Let no one Define your Journey
By Mila Madison
Let no one Define your Journey
There will always be new things that you have yet to experience. We can sometimes get lost in worrying about what we need to accomplish. Maybe you are worried about how you are going to get the money for your surgery? You might be unsure if you should go through with it or not. Maybe you are dealing with family issues or you are worried about what will happen at work when you come out? Maybe you have been at it for decades and you still don’t have all the answers? Looking for love? You are not alone in these concerns. We can become lost in these things and sometimes we may miss the beauty of what is happening around us.
For me it was a lifetime of fears. It was pressures from society. Those boxes that are carved out for us that I just could never fit into. We are told what our roles should be. We are pressured into them at an early age. I went through life trying to fit the role I was given, but I couldn’t. The more I tried to fit in, the worse it would be for me. I learned to get through life by thinking about later. I would essentially kick my life down the road and then kick it again once I caught up to it.
“IN MY FORMER EXISTENCE I COULD NEVER ENJOY THE MOMENT.”
In my former existence I could never enjoy the moment. My life was filled with trying to accomplish things, thinking that would be my answer. It was done with the thought that if I can accomplish something, things would then get better. I would become obsessed with reaching a goal. I could never enjoy the process. Ultimately whatever I wanted to do would be destroyed by my gender issues. It took me a lifetime to realize it. Even when it came to my gender I would put off those thoughts for another time. I would repress them. In my mind I would need something profound to happen if I was going to truly face them. I remember wishing that I would have some kind of accident that would render me gender-less so I had an excuse to transition to female. I would do whatever I could to avoid my issue. I would ignore my problems, justifying my unwillingness to face them as not wanting to hurt anyone. I would look for any excuse not to face this issue because I was afraid. All the while I was missing out. I missed what could have been amazing moments in my life.
“ARE YOU ALONE IN YOUR HEAD OR ARE ALL THESE PEOPLE THINKING IN THERE WITH YOU?”
We tend to put off what is good for us out of fear. This is not just a transgender problem, but a human one. At times we don’t do what is good for us because we worry about how those around us will react. Even if we are fortunate enough to take the leap, we still have to deal with the feelings and opinions of those around us. Sometimes we let what people have to say define us. The problem is that what we are really worried about is how we think those around us will react. Our fears are based in speculation. We let our preconceived notions define our journey and it prevents us from being who we are destined to be. Just think about it for a moment. Does it really matter what anyone thinks other than yourself? Are you alone in your head or are all these people thinking in there with you?
We shouldn’t put off what is right for us today with the hopes that it will be easier later on. If you put it off you may miss out on some amazing moments. Don’t let the fear define you. Don’t let what others think define you. Don’t wait. Start living now. Don’t worry about someone seeing you only as the gender you were assigned at birth. Don’t worry about how you may look or your voice. Worry about you, your choices. The ones that will decide the path you travel on and the moments that will be experienced.
In my transition I have learned to appreciate every one of these little moments. They now matter to me. The first time someone gendered me as she, getting my new birth certificate or the little “F” on my driver’s license. Going out for the first time as my true self. Each one of these moments has a story and I had to fight for every one of them. I am sure I will have a million more moments to fight for as I go. The difference is that now I can enjoy the process. I can appreciate what is happening. I am present in my existence.
“BEING WHO YOU ARE IS WORTH IT. IT IS WORTH FIGHTING FOR.”
Accepting the fact that you are transgender is a scary proposition. The road ahead is full of twists and turns. Many of your fears are justified and they will happen. This is just the truth. But as you overcome them you will be better for having gone through it. People are going to tell you how to live and try to convince you what is right and wrong. They will try to tell you what it means to be a man or a woman and everything in between. They will try to tell you how you should act. Don’t let them define you. Your journey is your own.
Being who you are is worth it. It is worth fighting for. What is important is that you keep moving towards figuring it out. Ask yourself every day, “what am I going to do about it today?” Though you may not yet be at the point where you want to be, make sure every day you are doing something to get there, no matter how subtle the effort may be. Let no one define your journey, and don’t forget to take a look around every now and then to enjoy the moment.
Stay safe and keep fighting for all of us!
Love and peace,