I’ve won! I’ve Won!

Hit the grand slam. The jackpot and the lottery all in one! My anticipation of the event rose as my good friend R, and G and I wound our way down the expressway and crept through the streets of Center City. I was psyched as we got to town a half hour before my introduction to the meeting of the group at the Center.

My hope dashed, however, as we either passed the place or didn’t even come close and time ticked away. I couldn’t tell which because I deliberately sit in the back when I can’t be the driver. I don’t drive to Center City because I am a chicken. So, I am asking someone else to do the deed. And find complete fault when things don’t go as planned.

It was ten minutes before the start of the meeting and we were kind of ‘lost.’ “Stop! Let me out here! I see the place. It’s back there,” I said. I jumped out and G followed. Turns out it wasn’t the Center we were in search of. But I’d seen their logo; we were close. I ran in waving.

“Looking for the group at the Center!” Was met with, “What is the group? Who sponsors it?”

The surprised man pointed me in the right direction and I ‘ran’ the nearly four blocks to Cherry Street. Without a cane. I arrived on time. Alone. Without my sturdy companions. When I entered the building and got out of the elevator on the eighth floor I melted. Not because of the previous mayhem. Because I was home. A lobby overflowed with trans masculine people. I sunk into a chair and exhaled deeply.

One by one we filed into a room and I took a seat. The room was full. SRO. Literally. Preliminaries were given. Newbies raised their hands. Not the term used but I like it for myself. There was a call for check-in’s. My hand shot up. “I’ll go first,” I said. It occurred to me I didn’t even know what a check-in consisted of. Once explained, I began.

Through this high-pitched wailing garble I managed to say, “I am Sam. This is the first time I’ve ever been in the presence of a trans man. I have been suicidal; feeling isolated. I barely got here by car but I swear I would have walked from the town where I live in to be here. I am so glad I am here.”

“Welcome. We’re glad you’re here. Glad you could make it. Come again. Yeah, come again,” were the responses. Tears dripped onto my pants and I couldn’t make eye contact but there I was! It had happened. I’d ultimately made it to my first all-trans masculine support group.

Other peoples’ check-ins were sad; troubling. One was arrested and taken to jail, searched and housed in the men’s section. As transgender, he did not belong there. Another had been punched in the face twice, by the same man, for no apparent reason and the police were unable to do anything.

One man was stopped by the  State Police and harassed. He was treated respectfully, as a male, until he was required to produce his license with his birth name and a giant ‘F’, for female, on it. Then, all bets were off. The cop gave him a hard time, deliberately emphasizing female pronouns, ignoring the fact the driver identified himself as transgender.

A young man seated next to me was exhilarated. He was scheduled to receive top surgery by the end of the month. Also, his mom and aunt had addressed him with proper pronouns and his chosen name at a family affair. Another man, seated across from me, was coming out to his church as his chosen name and gender and had been embraced by his entire congregation.

There was laughter, clapping and plenty of smiling. I never noticed the room had no window and barely any air moved in there. Or that the door was shut with a man standing in front of it the entire hour. My anxiety about not having enough air or room to breathe in, my angst over not having a set plan for escape in case of an emergency, didn’t enter my mind. Till now.

Only now I am comfortable knowing I’m going to be in that cramped room on the eighth floor of a building in the middle of a city that scares me due to its size. Because I am welcomed there. I feel love in that space; in a room where the people are just like me. Only next time I’ll be traveling by train.

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About sam davies

I love to write. I have a wonderful partner, G, of 16 years and a kitty named Mango. Only recently reclaimed my transgender Self. All my life I felt like a boy but didn't have a name for what it was I felt. As I travel this journey, I hope to meet others along the way who walk a more different path from the rest.
This entry was posted in Connection, Friendship, FTM, support, Transmen and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to I’ve won! I’ve Won!

  1. Good for you! I am so happy to hear that this is the group that you’ve been searching for. That this is a place that you can call home. Getting there will get easier the more times that you go.

    Like

    • sam davies says:

      It was you who sent me the link initially! Can’t thank you enough. Although it took several months I finally made the trip. I know you’re right it’ll get easier but going to make a dry run or two before I make it on my own!

      Like

      • I think it’s great that there are resources like this one out there. And kudos to you for being strong enough and brave enough to go. That takes a lot of guts.

        Like

      • sam davies says:

        Thank you. When you go through certain things you don’t realize your bravery. One finished, the panic takes on a different face and transforms. Whether you know this, I had you (and all my ‘allies’) in my back pocket the entire time.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I am so happy for you!!! It was like a mad scene in a movie as you described how you were trying to get there, but you got there. You’ve found your flock! What an absolutely wonderful feeling it must be. 🙂

    Like

    • sam davies says:

      Oh, pj, the flock I’ve been hoping for not so secretly! It’s good to be near a city. I feel for guys who are farther out and don’t have access to resources. Someday everyone will have the kind of connection needed. That is my hope.

      Like

  3. pkcapaldo says:

    It takes great courage to face a room full of strangers and bare your soul. Kudos to you for taking that step. I’m so glad you found kindred spirits there.

    Like

    • sam davies says:

      pkc, thank you for following my blog. I guess it did feel like a reach for me as I’ve declared in the past never to set foot in the city. With help, I overcame some of my fears and marched on. Think of what I might have missed if I’d been stubborn enough. Your support and uplifting gestures of all my friends literally has kept me going.

      Like

  4. Flo Shore says:

    YAY!!!

    Like

  5. Bridget says:

    Sounds like you let this happen and overcame fears to find a place you can be open and be yourself. It took a lot of spiritual strength to get there, and it will not only help you but many others.

    Like

    • sam davies says:

      Thank you for your follow, Bridget. Needing help to overcome fears is more of a satisfying experience than it used to be. Stubborn could have been my middle name. Now, when I reach out, I’m able to take the hand that reaches back and hold tight if need be. Great to have you on my team.

      Like

  6. Diane Yannick says:

    I loved reading about your adventure. I felt like I was running beside you. You raised your hand and weren’t afraid to share your heart. Everyone in that room is blessed that you entered the room.
    I am so proud to call you friend🌟

    Like

    • sam davies says:

      Thank you, Diane! My heart helped raise my hand. I was barely aware it had even shot up! Today I will take the train ride on another field trip to the city with my friend, R, and next Monday I will make the trip on my own. I know I can do this difficult task before me; not only because it’s necessary but because I have so many souls going with me, riding beside me. You are so much more than a writing buddy!

      Like

  7. contoveros says:

    Give my best to Mango!

    Like

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