Becoming Jay

Jay wishes he was a "normal" boy, but he's not. Most boys aren't born in a girl's body. When Jay decides to move forward with his identity, the first person he tells is Samantha, his long time friend and crush. What difficulties will Jay and Sam encounter? Will Jay ever be Jay? And will he and Sam have a happy ever after?

PS This story is about something serious, and being transgender isn't a joke. If you don't like people being trans*, keep it to yourself. It's a real feeling, so don't be a douche about it.


7. Step one, you say we need to talk

Jay twiddled his fingers. Then he tapped his heel off the ground, making his knee shake. Then he ran his hands through his hair. Then he bit his lip. He was very nervous. He was sitting on the sofa in the waiting room of the gender therapist, waiting to go in for his first appointment. The door to the office opened, and a young man, roughly in his twenties, Jay reckoned, poked his head out the door. 
"You Jay Lord?" he asked, smiling. He had shaggy, unbrushed brown hair, and big black glasses. 
"Yeah?" Jay said, his voice shaking with nerves. 
"C'mon in, kid," he said, disappearing back into the office. Jay took a deep breath and followed him. The office was small, but comfy. There was a desk along the wall, and two comfy armchairs alongside, facing each other. The man had sat down in the left one. "Take a seat," he smiled. Jay sat down quietly. The man extended a hand to him. "Hi Jay, I'm Nigel." Jay took Nigel's hand and shook it.
"Uh, hi," Jay said awkwardly. 
"So Doctor Boring sent you here?" Nigel asked.
"He recommended you," Jay replied, laughing at the nickname.
"So Jay," Nigel said. "I don't want to beat around the bush. Let's get right to the point. Doctor My-Salary-Makes-Your-Salary-Tremble-In-Fear sent you here because you body says girl and your mind says boy. So tell me, how do you feel? Tell me in any way you can. Speak. Sing. Draw. Write poem, write prose. Just tell me what you feel." Jay grabbed a pen and page from the desk and wrote furiously and fast. After about twenty minutes, he handed Nigel the piece of paper. There was writing on both sides. The first side of the page said this.
"I hide behind a name 
That doesn't suit my soul, 
I hide behind small words 
That don’t fit who I am, 
I hide behind clothes 
Not meant for me to wear, 
I hide behind a stickman 
In a room I shouldn't be in. 
I hide behind a face 
Seen as something it’s not, 
I hide behind a body 
That is something other than itself, 
I hide behind a word 
That’s only four words long, 
But I wish to replace it 
With a smaller one. 
I want to say my true name, 
And use the real words, 
Wear the comfy clothes, 
And follow the right stickman. 
I want to change my face 
And fix my body to be itself, 
And I want to swap out girl 
For boy."
Nigel read it and turned over the page. 
"I still don't know how to react 
When someone asks me 
Are you a boy 
Or a girl? 
The answer is boy 
It has always been 
And always will be 
But they don't ask because they want to know 
They ask because they want to see me squirm. 
They want me to tug at my loose jeans, 
Adjusting the sock I use 
To fake a bulge. 
They want to see me gasp for air, 
Even more than I already have to 
Because there's a bandage around my ribcage 
Holding in two lumps of flesh 
That should never have been there. 
I don't answer them. 
I walk on With my head down 
Because every time they ask 
They take some of my dignity. 
Later on, 
They'll get me alone. 
They'll ask me again, 
And chase me down, 
Armed with a knife 
Or lust. 
I say 
Don't talk to me about struggle 
Til you've woken up every morning 
In a body that wasn't yours 
And bandaged your chest 
And restricted your breathing 
Just so you could feel comfortable 
With your body 
For one day. 
Don't talk to me about struggle 
Until you've been chased 
By men with knives 
And endless lust 
Because to them 
I was a novelty item. 
Don't talk to me about struggle 
Until you've been kicked out of your own home 
For having a body that you didn't fit into, 
A wardrobe of clothes you didn't like to wear, 
A gender 
That wasn't yours. 
I know how to react 
When someone asks me 
Are you a boy 
Or a girl? 
I tell them 
I'm a man."
Nigel read Jay's words in silence. He looked up at the young man, twiddling his thumbs and tapping his heel and biting his lip and running his hand through his hair. 
"Jay.." Nigel said quietly. "These are amazing poems. You're a great writer. I can understand how you feel."
"How can you?" Jay snapped. "How can you understand how I feel? I've been living like this for sixteen years. My life has been one big lie until now. I've done everything I could to feel normal. To try and be normal. Do you have any idea how much pain I'm in right now? I have a skintight binder around my chest that could hurt me seriously if I don't take care. How could you possibly know how I feel?!" 
"Jay," Nigel said, grabbing the edge of his T-shirt sleeve, starting to roll it up. "What do these look like?" There were a bunch of little dots on his upper arm. Tiny red pinpricks. 
"Injection scars?" Jay guessed. Nigel nodded. 
"Now," Nigel said, grabbing the bottom of his T-shirt and pulling the side up to his chest. "What do these look like?" There were scars along the bottom of his pecs, rising to meet about in inch above the line in the middle. 
"You're trans, too?" Jay said. He was shocked. Nigel had seemed so.. male. So through and through male. He had passed seamlessly. Nigel nodded. "You had me convinced."
"As I do most people. And as will you," Nigel assured. "Now, kid, what's your plan?"
"I want hormone therapy and top surgery," Jay said. "I can live with needing a packer."
"Yeah, same," Nigel said. "Jay, do you have any fear of transitioning?" Jay thought for a moment.
"Not really," Jay said. "I mean, I am scared of needles and surgery and being knocked out. But it's not the transition itself. I'm not afraid of now permanent everything will be, I'm afraid of how I'm getting it. I more afraid of not getting the diagnosis."
"You're afraid of not getting the Gender Identity Disorder diagnosis?" Nigel asked. 
"Yeah. Like, what if what I thought I was isn't real? What if I'm not trans? What if it was a delusion? What if I've been wrong all along?" Jay said. He twiddled his fingers again with worry.
"Jay," Nigel said. He looked Jay right in the eyes. "You're trans. You feel the way I felt. You are obviously comfortable presenting to me as male. You are you. And you are a man." 
"Thanks," Jay said, smiling.
"You'll get there in the end, Jay."
"I know. I'll do whatever it takes. I'm on the road to becoming Jay.


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