Into who I truly am. This for me is a process of divine evolution, and it encompasses so many aspects of my self.
I wrote this Facebook post this morning and wanted to share it. It was inspired by a dear friend who came forward to me with information that has strongly impacted her life. We must lift her up right now as the media feels like waves crashing onto her shores. She deserves to be lifted and held right now.
I had a dear friend share something very important to them yesterday and it left me thinking this morning and I want to share these thoughts. I would also like to tag some of my personal heroes for fighting so hard to be authentically who they feel inside.
I wanted to tell you so far what your share has done for me. It’s making me wonder how many other things were not as they seemed in childhood, how many other fucked up things.
For those who don’t know I was raised in a strict Seventh-Day Adventist household. My mother got pregnant with me by an older man when she was 19, he was much older. I was a thing of shame.
I was shamed most of my life for how I behaved, for how I looked, for being her daughter. I was left by him, my father. I took care of my mentally ill mother. If reading these makes you uncomfortable then imagine what little me felt like. I was DCF involved. I wandered around an apartment complex alone and was molested by a young boy. I felt disgusting to share with anyone. I felt wrong. It wasn’t the boy in this case it was the lack of parents. I was removed from her care at this point, but she moved in with my grandparents with me.
I was alone. I was always alone. Until I found other families. Pam Jenkins Gena Rahenkamp LeMert John Enders John D Enders and many more. And even now more people come forward in my inbox and told me I was special to them then. My Aunt Linda who took me for normal childhood things like Disneyland.
I am a survivor because you loved me when I needed it most.
I am coming forward.
It’s actually making me wonder if I lived in a different time with different parents if they would have helped me transition to being a boy. Do you remember that me?! Masculine behavior as well, always wanting to protect and serve. “Hi I’m Chris”. I got called gay (proudly wear that now, but then it meant you’re scary and different and I don’t like that), a dog, told to go piss on a fire hydrant.
I didn’t want to kiss the boys I wanted to fight them for the girls.
I didn’t want to be rescued by the Disney Prince I wanted to look like him and love a princess.
I actually wanted to be a boy. I only favored boy clothes and swam in trunks with my shirt off. I used to play cards (pretend poker) at the table with my shirt off. I use to imagine peeing standing up (yes we probably all did,lol) but I mean regularly. And so many battles with my grandparents to not wear a dress and to shop in the boys sections. I felt uncomfortable in every possible way most of my young life and very alone. I got praised in my home for being strong and helping with my mother. Being sent into the lions den because she would be better with her own daughter right ?
Do you know I left that self behind in favor of acceptance?
We would do anything for acceptance in this world, and I needed it more than many, because of my home base. I was shamed to death there. Don’t be a slut like your mother. Don’t sing your voice sucks. Don’t talk too much. Good little girls are seen and not heard and they play with their paper dolls in the corner. “ Don’t talk so much, chatter box. It felt at the time that everyone wanted/ needed me to be less there, less of me, and if they were going to sacrifice by taking care of me please don’t make it any harder than it already is.
Do you know my blonde hair, I kept the same for many years was like Samson from the Bible. That wretched book that dictated so much of my shame. This is MY experience I am not putting anyone else’s religion down.
I met someone along the way Crystal Leckner who showed me how to be adventurous and myself, and my life opened up after that. Another personal hero. She changed her style more than you can imagine, and her hair, and I looked up to her so much. Another personal hero!
“But I don’t want to be a good little girl.” I didn’t want to be a girl at all, but I also don’t hate my body parts, and don’t want one more difficult journey. I love my wife and me as I am now albeit I think I am realizing clothes are still a struggle.
Last night we went to the philharmonic and anytime getting ready for something for me is still a battle… with what to wear. Partially now because I’ve gained weight, but also because I feel awkward in my clothing. I’ve settled on leggings and sweaters…. I dream of short hair cuts, but always afraid of not looking feminine, because then I’ll be treated badly again. I earned so much privilege when I became “a pretty girl”. 😕 I sold myself. I’d like to think I had to at that time to have any place to belong.
But is it still going on now?
I don’t even dance because dancing was bad and wrong and by the time I broke out of that I felt so awkward in my own skin. And then unknowingly people shamed me for my dancing. Why don’t you move your hips? Because the way I do feels different than how I’m supposed to look as a girl.
And then she danced is the running title of my memoir.
Do you know that my wife keeps that awkward photo of young me by her nightstand and I almost cried to look at it because I didn’t want to be that girl anymore. But since she loves it so much I am forced to love that her too. And that is healing.
No one should experience the abuses coming forward right now. However, the dark forces our light to shine more and helps us come together as we really are. #fighton #comingforward
How much of my acceptance is based on my appearance? If I begin to dress differently will people not come back to see me? If my gender is not immediately revealed will it lessen my credibility.
The fucking things people have to go through to have permission to be who they are in the world.
I wanted to share this so you now how proud I am that you are supporting your daughter. What a warrior! You’re doing for someone what no one did for me. You’re so brave and a beautiful person. How much of your brave is because of having to be? Would you be this warrior for your daughter without your experiences? This is the only way I make sense of my abuse. I wouldn’t be the therapist I am now without it.
Also maybe if someone had given me a better haircut it would have been a little easier 😂