I guess I'm slowly, slowly inching towards my pain. Towards the things that have been done to me. Towards the pain those things caused me. Towards a realisation that many of the oppressing structures are still intact, still capable of causing pain. Towards an unflinching gaze at the horrible reality that is humans.
But it is, too, a reality through which some people really love me. It's also a reality in which I have found happiness and ecstasy: it is the reality in which I cry for joy. Because of the wild joy that is being me. Because of the rich pleasure of having someone love me. Because of my children.
I cannot dismiss the pain. I cannot dismiss the joy. Somehow I'm trying to come to terms with both.
This is probably why I'm reading trans feminist writings - I'm trying to make sense of my experiences, I'm looking for a frame of reference that would give my experiences a space in which they're intelligible: and of course I'm forming that space myself, too.
Serano's Whipping Girl was, obviously, one big influence on this road to intelligibility, as was Wilchins' Read My Lips, and I'm very glad to say Troost's Beyond Inclusion makes good sense, too.
When examining my pain, there's this huge grief enmeshed with it: a grief born of not having had the normal girlhood which would have no doubt been a lot less debilitating than what I got.
It's such a two-edged project: on one hand, it's very empowering to realise what has happened to me, and on the other, it's very painful to realise the simple amount of crap I've had to wade through. There's just so much of it. There's the bullying. There's the forced masculinisation. There's the homophobia, biphobia, transphobia, trans misogyny, plain misogyny and simple hate directed at anyone who's visibly, palpably different. There's the silence of medicine: the withheld information, the power imbalance which I dare see now that I'm past it. There's the feeling of utter powerlessness against the cissexist, plain sexist, homophobic world. Hell, at least I know (I hope, anyway) the crap I've been through. I hope it defuses the effects of a bad things in my past a bit. I hope I'm no longer driven by the shit done to me.