Thursday, July 19, 2012

Spiritual Meg, Part IV

I know this is Therapy Thursday.  If anything interesting happened in therapy, it'll appear tomorrow.  I wanted to do this as a consecutive set.

I walked in and the couple in front of me greeted the greeter.  I guess they were not newcomers.  The greeter introduced himself to me and I did the same.  I saw a "welcome" table so I went over to that.  It was (wo)manned by two church members who very enthusiastically wanted me to sign to get on their mailing list, or at least get a name tag.  I did the latter.

I was a bit nervous as I put my name on the tag.  It was hard to write with the sharpie in any event; my name came out shaky and not at all ladylike.  I wasn't sure if my reaction was due to the fact that I was Meg or that I was at church.  By myself.  I have been to a variety of churches, always in the company of someone who knew what to expect.  I had no idea what to expect.  But if I didn't pass, no-one gave the slightest hint.  I do believe I was the only t-girl in the place.  I do not believe I was the first.  To jump ahead a bit, the reverend, from the pulpit, recited a litany that sounded like it came from an equal employment handbook: "sex, race, colour, sexual identity" or some variation.  She did include "gender identity" at least once, and she mentioned "gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender" more than once.  She did not look at me when she did so.

I did not chat, as it was time to go in.  I did thank them and ask where the sanctuary was.  I found a seat about half-way up the aisle where I came in.  There were two other women sitting further down the row.  I sat on the end.  I was calm then ~ I was Meg and I was going to have a new experience.

Near the start of the service we were offered the opportunity to introduce ourselves to someone nearby whom we did not already know.  I met the woman next to me, the gentleman in front of me, and the two women and young girl behind me.  The girl looked surprised ~ I'm guessing most adults ignore the children and that was the reason for the look. ;)  I did not hear her whispering to her mother "mom, did you see that?" or anything along those lines.  I also did not say "what the heck are you staring at, shorty?"

There were about 160 people there, of all ages.  I could hear a baby crying during part of the service.  I saw some (not many) pre-teen children, but there was also a separate something going on for children.  There were young couples and elderly parishioners.  Most were underdressed ~ compared to me.  I don't recall seeing any men in suits.  I did see some skirts and dresses, but also shorts and jeans.

I was a bit disappointed by the sermon.  I was hoping to hear more about the premise (mentioned yesterday) but she digressed into a discussion about how community is paramount, and what she considered the difference between individuality (good) and individualism (bad).

I wanted to tell the reverend what brought me in ~ it was kind of odd, how I was brought in but there was a long line waiting to speak to her and I did not wish to wait.  I was going to grab a cup of coffee at the snack following but I did not do that either.

I did enjoy myself.  I did have another foray out as Meg.  And everyone treated her just as she'd like to be treated.  I hope I returned the favour and gave a positive impression of our community to those who noticed (ie, everyone).


  1. Meg,
    You are finding out that the world doesn't collapse around you when you, as a trans-person, go out and do something normal like go to church. Most, but not all, people know by now what a trans-person is and take your presence as a matter of fact even if they haven't seen one before. We are at the early stages of civil rights movement for African Americans - we can go places where we didn't dare not so long ago and most people accept it without reacting visibly.

    Many churches are a safe place to go to en femme. I have struggled with my motives in going to church dressed in that I feel that I should not go simply because it is a place that I can dress but, as I said in a previous post, because I need to worship as myself - en femme.

    So, keep going out dressed. Calm the nerves and you will be able to sign your name without shaking :). You will need that the next time you use your femme named credit card when you purchase that nice new dress!


  2. I see this as another successful interaction with the civilian population. As an added benefit you may have picked up a blessing or two along the way.


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