12 October 2010

A Transgendered Dorian Gray?

Last night I had one of those dreams that both reflects and changes the way I see myself.  Those seem to be the only kind I remember. 

I was in a room, ready to get dressed.  It was bare and drab, seemingly devoid of windows or any other openings.  I was alone, or so I thought.  Even in those surroundings, I thought that all of the light and air of the world was highlighting every male feature I ever had.

But someone appeared in the room.  That's the only way I can describe what happened:  I didn't hear a door or window open.  The woman was something a cross between my mother and Dr. Marci Bowers, somewhere between the two of them in age. (Marci is about my age.)  She was beautiful, physically and emotionally, in all of the ways both women are.  

When she appeared, she handed me a dress.  When I woke up, I realize that it's a dress I actually own but have not yet worn.  I bought it at the Bell's outlet store near my parents' house the last time I was there.  I remember thinking that it would fit best after I lost a few pounds, but that I still looked better than I did in almost anything else I've ever worn.  

It's the sort of dress I might wear to a summer garden party or graduation:  A strap at the back of the neck flares open into strips of material that criss-cross over my breasts and flare into a skirt that falls to just above my knees.  All of it is made of a bright green crepe with white polka dots.

As I put the dress on, I noticed  a mirror in front of me, which I hadn't seen before.  "Take a look at yourself," the woman commanded.

After I put it on, in the dream, the woman brought me a pair of white rope-wedged sandals that went perfectly with the dress.  I don't have a pair of shoes like that in my waking life.  And, finally, that woman perched a broad-brimmed straw hat on my head.

"Take a look at yourself," she reminded me.

I stared.  "What do you see?"

I couldn't describe it.  Even though I was standing still, I felt as if my body were swaying fluidly.  I had never seen myself that way before, but, oddly, somehow I recognized it, as I did a grace in the outline of my face and my hair, which was almost a strawberry blonde.  

"Something's different," I said.


"I don't know..."  The truth was, I was afraid to describe what I saw, even if I could.  I was beautiful in the way of that woman who was in the room with me and pretty in a way I had envisioned but could never imagine myself becoming.  And I had a mature, confident sexuality that almost nobody ever develops.

"What do you see?"

"Myself..but different."

"Yes, it's you.  Exactly as you are.  Exactly as you always were."

Now, it might seem conceited of me to say that I'm a pretty or beautiful woman.  But, even when I'm not feeling well, as I have over the past two days, I realize that I do have a beauty within me, if it's sometimes tangled up with anxiety and other feelings that may or may not be warranted.  People have told me this; it's almost scary to contemplate because, well, I'm not used to it.  

But I've learned that I can't escape from my dreams.  And, to tell you the truth, I don't want to escape from this one, or this one.