I've had tons of dreams over the years, tons of goals, and aspirations. Didn't we all?
I think one of the hardest parts of life has been watching a steady stream of dreams falter and die as my life took roads I wasn't ready for and veered into directions I hadn't planned. All the while, those paths I did want to follow became more and more obscured. Lost, buried, entangled. It's reached a point of sheer, grotesque anxiety that prevents me from doing or accomplishing much of anything. And that, well that just feeds a viscous cycle of failure and depression that gnaws away at me. I'm too lost and depressed to be creative, then I waste time or fritter it away on menial--or meaningless--bullshit. Then, time wasted, I become more depressed about my wasted time. Or I get the nerve to finally do something about this dismal lot, and it feels like it's just too damn much.
I've come to call that part of me, "The Storm." It's a protector part that acts like it's a manager, but it's not. It takes every situation and throws it into a mess, churning it into chaos until even little things are too much to handle. It prevents me from really evaluating relationships, it prevents me from communicating clearly, it prevents me from understanding how to build my creative brand, and it prevents, well, pretty much anything.
For those curious, I'm delving deep into understanding Internal Family Systems, and these parts of my psyche as it were. It's a lot to explain, so I won't, feel free to look into this on your own if you aren't already aware.
Being trans, wishing to be female, to be out of this lousy body has been plodding along in the back of my mind for literal decades. Always suppressed and repressed, exiled as it were, to the recesses. I grew up on a farm in a county and world so red and repressed that when a gay couple moved to the area, everyone knew who they were because they were "the gays." Same with the one black kid who was in our high school for all of a couple weeks, as I recall.
I fought for my dreams once, but poorly and it has been difficult to forgive myself for that. My parents didn't believe in my goals to be a video game designer, a film director, or a cartoonist and writer. More than anything, I wanted to make video games. And at the time, there was only one real school that specialized in it. They didn't support it, didn't trust me to survive "so far from home," and didn't believe in it. I failed to be a powerful warrior for my dreams, and it slipped away from me. Maybe I'll come back to details on this later. The point is, looking back on young me with compassion, I see a confused, lost boy who didn't have support where he needed it--at home.
For fucking anything.
And that confused, scared, uncertain boy was wracked with depression, absent self esteem, and cruel self-deprecation. A defense mechanism of self-hate crippled his growth and improvement. He lacked the skills to stand up for himself, and in that, lacked the strength to truly look inside. To see the girl therein, who simply wanted to be free, recognized, and loved.
As that girl emerges now, surprisingly, even miraculously free of the terrible influence of The Storm, she is becoming a symbol of all the tools that boy didn't have. That girl is not just the dream, she is the Dream Warrior. To which, perhaps these protector parts--these firefighters and managers within who took on roles now outdated--will see in her the leader they needed all along. The one to get this whole meatbag running smoothly, confidently, compassionately, and happily. To get this entire team to function for success in every part of life, no more languishing in any of it.
* * *
The second shot did not go as smoothly as the first. I felt queasy immediately after, and pulled the needle out at an awkward angle that made it more painful. I was, it's safe to say, a bundle of anxious nerves doing this at home for the first time, no nurse there to cheer me on--or make sure I didn't fuck it all up. My friend, Miles, who is also trans, assures me that I will get better at it going forward. The girl inside is equally confident in that.