It’s the eve of my last day on earth as a guy. After I come home from work tomorrow I will strip off the last vestiges of my male identity and leave them aside forever after. Ever after I will wake up in the morning as Diana, go to bed as Diana, and never have to pretend to be anyone else in between. It feels like the finish line of the world’s most grueling marathon is in sight.
This might sound like the kind of event to inspire poetry. But poetry comes from more of a serene place in the mind. Serenity is pretty far from my mind in recent days.
Mostly I’m filled with an emotion that feels not entirely unlike jumping out of an airplane without any great confidence my parachute will function. There’s exhilaration for sure. But there’s more than a little panic intermingled. Great hope with serious potential for disaster… and it’s rushing toward me at great speed.
However the buildup … the “parachute packing” phase if you will… has proven about as flawless as any best case scenario I might have drawn up.
Today there were two meetings explaining my upcoming transition. One meeting was for the HR folks, and the other for all the managers in my department. I had spies in both, and was informed they both went well. Extremely well, it was emphasized.
Things I heard repeatedly were how “positive” the tone was. I heard that I had a lot of very strong and vocal allies in both meetings. I heard that my newly made friends from the Pride Alliance had a big and positive impact on the HR meeting. One person confessed she would have to struggle to remember to call me by my old name and pronouns for the next couple of days, since the announcement to the broader team won’t happen until Friday. After the meeting she was already thinking of me as a “she.” That’s a pronoun slip-up I never would have anticipated!
The things that drew questions were predictable: bathrooms, sexual orientation, etc. The responses were handled professionally. I have no complaints.
I wrote a personal letter to be read at the meetings (I’ll post it here Friday). The true target audience for the letter is my co-workers rather than HR reps and department managers. But apparently it went over incredibly well in both meetings so far. That made me feel good, since those were the only words directly from me anyone heard.
So anyway, barring some awkwardness around any managers I might meet tomorrow (sworn to silence but not ignorance), all this did was set the stage… albeit it set one hell of a stage.
After work tomorrow I’m hitting happy hour with my Pride Alliance friends to celebrate the passing of my “guy” persona, and the birth of Diana in the workplace. It will be an occasion for interesting toasts if nothing else.
And then I go home and shed my guy skin. Forever.