The Grand Experiment

Part One

I will forever recall that day about three years ago. In the aftermath of my latest twisted and exhausting cycle of buy, dress, cleanup, shame, and purge, I made a decision! I decided to begin the grueling process of fundamental and elemental change. I had searched for answers as to why a seemingly normal, red-blooded American army officer, graduate student, husband, and father had been burdened with the desire to be a woman. I mean, what “man” wants to do that? Let me provide a little hint: they don’t! No alpha-male in my life ever showed any inclination toward wanting to be the opposite sex. I have never been on a hunting trip and noticed the outlines of garters and stockings under my family or friend’s RealTree overalls or pants. Never happened! During my time in the army, no fellow officer was hiding women’s clothing in their wardrobes or duffel bags…I was alone in that to the best of my knowledge. I had to ask myself the following questions. What abuse had I suffered as a child? What genetic disorder did I inherit? What demon had infiltrated my defenses? The answers to all of the questions never came and most are still left unanswered. Starting decades before the present and ending just eighteen months ago, I had read massive amounts of psychiatric, psychological, and physiological studies trying to find reasons and excuses. Nothing conclusive was forthcoming. My final conclusion was that it just is! I am left-handed because it just is. I prefer blue versus red because it just is. I have a mismatch between my biological sex and gender identity because it just is! I was not satisfied with that answer in the least! This is not fair, I told myself. This must be a curse, or a supernatural thing ! Why me? Damn it, my life could have been “normal”!

In describing my gender dysphoria and the steps I took to address it, the “Grand Experiment” if you will, it is necessary that I provide some background first. I want you to imagine an afternoon just a few short years ago. The sun is out, a suburban house is empty save for the husband, and the neighbors are mowing their lawns. Their children are playing outside. Their squeals and laughs are muffled by the drawn drapes and closed blinds. It is as mundane a scene as you can imagine! Yet, little did the neighbors know nor did the wife and child realize at the supermarket just three miles away, that a desperate life was hanging in the balance against this backdrop. It was a picture-perfect day, in a picture-perfect town, in an upper middle-class neighborhood!

Furthermore, imagine a broken, tired, scared individual eyeballing a loaded .45 Colt Commander just an arms length away. At the moment, said individual had reached a crescendo of shame, guilt, and self-loathing. Despite devoting “his” life to the Lord, despite excelling in graduate school, despite everything positive, none of this seemed to matter at that moment. He had a home over his head, a beautiful and devoted wife, and an above-average child. From outward appearances everything was perfect! No one suspected a thing! However, this “it” had spent nearly the entire day guzzling Tennessee Whiskey and was in a near-stupor but still able to see clearly enough to pull the trigger so as to blow “it’s” brains out. However, on that particular afternoon, alcohol rather that a 230 grain hardball slug was enough…May God forgive! Unfortunately, many similar days followed.

As you might have guessed, dear reader, that “it” was I. And I am alive now to tell my story! It is my sincere hope that I may convey, in my upcoming submissions in this series, that despite what you may have felt or experienced, what you have suffered seemingly alone, when hope has been eclipsed by despair…well, life can go on and you are worth more than you can scarcely imagine!

To be continued…