Some days just kinda suck. Perhaps you have a stressful meeting. Or the house is a total disaster and you aren’t going to have the opportunity to straighten it up. Maybe you had to rush all day long, sometimes to the same place three times, in a vain attempt to get one simple errand taken care of. Or it could be that someone (presumably inadvertently) threw a wrench into that which you (mistakenly) thought you had a handle on. Or it could have been a sudden mental note coming to life reminding you that if you don’t cook that chicken up tonight you had best throw it away or risk an ugly outbreak of salmonella raging through your house. And, if you are really lucky (or me) you can experience all of these and more in one day. Yep, some days just kinda suck.
Coming off a wonderful and relaxing weekend, it was even more brutal than normal to hear an alarm clock go off at 6 a.m. today. This morning wasn’t just any Monday-morning-after-a-vacation-week…it was the morning that we were going to meet with the folks at the GeMS (Gender Management Services) Clinic at Children’s Hospital. It is the first of what will be a long series of meetings which will spread over the next few years. Yes, years. Before she can even be considered for puberty blockers, Jessie has to be not just thinking about puberty, but in the throes of it. That, dear friends, seems to be far enough in the offing that there is not much of anything that we either can or should be doing any differently than we have been. “Just keep doing what you’ve been doing” is the mantra we have heard over and over from person after person. Frankly, it is getting irritating. Patience has never been my strong suit and when it comes to matters involving my child and his/her gender, I am not inclined to change course. Sucks for me.
Perhaps the most mind-blowing (and by mind-blowing I mean mind-fucking) thing I learned today was a statistic that literally made me nauseous. Despite the fact that I might have heard it before, it still struck me much like I would imagine it feels to have a sledgehammer land squarely on your head: Seventy-five percent of kids who identify as transgender prior to puberty wind up, gulp, changing their minds. Most of those then go on to live as gay men and/or women. Of course this means that a full twenty-five percent continue on the path that Jessie is so deeply entrenched in, but it still freaked me out. That said, I maintain my contention that a ten year old boy socially transitioning without hesitation has to mean that there was something calling to him (g.c.i.) loudly and powerfully. But what do I know?
I pose that question rhetorically, but I do actually have a few responses to it. For starters, I know that Jessie loves to get dressed in the morning and, once she settles on an outfit, departs for school with at least some pink somewhere and does so with joy and without hesitation. I know that many of the most unpleasant “symptoms” of her prior distress have disappeared completely. I know that she thinks of herself as a girl named Jessie and not a boy named George. And I know that, for now, anyway, she is very confident and content in her new persona. As far as what the future holds – yeah, well that I clearly don’t know. But I take great comfort in the fact that nobody knows in part because I hate being the only one not in on the things.
But things aren’t all bad. Harrison took a bunch of pictures of me and Jessie tonight, including this one: