I took my kids to visit some dear friends of mine (a couple) that I’ve known since college in central Washington. Due to distance and kids, it’s been years since I’ve seen them and we had fallen a bit out of touch and I made it a point to reach out to them a couple of weeks ago and they invited us out.
While we were making plans last week, I briefed them at a high level about what’s been going on with me around divorce, job, and my plans to transition. Even thought I’ve known them for years and was certain that they’d accept me, they do live in a very conservative place and it gave me pause as I packed.
After thinking about it for longer than I should have, I realized that if I couldn’t be me while visiting friends, why be me? I can’t hide myself or shirk away from places or people who might make me uncomfortable or I’d never leave the house!
So I packed and wore my clothes and that was that.
There was some trepidation on my part before we arrived and I almost worked myself up again, but in the end it was no big deal. They were accepting, supportive, and I stayed up late talking with one of them, telling her a bit of my longer story and answering questions, and she told me I was brave and that she and her husband fully supported me. 🙂
We were out and about last night and today in town and I didn’t get any more looks than I normally do. My kids might perhaps be giving me some cover so to speak, as I’m the mom running around after them because that’s the role I’m in at the moment, and since I fit the archetype, there’s no reason to look more closely.
I have another friend that lives in the same town and we haven’t talked in years; he stopped returning my calls a long time ago. He knew about me in the 1990’s, so what’s going on with me is nothing new, but he doesn’t know that I’m finally transitioning. He showed up briefly today, gave me a big hug, and then realized that I was…different. He said it was going to take some getting used to and that it would be hard for him. He was still friendly, but there was a reserve there and I could tell it was bothering him. Oh well.
He may yet come around, but two out of three is fine by me!