This post is the 26th in a series.
I did quite a bit of journaling through the time when I was coming to recognize my reality. I would like to share some of these entries with you as a window into what it means to come out. Please come back to read through the rest of the journey. If you haven’t read the first, you can click here to be redirected to that post, called Truth. From there, at the bottom of each post you can navigate to the next.
Content warning: This post contains swearing.
August 12, 2020
I got another haircut today! As much as I loved the first one when we cut off most of the length, I love this one exponentially more! With the first cut, it was still several inches long and hung over my forehead, as low as my eyes. It was causing some physical unpleasant sensations – my hair is thick and coarse, so it felt scratchy and like I was being pricked – but surprisingly, it was also causing some emotional/psychological distress as well.
About 3 years ago I added bangs to my long hair, just to see how I liked it. After about a year, I decided to grow them out again: I just didn’t prefer them. I had none of these sensations I’ve had over the last number of weeks with the new cut. How do I describe the emotional response? It just felt too long, not masculine enough. Oof! That was hard to write! I’m still subconsciously, on some level, avoiding describing things or letting myself feel too masculine. It seems there is still an internal Assessor at work, gauging my thoughts and feelings: middle of the road androgynous – OK; straying into feminine territory – OK; straying over the line into masculinity – Whoa there! Be careful! Interesting. I showed my hairdresser two reference photos today. They were both men. I’m wearing mostly men’s clothes. I think the Assessor is weighing the masculine clothes against the feminine body and allowing that as a balance. But then to feel like, to say, something isn’t masculine enough, feels like new territory.
I’m glad it came out here, so I have a record of it, I can look at that, not be afraid of it, acknowledge that it comes from me, and give myself freedom with it. I am going to get this internal Assessor to shut the hell up some day! When it says, “Whoa! Hold up there! Don’t you think that’s going too far?” I want to come back with, “Why’s it so important to you? What’s in it for you to keep things the way they are? And who made you the boss anyway?” OK, so the answer to the last one is that I made the Assessor boss – a long time ago. I’m reminded of the story of the king and his emissary. A good and wise king, beloved by his people, had a capable and trusted assistance whom he named as his emissary. An emissary is a representative. It’s related to the word ambassador. Anyway, the king trusted his emissary with more and more of his own duties. Soon the people didn’t see the king very much anymore. And the emissary took advantage of his situation and started making decision for his own gain. Eventually, the emissary took over the kingdom, usurping the king entirely and oppressing the people. A long time ago I appointed an Assessor: at first only a few things were in the Assessor’s purview – let’s not embarrass ourself. Over time, however, the Assessor has taken over: outward appearance, vocabulary, emotions, voice modulation, interests & activities, and apparently, ways of thinking. It expresses itself most often in the familiar refrain of, “What will people think?” I have been working at wresting back control from the Assessor, so it’s always helpful to recognize it’s voice when it strays from it’s favourite phrase. It’s quite good at disguises, I think: it’s often disguised as courtesy for others, respect, dignity, decorum, shyness, peacekeeping. But slowly, slowly, I’m learning to recognize it and not automatically say, “Oh, you’re right. That is going too far. Sorry.” So, to the idea that wanting a more masculine haircut as going too far, I say, “Fuck off! This makes me happy and I don’t have to live by your restrictive, ridiculous rules anymore!”
One of the reference pictures I showed my hairdresser? Chris Hemsworth. Boom! Take that you inner tyrant! I went there and I’m glad I did!