Friday, October 19, 2012

Here. Now.

This night, I went out.  I went out as me.

Now, I didn't do full-dress (sadly, it's trigger-y).  I didn't wear makeup (also trigger-y, plus: don't know how & don't own any).  I didn't pass.  And that, that used to be trigger-y, too, but tonight?  Tonight I couldn't give a f**k because tonight rocked.

All this, of course, is not to say I went out in drab.  I wore a cami, even though it probably wasn't necessary, and my best soft black stretch top; my hair was (well, until the music kicked-in) immaculately brushed back into a long streaming ponytail, tied twice in green and pink.  What skin I showed (hands, neck, face) was free of any male traces.  I was uncommonly comfortable in my body.

I was sirred at the door, of course.  Curiously, I didn't even care.  Tall women with thinning hair, squared jaws, and deeper voices are sirred all the time.  Funny, that never seemed to comfort me before.  Perhaps it wasn't tonight, either—perhaps I'm just in a different place, now.  Either way, I was fine.

My friend met me there, as the first opener finished (a bouncy hip-hop ska-ish bunch).  We hung-out in the back patio until the second opener (a super-fun IDM crew) was done, then moved back to the stage area as the Minibosses were warming up.

It was awesome.  I had the best time.  I got on stage at one point to belt a vintage cartoon theme (long-running inside joke for them) in exchange for the 11-minute Mega Man II medley and the super-thrashy Castlevania II medley.  I even heckled (shouting requests for My Cooking Mama and Harvest Moon).  It was an awesome geeky crew.

It was my first time out, not in drab, feeling "Rachel".  I've been out before in my male-feminine best, but still consciously feeling the guy-mode.  It was … wonderful.  Sure, I didn't pass—but sometimes, sometimes that's not necessary.  What mattered was that I felt like me.  That's an amazing thing, and the best birthday present I could possibly give myself.

Because Friday is my birthday.  At thirteen minutes past noon, Pacific time, I will enter the latter half of my fourth decade of life.  At thirty-four (for yet a few more hours), I have already received the gift I promised myself four years ago: that I would begin transition in earnest (hormones, and a schedule & plan for FT) before … before today.  Here it is.  I made it.

This was the perfect event to celebrate it, to tell the truth.  The Minibosses are a rock/metal band whose fame is that they play nothing but music from games from the original NES (Nintendo Entertainment System for readers who were/are not gamers).  It's quite literally something that, had I told my 12-year-old self about tonight, I would never believe it (although I'd think it an awesome idea).  And if I were tell 12-year-old me that I would today, at last, be growing into womanhood … I'm positive I would not have believed me then, either.  And yet I am!  And, too, not only do the Minibosses exist, but they're even better than the recordings I have heard, and incredibly fun performers.

Tomorrow, I will have lunch with a friend whom I have not seen in over a decade.  I doubt I will be able to keep the topic away from my present life, and I'm very very done with hiding and dissembling.

So there's another birthday gift for me.


aaronburke said...

thank you for coming and singing ducktales with us. someone linked this to us after you posted it...a beautiful read. congratulations and happy birthday to you!!! :) - minibosses

Rachel Alder said...


Thank you so much for reaching-out and for the kind words! You guys put on a fantastic show, on top of all the awesome legitimacy you contribute just by existing (and touring!). So glad to have come, best birthday in years.

Also? my 7y/o is a SMB3/Zelda/Kirby/Katamari junkie, and budding rocker. I played brass 2 for her, Friday, and you are now her fav artists :) May not last, tho; she's still exploring my best-of-OCR playlists, and I'm about to introduce her to S:S&SEP (now that she can read well enough), so you'll be up against Guthrie shortly … well, we'll see.