And I still do…love you.
Your amazing self, your indomitable strength, your compassion and heart.
I would literally give anything and everything to be able to give you what I thought I was giving, but for real and not thru the mirrors that it finally dribbled out via.
I will never…ever…be able to go back and do/give/be for you the way that I feel for you, think about you (nearly every moment of every day of my life). I will never be able to be to you then who you deserve, and who I so desperately longed to be to you, and that has nothing to do with gender and everything to do with love.
Honestly, there are lots of ways where our shared narrative wildly diverges, but those are irrelevant and I do not trust my memory, of either good or bad things…no actually, that is not quite right…
…I do not trust Memory. At all anymore.
I think perhaps memory is equal parts what happened historically, what we experience from those events, what happens inside our brains and thus our soul, and then how we live that out as the telling of that memory.
So from that standpoint? As far as I am concerned everything happened just as you say…because that is what you lived. And everything happened just as I say as well, because that is what I lived.
“What really happened…”
That is not the place of those who seek truth and to live in wholeness…and I do, though to read of how far I missed that mark is so shattering to me.
Knowing my failures as a parent is far more shattering to me than all of my gender struggles and horror combined, and I would gladly bear any burden and pay any price to see this off of you and your brothers and sister, off of my dearest darling too…
but it is really not about that anymore. It is about the very things you did…you are doing…dealing. And then somehow from the midst of the ashes bringing forth beauty.
Your brother told me that I was not allowed…anything. I was not allowed to have a “revelation” or a “Road to Damascus” experience…that I was not allowed to “get away scott-free” and just move on in life finally happy and tasting of the goodness of life.
I get what he means, though I even feel funny writing it here, because it feels to me like I am somehow doing the forbidden thing (and don’t even get me started on how the patriarchy pushes him, in him, and its echoes in me ring so hollow and empty and are powerless)…
These comments here are not me taking an allowance, an indulgence, an expiation or absolution…these are not my rationalizations or explanations or justifications, not my protests I did the best I could (Dane Cook and the door-kicker)…the only thing I hope you do understand is that I was not ever in your lifetime consciously aware of my true nature as transgender until a fateful day in March, of 2013.
Aware of the horror inside me, the gaping nothing, yes…aware of the maelstrom within, yes…and while your brother has made it clear that my words to you all about how it was you who kept me alive and gave me hope and stayed my suicidal hands ended up being to you all a litany of blame that I couldn’t end it all, I assure you that it was not that way within me…the fact that you all experienced it that way is due to my incredible ineptness at communicating my true heart…
…it was you, dearest of dear, your sister and brothers…you were the only true good in my life, and at the time I considered that the taking of my own life would mar you forever…besides, with you there? I really thought it would be possible to endure and survive.
I am so deeply sorrowful that my existence brought you such brokenness and harm. But it was never…ever…a conscious performance and concealing. While I was utterly dissociated and terribly broken, I lived as true as I knew, in various forms of hitting and missing that mark.
So no…no absolution…no right to anything except knowing how deeply I failed you, how horribly I bungled that moment in September 2013…to you…the one person I so desperately wanted to connect with and whom I so utterly and horribly marred.
Just know that I live my life now, in daily intention, to be in all ways the antithesis of what I once was…that I find comfort and solace in the words your Grandpa drilled into my heart as a child “A wise man changes his mind, a fool never” (though the “man” and “he” part always stung deep)…dearest and best, it actually is possible to learn and grow, to have blinders fall away, to have the things that are props and deceptions and traditions of humans be revealed as hollow and empty and harmful. I find comfort in my resolve to be kind, gentle, and tender…expecting nothing, deserving nothing, demanding nothing except the supply to give blessing and make some small effort to choose the good and reject the horror.
These comments are to let you know that I stand in awe…you are my hero. My example of a true woman. I will follow from afar and respect your boundaries…after all these years I am finally learning about those. It’s hard when you weren’t taught them ever in your own childhood, but I am not going there. It’s too easy to slip over into my own story and history, my own lived out memories and even worse the gaping black holes where the rest of my family has memories and I have a void.
I don’t know if you will ever read this…it doesn’t really matter. God knows. And I want the world to know that I love you utterly, in spite of the tragic and terrible flaws and failures all around.
May God grant me the grace to be even a speck of the woman that you are, that your sister is. And may we meet someday in the arms of reconciliation…not a right nor a demand that I make…strictly something you may or may not choose, or even chose and unchoose moment to moment.
You are free, my lil songbird, never really “mine” and always yours…
I loved you…then and now.