Ever have one of those epiphany moments? It took a while for it to sink in, but I actually had one yesterday.
I'm not changing ...
I'm transitioning to a different gender, but the person under the skin isn't changing. I said that yesterday while I was talking to my manager. Today I found a little peace of mind in those words.
My quirky, off beat sense of humor will remain. The off the cuff comments will still fly out of my mouth before my brain filter can stop them (even though they will be in a different voice). I will still be somewhat unpredictable while at the same time being consistent, level headed, compassionate supervisor that I've always been. I will expect the same level of excellence while striving to lead by example.
I'm not changing ...
I do not realistically expect everyone will immediately or openly accept what I am doing, but I hope that once they see my personality is not changing that they will be more tolerant.
I am a very analytical person. Pretty much everything I do receives a high level of scrutiny and research before I ever begin to consider trying it. When I attempted to run a marathon I did a lot of research ... I went to runner's boards, triathlete sites, read books, studied anatomy and physiology as it pertains to exercise ... I developed a plan, followed a specific routine and ... and ... Well, unfortunately I injured both knees during training, so I did a half marathon with chondromalacia in both knees and torn cartilage in my left knee.
No, I'm not trying to prove I'm tough ... If anything I proved I'm stupid. The right knee was injured first and was diagnosed as chondromalasia, so when I hurt my left knee I figured it was the same, but it never got better. That's when I found out I had a cartilage tear.
In my mind I already have a road map of many things I will need to do during my transition ... Talk to my company's HR department, legal name change, all the proper medical procedures (hormones, blood tests and so forth), permanent hair removal, and the list goes on.
I'm not changing ... at least not the important part.