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Body shit is freaking me out, seriously. I've been trying to work it in my head, taking a tiny bit of encouragement from the study that shows depression is an analytical thinking boon, but I can't seem to break things down into sufficiently small pieces with which to work, and it's making me crazy*.

It's tied up in a lot of things in my head; there are many ways to get to here. One, I'm not ready to be old. I've never had a wild youth, never had youthful indiscretions, never romped freely with others in the sensual. I've never been the hot young thing, never had a chance to enjoy my body or my own physicality because I was always struggling to find a way to coordinate or translate the closed eyes, internal experience of self with the social construction, reinforcement and/or denial of self. But time marches on, and it's starting to show on me. I don't want to jump from 'conflicted' to 'old', particularly when in my mind, 'old' means I'll look even more definitively like what one interprets as a man.

I want a better world, one in which there is room for people who don't fit the mold, not just the horrible, invisible, cruel monolith of sex/gender. I want to fight for this world, but can't find traction. I have not been able to find a group engaged in this fight in a way that will give me anything other than working for the goals of others (which I do anyway, but damn it, I want liberation and freedom, too), and I haven't been able to find individuals with whom to form a group, for much the same reasons. I don't want to pay the price for trying to manifest in such a way as to be punished because I aimed for the better world, but it's just not here. I can't be the change I want to see in the world because I can't change the world alone, and I can't take the hits. It's not just on me; I can't just decide to feel better about an untenable situation, change my perspective and be all sunshine and smiles. I refuse to be atomized on this; I'm a part of a larger problem, I just don't know many people who experience it like I do.

On a more on the ground level, I'm feeling both more in my flesh and less. My body felt closer to fitting when I had less body hair. Spironolactone helped with that, impressively, over time. It also gave me bigger breasts; not much, nothing special, but more than I have now. But, the sexual side effects were unkind, and alienated me from my body as it brought me closer to it at the same time. I discounted the positive effects of the Spiro (they were very gradual), but decided I would not give up steady erections and satisfying ejaculation (also gradual changes, but when it hit me, it was bad). So now I'm more sexually engaged or engagable, but in packaging that I find unpleasant (on a good day) or flinch from a mirror, reptile brain alien (on a bad day).

From there, it's no step at all to realize that any manifestation of self, any physical peace can probably only be mediated by technology, artifice**. There is no just being, because my body refuses to grow, develop, manifest, whatever the fuck you want to call it, according to the plan it seems to have, the images and sensations it projects at my conscious brain with the imperatives WANT and DO NOW. I don't get the luxury of a feeling of personal authenticity, even for a moment, because things don't match.

I'm getting ready to head to a place with either no showers, or public, sexed showers for four days. I can't remember when the last time I was in a public shower, but I'm pretty damned sure it was before I started hormones. And, fuck, how is sexing showers in any way safe or good? There will be plenty of boys who dig boys, girls who dig girls, and both who dig either, so what's being protected, exactly? But no one thinks about it, because of course people are either men or women; it's not even worth thinking about it, right?

A lot of folks just don't bathe, or make do with washcloths, and that's great... for them. For me, I cannot.... no, I will not, go that long without shaving. As referenced above, the hair is back, and I hate it. I can shave my face, because I have to show that to the world, but if I can't shave other parts (arms, legs, chest: take your pick), I do not want to show them. I don't want to give anyone more obvious excuse to throw me in man category (even though they will anyway), and I don't want to see that shit myself. I don't want to recoil, and I don't want to have to suppress that feeling for extended periods, because it costs too much.

And just... fuck, I don't know. This shit is supposed to get easier, isn't it? I work, hard, on this stuff, but I'm just not making headway. Stepping into the elevator after lunch, as soon as I realized I was alone I had an almost overwhelming urge to throw myself against the walls as hard as I could, and at the moment, it made a lot of sense. It still does, and I wish my brain could come up with other physical metaphors, because I really don't need broken bones, sprains and bruises on the outside, too.

*My thinking jumps tracks quickly and badly when I'm like this. I just tried to take out the compost, but couldn't get to it easily due to the leftover dishes from previous days, and couldn't put them away because the washer hadn't been emptied, which led to working at it with increasing frustration, trying to get all the obstacles out of the way just so I could accomplish one simple task. In the process, we lost a ceramic rice bowl (shattered), a filtered water pitcher (smashed with a cutting board) and an old tupperware pitcher (dashed in the sink). All I wanted was a Pepsi...

**Yes, I know this is a problematic issue. Everyone wears clothing, has affectations both personal and societally mandated. It's different in degree, not in general.

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