Tales From the Pink Cloud
by Mila Madison
It is a time of firsts. As we begin our transition, we go through some amazing moments. The first time you paint your toes or try on a pair of heels. The first time you go out as your true self. Maybe it is when you hear someone call you by your new name for the first time or refer to you as she (or he). It is a high like no other. Being able to see the real you come into focus more and more with each passing day as you look in the mirror. What a great feeling. Everything is new as you live each moment again, but for the first time.
“…THE PINK CLOUD. IT IS WHEN EVERYTHING IS BRAND NEW AND WONDERFUL.”
For those of you who don’t know, for us “trans” girls, this time is known as the pink cloud. It is when everything is brand new and wonderful. Some of us get to stay in the cloud longer than others. Some of us go up and down with it. Being up on the pink cloud is the best because you finally get to do all the things that you repressed for your entire life. It is that feeling of freedom and exploration. The newness of it all. It is downright euphoric! But what happens next?
You start to settle in. You get into the routine of being your true self. Maybe you are out at work, and everyone is used to the news. You have come out to your family and sorted out who is now in your life and who is not. You are used to your routine, putting makeup on every day and such. Maybe you even get to the point where being able to take off your bra at the end of the day is the best thing in the world. Every day you are just simply you. There is no more going back to that old person.
“I WAS RAISED BY WOLVES…”
For me it can sometimes be a big lull. A moment in time where I am sort of stuck in transition. Spinning my tires like a car stuck in the mud. Don’t get me wrong, life is amazing finally being myself. But maybe that is the problem? Here I am, essentially still a 13 year old girl with the life experience of a person who was raised as a male. I was raised by wolves as I like to say. I still have the life and responsibilities of that old person. Sometimes this gets to me. You see, before I didn’t want to live. I didn’t care about myself or my life. I was just happy that I was taking care of my family. Now that I am finally me, I am starting to resent that life. Though I will always want to take care of my loved ones, I don’t want to live “his” life anymore. The 13 year old in me wants to go out and do those things that young girls do. I want to have that first job at a clothing store, or a boutique, or something sadly stereotypical of what young girls do.
I start to wonder if I will ever be able to complete my journey. Will I ever be able to afford all the things that are associated with completing transition? Everyone tells me I will get there, but when I ask how or when, no one has the answer. I begin to wonder if it was all worth it. The thought of it triggers my dysphoria. I have come all this way, and yet here I am still dealing with it. That feeling comes over me. I begin to worry. Bad thoughts circle through my head.
“I FEEL THE WEIGHT OF TRYING TO BALANCE MY TRANSITION FROM WHO I WAS, TO WHO I AM AND TO WHO I WANT TO BE.”
To be honest, I sometimes feel like I have no business writing here every week. I want to inspire everyone. I want to say something profound that brings us all together, but sometimes I am just in that lull. I want to give everyone comfort and hope, but I am falling from the cloud. I feel the weight of trying to balance my transition from who I was, to who I am and to who I want to be. I worry about being able to do all this and still take care of my family. I worry about failing the people who read my column every week by not giving them something that truly matters.
But then the light bulb goes on. I force myself to put the brakes on the downward spiral. I realize that everything in my life is still in transition. My life, my work, Transgender Universe, the people around me, my family and everything else. It is all still in transition. I begin to realize that all I can do is be honest. I realize it is okay to have a moment of weakness, even if it is in front of an audience. I get to know that by being here I am not alone and that by sharing my moment of weakness with everyone I might just help someone else get through theirs. I start to feel better.
Though today I may be down from the great pink cloud, I know soon I will be back on it. The cloud never has to go away. I realize I have so much yet to experience. I realize I need to keep working at getting myself where I want to be and that we all have our bumps in the road. Those moments where we are “falling." I know tomorrow I may be back up there. For the first time in a few days I am starting to feel better as realize I have all of you to share this with, and to me, that is something that truly is profound.
Sending my love to anyone out there who is feeling down today.
Stay safe and keep fighting for all of us!
Love and peace,