It’s a strange thing to not immediately recognize myself in the mirror. It’s weirder still to give myself a double take as I slowly realize… oh wait, that’s me!
It’s an odd sensation being among those whom are supposedly like me, my peers, my friends, my brothers. They talk like me, they look like me, and heck, they even walk like me. Yet I feel completely out of place. Despite appearances I know something doesn’t quite fit.
I know who I am supposed to be, and the world accepts me as such. Generally speaking, life is pretty good, yet I can’t shake the feeling that I am living someone else’s life. Wanting to change is illogical. It’s hard, it’s inconvenient, and potentially even dangerous, both figuratively and literally.
I have tried time and time again to put this behind me. It’s just a phase… I am just lonely… Maybe if I had a girlfriend things would be different… For a time I even considered that there might be something mentally wrong with me. Suppressing this feeling, burying it, ignoring it… I always find myself back at square one with fewer options, fewer excuses.
For this reason, I eventually sought help and slowly opened up to those closest to me. So far my experiences on this journey have been mostly positive. But it’s a big scary world out there, so I am fully anticipating some bumps in the road.
I don’t hate the person I was, but I look forward to the person I will become. With each passing milestone I feel a weight lifted off of my shoulders.
I don’t expect anyone to understand – it’s taken me decades to come to terms with who I am. But to be honest, I don’t need you to understand. I am not sure it can be truly understood, without having lived this life.
The first sentence of the first paragraph in the German Grundgesetz (basic law) reads:
Die Würde des Menschen ist unantastbar.
A loose translation is “the dignity of humans is untouchable”. This is the foundation of modern German society. All partisan politics aside, I think the idea that all humans should be granted a basic degree of dignity and respect is something that most of us can agree on. It’s a noble concept, one which many religions call their own (at least in theory).
As such, I ask less for your understanding. Nor am I seeking your approval. Instead, I ask that you respect that I am still human, and as such deserving of basic human dignity.
I apologize if any of my revelations within these pages make you uncomfortable, I mean you no harm. I am just trying to live my life. And lets be honest, we are all just winging it.