OMG! I had submitted this to the New York Times several months ago when they were requesting stories from members of the Trans Community. Well, I never heard from them or I missed the email, so I thought it didn’t get posted. So imagine my surprise, early this morning, stumbling upon this while browsing for some background to a blog post I was working on. Well, I guess I’m really out now, 🙂 The newspaper had a strict limit on the number of words so it is edited down some but I guess it came out alright except for a typo or two. Now you know my last name and if you think back to a certain Vice President you’ll understand why I don’t publicize it. Thanks for your support everyone. This is a screen capture of the piece…
See the original here at The New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/projects/storywall/transgender-today/stories/jerry-cheney
Browse the many other wonderful stories on the New York Times Storywall: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/projects/storywall/transgender-today
Now, I’ll lay back and see what the reaction is. To be perfectly honest I am a bit nervous. I am glad I could bring some visibility to the older, dmab, chubby, agender, non-binary, genderqueer community.
Update: When I first posted this I was quite overwhelmed with the ramifications of what this exposure meant, not just for me but for the many others like me. To be perfectly honest, there are times when just being my authentic self scares me. It is extremely unnerving to be thrust into the spotlight. When I submitted this post to the New York Times I seriously doubted it would even make it to print. I felt I had to at least try to live up to my belief that coming out and sharing our stories is the most important political and personal thing you can do to counter all the hate out there.
I know I did the right thing but, to be honest, there are still doubts and fears circulating in my mind. What will happen now? Will I lose friends and family? Am I now in danger? Despite whatever confidence I may project, I am still human and subject to doubts, fears, discomfort with my appearance, fears I’ll come off as arrogant and a dozen “what ifs” that really scare me. Still, I think I did the right thing. I believe sharing our stories is the single most important thing we can do to counter all the hate and transphobia out there.
So, do take some time to read the stories of the other folks who responded to the New York Times’ request for stories. What they have to say is important. Here are there voices: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/projects/storywall/transgender-today