Unknown

So many years ago when I fought so hard to hide my reality,because even I had no true understanding of why or who I really was I just succumbed to showing a picture I wanted others to see.

During  some of that time I manifested a gruesome military warrior ,hell bent on being seen as the complete antithesis of my inner reality,and yet a successful warrior none the less,as I felt failure of my male persona  was somehow a brand I might carry into my unknown future.

Years kept clicking by , and my reality continued to elude me,and any cognizant answers just seemed like a never ending pit from which I would not emerge.

Thirsty for anything that would bring some understanding to my never ending search to my blindness I felt would never reveal any answers,and then the world by way of computer knowledge ,allowed me find out that many others in this world,had also experienced the unknown.

I soon began to realize that the known was  the  teacher ,I had looked for with no map.

Answers came flooding into my mind and I soon found ,that the unknown was completely available,if I only knew where to look.

While looking may be a never ending quest it brings me to a better understanding everyday.

Hugzz Butterfly

Thoughts

I’m mostly silent on the political scene except with friends and family,but tonight I just feel a need to speak my piece about the bathroom issue .

 

until the State of North Carolina brought the issue to public view little had ever been mentioned about the bathroom issue,as for myself always presenting as a women ,I have for years used the ladies room without ever a bad experience.

Now however I feel concerned about my safety in doing so,

However let me speak to what I feel  is overreach by Obama in regards to the school bathroom order yes I feel what you do in your own stall is private and should be a non issue, the fact that pre-op transgenders should share shower rooms and lockers is not a good thing,I base this on my own thoughts as as teenager who still was exploring my own gender or failings of understanding it.

 

So let’s put the bathroom thing back as it always was without problems and have a common sense discussion about the shower and locker room thing.

 

Thanks Butterfly

How do we get to a place of mutual understanding?

I hate to keep going over an issue that really seems to get little coverage on transgender blogs but,when you have first hand experiences that affect you in personal ways it’s something worth mentioning.

What you say am I talking about? it’s the distance between the lgb and the T as much as anyone wants to say that we are somehow in locked arm on issues that concern us all it’s really just an illusion,with most Gay people and particular,those on the male end of the spectrum.

They really have about as much understanding of Transgender persons for the most part as Cis people do.While this isn’t true for all, it tends to be more than not.My peronal dealings with a great many of them,leaves me feeling that they are for the most part a very self centered group of people intrested in moving their own interests forward regardless of what is truly the civil rights movement of our time.

I don’t make these claims lightly  it’s the culmination of years of interaction with gay men,I don’t however find this to be true of  the lesbian community,guess it’s just a girl thing,can’t pin that down for sure,but they just seem more tolerant than their Male counterparts.

Most of you who have followed me for any length of time know that this has been an issue that has had a cumulative part of forming my way of thinking in regards to the LGB—-    T,experience .

Personally I find a gap that lacks very much respect in most of the male gay community  and those of us who are Transgender definitely the struggle is much different for lots of obvious reasons.

I don’t expect this gap t close anytime soon as the goals are far apart,in reality.

As for me I will try my best to close the gaps between all people regardless of their preferences in life.

But I often find some of the LGB   T community out of sync with the real goals of humanity at large.

thanks to all

Butterfly

Just a few things on my mind

Hello dwellers

I know it’s been a while since I was here to provocateur in  your world .

I have been busying myself with being stealth,and just living life as the person I am.

There are as usual things that keep stabbing me in life and so are hard to ignore.

  1. It seems the religious right who seem to have taken over an entire party of our politics in the U.S., I must say to them you don’t represent  how all conservatives feel,while I’m conservative in my beliefs that the Federal Government should get the hell out of our lives and stop creating new programs that never work ,with the thought they know better how to live my life than they do.
  2. Let’s just get back to basics  and realize that the Christianity does not own the political system and that “the rights rights of all people come from our maker and not specifically from their God but from the one and only deity. whom ever that may in the end be,we all have our ideas and ingrained,beliefs on this, and all should  given reverence regardless of what lives in our own hearts.Does Buddha or any other God have the answer ,I think not ,I happen to believe in the teachings of Jesus but there have been profits way before him,or are any wrong or do they all just compel us to be decent to one another as a sign of mature understanding?
  3. While I support the LGBT community as a whole I have to say through experience that  it’s more like this LGB    T.
  4. You can’t always assume that the gay community has your back as a Transgender person because it is just not so. Their political philosophy does not always align with mine and I might add with a vast majority of  the conscious world. They are mostly concerned with their own agenda,and have little if any understanding of what my life has undertaken over decades of misunderstanding.
  5. Being human and nothing less should be the goal of  the world,And that seems far off to me!

The sad and the real with a little humor

It is a sad time that I post this night,my stepdaughter has taken her life by suicide,she struggled for many years from depression and alcohol addiction

 

I am devastated by these developments tonight ,but thankful for my daughter Vicki Eastwood who survives by the grace of God, for her the pain must seem insurmountable,at this moment. For her I give my most precious love and warm comfort.

 

 

In other news: I came upon my 3rd Mammogram held by the women’s clinic @ St. Elizabeth women’s clinic.

 

This being my 3rd, mammogram I thought of it as simply routine,much to my surprise however it was less than ordinary.

 

As was the norm she had a battery of questions, before we began the procedure

firstly she ask how many pregnancies I had to which I answered none ,nextly she ask when I had my first period, to which I replied  I’m still waiting for that too. She gave gave me an odd look but didn’t skip a beat and continued right along with the questions.

The really good news is that no evidence of breast cancer was found,with the caveat that I have very dense breast tissue which makes reading the scans difficult.

Next day I had my bi-annual visit with my Oncologist who always gives me a thorough breast exam as well. She was pleased to note also that I had since April lost 23 pounds. The reason being that my general practitioner had prescribed a statin drug for my cholesterol . After extensive research I made an informed decision to not take this drug which multiple studies have proven to show that these drugs are dangerous and truly a scam which now includes 1 in every 4 Americans , I also have friends who have suffered the side effects,of these big pharma drugs, 1 who has developed alzheimer’s and 2 who got diabetes,as a direct result from going on statin drugs.That being said knowing my numbers were outside the the guide lines I made radical changes to my diet and got my numbers back in the normal range within 60 days. Mostly this has been a blessing in disguise for me as my being on HRT has come with some weight gain that I didn’t exactly want anyway. I had tried all the fad diets with no success,but this time I made a long term commitment to really take control of my diet it has paid many dividends some being more energy and the weight loss is a blessing as well.At first I missed some things but over time I lost my desire for them and really find my new way of eating to be most desirable .

Well not to harp on that issue too much ,I will move on to other subjects.

 

Also in my personal news I have two successive visits with my ” mental health person” ala the VA in an attempt to get my papers signed so I can change the gender marker on my ID they have let me know that when I see my GP on the 17th they will indeed sign the paper work. This leaves me with now going back to court to now change my marker on my birth certificate which could have been done when I went for my name change but no  one let me know that so now it will cost me close to another $200 to return to court for just this one thing that could have been done the first time.Can you say FRUSTRATING !!

 

All this being said my transition has been for the most part just lots of effort,and graced by the love of a very accepting and supportive family. To them I can’t begin to express my gratitude and thanks for their love in this difficult but very necessary part of my life.

See you all soon with more news

 

Butterfly

Across The Rubicon

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As most of you know already,last year before our Family reunion I made the decision to no longer hide who I am from my people. This has resulted in the biggest and best turning point of my not so young life.

It has allowed me to forge better and stronger relationships with members of my family and their friends as well,without doubt it has lead to a relationship between my youngest sister and I that I  dreamed about but never thought would exist, we have grown so close and formed the most wonderful bond It’s like it was somehow destined to have happened.We have become inseparable friends. It makes me cry sometimes knowing how long I kept myself from the fruits of love my family had to offer.

As with most Like me in my age group we began our journey with very conflicting and confused views of our condition,and over time we confronted nearly every emotion and self doubt that anyone could conceive,most going through periods where we thought we could defeat the reality of what we are by as many methods as our twisted understanding could dream up,as with myself I went the whole gambit ,practicing  immersion therapy thinking if I could just do the most male things possible It would somehow go away or at least I would be invisible and no one would discover my socially abnormal lust to be what my brain kept telling me I was. 

Well as it turns out,after a few years now of consistent hormone therapy I threw caution to the wind in favor of living as the person who had been trapped by utter fear of discovery and just began reconstructing what I had left of my life as just me. A me even I wasn’t sure I really was after these long years of confusion and lack of understanding my true self.This round of things is much different than my previous temporary jawnts into womanhood this time I went in with a commitment  to never turn back again but always continue moving forward no matter how frightened or difficult it might get.

So many times in my life I built wardrobes of womens clothing only to lose my confidence,or out of fear of being discovered and having to face what I thought would be the true end of life.I purged so many wardrobes only to begin again within a few months this time I did a reverse purge and rid myself of every piece of male clothing I owned with the solid mindset that this time a permanent girl would appear and grow and keep growing and never again look in the rear view mirror.

This time I have truly crossed the Rubicon, for those who have no knowledge of the term briefly it was a river in Italy that was forbidden to be crossed by Armies,and Julius Caesar crossed it with his army it was a point of no return just as I have finally reached the point of no return in my transition,I have truly become something completely unique to all previous versions of myself,It has been so powerful a change that I’ve completely released my mind from all that seemed to clutter it with doubt about my true identity,I no longer even, but on rare occasions  think of being transgender I’m just Shelle.

Some new reality has set in on me I used to be very focused on every article and piece of information that had anything to do with being transgender that I just couldn’t get a grip on working hard on the individual I wanted so much to be.Truth is the best and most motivating thing I ever did was to trust my family with what I had been facing all my life,guess had I should have trusted in the fact that I came from pretty strong people who have known how to deal with diversity and personal struggle from the time our people landed on these shores from England. I guess that learning all I could about my condition was really a right of passage in most ways a trail to be traveled,to a destination that was far from sure in the beginning.Truth is I have gained more strength and clarity in life by reuniting with my loving family than I could ever have pictured in my mind,being able to look in eyes of the people you grew up loving all your life and feeling comfortable and loved is a priceless gift only they and God can bestow on you.

I know it’s been a bit since I last updated my journey but frankly real living has overcome me,I’ve been so engrossed in living that I really forgot to be concerned about the lost soul I once was. I don’t feel anything but normal these days,something I have never known in my life,there was always that heavy hand squeezing the life out of me.I guess being recognised as yourself and being comfortable there is pretty intoxicating to someone who really hasn’t known it in an entire lifetime.Feels kind of like I need to sprint toward the finish line as there are not many ticks of clock left in my life,like I must cram every wonderful moment of a finally happy life into the small place left to fill ,before leaving this new found peace. Relationships I once thought would be burning pieces of coal,have now turned into precious diamonds,and I’m blinded by the glitter so much that I’m just living free from all the burdens I once heaped upon myself.

Seems like Shelle has become the most normal person of my life,a girl that can be best friends with my sister,hang out with the girls go shopping and just hangout, there are so many new  things in my life I’m just drinking it all down with a very humbled heart.

Back real soon sorry for being away so long,

Butterfly

Summers end

1383118_10153385058355475_870397557_n  So summer comes to a close here on the plains,and Oh my what a wonderful one it has been .

I finally found my footing and grabbed all the bounty I could have ever desired,so much to say so much to share,Stay tuned as I turn the pages of my life over to you all.

 

Butterfly

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Lot’s of news to report here from the Butterfly Den,

A couple of weeks ago I received my annual invitation to my family reunion I have not attended since I transitioned out of respect for the event and up till now only my immediate family know about me. this has been a source of great anxiety for me as I do love my family and still desire to be a part of their lives,but as always there is that gripping fear of being rejected by people I have loved all my life,so this year I made a decision to address this issue head on and penned a letter to my cousin who sends the invitations:

 

 

Dearest Donnie; received my invitation for the Medley family reunion and just as last year it gives me time to pause and ask myself what should I do.

It makes me sad that I can’t be a part of the lives I so dearly love in this world, I didn’t attend last year’s event out of respect for all of you who have loved me all my life it is not my wish to disrupt this wonderful event that my family has each year so I chose not to come in spite of the fact that my heart and soul wishes I could.

You see I have struggled with a genetic disorder all my life and have only in the past many years come to grips with it and finally sought  therapy and treatment, through  the VA, There is no way to say this easily I’m just going to say it and hope you will understand I’m a transgendered person, I tried all my life to understand and suppress this but it’s not something that goes away it happens before you are born and cannot be changed, as I grew up from an early age I knew I was a girl but it wasn’t well understood how this occurred back then.

In more recent times it has been studied and much is known about this now it has been a plague to my life for nearly 60 yrs. I just always wished I had been born normal and been able to live life like anyone else but that was not to be.

It was not until all my parents were gone that I made a choice to act on what my doctors had confirmed many years ago I suffer from gender dysphoria, it resulted in a lot of horrible things that hurt my life because I just couldn’t understand why I was this way, after years of therapy and finally making a conscious choice to have a more peaceful end to my life I have now for about five years undergone hormone replacement therapy and finally have found true happiness in my life.

This decision has of course alienated me from many who have loved me all my life as most don’t or won’t, try to and understand this phenomenon, my immediate family brothers sisters and my son never missed a beat and continue to love and support me in life, as well as some of my cousins I’m in hope that you will support my decision as well and understand this difficult road I have traveled for so long.

Please pass along my love to all who attend this year and feel free to share this letter in hopes that next year I can attend without being the focus of the event but just another Medley.

I have legally changed my name and now live as who I should always have been,

 

Your cousin Mike Iles now (Shelle Marie Iles)

 

Above is the letter  today I received this wonderful reply:

 

Mike, Sorry but you are still Mike to me, give me some time, Your letter was heartfelt and enlightening.  I personally can’t imagine what you have been going through for the past decades.  I am enclosing this response to Tim as well, why – I can’t remember very many childhood memories when either you or Tim were not a part of my life.  We were the “Three Musketeers”  Now that we are the “Two Musketeers and One Musketshe” is completely immaterial to me.  I can still remember some spankings that I got that were directly because of you or Tim.  I was usually the innocent one of the group……..Yea Right…….

 

I gave this letter to Mom, who lives with us last night and simply asked her to read it and give me her thoughts.  Her exact comments were as my thoughts almost exactly –  “ I can’t image what he has been going through over the past years. It is immaterial who he is, he/she is still a Medley.  He should come to the Reunion”.   This from a 93 year old who has seen it all.

 

I will definitely read the letter at the Reunion if you are not there.  If you decide to come (Please Do) I will still read the letter to the family.  It is important to you that this information is understood.  I can’t guarantee how everyone will respond (remember it is the Medley Family) but myself and Mom will great you with open arms.

 

Blood is still Blood and the older we get in years the better we understand that the ONLY thing that really matters is FAMILY, Friends and Health.  Everything else is superficial.

 

Tim, the letter was written in a Red Font and was had to scan, I hope you can read it, it is worth the read…

 

So, I am Still just Donny and Tim is still Tim.  Mike is now Shelle and I still Love you Man.  Or Woman, Shit now I am confused.

 

Hope to see you Sunday, Really……

 

Donny……

 

I replied and  agreed to attend this year,for me this a long anticipated moment in my life and still a very frightening thing as well,I expect I will lose some and some will continue to love me but this is a milestone I avoided for far too long and it will be a weight lifted off this heavily burdened heart I have lived with for so many years.

 

Butterfly

 

Updates to still here,and new news

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The Person mentioned as hopeful from Craigslist,is now blocked from contacting me,after asking for a video chat and  then wanting me to disrobe for him.So much for that!!

 

In other news my platonic friend who is very much disturbed by the fact that I had a date with someone is  now actively trying to change  the parameters of our relationship,we have always had issues between us that prevented us from being in an intimate relationship and I told him as much as two years ago nothing could change that unless he was willing to seek therapy.On Thursday he had his first session with my therapist,I hope this will be helpful for him at least it says to me he cares more than he’s let on in the past,we will see what it brings to our future,I think some things at least for me are insurmountable,and that being friends may be as far as we can ever go,he gets kudos  however for at least addressing his own problems head on finally.

 

Finally I’m going to do something here I don’t usually do, I’m going to get a little political don’t usually but sometimes when things affect my own well being,I will speak out.I’m mostly at odds with the LGBT community I suppose with my political beliefs the vast majority of them are dyed in the wool Democrats or socialists who believe Obama is some sort of God who is their benefactor and walks in lock step with their every need.I am a Constitutionalist who believes strongly That we should have less government and that we should not live trillions of dollars beyond our means. I’m a senior citizen who has  been dependant on medicare for my health needs,beginning this year  my costs have skyrocketed Because of the huge cuts made to medicare by The ACA  and now upcoming on March 31 more cuts to health care providers that have medicare patients.As time goes on more and more gets cut from medicare to fund Medicaid under the ACA,I paid into the medicare program all of my adult life,and now it’s being compromised to fund a program that will help people who have never paid a dime and likely never will,I also paid into Social security all my life and now all you here is it’s a runaway program that’s breaking the country,Maybe if years ago they didn’t raid the fund and spend the monies on other things It might be more solvent today,no one ever says Welfare is running out of money as it continues to spiral out of control and is also being given to people who won’t or will never put a dime back into the system.But I digress my Oncologist informs me that new guidelines for medicare no longer will pay for Colonoscopies every two years but now every five years being a colon cancer survivor this doesn’t sit well with me,this is but a small sample of how my health is being compromised because of the ACA I have lost many such services and my costs are rising while I get less care,meanwhile the democrats hammer away at the theme that the republicans are pushing granny off the cliff,guess what not a single republican voted for the ACA,so who’s really pushing granny off the cliff.Finally I have had enough of the rising costs and diminished coverage,I took steps this past week to turn my health care over to the VA,not only can I now get a colonoscopy when I need one,but I have access to an ever-growing transgender service,they also showed me what poor quality my care is under medicare,I have been receiving blood pressure meds that are totally inappropriate for my condition, my doctor at the VA changed that immediately.I have now a new level of confidence about my health care. I predict that senior participation in the upcoming elections will remove hapless Harry Reid from his perch and our government might return to some level of normalcy.And maybe this lousy unread health care bill will be replaced with something that really helps people and restores medicare for the people who depend on it.

Butterfly

 

 

Still here

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Lot’s to tell,finally but reluctantly our long winter begins to release it’s icy grip on this part of the world.The grip began early and we have had temps running 30 to 40 degrees below normal since mid October for a  lady like me who can’t afford the luxury an auto it has been most burdensome,the combination of being trapped inside for what seems a lifetime now,and the effects of my hormones have added some unwanted pounds to my physic,it doesn’t help that I love to cook and comfort food abounds in Shelle’s abode in the winter months (I should mention I’m a good eater too and I often eat more than I should when I’m stressed) well enough said about that I obviously have some work to do when spring allows me to get out work off the winter pounds.

On Other fronts I have still been on my quest for my someone,things in that department  have moved slowly up till recently,when a couple of events have caused some serious changes in my life,I have a male friend now for about two years who has always just been a platonic friend with no kind of intimate attachment,just friends,we are very close but just not close enough to be in a relationship,so I thought. But recently I had the occasion to go out with a guy and that sent him over the edge it seems, he said he couldn’t stand the fact that I might become attached to someone else and then not have the time for him anymore,Does it sound like he is more attached to me than he lets on or is it just me? Yea me too! Well he has always kept me away from his family I guess he was ashamed to have them know who and what I am even though I’m just me everyday,all that has changed rather suddenly,and I’m now fully welcome in his life,even still he says he wants no committed relationship,well me being me I had to insist that I not be held hostage by his feelings and still be free to pursue my someone,he agrees with words but not actions he is visually upset at the prospect.

In recent days I had an answer to my Craigslist ad, first one in months at least the first that seemed real enough to warrant a good look,I  engaged and we began a dialog that soon left me scratching my head,he said to me please don’t let race become an issue for us,to which I quickly responded how could you ever seek out someone like me and even bring up that issue I have probably experienced more discrimination in my life than you ever did in yours.I was never raised to see color I deal with all on the”content of their character not the color of their skin” Hope something good comes of this but I have learned to be cautious with these persons.

Updates forthcoming,

Butterfly