There are many incidents that remind me of my mental difference, the divergence in my neurology that makes “normal” people a ceaseless, discomfiting puzzle. One stands out in my memory, though, for the sheer spectacle of that difference: the time I was stuck in an elevator for the better part of an afternoon.
CN ableism in quoted messages
I don’t often check my “filtered messages” on Facebook. I don’t get many, and by the time I get around to remembering the secret extra inboxes Facebook helpfully uses as a preemptive trash bin, many of the people messaging me there have already had their accounts disabled on account of being spambots. It’s a short queue of “Facebook User” interspersed with men from overseas asking outrageous things of me.
Which brings me to Niall Corbally, the drift-race enthusiast and proud Tweeter who decided that messaging overseas trans lesbians to get them to perform sexual violence upon his gonads was a good use of his time. This is the message he sent me at the beginning of the month, that I found earlier today:
I’ve occasionally been challenged to put together a bucket list, but that framing device doesn’t do much for me. My dreams are at once too distant and too quotidian to fit on a “before I die” sort of list. For now, they’re a “when the tide comes in” sort of list: a dream for a future where scrambling for every cent is a distant memory, a plan for when I’m gainfully employed again (for various tiers of “gainfully”), and a promise to my future self.
My parents claim they have an honest relationship with me. I hesitate to say they think so because the claim is so bizarrely impossible that them “thinking” their way into it seems like the real stretch.
Do you think I’ve been honest with you about me, Mom and Dad? Do you really think me knowing I was trans for almost two years before I told you is the aberration, the break from our pattern that signaled a loss of trust? I don’t believe that for a second. I think you twisted and turned your way into this narrative because it let you harp on how I handled my disclosures for a while, instead of having only your own bigotry to lean on as a reason why my being Alyssa instead of [deadname] is a crime against family honor. I think you built this skein in your minds because it was important to you to feel a certain way about your children, and that it has less than nothing to do with me.
A Kanto for my Amantes: My Lovers as Pokémon
There’s an idea, somewhere between a running gag and a stereotype, that some people collect lovers like a Pokémon trainer collects pets. This concept grades into ugly objectification here and there, up to and including people maintaining de facto bingo cards of the demographics they’d like to bed, but it’s also an interesting thought exercise for the polyamorous lady.
Going it alone is not how this world works. None of us is invincible, nor are we all best at everything. Humans are interdependent, and we need each other. Sometimes, we are each other’s accessibility devices; other times, we’re each other’s levees, holding up what can no longer stand on its own. We look for, and find, people who fit with who we are, and we grow fond of and interdependent with people who can accomplish the things that we cannot. In the best scenario, we’re not just lovers: we are family.
A person and their partners, then, can be rather like a well-balanced Pokémon team.
So, here are the members of my polycule reimagined as Pokémon.
I’ve been on several Caribbean cruises. I’m also terrified of next month’s automatic bill payments. The juxtaposition of those two facts, both as true as they are incongruous next to one another, is something I’ve had to learn to understand, live with, and acknowledge as part of myself.
This week, I expanded my blogging horizons by giving my readers the option to ask me questions they’ve been curious about. The result was a mix of questions about me and things they hope I write about at greater length in the future, and it’s been fun to read and to contemplate.
People say a lot of things about hope. It’s an endless positive, the core of vital optimism that prevents people from descending into despair. People claim it’s audacious to be hopeful, a bold statement of the inevitability of future improvement. Heroes are powered by hope, defined by hope, sustained through their darkest moments by hope. Hope is what we offer each other when we are wounded or scared: This isn’t forever. Things will get better. You can get through.
Hope is dangerous.
This is the letter I will send my grandparents as soon as I have enough money to print some photos.
My navel piercing was exhilarating. I got it the last time I was in Miami, surrounded by my Miami friends who had no idea why I’d just signed up for such a feminine-coded body modification. Having friends there made the event exciting; having Ania made it safe. I faced the needle with enough nervousness that I had to fill out the “I’m the right age” form twice.
Ania has a picture of the face I made when it went in. I’m not sharing it.
Afterward, though? The soreness commingled with a heady endorphin rush that I should have expected but most definitely did not. I was giddy with delight. If we weren’t already at our financial limit, I might have signed up for another piercing then and there, in that euphoric haze. I’m looking forward to that feeling again.