We interrupt your scheduled programme of further musical reminiscences to bring you a few thoughts and developments from planet trans*. The fact is, since I have been taking a musical diversion over the last week or so a few things have occurred to me, and I wanted to get them down in a blog post for posterity before those thoughts evaporated again.Over the last week or so it seems to have become de rigeur to write about trans* dreams and their relation to our lives. I have to single out Val South in this, she kicked the whole thing off with an excellent post covering several different cross-dressing-related dreams, along with her own interpretation of what they might mean. Then a few days later Michelle came up with her own post taking a wider look at our subconscious and conscious realities and how they interact (the Ph.D’s in the post, Michelle). I don’t want to go into as much detail as either of them, but I have a couple of dreams to share.
One of Val’s dreams reminded me of a recurring dream that I used to have. At least once a fortnight, I would dream that I was dressed in some kind of female clothing, usually a skirt and heels, and would usually be going about my business in an otherwise mundane and unremarkable manner. Then suddenly someone, could be anyone, would notice what I was wearing and the next thing I knew everyone in the dream would turn into Nelson Muntz, pointing and laughing “ha-ha” at the silly girly man. These dreams ceased when I started to actually go out in public presenting as female in real life. So let’s face it, you don’t need to be Carl Jung to interpret that. However, in her post Michelle makes reference to this dream and the fact that I don’t have it any more as an assertion that I no longer have any trans dreams. That is not actually the case.
Most of the trans dreams I have now are of the relatively mundane variety, it’s just that Nelson Muntz no longer turns up at the end of it. I wouldn’t even necessarily categorise them as “trans dreams” any more, in that I’m just being myself. In fact it’s potentially more accurate to say that those dreams in which I’m presenting male are more like the trans* dreams of old, in that gender is more likely to be an issue for my dream-self. However a couple of weeks ago I had an incredibly vivid dream which took things in a slightly different direction. In the dream I was Bob, but I had had my surgery. Bottom surgery, at least. And I was on hormones. I had been through the various hair removal treatments and in just about every aspect, I was as medically female as it will ever be possible for me to be. However I was completely socially male. I wore Bob’s clothes, spoke in Bob’s voice, I had short hair, but the whole time I had this intense frustration that underneath it all I was female and couldn’t let anyone see because I was too scared. It was so intense and vivid that when I woke up I had to check that my “bits and pieces” were still in place. Sadly, they were. Analyse that – actually, it’s probably not that difficult.
Enough about dreams, now on to something that actually happened, but is possibly more open to interpretation than the dream. In my last non-musical post I wrote about daughter no1’s reaction to daughter no2’s pink and sparkly trainers being branded as unisex by Tesco’s automated check-out. In short, she ended up asserting that all clothing is unisex and a boy can wear a dress if he wants, there’s nothing wrong with that. And in turn, I couldn’t help but wonder if that statement was said for my benefit. If it was her way of telling me that she knows. Probably not, but that little nagging voice keeps asking. Well anyway, she’s done it again.
I don’t know if you’re aware but there’s a new Star Wars movie coming out next week. Daughter no1 and I are going to see it on the evening of 17th December, the day it opens. We were discussing this a couple of days ago and I mentioned that many years ago when I had gone to see Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers on its opening day, a couple of people had turned up to watch it dressed as hobbits. When I told her this, my daughter’s face immediately lit up and she exclaimed
“I could wear my Princess Leia outfit!”
About 4 or 5 years ago when she was first discovering the original Star Wars movies, she asked for a Princess Leia outfit for Christmas. It even came with a wig featuring the famous “earmuffs” hairstyle. Incidentally, it is the white gown from A New Hope, not the indecent slave girl bikini from Return Of The Jedi. Anyway, she thought about this some more and then added;
“Actually no, you should wear it”
OK. I should dress as Princess Leia to go to the cinema. Notwithstanding the fact that the costume fitted an 8 year old girl and would fit neither of us now, I was still puzzled as to why she thought I should wear it, so I asked her. Her reply?
“Just. It’d be cool.”
So she does it again. Plants a little seed in my head that she knows, but not to the extent that I can be sure. I mentioned it to Mrs K, who as usual dismissed any notion of ever mentioning it to her. But she also said that even if our daughter had found my stash of Kirstywear, it doesn’t necessarily mean she comprehends its meaning. So maybe that’s why she’s being subtle rather than coming straight out and confronting me – because she’s not actually sure what she’s found but she has found something. Unfortunately, she’s being so subtle that I can’t possibly know for sure if she knows or not. And I can’t ask, because if she doesn’t know, I will have outed myself. As what, I’m not sure, but I will have drawn her attention to the fact that there’s something about me that’s not like most other dads. Aaarghh it’s so frustrating!
And finally, a little word about my musical interludes. Believe it or not, writing them has actually helped me cope with my gender issues. Ever since Michelle brought the subject up a few weeks ago I have been a little bit obsessed with music. Listening to all those albums and quite a few others by the same artists. Trawling YouTube for obscure live clips or original performances from decades ago that I haven’t seen in all that time. In short, I have been distracted. I have been obsessing over music and it has stopped me from spending quite so much time obsessing over gender. It has helped with the dysphoria because my gender is irrelevant to the greatness of the music that I have been writing about. So thanks for bearing with me while I go off on those musical diversions, but the fact of having some sort of non-gender-related obsession is really helping me feel better. I genuinely don’t mind if nobody reads them at all, I just need to liberate the inner music critic. Now I know it’s only a distraction and the core issue hasn’t gone away, but it’s a very enjoyable temporary painkiller. So next time, I will be returning to my musical interludes to finish off the top 20 with my five favourite albums of all time. I bet you can’t wait – I know I can’t!