When the time is right

“You will know when the time is right.”

I have heard this statement time and time again, with it’s vague prediction ringing true each and every time.

I already posted about the first time I ever told someone about who I really was (Born This Way Part 2).  So I will NOT revisit that turmoil.  It was the first time I had practiced the “time is right”, though I obviously had gotten that one wrong.  It wouldn’t be the only time I misjudged the time, or perhaps just the person.

There were girls in college who knew, but it was sort of unspoken.  I never outright told them and they never outright asked, but we just seemed to meld together and being Jenn would just happen.

There is a song by RUSH called DOUBLE AGENT.   The opening lines speak volumes:

Where would you rather be?
Anywhere, anywhere but here
When will the time be right?
Anytime but now

The first important telling was to my wife.  When we started dating, I really wanted to tell her, but I always had that deep seeded fear, so I never did.  When we were married, and I started bringing my clothes over to the apartment, there was this huge section of women’s clothes in with my  own, which, of course, raised questions (if not concerns).  I dismissed the clothes as something other than what they were, but did say that they were mine and that I had worn them all.

When will the time be right?
Anytime but now

After long discussions, I knew the time had come to let my wife in on my little secret.  I told her and nothing happened.  She didn’t care.  All of my fears had subsided.  Then it was time to show her.  Keeping in mind that I was not as polished as I am now, her reaction still wasn’t what I feared.  Rather than freaking out or leaving, she offered suggestions.  She offered to do my makeup and my hair (when I still had some).  It opened the door, though, really, just by a crack.

When will the time be right?

It was a few years later that I took my next, very large step.  There was a post in the Indy Goth Yahoo Group (yeah, remember Yahoo Groups?) and they were looking for models for a fashion show coming up.  I contacted the events coordinator, Isabella, and she put me in touch with Rachel, owner/creator/proprietor for Surrean (which I thought was her name. Silly me, but it is a beautiful name).  I contacted her to see she would consider putting a trans in her show and she said, WHY NOT?!!  Not only was she extremely supportive, but she was willing to let me in, sight unseen.

I remember showing up in Indy, the night of the show, scared to death.  I had never been this out before.  I had made quick runs into stores (and once even made a purchase) but this time I was out of my element.  I didn’t know any exits.  I didn’t know where I was.  I had no idea what to expect.  This was in the back section of a “normal” bar, filled with people drinking, and I didn’t know anyone, really.

Isabella had agreed to do my makeup, which was awesome, and Rachel called the models back to get ready.  We were all packed into a closet space, stripping and dressing within a foot of each other, another first for me.  Nobody cared.  We were there to work and part of that job was get ready, no matter who was next to us.  The rest of that night is a complete and total blur.  All I knew was that this had been the most perfect experience I had ever had (besides getting married and the birth of our daughter).  No threats from the “normal” crowd and nothing but kindness from everyone involved.  Rachel has become one of my dearest friends.  To this day, she helps get that scared little bird out of the nest.  Not so much scared any more, but still a painful wallflower.

When will the time be right?

Sarah, the other writer on this blog (and one of the coolest people you could ever have the honor of knowing).  I also spelled out, in the earlier blog My Dearest Friend, how Sarah and I met and became close friends.  She has been a prime factor in my moving forward and breaking out of the shell.  My favorite story, on how far I had come, was for her birthday.  She was in Indiana (in between California living) and we decided we were going to live it up for her Birthday and go to Talbott Street, a fabulous Indianapolis bar (be sure to read the history of in their website).  Once a fully gay bar, now it hosts a mixed crowd (sometimes that’s cool, sometimes it really sucks) and has drag shows every Friday and Saturday nights. (enough of the plug,  on with the story).  

I received a message from Sarah that her sister was going to come along (in case too much celebrating was to occur) and then, just a little while later, I learned that her sister had invited a few people to come along as well.  Not a big deal, but Sarah voiced her concern that it might infringe on my being out for the evening.  We were to do dinner at a great little Greek place and then to the bar.  She squeeed so loudly when I got out of the car, it was awesome!  I had decided to “dress down” while dressing up.  I looked cute, just saying.  Skinny jeans, knee boots with heels, cute top and jacket.  In we went.

Not only did I not let the fact that other people were with us get to me, but I was actually more talkative and interactive than I probably would have been as my guy self.  We all laughed, ate, drank and had a good time all around.  The club was even better.  When one of the attendees had forgotten their ID, we made plans to go in and get her one of our IDs to get in.  Her concern was not really looking like the person in the picture and I chimed up, “Well, I certainly don’t look like mine!”  Laughter all around!! (you did it Spongebob!).  The night progressed tremendously.  Drinks were drunk (and spilled).  Dancing happened (or at least the mod version of bobbing along to the music, it’s how the cool kids do it).  I even had some guy come up and try to grind on me, but I was there for my bestest friend, players beware.  We are the Wonder Twins.  We are He-Man and She-Ra.  We are Bloo and Cheese.

When will the time be right?

When I last visited California, we went out to a film premiere and after party.  Bigfoot Entertainment had just finished a film and Sarah had been invited (I was her Plus One).  The big deal of the evening was that an old college classmate of mine is the CEO of the company and I did not look like I used to.  We were unable to really get to talk to her but when I returned home I got hold of her and let her know we saw the film.  When she told me that she had seen Sarah, I told her that I was the – girl with her.  This opened up a huge discussion and her acceptance and support was beyond amazing.

When will the time be right?

This revelation led to another college friend that I came out to just after.  Another amazing round of acceptance.  Not only that, but she then told me about a co-worker that had just sent out a message to everyone that they were transitioning from male to female.  She wanted to let me know that I was not alone.  

I have kick ass friends!

As I stated earlier, sometimes my timing is off, or the person is.  I told an ex co-worker (who I knew was freaking cool).  I knew that she would not have an issue with something as minor as this. I was wrong.  The reply was a simple, “hmmm.  didn’t expect THAT!”.  Then I decided to try to beat her to the punch at telling my good friend (and ex-employee), who happened to be her boyfriend’s best friend and roommate.  Sure enough, she already told him.  When I asked his opinion and if he would befriend my true self on MySpace (it was a little while ago), he agreed without hesitation.  He said that I was the most genuine and sincere person he had ever met and that he was totally supportive of me.  I’m not sure who else she told, but nothing bad has come from it, so she may be the only one with the problem.

I came out to my good friend Cheryl, not long after we re-connected while she was teaching a workshop at Ball State.  We had established a friendship that was only slightly there years earlier.  We knew each other and had the same friends, but did not truly know each other.  After our reconnection, I decided to invite an old high school friend of ours to my profile.  She then asked if she could invite Cheryl, to which I said absolutely (I just hadn’t gotten around to it yet).  From there, we have had heart to heart talks (one lasting till 3am, that started at 6:30pm the previous night), fun nights out, and conversations that have opened up a world of commonality between us.  She is special and dear.  Another treasure I hold close.

When will the time be right?
Anytime but now

My best guy friend has been the toughest hurdle to jump.  I have tried on numerous occasions to tell him.  Each time I knew the time was right.  The first was when he had called and wanted to meet for drinks.  My nails were done, I was dressed androgynously, and I had a big gemstone ring on my hand in place of my traditional wedding ring.  When we got to the bar, there was a student film about to be shot, but we were allowed in.  Right when I was about to spill the beans, they came back in to shoot and we thought it best to not be there, in case we were seen in a scene that wouldn’t match continuity and that our voices might be picked up.  So out to the sidewalk we went. Anytime but now.

I had tried on several other occasions but something always popped up to get in the way.  Even when he picked me up at the airport (after my California visit).  I was dressed in skinny jeans, femme shoes, a burgundy top with heart buttons and a short jacket with slightly poofy sleeves, painted nails and the different ring.  When we were driving back from Indy, he asked if I wanted to stop off for a drink.  Sure!  I couldn’t tell him on the drive back, so I decided to tell him at the bar.  We got there, grabbed our drinks and sat down.  As we talked a little more, I decided this was it.  RIGHT when the DJ decided to crank up the tunes to a deafening level and drown out all ability to have a conversation at a normal level.  Anytime but now.

I have yet to tell him.  Somehow, I want to get his reaction on video.  I don’t know why, but I do.  I really think he’ll be OK, but I am still scared of losing my best guy friend.  I only have a couple guy friends the way it is.  LOADS of girl friends,and they all have been great.  We go to lunch all the time and we have been friends for a number of years (12+).  It will happen.  I will tell him.  It will be the greatest weight off my shoulders, no matter what the outcome.

When will the time be right?
Anytime but now


About Jennifer

She grew up in an Indiana town Had a good-lookin' mama who never was around But she grew up tall and she grew up right With them Indiana boys on them Indiana nights Well, there are partial truths above. Being from Indiana, I did grow up in an Indiana town. I did not have a good lookin mama, but she was always around.'I did not grow up tall, but I suppose I grew up right. I spent lots of time with Indiana boys on Indiana nights. It's because I was one. Still am in some ways. Certainly not in others. My transitional journey has begun. Goodbye to my male self and hello to this wonderfully feminine world in which I was meant to live. At the age of 45, I am beginning my true journey to self and home.
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4 Responses to When the time is right

  1. Tracy says:

    Love your writing style in this post with the lyrics woven in…and the whole trail of your successes made me smile 🙂

    • Jennifer says:

      Thank you so much! I am trying different styles to see what I like. Unfortunately, my best writing style is more like a Monty Python skit, where I can just go off on a tangent and suddenly find my way back to the subject.

      I have enjoyed reading your blogs as well. Need to read some more. Thanks for commenting. And reading. Or Reading and commenting. Or both, really. I like reading and commenting. And comments left by others (and leaving comments for others). I sort of feel like I’m rambling? Am I? OK, back to business.

      Many thanks, seriously. 😉

  2. bronzegirl says:

    I am honored to be mentioned with such sentiment, our friendship means the world to me. And to think it was so serendipitous! I’m sure I would have watched you walk by the fishbowl enough times I would have stopped you and said, “I’m having a flashback…I know you!”
    When Wednesday sent me to your MySpace page, I was curious and clueless as to why the invitation was so clandestine….I was thrilled to find Jenn!!! I didn’t just “accept” who you are, I was Utterly Thrilled!!! You had no idea at the time about my personal experience with gender identity issues, the research I had done, that my favorite singer is transgender, and that my latest body of work is about gender fluidity (and in a sense, a tribute to those “in between” and that journey to “emerge”). It blew my mind and I was SO grateful you trusted me to let me in sooner than later. I needed that, too, my friend. It allowed us to be real right away with each other, rather than dance around the essence of who we are. You are one of the MOST REAL people I know.
    I “met” Jenn after knowing you in boy mode, but in all honestly, I pretty much only see Jenn. That is who you are, and when you can’t be Jenn I don’t think of there being two of you, I know Jenn is the one there, only hidden at the moment for practical reasons. Jenn is who I see when I look at you.
    You are special and dear to me, too.
    I am getting excited about a trip to Talbot Street in the fall…… 🙂

    • Jennifer says:

      You are among my “inner circle”. My Marines. The Few. The Proud.

      Our meeting was not by chance. Fate. Karma. Cosmic alignment. Whatever the reason, we stumbled upon one another for a reason. And then, like you said, for all of the gender issues that surfaced from there.

      And, when not presenting as Jenn, I still feel like her, and that is who I really am. I am glad to know that it shows through.

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