No, I'm not going to argue here that the Big Bang Theory is absolute truth, for I do not happen to believe it. I'm a multiverse fan, actually.
But that's not what I'm writing about, either.
Picture an un-popped kernel of popping corn. It's just sitting there alone in the bin of the air popper ('cuz air popped is healthier). Inside that kernel is a bunch of stuff that, when certain outside forces are applied, will cause that kernel to explode in all sorts of directions. But consider how that kernel gets popped. Somebody has to plug in the air popper. The air has to heat up. It has to get up to speed to spin the kernel. When the kernel pops, there has to be a lid to prevent the kernel from flying wherever. There has to be a bowl placed nearby to catch the kernel. Somebody has to unplug the popper. If somebody touches the popper right after the popping, that person may get burned and that sets off a whole litany of procedures. Let's say that doesn't happen. The kernel is still hot, though. Touch it and get hurt. Ouch. Get the ice or turn on the cold water.
Then there's the whole clean up process and the optional seasoning of said kernel.
Do you see how this one little kernel causes so much... stuff?
Having planted the idea of having popcorn into your mind (whether or not that is agreeable to your taste in snack food), picture that kernel as the Transsexual individual. At some point, hopefully, that person will transform into a multi-dimensional new creature that's worth drowning in butter... you know what I mean.
We have been working on the idea of moving to another state. What this means, because of a combination of factors, is that Natasha needs to get a new job. She's been applying to whatever she can find, but as of last week, the two companies who showed interest in her suddenly vanished. She emailed them, reminding her of her existence. It occurred to us: what if they Googled her?
What if they Googled her? If they did, they'd find out that she's Trans. In the case of both companies, there had not yet been any live, face-to-face interaction. They could easily have pulled the discrimination card without worry of repercussion. Of course, there's no proof, and in the case of one of the companies, she since found out that they're still interviewing other people and haven't made any decisions yet for the next round. But before we knew that, it got me worried (well, not just me...)
What if she can't get a job? Or what if it takes so long that we end up stuck here indefinitely?
Fortunately, we then discussed alternatives for getting out of here, like me looking for full time work again, but that puts a wrench in things. Not such an insurmountable wrench, but an unexpected pain nonetheless.
You remember that Natasha got SRS last summer, right? Well, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Arizona received her name change forms and promptly informed her employer that they would no longer cover me. So even though she had SRS, we decided that she should not change her birth certificate yet because we knew that BCBS AZ would try to drop me again since they would not find our marriage valid even though it is. But this isn't the end of the story. Here in the oh-so-brilliant state of Arizona, there's a bill going through the house that will allow a person to call the police on you if you enter a public woman's restroom and that person suspects there's a problem with your gender. If that officer asks for your birth certificate and you don't present it, you will face charges for a class 1 misdemeanor for disorderly conduct. If your birth certificate doesn't jive when you appear in court, guess what? You're f*%ked. So, now Tasha is changing her birth certificate. Tell me, my dear reader, what do you think BCBS AZ is going to think of THAT!?
I'm writing about these things today because these are some of the things people need to consider when taking the steps to go through transition or even to just present. In no way am I suggesting that someone put off or forgo following his or her need to set things right. What I am suggesting is that people keep this stuff in mind when making the decision to move forward. Every decision in life has consequences - many of which we don't foresee, many of which we do. The thing is that I find myself thinking over and over again, "Never in my life did I think I would have to deal with the extra bureaucratic b.s. The usual b.s. is bad enough." I don't go around blaming Tasha for these added mounds of crap. We'd have some kind of crap going on anyway. Such is my life. I would never think to blame anyone but the bureaucrats. It's just that... well... it all really sucks.
As Steve Martin said in "The Three Amigos," "We all have our El Guapos to face. Sometimes it happens to be the real El Guapo." I love you if you get the reference. What it means for the rest of you is that we all have some crap to deal with and we have to deal with it or it will shoot yo uin the head with a pistol while admiring his new birthday sweater... I digress.
The bottom line: be a boy scout. Not one of those anti-homosexual kinds of boy scouts. Be one who is prepared! That was the point of this post. We're here, at this point, learning as we go. If you can, make a list of the facets of your life AND THE LIVES OF THOSE WHO DEPEND ON YOU that may be affected by your transition and be ready to deal with them as they come.
Be the kernel! Be a smart kernel! Pop with purpose!
...and clean up with hot, soapy water.