Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Sharon at Keystone ~ Part IV

The fourth and final part of what sounds like a fantastic four days in Pennsylvania.  I plan to be there next year!  See parts one, two, and three, if you missed them.

December 2009 ~ sans corset
After the shopping trip, I went back to my room to change for the evening Gala.  I wore a brown dress with a rounded, low cut neckline and shoulder straps, with side gathers (at least, I think that's what they are).  I had worn it to the TGEA Holiday Gala, but this time I had the corset on underneath.  Let me tell you, there is quite a difference.  I have sent photos of both to Meg.  Hopefully she is able to post them here for comparison.  I was wearing my long red wig, which I seem to enjoy wearing to more formal events.  And I paired the dress with some 3 1/2 inch strappy sandals by Chinese Laundry, which are more of a rust color, but close enough.  The heels are not the most comfortable to wear, but they look great and make me taller.  The things we girls do for fashion. 
Many photos were taken at the cocktail party.  I chatted briefly with Mike, who I had met at the karaoke and on the busy ride the night before.  I asked him to save a dance for me later.  We had a nice dinner.  The Burning House Band was back (they played at the last two Keystone Conferences), albeit without two of their best singers.  They were good but not as good as in the past years.  I did dance with Mike a few times.  It was just regular dancing, although I did let him twirl me around a few times.  There were only a few slow songs, and during one of them he asked me to dance again.  I politely declined.  I think it was just the song, not the company. In any event, I haven't shared this little tidbit with my wife. I don't think I crossed any inappropriate lines, and I think telling her would make more out of this than what it was, just two people having fun.  I definitely felt more feminine dancing with a straight guy.  I have danced with other guys before who were gay.  Not that there is anything wrong with that, but it didn't make me feel the same knowing the guy wasn't attracted to me (as a woman).  Mike clearly was, but he was a true gentleman.
2012 ~ with
Also at the Gala, I ran into Stacey from Baltimore , who I had met at a prior year's Keystone Conference.  She told me she recently started living as a woman full time.  We have some things in common, like the fact that we are both Jewish.  She says she usually wears her Star of David when she is en femme.  We both agreed that just because we are TG, that does not mean we cannot embrace our religion.  I resolved to wear my religious jewelry while out en femme.  She also wanted to get in touch with me on Facebook.  I don't have an account there as Sharon, only in my male persona.  I am concerned that Facebook is data mining and that if I create a Sharon account, one of my male friends will get a suggestion that they friend Sharon, since Sharon's email address is in my male email account's address book.  Then, if they read my posts, they could put two and two together and . . . well, lets just say I am not ready to come out to everyone just yet.  I still need to figure out how I can safely create a Facebook account for Sharon. If anyone has good advice about this, please let me know.
One last thing about the conference, and perhaps the most uplifting, is the presence of the youngest TG person I have ever seen in person. Jaden is 7 years old.  She was born male but told her parents she wants to be a girl. Her mother is letting her dress and live full time for now.  I met her mother and told her how much I admired her for allowing her child to make this choice and supporting her.  I didn't speak directly with Jaden, but I saw her getting her photos taken by the conference photographers.  She looked soooooooo cute!
The Gala ended soon after midnight.  I changed into a casual outfit and hung out in the hotel bar, not wanting the evening to end.  But it had to. I was exhausted after staying up late every night. So I turned in.  On Sunday I had brunch with Amy and some friends from TGEA before driving home.
One thing I forgot was how much wearing clip-on earrings can hurt and damage your earlobes.  I have considered having mine pierced, but haven't done so yet. My earlobes are sore and red in spots.  I have been covering this up with makeup.  I hope nobody at work notices.  No one has said anything so far, but I had long fingernails last week at work (no polish) and it would be awfully hard to miss that . . .
So, how has attending the conference changed me?  I feel more confident being out while en femme.  I have been going out for almost 10 years, but I haven't really embraced my feminine side yet.  I have made new friends, both locally here in Northern Virginia, as well as around the region.  I want to practice my female voice so that I can use it with confidence to meet new people and have interesting conversations when I am out and about.  I want to be more visible, so that the rest of society, the non-gender gifted (or, if you will, the muggles, for the Harry Potter fans among us) will realize that we are not freaks and perverts.  We are just people trying to express ourselves in accordance with how we identify ourselves on the inside.  Jeanine and the folks from Transcentral PA have established a strong presence in Harrisburg, and I think I and the other TG people in Northern Virginia, D.C. and Maryland can do the same.


  1. Sharon ( and Meg)
    Thanks for the final update on Keystone.
    I would love to attend next year and as of now I put my odds at about 10%.
    Your final paragraph is the best promotion that the conference could have.
    Good luck and keep moving forward.
    PS: You look great ~ the corset does make a subtle difference.

  2. I created a different email address on gmail for Joni to use. Then I created a facebook account for her with that email address. But, it's definitely a concern and I can't let her friend my male persona.


My day is brighter when I hear from my friends!