Echo in NYC

Musing into the void

Walking in New Shoes

Hi there! It’s been a while.

Confession: after the last post I haven’t really had a lot of energy for writing. I just felt I didn’t have a lot to talk about, which was really a mask for my depression to pull me down. I’m not sure I’m better now, but I’m certainly a bit more energized.

So today I’d like to talk about my new perspectives I’ve gained since transition, and muse a little bit as to the reasons why.

For context, old me was a very black and white person. Things were right, or not. However, despite that, I wasn’t really active in actually doing anything. I said I wanted to do things and genuinely did, but it just never happened. Part of it was I felt threatened, honestly. I felt like I could never measure up, could never provide meaningful change, could never really… matter.

I also was a very strict atheist. I hated organized faiths, and was quietly dismissive of my friend’s spirituality. I dismissed it as a bunch of New Age nonsense for people that couldn’t face the fact that we are alone in this universe. I honestly took comfort in what I believed was my hard headed, practical approach towards things.

Things are very different for me now. Where before it was very right and wrong, I now have more empathy. My politics are definitely farther to the left, but honestly not that much. I just feel like I care more? I actively want to make the world better, and have been doing what little bits I can to help with that. I volunteer, try and get signatures, want to go protest, and actively engage with politics and my community. I also feel more keenly my place within the corporate system, and resent it more.

Regarding spirituality, I identify as a witch now. Or rather, that’s one of many facets of my complex and ultimately still unfolding spiritual identity. I relate to many entities, many incorporeal, and do my best to build meaningful relationships.

Yes, I still have my rationality. From a purely intellectual standpoint, I realize that these things live inside my head. I just don’t care. They are part of me just as much as my friends are. Though with the caveat that I try to not let the spiritual world affect me as much as the physical realm. I need human companionship as much as the next city dwelling primate. I shouldn’t lean on gods and monsters for my human needs, just as much as they need to respect my fleshy limitations.

So… why? Why the vast shift? There are several reasons, I feel:

Firstly, peer pressure. My friend group has shifted with me, and people generally rub off on me. My friends tend to be a bit more spiritual, and a bit more political. They have brought me into things, and I’ve gotten more and more into that world. I also have folks that hang out with me that’d never have associated with me as I was before, and they are very different people. All kinds of trans folks, artists, sex workers, and other delightful queers of an uncategorizable variety. They are my people, and I suppose I’m recognized as one of them now.

Secondly, I feel there’s a big difference between being sympathetic to marginalized folks to living it. I understand fear, understand being the freak, understand being visible. It’s hard, and I live under a constant strain I simply didn’t get before. I think it’s helped me grow as a person, and broaden my empathy for other human beings that face hardship different from mine.

Lastly… I think the hormones helped. My empathy has definitely changed, and I feel energy and creativity I simply didn’t before. My attitude changed in ways I can’t really put my finger on, but that feel really significant. I don’t pretend to understand it, but like a dear friend says: hormones are chaos magic.

So, I suppose, I shall boil and bubble. And let’s see what continues to brew in the corners of my brain. I know I’m excited to find out!

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