I continue this series of lookbacks at life before I started this blog, when I had just emerged into the real world, with the feeling that I needed to spend as much time as possible negotiating this new reality. My hormones seemed to be going crazy, my wish was to live as a woman and I was finding out as much as I could about the process of transition.
Perhaps the timing was lucky. I was working part-time as an employee because the rest of the time I had been studying for the qualifications for a new self-employed career. But I was able to put that career on hold and give myself plenty of 'me' time, which, from late summer 2010, I spent pretty much as a woman.
There were, in addition, many periods of several weeks at a stretch when I didn't work and so lived full-time female, to see what it was like, if it was workable, if it suited me, if there were any problems...
And it was amazing, so wonderful just to interact with the world as a woman and feel that this was just the way things should be. I've always wanted simply to lead life as a woman, even the most mundane aspects of it. I just loved going to the post office or the supermarket as Sue and it feeling right and normal.
Although it would take an age to get ready, what with epilation, makeup and so on, it just seemed a price that needed paying and, although slightly annoying, I didn't resent the need, nor did I tire of dealing with the less feminine aspects of my body, hair mainly.
Of course, the plentiful time available meant an improved social life, too. I've already described in part 3 (Meeting others) how I travelled around to meet other like-minded people, and eventually started organising events in London. In contrast to my mundane yet ideal life en femme near home, there was also the exhilaration of packing nothing but Sue clothes in a case and going away for a weekend, with no prospect of backing out and going back to boy mode.
By 2011 I was in an amazing place. It was really a question of whether I wanted to take the final plunge and switch to finally being the woman I'd always wanted to be, fullstop. I take my time, though, and doubts about formal transition, family and trans community issues and, eventually (in 2014), disfiguring ill health led to my remaining part-time. I don't like the situation where I have to be male some of the time, although, truth be told, it does keep away a lot of troubles if you keep that option, even if you aren't being true to yourself. After all, I've learned by a lifetime's forcing how to keep that male interface with the world when necessary.
So in the end, officially changing to Sue Richmond full-time never happened, but I am satisfied that I gave it all due and proper consideration, and had a lot of fun along the way.
A dip in the archives
The background photo to my blog was taken by Stella on a trip to Painshill Park, a landscape garden 30 miles from Central London (Painshill Park website). This was August 2011. We took a picnic there, strolled round the lake and grounds, and took in the various follies and architectural elements (such as the Turkish Tent seen here) before driving back to London. But we'd had such a nice day in each others' company that we decided not to go home immediately but to have dinner at a old pub in Strand-on-the Green, a pretty riverside hamlet in West London.
I chose it as the background photo to my blog - and I have never changed it - as, to me, it captures the happiness and satisfaction of what was undoubtedly the best year of my life, when I was out in the world as the woman I had always felt I was meant to be. It also shows the three things I love most: sunshine, greenery and being out in a skirt. A simple, wonderful time.
Cari lettori italiani
Oggi è l'anniversario dell'inizio dell'emergenza Covid. Stiate bene è speriamo che finisca quest'anno.
Qui parlo del periodo più bello della mia vita, quando spendevo la stragrande maggioranza del mio tempo vivendo la mia vita da donna. Ero felicissima ed era a quei tempi che ho iniziato a scrivere questo blog per condividere questa gioia e incoraggiare le altre ad avventurarsi nel mondo reale.