27 November 2008


So...This is my last Thanksgiving before the surgery. That I am looking forward to it is, in itself, a major reason to be thankful. And everyone with whom I spent this day knows it.

So what else inspires my gratitude right now? That I'm alive, obviously: I could just as easily not be, for any number of reasons or causes. But here I is, as I say in my best English-prof way.

What else? That someone else could share her gratitude over the same, as Toni did last night. She's a student at the college, and has been at least since I started working there. She's worked as hard as anyone I've ever seen--and done it with as much style--even as the complications in her life seemed to grow more and more relentless. The latest? That her significant other was cheating on her with one of her friends, and that the house in which she'd been renting became the latest foreclosure statistic. Still, she is grateful for what she has and what she's accomplished. That made me grateful that I have a shoulder she could cry on.

Wanna know more? Well, I could sleep in today and still make it to two homes to which I'd been invited. And I could ride my bike to one, and from there to the other. And be treated so warmly, so hospitably by everyone in both houses. Everyone looked happy, and happy to see me, as I was happy to see them.

Who were they? Dominick, his mother and grandmother at my first gathering; Millie, her family and a couple of friends at the other. Even though I know I will see them again very soon, I wished I had more time with both of them. But the time I had is something for which I am thankful.

Along with the abundance of love was a bounty of good food. I might whine about the weight I probably gained today. But I'd lost some before today; I should think I could lose today's gain, and more. That I can even think that way is yet another reason for gratitude.

And afterward, when I got home, I was able to talk with my mother. My father was asleep by that time, but Mom was alert, if tired. The parents of so many other people my age are long dead; I wish mine were healthier, but at least they're still in this life. And I have a ticket to go and spend a week with them at Christmastime.

As I left, Millie and I embraced. "I am sooo blessed, I intoned as a tear flickered down my cheek.

"I know you are. And good for you!"

Now tell me...What else could I ask for now? That loneliness I used to feel--which seems to be a common denominator of transgender people before they "come out"--seems to be something that doesn't find me, even when I look for it just to see if it's still there.

When I got home and sat in my chair, Charlie and Max were at each side of me and took turns nudging their way into my lap. Both purred loudly.

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