Reflecting on 2015, I feel like it was the most wonderful year ever for Allison. Here is a recap of my significant milestones and some high points.
- Attending First Event was an unbelievable start to my year. Events were great and I had a wonderful roommate! However, through several seminars, I was hammered by the realization that I needed to reveal Allison to family, friends and colleagues. My commitment to do so would make 2015 my coming out of the closet year.
- Soon after that, my wife of 4 decades read ”She’s not There”, viewed Bruce Jenner’s interview, and processed things with me and my therapist. Over the next few months, she finally understood my dysphoria and agreed to let me express Allison openly when we both retired. So over the next 6 months I prepared for my new life.
- I became a regular attendee at CDI-CrossGender Community which gave me a place to belong, a community of non-judgemental friends, and yes, a place to serve.
- In June, I was thrilled to be a bridesmaid at my longtime friends Betty and Mischa’s wedding.
- And that summer, many wonderful days sailing on T Time with transgender friends and others
- My wife and I retired on September 2nd and I had a wonderful coming out party at CDI. I could dress at home before going out, found that my life-long struggle with toxic shame evaporated and felt so free to be me.
- Over the next 3 months, I came out to my children, my church pastor and Elder Board, former colleagues and lifelong friends. While not all embraced my transgendered self, I did clarify misconceptions and felt relieved that I was no longer hiding my identity.
- Along the way, I discovered SAGE, an LGBT senior center in midtown where I took dancing and acting lessons and made new friends.
- That led to a solo lip-synch performance of “Dance 10 Looks 3” (better known as “Tits and Ass”) from the Broadway show Chorus Line. The venue was benefit variety show at a small theater in the Village. I got lots of encouraging feedback about my costume and performance.
- In November, I was elected president of CDI, affirming a role I had played for several months. We have enriched CDI’s programming with Trans themed Movie Nights, Dinners out, speakers and mini-lessons.and facility upgrades like a professional photography studio setup for photos.
- And all year long my body slowly feminized and by December, I was thrilled to finally be filling a 36B bra. What a rush it is to have cleavage.
The journey continues for me and I count it a privilege to have friends like you to travel with me.