I’ve never wanted to be anything other than what I am.  Trouble was, I never knew what I was until now.

I suppose there is always an element of the unknown in everyone’s identity.  From birth to death, I imagine we never completely realize our potential to be whatever it is we can be.

But there comes a point in one’s life where all of the big pieces come together and a person feels whole, unpolished perhaps, but at least all together as an entire individual.

I’m coming to the end of my 40th year and I think I may have reached that point at last.  The basic pieces are in place.  I’ve found the strongest blocks of my identity and arranged them to make a rough outline of myself.

Poet.  Trans Woman.  Empath.  Maker of Stuff.  Imaginator (person who imagines).  I touch everything and taste everything.

I’m not as afraid of myself anymore.  I don’t wish much anymore.  I hope for things.  I don’t wish I were a woman without the “trans.”  I don’t wish to have had a girlhood.  I hope the line between woman and trans woman become more and more blurry, but I don’t wish the line to go away anymore.

I embrace it.

I embrace more now.  I have felt enough aching, enough body-balled-up tension on the floor.  Of course the ache doesn’t leave.  But I won’t be the ache anymore.  I’ll embrace it.  And of course tension won’t leave.  But it will not consume me as it did.  It will be like a hardened lump of gum in the gut.  It will dissolve slowly and pass through to make room for new anxieties and new fears.  But they will not be me anymore.  They will be in me and around me.  Objects to embrace and lull to sleep like fussy puppies.

And as for the monsters I’ve known, the behemoths, the krakens: I think maybe they never really existed except in mirrors and reflective pools and dreams.  But if such horrors do find me and take my strength from me and the drowning begins again, then, maybe, knowing what I know now of demons and drowning, I think I will not fight them.

I will let them do to me what they do to everyone.  Because I’m complete now.  Because they are not death.  Death is neither friend nor enemy.  Death sleeps everywhere and wakes up at times and in places we can’t predict.  It has very little to say.  Sometimes it doesn’t even tell us goodbye.


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