TBB thinks I have the idea of “normal” wrong.

To her, normal isn’t some model of what would be good and what wouldn’t be good.

Being normal just means being comfortable in her skin and her world.

When she decided to transition, she abanoned hope of being normative, blending in somehow.  Rather, she committed herself to creating a new normal, whatever was normal for a big, beautiful transwoman, a big bitch, as it were.

She thinks she’s achieving that.  So much so that she’s ready to leave the space where she shed the cross-dressing man facade and revealed the transsexual woman beneath.  Now, that transsexual woman is ready to move on, to go ahead and leave gender obession and do her work.

Part of this is the result of the tedium of the stories she hears from trannies in that space.  They all have begun to sound like the same story, the same myopic, needy, canned story, the same story of sickness & desiring.

The big breakthrough for her?  She can’t believe how much her way of seeing the world has changed.  It’s amazing to her how much her perspective, her awareness and her choices have changed.   It’s something she never could have imagined, something she could have never understood before she experienced that.

I get that.  I tried to explain it to her in the past, but she didn’t hear, she couldn’t hear.  She had to be where she was.

Transvestism is about changing your clothes.
Transsexualism is about changing your body.
Transgender is about changing your mind.

If transpeople stand for anything in the world, it is for the possibility to transform beyond biology, history & expectations.   It is to trust the continuous common humanity we all share, trust that spiritual being living a human life, rather than the quick and easy walls of projected separation which maintains the status quo.

I was talking to someone yesterday who talked about breaking though the barrier of fundamentalist fear.  I was struck by The Right Stuff — I am the child of a jet engineer after all.

Breaking the sound barrier was hard.  It was hard because just before the breakthough, just before Mach 1, the air gets thick and roiled.  It’s a scary and unsafe place — men died trying to get there — and many experts said that barrier just could not be broken. 

I suspect that is common to barriers; the resistance is greatest just before the breakthough. 

And after the breakthough, we find a new normal, a new kind of stasis, a place where going beyond the barrier becomes commonplace, routine, and yes, becomes normal.

No one else will lead you though your breakthroughs.  In fact, they will probably be part of the resistance encountered.  But once you establish a new normal, they may well follow you to that new space.

I think TBB is right.  What needs to be abandoned are dreams of becoming normative, being who we want to be.

What needs to be claimed are dreames of becoming normal, of being who we are in a comfortable & potent way.

And that’s the breakthough that may be possible.

p.callan, P.Callan

As it turns out, I don’t care much about blending in as private callan, p.callan.  

Well, that’s not quite true. 

All my life, I have deeply cared about having the ability to simply walk in the world as a girl or woman.   That would be magical, on many levels.

But I have never had an interest in walking in the world as a crossdresser, a man-in-a-dress.  Never.  And I doubted that with my bones, my hair, my voice, my adams apple I would ever be able be able be able to walk as just a woman.  Maybe if I started early, maybe.  And if I could have had a baby after the surgery, well, I would have jumped, whatever I looked like. 

I have ended up walking in the world as a transperson, though all the pieces of that.  I have done that work, deconstructing, analyizing and reconstructing, until I can speak woman pretty fluently, but as an immigrant and not a native speaker. 

But still, my public persona — P.Callan — has been ephemeral, text on a screen, moments of appearance. I have kept my head down, not showing much in the world.

I get dressed and think about just going out to the store.  And when I think about going out and just blending in as a guy-in-a-dress — something I know how to do in my own defensive posture — well, I just don’t care much.  I’ve never cared much, as I recalled going to the bar where I came out working to be androgynous and gender fuck before the term was born.  That was a long time ago, a very many me’s ago, a me exercising defenses rather than authenticity.

If I can’t be out there as P.Callan, the big femme dragmom trans-shaman, then what the hell am I going to be out there as?  Some kind of pleasant compromise? 

p.callan, well, gender neutral whatever, simple and hidden.

P.Callan, well she is a public figure with presence and power.  She has to be to make her voice heard in the world, to return the gifts she found on her journey into the wilderness to fight the dragon with “thou shalt” engraved on every scale, as Joseph Campbell said.

If beauty is about confidence, well, I have no confidence that I will ever pass as having been born female, no confidence that I will ever blend in as one of the norm.  I do, however, have some confidence that what I have to say has value & power, that my creation has beauty & grace.

I find all this difficult to say, because I have seen too many trannys who don’t look beautiful to me, who do have a strong indvidual style, but who seem disconnected.  I fear that my style will look odd and silly to others, even though I do know that I don’t think like those other people — I think like me, make choices like me, not like anyone else. 

“There is only one of me,” I reminded ListMom Linda on Saturday. 

“Oh, I know that,” she said.  “I just can’t remember your name.”

Of course, I’m writing about this all because I don’t have anyone to talk about it with.  That’s probably why I learned to write like this, in an attempt to find an audience.

There really doesn’t seem to be an audience for p.callan, all those jewels covered in shit, vomit & blood.  p.callan is a bit too messy, a bit too lifelike to feel comfortable around.

But P.Callan, a big performance person, appearing with authority, well, now she has something people can listen to. 

The appearance of transcendence is transcendence to most people, people who really want to believe that if they can just change that one problem in their life — appearance, money, family, whatever — that they can find true happiness and joy.  Of course, those of us who have changed many things know that the human side stays, the scars still decorating our body, the wounds still possible.   The only way to get over that is to build walls, like Oprah does, but those of us speaking for continuous common humanity don’t really have that luxury, the luxury of separating ourselves from the bad people.

I have three workshops penciled in on the schedule — a day on tyhe power of doubt with Jennifer Hecht at the Unitarian, how to make money with life coaching with Merci Miglino, and a meeting with performance coach Lezlie Dana.  Let’s see if I make them, lets see how I get out there, beyond the  tongue cut on the broken tooth and infection, and be.

But I suspect this theme continues for a while.

Can I trust P.Callan, trust finally letting out the big stuff — the overwhelming & scary stuff — in the world?