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Interview With A Difference Maker Version 11.2

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We continue with Michelle:

It has now been three years since I decided to express my feminine self at work. With each passing month and year, I have sorted out barriers that may be faced by other transgender members in the military. I do all activities exclusively in my female expression: yearly medicals; yearly physical fitness test, presentations and facilitating training on diversity and inclusion.

I have also participated in many physical activities, such as yoga, stretch and strength, classes, cycling, and this past summer I participated as a player with the base’s women’s soccer team. I am also now currently on the women’s hockey team and having a blast! I consider myself again very fortunate to not have encountered any resistance or negative feedback from my participation, but rather welcomed with open arms.

I was supposed to have retired at the age of 60, but I took advantage of an extra five years of which I still have three remaining. I only think of the current time and will have to contemplate what is going to happen once I retire finally.

Having talked in the past to a therapist who is WPATH qualified, I had found a comfortable existence/understanding of who I was, but as the months roll by, I now find I need to take another step in self realization. Yes, that means an appointment with a Nurse Practitioner (who has dealt with other transgender members) about low dose HRT.

While some folks plans for gender transition are on a steady incline, mine has been more of a small step up, followed by a plateau, followed by another small step up, followed by another plateau. I now find myself taking that next step to the next plateau.

When the time comes to finally retire from the Canadian Armed Forces, I can see that I’ll still be involved in some capacity with D&I, in the private sector or lobby group. This is not something that a passionate person can just stop doing…being oneself. This IS who I am, it’s only taken me 5+ decades to figure that out.

Check out Michelle’s blog!

Most of my blog entries were written on a spur of the moment, so contain my thoughts at that time. 

2014, 2015 have a number of entries covering the subject. But basically, the situation I find myself in stems from my wife’s long ago request not to see this side of me at home. I still honour this request but there is now an obvious overlap of feminine into my masculine expression, what with long hair (she hasn’t said anything about it), wearing my studs almost all the time, laser to remove dark stubble, among other things. 

If I’m going to meet up with friends, I’ll just tell her such and what the timings are. I used to get changed upstairs and let her know I was leaving and she would make sure she was in the back of the house to not see me leave. Now I head to my office and change there. I’m waiting for her to make a request, but we’ll see what my personal future holds and whether I need to start a new conversation.

It’s not that I “lied” to her when I said I was a crossdresser, but that was my truth at that time; I didn’t know better. 

Yes, I realize I’m living the reverse life/work (expression) arrangement than most, but it’s working for me.

Thank you Michelle and my little coven of interviewers! You are amazing, all.

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6 Responses

  1. Kandi,
    Again Michelle makes a very important point , take steps at your pace . I know it’s not always possible to work inside your comfort zone , pushing the envelope is both exciting and scary . You have to listen to yourself , seriously listen to both your heart and mind , when both align that has to be the right decision for YOU . Others may not agree with you but they can’t know YOU !
    Michelle comments on the help and guidance she’s recieved from the military but the same can be said for the others we encounter , it’s quite a revelation to discover they are on your side , they really want you to succeed .

  2. Michelle,
    I am so impressed by you.

    I am also surprised you haven’t had any negative comments while you are at the military base. I expected a few of the “macho” guys would have made some sarcastic comments to/about you. I guess the world “has come a long way baby.”

    Keep up your fantastic work regarding diversity and inclusion.

    Thank you for all you are doing.

    Jocelyn

  3. Thank you so much Kandi for letting me tell my story. I always hope someone can take even the smallest positive message from this and like a better life.

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