Archive for male-to-female

Death, Elders, Karma

I’m going to visit my family for a few days. Will be off my high-speed internet fix and my blog during that time.

My grandmother died last Saturday at the hospital. She was recovering from surgery as well as pneumonia. In her 80s. I was a little surprised to hear it, and my mother never even told me that my grandmother had gotten sick until my brother mentioned it. I thought that was weird. But my mother doesn’t tell me much of anything unless it directly concerns me. Her calls are usually to ask whether i’m sleeping enough, whether i’m wearing the clothing she bought me, whether i am making enough money at my job.

This reminds me of some thoughts i had last weekend at the end of the digital storytelling training program. I had just spend all day at the office building in downtown San Francisco, mostly helping people with a digital film editing program, stressed, tired. Though it didn’t surprise me, i realized that even though i was, in theory, similar to these women in that i had a male body and was transitioning to a gender of “woman,” i felt very different. Not only because of my age (i was definitely younger than any of them) and educational attainment, but also because i got the impression that i was the only one who passed as a straight guy during my teens.

It got me thinking about something i was troubled by during my initial coming out period in Santa Barbara. And which still bothers me somewhat today. Where are the elders?? Where are the people i’m supposed to be able to look up to for wisdom, for guidance? Not my biological mother or Her mother. Nor did i really even know my grandparents from my father’s side.

A generation or two ago, people with my gender inclination and attraction to women living in a society as homophobic and transphobic as the United States probably would not have come out until they were in their 40s or 50s, married to a cisgender (XX chromosome) woman, had 2.5 kids and a house.

… continue reading this entry.

Hafiz i am not (re-rendering of How does It Feel to be a Heart?)

The Hafiz poem, as translated by Daniel Ladinsky, is at

Once a young woman asked me,

“How does it feel to be a man?”

And i replied,

“I am not sure what you mean.”

Then she said,

“Well, aren’t you a man?”

And this time i replied,

“Am i a man if i wait in line to use the women’s restroom when there is no line to the men’s?

when, on the telephone, people assume that i am a woman?

when, in person, people are often uncertain of what my gender is?”

And the woman responded, “But you are a man.”

At this i replied,

“Is there a contest that one wins

for corralling somebody into a pen?

If you are seeking to know yourself

Do not look to me.

If you are seeking to know me

You do not know how to see.”