Last week I had my birthday. It was a rather low key affair with my wife and kids. We had one of my favorite dishes for dinner and I got a great little cake. My kids also decorated my present to look like a sailboat. Things were pretty cool. My younger son took a picture of my present before I opened it and I took a peek. The person sitting on the couch next to this amazing feat of wrapping was supposed to be me. One year and I almost can’t recognize myself. I’m surprised that they bought ‘Happy Birthday Dad’ wrapping paper. Anyways they got me the Black Pearl pirate ship from Pirates of the Caribbean in Lego. I may be changing gender but I still love Lego. My family knows me too well.
Friday I got good news. Due to a clerical error I did not have work our church carnival this year. I was free to go to my support group meeting which I have missed. It was a full house and I got a number of compliments about my progress. There happened to be a few women I haven’t seen for a while and we got caught up. The meeting finally got started and so did my phone. I left in the middle of a group discussion to answer my daughter’s frantic texts. It seems that a local pet store had this puppy for sale and it was left to me to decide whether or not to get it. Outnumbered 4 to one I caved in. The rest of the meeting went along without incident. A group of us broke off to a local restaurant for dinner and then a smaller group went to Denny’s after that. I eventually made it home around three AM and crashed.
The next morning I woke up to a stubby legged little ball of energy. I am now the proud owner of a three month old Corgi. I will point out that I have wanted a Corgi since I was about 5 years old. Coincidentally that was about the time I started wanting girls ballet outfits. Now I have girl clothes and a Corgi. Too bad it only took 43 years to get them.
Later that morning, as the dog was getting acquainted with our home, I got a frantic call from the pet shop. The gentleman who sold us the dog told me he sold us a boy dog but gave us the paperwork for a girl dog. I had no idea we had a trans dog. It was all I could do to keep from laughing out while I told him we would be down later to fix the paperwork. After I hung up I exploded with laughter. I told everyone what happened and they were wondering why I thought it was so funny. My wife knew why I was laughing and she gave me a disapproving look. I went and picked up the dog and looked him in the eye. “So, when did you realize that you were a girl dog trapped in a boy dog’s body?”, I asked. He just grunted.
Sunday marked my first Second Birthday. It was the anniversary of my first time out in public as my true self. I celebrated by wearing my one and only pair of Victoria’s Secret panties, jeans and a plain T shirt. Then I got a large piece of my birthday cake from my other birthday. I sat down and watched the documentary ‘American Transgender” which I had recorded. The Itty Bitty Titty fairy also brought me a gift, sore and itchy boobs.
Later in the day we took the dog and the kids to the church carnival.
It’s called Fiesta with Friends. But this year it wasn’t much of a fiesta. We couldn’t pinpoint why but none of us felt any energy and excitement. Our boys had even gotten free tickets for the rides that they didn’t feel like using. Even the weather wouldn’t cooperate. It was overcast and grey.
The only bright spot was our Corgi. It seemed like everyone had to come over and pet him.
I decided later that this carnival signified the end of part of all our lives. My daughter graduates high school and my older son moves on to a high school but one closer to our new home. We are pulling our youngest son out of the school because of the bullying and our increasing dissatisfaction with how the school has been run the last few years. My wife is also tired of the drive and the extra gas expense each month. She is also sick of the increasing elitist attitude amongst the parents at the school. Many of the parents we have socialized with have left or are leaving. All that’s left are a bunch of winey, stuck up, stereotypical upper middle class soccer moms. As my daughter would say “Mom is so over all that”. And I don’t blame her. At the end of all this is me. I don’t fit in either (hmm wonder why?). When I go to the school or church I get stares. My wife has been asked about my health situation. Someone even asked if I had cancer because I was thin and my face looked so drawn. It’s time for us to move on. We have changed too much for them. I think for the better.
So that brings me back to our little ball of fur and endless energy. He signifies a new beginning for us. The first page in another chapter of our lives. This dog has brought something to this family; a sense if connectedness that we have been missing. It may not last as he gets older but for now we all need him and each other.