Yesterday was another special day in the life of Andrea. I managed to contact a group of transvestites that meet each month not too far from home. It seems that there are quite a few things that happen not too far away.
Anyway, I emailed B who kind of organises some monthly meetings at a pub. (S)he also produces a monthly "whats on in the area" newsletter and she and her partner organise a monthly get together at their home.
It just so happened that having emailed my queries to B over the weekend I discovered that the next home get together was due for Tuesday 10 July 2007.
It meant that I needed some new shoes ... ones with smaller heels. This also proved to be an irresistible opportunity to buy other things ... I'm gradually becoming a shopaholic.
So ... I organised leaving work a little early yesterday ... and took a small case full of clothes and makeup. Not quite sure what to expect.
They say that "the devil is in the detail" ... but sometimes it seems there are angels in there as well.
Over and over I am discovering that the transgendered community that I'm getting to know are the sweetest and friendliest that I have ever met. I guess it's possible to come up with a multitude of theories and reasons as to why this might be. But really, at the moment, the reality of the friendliness matters a lot more to me than the causes of it.
It was the first time that a self-made-up Andrea had been seen outside of home. That in itself is a special thing to me.
B and his/her wife said that they'd really love to invite myself and my wife over for a meal sometime. Just to provide my wife with a chance to get to know people in similar circumstances without being faced by a whole group of trannies.
And my wife is OK with the idea as well. That means a lot to me. It's not easy to put into words. I think it's in knowing that the Andrea in me doesn't have to be marginalised. That my wife is OK with being a part of the Andrea in me.
I chatted with B and his wife a while last night. mentioning the way that my own wife has said how less stressed and irritable I have been since I "came out". This isn't such an unusual thing. B's wife said something along the lines of ... well ... in a way when you are dressed you are different.
I've been thinking about that today. And yes, there is an element of truth in it. When I am dressed I don't even vaguely think about the hassles of the work day. It's a way of shedding burdens. Kind of therapeutic I guess. So, as well as being an opportunity to express an inner part of me that I've kept hidden for so many years ... it's also a way of letting go of some of the not-so-nice parts of the day.
B also said that if I'd like to go out for a meal or a drink with her, or shopping ... then she'd be happy to do that. I'm really looking forwards to taking her up on that.
At the meal last night there were quite a few girls that needed to change before setting off back home ... wash off the makeup .. remove the nail varnish ... become drab (dressed as a bloke) again. Mostly this was because of wives / partners that didn't know, or children being home.
I'd decided that I would drive home as Andrea. That was such a relaxed experience. Not having to worry about hiding myself before I got home.
As time passes I'm becoming less and less concerned about people discovering that Andrea exists.
I don't want to upset people ... but also I need to be able to be myself.
Ultimately if people decide that they cannot live with the concept of Andrea ... then really it means that they cannot live with the concept of me. Handling this might be seriously difficult at times ... but I know that pretending that Andrea doesn't exist is even more seriously difficult.