Now that I’ve put my thoughts about an important piece of Wisconsin legislation into the ether of the internet (it can be found here, for the record), it’s time for me to dive in to the annual series of challenges one of my WordPress peeps, The Finicky Cynic, puts out every year. She calls it “June Jour Challenge,” and it includes various single topics we can respond to, as well as certain forms of writing styles we must adhere to (or adhere as close as possible).
Since F.C. started the 2017 “June Jour Challenge” a week ago, I have yet to respond to any challenge. That ends with this post. And with me playing catch-up, I’ll have to respond to F.C.’s challenges out of order (I hope she doesn’t mind). I’ll start with a response to this challenge she sent out yesterday:
“Everyone has a ‘safe space’ where they can relax and be themselves. Where is yours?”
Well, that’s an easy one for me, and with that I harken back to an old post I did a couple of years ago. Remember this photo?
That was me on a Saturday morning, all dressed up and stretched out in my bedroom typing away at my (then) computer. My bedroom is the most private, most serene room in my entire apartment. It’s not as orderly as the living room; it’s not as, well, food-oriented as the kitchen; and it’s not as… well, let’s just say we all know what a bathroom is for.
As you can see from this photo, my bedroom is where you’ll usually find me any morning working on my computer. Sure, I could (and do) take my laptop and work anyplace else in my apartment. But it’s the serenity of the morning combined with the privacy of my bedroom that allows me to really get work done. Well, I could get work done so long as I don’t waist my time surfing the web (*sigh* YouTube…). It helps that my bedroom window has an eastern exposure, which is good for two reasons: One, I don’t have to be distracted by what’s in my living room, that being the TV set and the view of the street (not of a busy street, but it’s a clear view of the cars driving by and other folks walking on the sidewalk). And two, I can enjoy the beautiful sunrises, especially here in the summertime.
My bedroom isn’t devoted solely to sleeping and computer work, mind you. It’s also where I get dressed every morning, as well as where I dress up as Allison. I’m sure you’ll agree when I say the bedroom is the best, most comfortable, and safest dressing room there is. There’s no risk of snooping eyes from the clerks and customers; no strange looks when you enter with a skirt and you’re in male mode; a reduced risk of people overhearing you shriek in disgust when an outfit doesn’t look good on you; and when it doesn’t, you won’t have far to go to pick out a more flattering outfit (I mean, the closet’s right there).
Above all, my bedroom is indeed a place where, as F.C. suggested in her prompt, I can relax and be me — all aspects of me, whether it be my reserved, male side or my happy, female side. Aside from the computer and the radio and the cell phone encroaching its door, my bedroom is where I don’t have a care in the world. And I wouldn’t trade the serenity this safe space provides.
I’d be remiss, though, if I failed to include, as an honorable mention, another safe space i’ve come to enjoy the past half-year or so. I attended a group meeting of Madison area crossdressers and trans people for the first time last December. Since then, the meeting space our group uses has become another safe space for this crossdresser. Sure, the meeting room’s windows may be wide open, but the trees in the yard provide a sense of safety and security. And I’m certainly not the only person in the room, but I know that the others accept and respect me for the person I am, just as I accept and respect them as well. This is the safest place I’ve been in away from home. If you are a crossdresser or transgender person, I hope you have or will find a space that is just as safe and welcoming.