as loving parents, the pain our children feel is our own in a way…a deep way. my daughter is going through pain i wish no child ever had to feel. and there’s nothing i can do but stand by and hurt right along with her…
except i can’t really know how hard what she is going through is for her. she has a body that every day tells lies about her. that says, ‘you’re not what you think you are’. the part of her she most wants nothing to do with seems to have its own mind…it has its way with her. it jumps up and slaps her with the most unkind reality.
entering into tanner level two means that we can move forward a bit now. we can get the puberty blockers that will stop her from developing the irreversible male traits testosterone would cause. and that’s a good thing. but this level has also made her acutely aware of her helplessness in the situation. every morning and often throughout the day, the penis she wants no part of makes itself hard and even harder to ignore. she is crushed every time it happens. she wants so much just to cut it off of her body. i talk her through it with the same words every time. that cutting it off would injure, maybe even kill her.
the problem is that she is in such pain that death seems an option for her. she would rather be dead than have to go through what she is dealing with. she threatens suicide. i watch over her closely, remind her that the problem of her having the wrong parts is temporary, fixable but that death is forever. the words echo and clang around …so many empty cans kicked down the alley.
lately she sleeps, way too much. i know why. when i was in prison i wanted to sleep until my release date. this is what she is doing. she even admits that she wishes she could slip into a coma until “after the surgery”. she is every bit as much in a prison as was i. though mine was only steel bars, walls and barbed wire fences, and mine was one i had earned.
her prison is far more constraining. and she committed no crime justifying the sentence against her. how i wish i could free her this moment! how i wish i could wave a magick wand and change her into the girl she will be. how i wish it were possible to get the surgery done yesterday!
but i am as much a prisoner as is she in all of this. my hands are bound, and i have no power to open the gates that will set her free. there are protocols that are in place for good reasons. there is a prescribed way forward that unfortunately must include time. time so unkindly slowly passing between now and the day she can be under a surgeons blade. time that doesn’t speed up no matter how much we want it to. circumstances that depend upon time for their resolution are always most unkind!
this is a depressing read, i know. and if anyone is still with me by this point please understand, i will get her through this. i will keep her safe. but how can i alleviate the pain she feels? my own heart sinks below the horizon of a future that seems so far out of sight! i am torn apart! whereas she can temper her sadness with anger about the situation, i haven’t the benefit of this. instead, feeling every bit as frustrated that so much of her being made whole depends solely on the passage of time and the reaching of a certain age, standing helplessly by without remedy that can soothe her, i bleed from every pore of my being.
if these tears could but heal.