Memoirs

Tomorrow.

The beds shuffle and slide as interchangeable as my access to self agency. One ward becomes another until the elusive long sleep turns into a plastic mattress in a holding cell. Inevitably it is irrelevant. Get better they say but their words belies the environment. The clip of the metal buckle closing across wrists, ankles, arms. How much for the girl in the window sir? The one with the oil spill pupils. Soon they say. Soon we’ll let you go. Tomorrow they say, a tomorrow that turns into a today that turns into a litany of false promises.

I wish I’d pissed the bed. Not to lie in my own urine but to give them something, anything to show my defiance of tomorrow. The questions are regurgitated. Are you agitated? I just laugh. My mouth still tastes the acidity of the washing powder that tinged the security guards suit I bit. Fucking bitch he cried whilst I ran just another metre on my fractured foot he’d crushed with his boot towards doors that would never open to tomorrow.

My new today is twisted blinds, flaking two way windows and muted birds I glimpse daily picking at something, anything to consume. Another ward and another day yet still no tomorrow.

They say tomorrow has a routine yet todays is tedious. Tomorrow, my tomorrow, is not their tomorrow. I walk slowly on the side of my foot for the breakfast, lunch, dinner and the meds. There are cookoos here but the walls are strangely absent of time. The world continues without me, I remember they have tomorrows whilst I am left with a shell of a day.

He claps and wanders incessantly with his ghost of a warden tracing his movements. Salvos suited his claps mark the meals louder than the nurses calls. We pass in the hallway and he fingers my sweater and rests his hand upon my shoulder. I ask him how long his tomorrow has been and he tells me three months and claps thrice. His brown eyes look at mine as if to say he already knows his tomorrow will never come.

The questions are repetitive. They ask why but if I knew why I’d tell them. Chase the long sleep. All I chased was seizures, a mask of my own vomit and blankets of warm urine.
“Do you want to die?”. Not particularly. It’s an ethereal game of hide and seek, balancing on that razors edge seeing how much my body can sustain. How close can you get to the sky without descent? The answer is in my subconscious and sleep is the only doorway.

He’s the youngest, bar me. We crouch behind a fire hydrant and suck cigarettes in a quiet camaraderie. He pulls down his hoodie and slips the headphones from his ears. Placing his hand in his pocket he looks up at me. Fingers contain wooden beads strung in a loop with a cross on the end. He slips it over my thumb. I stroke the beads slowly. Ten. He pauses. “A priest gave it to me, for protection.” It sits awkwardly on my thumb. His forefingers stroke the healing scars across the head and heart lines on my hand.
“Who is the priest?” I ask.
“I am the priest.” I hope my tomorrow comes in ten days. Before he leaves he hands me a tiny silver token to protect me further. His tomorrow is court.

Sleep is elusive as my bed mate talks in her sleep. She talks of her children, of petty money, of swindling husbands in between moans and sobs of frustration. I wish I could hand her back her tomorrow and agency but my words will be useless in the dark as her tomorrow hasn’t come for six months so I leave her to fart in her sleep.

Everyone in here has their tomorrows in their arteries. Some have halted their today by mainlining into their bodies. Others are strung in an endless loop of paper cups and plastic dispensaries so their blood runs thicker or thinner so their minds run faster or slower. Some slice and cut until their veins sit inside out, where they feel as if they are meant to be.

Her hand is swathed deeply in fresh bandages and she fumbles with the butter portion. I reach over and open it for her. “What happened?” I ask her. She looks at me, eyeing my intention. I had none albiet curiosity. “I put a kitchen knife straight through my hand.” I just nod. “It’s infected now see, my hand is in necrosis.” Unlike some of the others, she does not want a tomorrow now. Her children flit in and out during visiting hours but I see a relief when she gives them back. I imagine and wonder whether she traced the bones and tendons to find that millimetre gap so it would slide through cleanly. I barely see her after that as she retreats to lay in bed. I think she lies just thinking of today without the burden of tomorrow.

The algae green of his old weatherproof jacket twitches almost as much as the Parkinson’s narrates the gait of his constant loop. Up one hallway, down another, alongside the building. His beard almost touches his chest and his feet are as brown as the tobacco stains on his fingers. Bemused I watch him roll a cigarette. I offer him a tailor. He declines. The wind rushes between us and the trees continue to shake the dead leaves from the living with no thought of tomorrows.

It’s a cold spring. The season of rebirth is still filled with rain and icy winds. Summer is late. We all half heartedly pick at plates in the dining hall, only few words spoken. We’re all solitary in our search for respite, an answer or a semblance of normality. I think we have all realised winter is not going to end this spring.

“You got ACDC on that music thing sister?” The blackfella asks. I shake my head. “What about rap music?” I nod. He flips to NWA. “FUCK DA POLICE” he laughs. “Tried to get some weed in here sister, but the nurses stole my pockets.”
“Get your mate to bring you in some baked goods.” He laughs and shows me his new-old shoes. “They’re alright eh? Haven’t had new shoes in a while.”
“You voluntary?” I shake my head. “Could’ve come to the park sister.”
I am remined of the tedium and the invisible line I cannot walk beyond.

Finally I am called into an office and they tell me I am sane and can have my tomorrow, tomorrow.

There is a woman, tall and gaunt that walks the wards at night. Overcome with her insomnia she knocks and raps on every door. It’s two in the morning and she pauses at my entrance. Peering in she sees me writing.
“You’re going tomorrow?”.
“I am.”
“Where are you going?”

I don’t have an answer for her, maybe tomorrow has it.

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“How do I end this?” – A piece of writing from a trans sex worker.

The lovely lady in question allowed me to publish this on her behalf.

The Transsexual Stereotype

I do kind of feel like I’m fitting some kind of “true transsexual” stereotype by getting SRS and getting it so soon. And it’s true that I am getting it to “be a real woman”. And I feel guilty about this. I am a real woman and I feel guilty that I would say otherwise and compromise my identity and by extension other trans female identities.

I always thought SRS would be the last thing I got. That I would be a more modern transsexual woman, sporting a girlcock underneath the femme business suit and subverting genital biological essentialism. But nope. I am just reaffirming it.

Penile Privileges
As I have discovered this year, having a penis and looking like a girl (and there is a reason I say girl here and not woman), can be an incredible money-making asset. Transsexual porn is widely known and hence men have grown to increasingly sexualize us but at the same time our occurence in nature is minute. This means the supply and demand curve is in our favor. As a transsexual sex worker there is a lot of money to be made.

My only regret is that I didn’t make more money. Instead I divided my time between my girlfriend and work and put up with diminishing returns by not touring. If the relationship had a happy ending then this might have been ok. Instead I have the history of 6mths of an unhappy relationship AND dysphoria, when I could have just had the dysphoria by itself and for a lesser period of time due to the lucrative income skyrocketing me to surgery. I would have been miserable, but I was miserable anyway.
Another bonus of having a penis is that it makes for tactile sensations whilst penetrating. It’s ideal for penetrative sex with another woman. I’m also very forutnate in that I am in the minority of trans women who have lower than detectable levels of testosterone, yet can get it up on command.

Unfortunately, PIV sex with another woman triggers me. It still feels good but it feels bad. I also get very jealous (I would rather switch roles!) and penile stimulation doesn’t feel anywhere as near as good to compensate; it’s as if my penis has been injected with local aneasthetic.

In short, my penis is pretty useless at it’s job of giving me pleasure, but it is a lucrative little organ.

Socially Triggered Dysphoria
I have well meaning cis friends and acquaintances who do trigger me, but by far the main source of my distress is my job.

I think I could be a cis sex worker and be content doing so. Trans sex work is just a constant assault on my identity. On busy days the money feels so good and sometimes I will even end the night smiling. But more often than not I will finish the night feeling soulless and empty. It’s not the sex. It’s what my clients say…
• “I have never been with a tranny before”
• “I have never been with a shemale before”
• “I have never been with a man before”
• “I have a girlfriend but she is a real woman”
• “So when are you getting the operation to become a woman?”
• “Yeah it’s not my first time, I saw this other tranny a few months ago and he was really good”
• Just checking but, you are a bloke right? Like, you still have a penis?

The first time it happens I am angry… By the umpteenth time it happens, I don’t feel like a woman anymore. And it is the worst feeling. Because when I don’t feel like a woman, I feel dead. An empty shell. With no purpose, no strength, no willpower, no drive, no personality. Just a husk.

I go through jobs on autopilot, but clients do pick up on the mood. The sessions are short and unsatisfying and they often put their feelings of discomfort (a direct result of my poor quality of work) down to transsexual women just not being as good as the real thing.
Sometimes I have the strength in me to fight it. But aggression isn’t conducive to work either. The only option is to repress and grit my teeth.

This needs to end. I can’t do this indefinitely. I’m worry that the soulless emptiness will dominate me forever until I die. I worry that eventually I will just accept my fate as being a “tranny” and not a woman and lose myself and my very essence of being. It’s like pre transition all over again.

How do I end this?
I could go with my original plan and get FFS etc and then get a straight job. But I won’t have a fallback plan and that pesky girl penis is still a liability. Or I could get SRS. It’s the last remaining solid bit of evidence that I’m trans. And once it is gone it doesn’t matter what I do, as long as I’m not outed (and I’m pretty sure I can bluff anyone who does suspect) my identity will be sacrosanct. I can try putting my degree to good use. Or I can continue sex work. I may have to endure being an ugly butch girl (not that they are mutually inclusive) but at least I will be a girl.

Furthermore, disclosure will no longer plague me. I can go out to gay or straight bars and flirt and dance as much as I like, comfortably knowing that I have nothing to worry about if a stray hand goes down there… As opposed to crying myself to sleep after a night out.

Perceived Biologically-derived Dysphoria
I have issues with having a penis. Sometimes it feels okay, but these occasions are rare. More often than not I find my hand gravitating between my legs and gripping my cock as if to crush it out of existence. It’s completely subconscious and has been going on ever since I can remember. In fact there are photos of me when I was 4 years old with my with one hand in my pants and another in my nose. I’m not sure what the significance of the nose-picking was but when I look at it, the feelings associated with that dick-death-grip are visceral. It’s like a hardware incompatibility. It’s just not meant to be.
I kind of wish it was. It would make my life easier.

As for vaginas, they seem incredibly appealing and I am incredibly jealous of individuals who have them. I have no justification other than the thought of one feels natural. This of course is in direct conflict with patriarchal discourse which is inherently phallocentric and sees vaginas as nothing more than fuckholes. To the patriarchy I say this: fuck you and fuck your phallus, I will gladly trade mine in for a “fuck-hole”, because no matter how disgusting it is seen, no matter how crude or inferior, to me the ugliest and worst vagina in the world is still superior to the biggest, hardest cock in existence. I’m sorry but vaginas are just better.

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