As I inch closer to the doctor’s appointment that will be my first step towards starting hormones, I’ve been doing a lot of introspection about why I want to take them.
The primary reason is to see how I respond to them. After reading many, many stories of other trans people, starting hormones appears to be a bit of a screening test in that it either seems to confirm or deny that it is the proper course of treatment for a subset of transgender people.
In my own case, I have serious ambivalence about a positive or a negative response, and further ambivalence about either reaction.
If I have a positive response that brings a measure of relief to the gender discomfort I have, I’ll be happy about that. But at the same time it would be sobering and downright scary, as it would seem to indicate that I might need to progress further in transition will all the attendant challenges to relationships and employment.
With a negative response, it might relieve the self-imposed pressure I feel to transition and it would remove a huge obstacle in the relationship with my wife. The scary bit here is then trying to find a priori basis for the gender bending feelings I do have and how to accommodate them.
I’m also trying to prepare myself that no clear answer may emerge after I start hormones, and that I’ll have to continue the hard work of blazing my own gender trail.
Mostly though, I yearn for hormones to bring some certainty and clarity to my gender experience, which often leaves me feeling uncertain and muddled. I remind myself that getting the prescription is one step, filling it is another, actually taking it is yet another, and that I get to decide which steps I take. I further remind myself that wondrous journeys of a lifetime can begin even with halting, hesitant, or uncertain steps, and that the journey is the reward if I’m pay attention.