Friday, 4 December 2009

What lovely neighbours I have

After my Deed Poll name change, it became urgent to tell everyone who might be in contact with me who I now was, and what was going to happen to me. I had to tell my immediate neighbours especially: but those fortuitous moments when you might see each other (and then easily launch into an unhurried explanation) refused to happen. And yet I didn't want to knock on their front door in full Lucy, as if selling myself on the doorstep. Finally, I encountered the neighbour on one side, an older man who lived alone, when out in the front garden one rare sunny morning two weeks ago. I invited him in, and told him all. He was as sweet as pie, totally accepted what I said about myself, and we parted on the most cordial terms.

Phew. Could it be that easy?

Today it was the turn of my neighbours on the other side. I'd noticed that the lady of the house (henceforth J---) was 'in' the day before, when she accepted a parcel from the postman. I was about to drive off, and happened to see this. I got out of my car, rang her doorbell and asked if she was free for a chat. I was in my usual girl-about-town stuff. J--- said she had a friend with her, but we made a date for coffee in my house next morning. I got the impression that J--- wasn't surprised at my appearance, and welcomed the chance to hear my announcement. Well, next morning it went beautifully. J--- had been an HR manager in the past, and already had a clear idea of what a transsexual person was. I told her all about myself, what Mum and Dad had thought of it all, how I was placed at the moment, and what was going to happen in the future. We talked surgery, we talked attitudes, we talked clothes, we talked makeup, we talked weight problems. We also talked tree surgery and fences - ordinary things as well as the extaordinary. I felt I'd gained an ally.

Phew again! It was that easy. Thank you, J---.

Right, I feel encouraged to tell a whole boatload of people now.

And the day's nice moments did not end there. I had a noon appointment in Haslemere with Dad's solicitors, to effect a transfer of the interest in Dad's house into my name. The lady who saw me was kind and gentle, and at the end wished me well in my new life. I was on air. I felt like a good long walk under a sunny blue sky to savour the sweetness of life. Pity the sun went in, and it got cold! Never mind. I got home and had a nice cup of tea and reflected that although there may be murderous scumbags out there, most people I knew were fantastic.

10 comments:

  1. I expect that a lot of it is down to you. From the way you write I get the impression that people warm to you. You do have good neighbours

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  2. Anji, what a lovely thing to say. I do find it very easy to talk to people, whether complete strangers or lifelong friends. I can't possibly admit to being an especially warm person though. But you have given me a warm feeling thinking that I might be such a person. Oh, if only.

    Lucy

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  3. It's really nice when it goes that easily, isn't it? I have not let either of my neighbors in on the news yet, but I was out putting up Christmas lights last weekend and one of the neighbors came over with some mail that had been misdelivered. I was in full out Sophie mode, nothing androgynous about it. And she didn't say a word about it. Just prattled on about how she hadn't been able to work in her yard, how much the leaves were piling up, etc. And walked away.

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  4. Nice one, Lucy....!

    You know.... I have to wonder about all this.

    Because my experience so far, empirical as well as observational and anecdotal, has been that it's the OLDER generation that are more accepting than the so-called "younger generation". If you want bigoted, rude and often violent reactions, look to this country's youth..!!

    What a triumph that has been for our so-called liberal progressive education system. It seems to have had the opposite effect.


    Hugs
    chrissie
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

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  5. Congratulations! I'm glad things went so smoothly for you. Anji is right, attitude makes so much of a difference in how people react to you. Here's hoping your winning streak continues. :)

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  6. How fantastic Lucy, you must feel absolutely wonderful and free at the minute, I must agree with you that most people are fine,good and respectable people, just be yourself as you are, we can never please eeryone, and those who can't except us would find fault with most things in life and us even if we were'nt Transexuals. Good luck and enjoy this wonderful new beginning x

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  7. Dearest Lucy, I'm so thrilled for you and feel sure that, as Anji said, a lot of your success is down to your own warm personality.

    There will always be morons out there who can only snear but, generally speaking, I sense that society is becoming more understanding. All of which gives me heart for the day, in the not-too-distant future, when it will be my turn to 'go public'.

    Angie

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  8. What a civilised neighbourhood you have there Lucy, you will be running coffee mornings before you know it.

    Caroline xx

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  9. Well, I didn't expect all these comments! Thank you everyone. I suppose it is a pleasant quiet road in a pleasant village in a nice part of the world, with nothing threatening about it. But I lived in a similar area before, and my next door neighbour, a selfish, boorish, flash, partying, turn up the thump-thump disco music at 2am moron, made my life a misery. No wonder it brought on blood-pressure problems. I can't imagine how he would have reacted to my being transgendered. Not ideally, probably. So I value friendly neighbours like diamonds or gold dust!

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  10. Love that "J". Can you clone her and ship a few off to Cali?

    Calie xxx

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