I woke up earlier than I expected yesterday. I work at night. So, I don’t usually get up until about 10am. I slept well, but maybe I’m getting used to sleeping at the new place. After going through a box and finding my bathroom scale. I heard my mom come back from her walk with my sister. I also heard the pitter patter of kid feet. So, I went up to say hello.
After I climbed the stairs from the basement, my mom saw me first and said hello. Then, my 11 year old niece turned around quickly and said “You scared me. It looked like you had a woman’s face”. I stopped quickly and let out a little nervous laugh. I think my mom then quickly asked if I had slept well.
Now, I’m going to use a word that I’ve hesitated to use concerning this transition. But, I think I’m getting to a point now, that I can say it out loud. In the past, I’ve gotten down right paranoid in my concern about people knowing about my gender dysphoria. But, as time goes on, I’ve seen people successfully transition and I’ve talked to them about how they handle life’s challenges. And a certain amount of my fear has faded once I established some peace with self acceptance.
But, that doesn’t mean that I need to have a conversation with my young niece and nephews. I respect that these are not my kids. And when the time comes to tell them, it is not my call. My sister and her husband will handle that. Thankfully, direct questions have not come yet. And they probably won’t for some time.
I don’t know what my niece saw that I don’t see. Was it my long hair and me approaching from the corner of her eye that made her say that? I don’t know. I shrugged it off as a silly comment from a kid. We both smiled at each other and laughed. Not a big deal.
I put it in the same category as getting mistaken for a woman by a waitress as she approaches our table. This happened a couple of years ago while I was out having dinner with my mom at an Applebee’s. We had just sat down and the waitress walked up behind me. She said “What can I get for you ladies?” It was a simple mistake. And when she saw my face, she became very apologetic. I laughed as if it happened all the time and insisted that she shouldn’t feel bad.
I’m sure there are times as people approach me in their car as I’m riding my bike, they might assume I’m a girl just by the fact that all they see is my long hair. Up until recently, I have had to wear a jacket or sweatshirt. I’m also wearing a helmet and sunglasses. I’m hunched over, so they can’t really see the outline of my body. And I have shaved legs.
I can’t be responsible for how people see me right now. Although, I would like to be in a position of passing as female on a daily basis. I know that without facial surgery and the effects of more hormones, it’s not going to happen in the short term. Until then, I’ll treasure the happy accidents.