a stepping stone purchase - I'd eventually own a house that could hold all of the stuff that I'd accumulate over the years.

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I guess that the same thought process goes for maintaining one's health as well.  One can not do everything all alone.  The impetus to finally to do the work on this apartment wouldn't have been there, had RQS not been in my life and been in the same position in life.  We work well together.  Years ago, my former cruise partner (FCP) wanted a diet and exercise buddy - something I wasn't prepared to do.  There was a certain desperation in communicating this need for a partner, and I knew I wasn't in a position to help her out.  She would eventually have Bariatric surgery, as well as skin reductions to make her body reflect who she wanted to be.  

So, this leads to the question: Who do I want to be?  To answer that takes a lot of hard work.  To welcome people into my life, I have to have a home worth visiting.  That involves apartment cleanup and some help.  Something similar is needed to get my body into shape.  Will I do anything as drastic as my former cruise partner?   No.  I saw how miserable she felt in the early days after her surgery, and I felt bad when I saw her binge eating afterward.  She dealt with the symptoms, and not the underlying problem.  I want to deal with both the underlying problem and its symptoms.

Over the years, I've learned that I need to be able to be out as Marian.  I would never have been happy if several of my previous romantic relationships got further than rolls in the hay.  I'll always be grateful to FCP for her help at the beginning of my journey.  Yet, to continue along this path, I had to go it alone.  Sadly, the way it happened was not a good thing.  But I'll bet that she's better off having been forced to open herself up to the world a little.

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In the end, I'll end up being the person I want most - who and whatever that person may be.

An early dinner with a friend

  Last night, I mentioned to Pat that I wish I could have been born a cisgender female who looked like this when younger.  If I were younger...