When A Friend From The Past Embraces The Change They Know You’ve Made For The Better A Light Comes On And Women Talk Of Frilly Pounds And Lipstick.

Hey everyone. I don’t usually do emotional posts but this is an exception to my usual rule and if you read on you’ll see why this one comes from the heart.

On making my way to the Merchant City Festival I bumped in to a friend I hadn’t seen in years. As I waited at the lights to cross the road from Buchanan Street towards the galleries I saw a young couple pushing a baby who asleep in its pram. On seeing the mum I saw a smile I would have recognised anywhere. it belonged to Josephine McKay a much loved friend from my past and this was the first time I had seen her for at least 12 years. It was also the first time she was seeing me as the women I am

When I called her she asked if we had known each other before and said she had saw me smiling at her. This was I suspect her light bulb moment when she realised who she had caught up with and with that smile which could melt all the snow in the arctic circle she just turned round said you’ve changed a lot since the last time I saw you and I have to say your looking good. To say this pleased me would be putting it mildly as getting that kind of compliment from Josephine is like to being you look good by a favourite niece.

The ice now broken Josephine asked me all about my transition and one of the first things she did was to ask me my name. This for most people would not be a big deal but for a trans-woman it certainly is because it’s all about respect and it shows a willingness to get things ready. Remembering my past she also asked whether I was still in to my poetry and comedy I assured her I was and was looking foward to the Edinburgh festival with all the madness of the fringe.

I explained that the road to transition was not an easy one and that there had been several false starts along the way but the night that changed my life was the 19th December 2008 as that was the night I changed my life for good and I’ve never regretted it even for a moment.

As we chatted I asked Josephine if she was still in touch with anyone from back in the day and when she said she was still in touch with her friend Paula I have to say this didn’t come as a shock. Having chatted about the past. Josephine got me focused on the future as she introduced me to her husband and new nine week old baby boy. As we talked about roots she told me she was settled in Wishaw now and the reason she was in Glasgow was for her husband to buy her some new lipstick or other make up as her birthday is coming up soon and she wanted to be treated. Of course I backed her 100 percent on this it is after all one of the perks of being a woman.

I said that Scotland had moved on a lot with regards to equality issues since we first got to know each other in the late 1990’s and said that the fact marketing consultants talk about the frilly pound for transwoman in the same way they refer to the pink pound for gay community shows the progress we’ve made and it was that progress which has made it possible for me to the happy woman I am now

As we parted at the end of our chat I felt a level of acceptance and support beyond what I could have hoped for. I don’t know why this is but I think it is probably because as a Scot I always believe you should be cautious in these matters it just makes it all the more rewarding when an old friend embraces the changes they know you’ve made for the better the light comes on and women talk of frilly pounds and ipstick

Love And Best Wishes
Gayle X


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