We had so much fun and learned so much at First Event 2010. About ourselves and about each other. I hugged till my arms hurt, smiled till my cheeks cramped, and loved the pink cloud and blue bedrock of our community. So many highlights it’s hard to process them all. But now that the party is over and we all get back to other priorities a let down can sometimes happen. This is true particularly if you’re newly out of the closet and if First Event was your first or among your first public venues.
You might get bummed as the days progress this week. So here are some tips others have found that can help make life a little less gray.
(1) Look: Did you get a photo of yourself at FE10? Not a glam photo per se, just any photo while you were presenting as you. Look at yourself. It’s not narcissistic it’s like looking at a mirror. Sometimes, when our inside and outsides don’t match and your feeling dysphoric, looking at a photo of yourself can be a nice reminder that who you are inside is who you are outside. This can be a real help for you to get your feet on the ground.
(2) Chat: Friends. You need ‘em and you need to talk with them. Rekindling the memories can be extremely helpful to laugh and get life back on the lighter side when you feel blue as you get further away from your fun and meaningful time at First Event. So chat with your friends DO NOT go back into a shell or into your closet. This is not healthy for you. Virtually, you can chat at TCNE’s Yahoo Group or another good place is at Pink Essence on their terrific chat line. The Transgendered Planet is another good one. These are very safe spaces. Talk on the phone with someone you exchanged phone numbers with. Process your feelings! You need it.
(3) Plan: Your next time out. That’s right. You need to get out and see people. There are many transgender conferences both small and large throughout the U.S. TCNE’s “TG Conference List” is updated monthly for you to find a conference close to you. And there is likely a support group near you in your own city or town or within an hour or two so you can go out and feel safe and not exposed. Tiffany Club would welcome you if you can make it to our offices in Waltham, MA. But if we are too far away, IFGE is a great resource to find such places and TCNE has a list as well.
(4) Give: Give back; that’s right, even if it was your first time out you can give back to move forward causes that effect others. And in doing so you give yourself a big emotional boost, banish those blues and help others. What a triple play! There are many transgender rights actions happening all around us, from the national ENDA bill to Massachusetts Transgender Civil Rights Bill (H.1728/S1687). There are many womens issues you could involve yourself in as well, from helping those who are the victims of domestic violence, to womens health issues, to women in shelters (many times with their children). Finally, are there any other trans-persons near you who are homeless or out of a job or who knows what? Reach out to them in some way to help them out. We may not always agree with each other, but we do need to support each other.
This isn’t fantasy, it’s your life..so live it, have fun and if you get the blues, remember to LOOK – CHAT – PLAN – GIVE!