Little changes

About nine months ago, I finally accepted it. I too sit under the colorful umbrella of the transgender community, a lovely community. Being trans* still occupies me a lot, but in a much more positive way than before. Since that moment I had my first total makeover done, bought some nice clothes, took make-up classes. And all these things I did very consciously.

But there were also things that came naturally, things I didn’t consciously choose for, things I didn’t expect. Little things, that are also on the path that I’m on right now.

Last year I chose my name Louise. To be honest, I still have to get used to that name, and there are only two people in the real world who have used that name on me so far. Sometimes I am confronted with that name, at unexpected moments and at unexpected places, like on a bottle of water. At a time when I’m with people who don’t know about Louise, at a time when my thoughts are focused on something else. It feels like a small, silent message: “Hey, remember?”

Also new is my alertness not to run into anything. When my legs come out under a skirt, they have to look as smooth as possible. No scratches or bruises. And in a natural way I have become more careful, and I look – better than before – where I set my feet. This was not a conscious decision. This just happened by itself.

It goes even further with my white sneakers. They have to stay white. So, if I spot a stripe or a stain, I polish it off as soon as possible, with a wet cloth. The day before yesterday I went cycling with them, and I pushed the support of the bike backwards with the sole of my shoe. Not with the side!

The way I eat and drink. Incredible how careful one has to be, when eating and drinking while wearing lipstick. And even if I don’t wear any, but when I just think about it, I sit up straight, dose and balance the food better on my fork, and try to touch my lips as little as possible when I take the bite.

Talking about bites, I always have liked delicious bites, and still like them now. And good wine. But more than ever I realize what these things can do to my body, if I take too much of these. I enjoy every sip, but take more time between sips. I don’t need a second glass anymore. Crisps will go in a bowl, and I don’t take a second bowl (well… most of the time ;). Because those new dresses fit me well, and they have to continue to fit.

When I look at pictures of myself… Oh my god, I have become so critical. I can’t help looking for and finding imperfections. My eyes that aren’t open enough, my lips that don’t smile, my beard that squeaks through my foundation, my chin that is double, my Adam’s apple that is too visible, my waist that isn’t narrow enough, my fingers that are too thick, my legs covered with keratosis pilaris. When did I make the choice to be so critical?

Being a woman, it isn’t easy.

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