The Gift Of Insight

It’s my birthday on Sunday, and I am in the traditional mode here.  Those around me have no idea who I am or what I would like, so the obligation is for me to shop for myself and they feel good buying me something.

That’s tough in two ways.  First, the mode I am in, the mode I believe that I have to be in, is denial. I have walked away from desire, in an attempt to move beyond needs.  “If you have no needs,” Oprah’s psychologist Robin Smith says, “you have no self.” 

But more than that is the difficulty of being that insvisible, of knowing how much I have exposed myself in the last five decades and realizing that if they don’t know me by now, they don’t really want to know me.

On one of these tranny lists there is a partner who believes she is being pagan and holy, mystical and healing.  The way she approaches it, though, is to see the transpeople on the list as abject and broken.  She offers {{{{huggs}}}} and platitudes, then switches the subject to something that may well contradict what the transperson was saying, that often negates their sharing.

It’s my sense that she does this so she doesn’t have to actually lose control and open her heart to what we offer.  If she can’t placate us with strokes, how can she actually placate her partner?

I actually like to listen to people.  When they offer some deep part of themselves, they offer me the gift of insight, allowing me to glimpse humanity in a mirror and be reminded of what we share, of what lies within me.

But, as I have said before, the most painful part of being trans is to not be able to give gifts and have them accepted.  This partner, in her callow cuteness, just reminds me of my pain, and that makes her unsafe.

If the director doesn’t realize
what a courageous thing the actor is doing
by touching on some emotionally tender spot,
then the actor will be wary of doing that.
 Arthur Penn, Director

Wary?  Oh yes.

And all I have to do is have no needs.  No self.

Seeing Hearts

TBB was in Manhattan over the weekend.  While she is building community where she lives, it was a treat for her to be among smart people who actually understand and admire what and who she is, the kind of audience she needs to learn to relax and trust herself more.

She noted the takes of cab drivers, who thought she looked good, for a guy. “How are SF, NYC and Trinidad CO alike?” she asked. 

“You can’t pass in any of them,” was her reply.  “In most places, the thought of transsexual is dismissed, but not there.

She decided to help carry up a mattress and box spring for a friend who was moving.

A fellow who was helping said “Your friend is stronger than many guys I know!”

The ones who love us, well, they see our hearts first, not our bodies.  Others, well, the bodies first and the content, maybe

If we haven’t learned to trust our hearts, though, we have trouble trusting their attraction and affection for us.   And we can’t shine because we keep the defenses up, end up doing the work we learned to affact when we did for affirmation rather than be for affirmation.

As for me, I’m not even sure where my heart is anymore.

Beyond Knowing

Yesterday my father came downstairs and told me about the revelation he had in the night.   He was describing the waveform in the turbine disk.

He turned from me dismissively.  “Bah,” he said.  “You are not even watching!”

“Yes I am,” I replied, though I wondered how much I knew and how I could show it.

“It’s a kind of a sawtooth shape,” is what I heard come out of my mouth.

He looked a bit stunned. 

“Yes,” he said.  “A kind of a sawtooth.  It’s a sawtooth that is the base for all the dynamics, and the other harmonics aren’t important.”

I coould tell that he hadn’t though of “sawtooth” before this, and the term pleased him, was useful.

I just wondered how the hell I knew that from some vague hand motions caught out of the edge of my eye.

I know what it is to be a human doing rather than a human being, do and do because you believe that you are doo-doo.  It’s what I did last night at the buffet resturant as I cared for my mother. 

And when I do, that comes from some kind of concious response and creation, rather than from some deep place.  It is speaking miracles.

The limits of that concious response are the limits of my defenses.

The limits of my unconcious responses, the ones that surprise & delight me, that give insight, well, those limits are bigger than me.

And they are the only thing that gives me a glimmer of possibility.