Finally! A Transgender Sports Model

Following in the footsteps of all the gorgeous transgender women in the past who could have graced the pages of the Sports Illustrated Swim suit Issue but weren’t allowed, we finally have one who could.


Now, Brazilian Valentina Sampaio has made history as an impassioned activist and true LGBTQ pioneer. And by saying she represents the well rounded woman who Sports Illustrated is proud to have representing them.

The Reality of the Dress

When we are young novice cross dressers and/or transgender women, the power of the clothes and makeup is nearly everything we experience. For some of us the allure of the clothes began to fade early. I began to want to be the girl, not just look like one. 


I think the recent quarantine has heightened the differences in those who have to cross dress to reestablish who they are gender wise. If you use me for example, I always know who I am gender wise and would have to go out and buy men’s clothing if I even wanted to try to express any of what is left of my male self. I am making up for all the years when I questioned my gender continually.


So, while I don’t need the dresses, hose and heels to feel feminine, it is certainly fun on occasion to get dressed up like I did Saturday night when we went out to eat for the first time in nearly three months. Nothing wrong with any of that since all women get a chance to feel the same way during their lives too. It’s part of the fun of a being a girl. 


With my HRT induced body changes, I have found I have made it easier to find “fun” outfits in my wardrobe. If the stars and everything else align, I may even get my favorite summer “boho” outfit past Liz and get to wear it to a lesbian bar in the area. The outfit consists of a spaghetti strap tank top and my well frayed jeans I roll up to mid calf. I wear the whole thing with sandals of even flip flops. I love the feel of the top I wear with no bra…if Liz approves it. Once again I am experiencing extra fullness in my breasts with the increased dosage I am on and I can’t forget my hair which is growing rapidly again. 


The problem is the two lesbian bars we could go to are across the Ohio River in Kentucky which is just re-opening on a limited basis and Pride has been moved back until October. I love me some lesbians and hope it happens! In the meantime the reality of the dress (or the fantasy) may just have to wait.  

Do Clothes Make the Trans Woman

I happened along this article from the Huffington Post which may interest all of us transgender and/or cross dressers. It’s about trans woman Stella Sacco and her feelings when she tried on a new dress:

“Whether we do so intentionally or not, many of us use clothing and makeup to express ourselves every single day. When a person transitions their gender, that notion of self-expression takes on an even deeper meaning. 

For Stella Sacco, finding clothing and building her wardrobe felt daunting when she first came out as transgender in November 2017.  

“I know there are people who can really pull off wearing clothing for their authentic gender right away,” she told HuffPost. “But just like cis women, trans women are all different. We all have different body shapes. Some of us are traditionally feminine to start and some of us are not. I’m 6′1 and shaped like a carrot.” 

Finding comfort and confidence, then, was somewhat of a challenge in the beginning. Sacco, 32, had her first experience shopping publicly in the women’s department when a friend and his wife gave her an H&M gift card to kickstart her new wardrobe. She recalled the experience as daunting ― but powerful. 

“That first time I picked out an outfit for myself felt amazing,” she said. “Even the feeling of going in and being really stressed out ― and thinking, ‘Are people judging me because I’m in the girls section and people think I’m a guy?’ ― was hard. But picking out the outfit and being like, this is a full outfit I picked out ― that’s a feeling even now I carry with me every time I go shopping.” 

All great points we will consider in a later Cyrsti’s Condo post.

Trans People Can’t have Nice Things

rans people simply can’t get along and this includes me. The goddess knows I have posted a number of crazy photos on social media for the world to see and laugh at. But recently I saw a post of a transgender woman in a form fitting silver lame’ long dress. She was asking how she looked. Normally, I leave posts such as this alone thinking I don’t want to be the one to throw stones in a glass house. But this time I couldn’t help myself. I simply had to comment on the obviously huge belly sticking out in the picture. I commented something to the fact she may want to try some Spanx under garments before wearing the dress again. Of course all of the other ten comments were totally positive and were telling her how wonderful she looked. 

As I look back on it, no comment would have been better than my snarky, trans-naziish, statement I made. But I let it go. 
I was part of the transgender problem not the solution. Just another reason trans people can’t have nice things when we snark at each other. Then again, I wonder what an outsider to the community would think about some of the posts I see. I understand. It takes most of us years to achieve even a modest attempt at a quality feminine presentation. 


An example is this five year old fuzzy tavern post of a very fuzzy intoxicated me during a Pride Pub Crawl. I wasn’t quite crawling yet when this picture was taken!

Girl Code

One of the first things I learned as I attempted to assume a feminine life was communication. I refer to it “Girl Code  The Art of Feminine Communication.” As I learned the hard way with men, my intelligence level had decreased along with my opinions on current affairs, women played on a whole different field. 
For example, women operate on many more communication “channels” than men. Many of which are non verbal. Also it is no secret women are more passive aggressive than men. There were more than a few times when I discovered way too late I had a knife sticking out of my back after interacting with a woman I considered an ally. One of my favorite examples was all was good with socializing with several women until it was time to use the restroom. Or the well known “You make a good looking woman…for a man in a dress.” 
I remember vividly the bartenders in the pubs I went to (all women) who would steer possible problems with men away from me, simply by giving me a look. 
I discovered girl code worked in wonderful ways too. Any number of small selected appearance compliments could open up a whole excellent 
 conversation with a stranger. I think, it was because they knew I was transgender and had some sort of “fashion sense.” Also I was very lonely in those days and was seeking out any companionship I could. 
Girl Code to me also dictated I grow a thicker skin. Much more than the softer one I was developing with my Hormone Replacement Therapy regimen.  I became able to smile sweetly and pull the knives out of my back. 
These days I do believe in many areas. life is becoming somewhat easier for those of us transgender women who take the time to learn Girl Code.You just can’t throw on a dress and make up and expect to cross the gender frontier. If you need to work on your skin, figure out how to do it. If you need to take off a few pounds do it. After all, Girl Code dictates you do it. And while I am on the subject, May’s issue of Cosmopolitan, one of the ultimate Girl Code’s publications features Madalynn a trans woman on page 62. She is part of a creative collaboration between  Dove and Cosmo. Unfortunately I have not been able to come up with a picture for you yet. I am sure one will surface sooner more than later. 
Finally, consider immersing yourself in Girl Code. It can be a very pleasurable part of your Mtf gender transition. 

Social Distancing

As the new reality continues and even becomes more ingrained in our lives, social distancing has become one of the words of the day. Plus more and more of us who are fortunate enough to have our own hair, are beginning to think seeing our hair dresser is an essential activity. Especially for those who have to have their hair colored. Thanks to the insight years ago from my former stylist, we decided to let my hair revert back to it’s natural soft grey tones. So really, all I have to worry about is getting it trimmed and shaped once things get back to normal.
These days too, I notice the number of cis women commenting on their lack of hair maintenance and I understand. Following the first trip to an upscale hair salon my daughter gifted me when I first came out to her, I was hooked on going to a hair salon to be pampered and “touched up.” 
Unfortunately, over the years I tried hair shortcuts such as trying to color my own very long and thick hair. I managed to get in trouble by getting color all over the bathroom walls and towels as I learned the hard way how hard it was to remove the stains. Plus, I also became very adept at missing parts of my hair when I was coloring it. 
These days, the only thing I worry about with my hair is it becoming too long and unmanageable. However, with people maintaining a safe distance from me I will automatically look better. Perhaps like when they turn the lights down in a pub for happy hour. And I am not the only one! Let’s check in with Connie in Seattle:
“OK, the social distancing is already improving my looks. Ten feet might be even better, but viewing me from six feet away is much easier on others’ eyes than from two feet! 🙂

The countless hours I spent working on and improving my looks during my self-induced isolation, over years of closeted cross dressing, should have been more than enough. The trouble is, though, it wasn’t until my fifties that I finally showed myself to the public. I am, by nature, a perfectionist, so I always have seen room for self-improvement. If I had the means to “turn back time,” as does Cher, maybe I could improve on what age has taken from my looks. Sitting in front of the mirror now, during this Covid-19 isolation, primping and adoring myself, is not going to cut it like it did those years ago. In fact, these days, doing so seems a rather silly thing for me to do. Unless I had a special occasion that warranted a glam look, I now just spend as little effort and time in order to make myself less-than-perfect – but still acceptable.

So far, I’m still allowed to work. In normal times, I work outside with hundreds of tourists all around me. This morning, I didn’t get any closer than twenty feet from one person, and only noticed a few others further away. I still put on some makeup, though, along with a do-rag scarf on my head and old jeans. It’s my Rosie the Riveter look – all the rage this Spring! :-)”
Sounds like fun :). Stay safe everyone.

Rubies

From the “Daily News” : “A father proved that necessity is indeed the mother of invention.A Toronto-based super dad who created a swimwear line for his transgender daughter now wants all trans girls to be confident and comfortable in their clothes.

Jamie Alexander (above) , a serial entrepreneur and tech adviser, had to get creative to help his daughter Ruby feel as feminine and fun as all girls of her age.

“As a father of a transgender girl I want to make the world a safer place for every girl,” he said in a statement, when he launched his latest project, an online store called Rubies.

“We design form-fitting clothing for trans girls and their friends — so that they never stop being active and being girls, no matter where their day takes them. We believe that every girl should be able to enjoy the same level of comfort and confidence as her friends — whether it’s the beach, ballet, gym or swim,” Alexander added.”

Follow the link above for more.

Body Image and the Trans Girl

As I continue to write bits and pieces in my book, the topic of body image keeps coming up. As referenced in yesterdays Cyrsti’s Condo post, cis women often have the same problems with feeling secure in their own skins as we transgender women. 

Through the years we have to struggle through the dazzling yet scary arrays of makeup and fashion to desperately try to find our spot on the world. The ancient stereotype of the cross dresser squeezed into a mini skirt and heels waltzing through a mall somewhere is my scariest vision and one I am afraid I tried too. Fortunately, there are no pictures :). 

Then there is/was makeup to contend with. In the looking like a clown department, I was lucky I had quite a few chances to experiment when I was younger with makeup…even to the point of convincing my first fiance to apply it for me.  As far as my body image was concerned though, I didn’t really have one, except an unrealistic view of how I thought I should look. Again and again, the wrong use of mini skirts did me no favors. I was over reacting to the rare occasions people saw me in a short skirt and saying I had good legs. The problem was I had no idea of how to properly showcase a feminine asset. In fact, I went the opposite direction.

In the 1970’s I became enamored with the hippie boho look, complete with bell bottom jeans etc. So, I began to try to dress myself in those fashion directions (which I still like to this day). In fact, I used to get asked at the transvestite mixers I went to how I could not possibly wear a dress. During that time I was slowly beginning to discover my inner woman’s body image I have today.

I still rarely wear dresses or skirts. Relying instead on leggings and sweaters during the cold seasons and lightweight culottes with tank tops in the summer. I do have a couple maxi dresses for the hottest days. 

The fun part is, women can be different and that is OK…to a point. The hard part still is getting to a point where your inner woman tells you what she wants to be. 

These days though, there are getting to be numerous places one can go to for help with your body image. Take Ginger Burr’s Total Image Consultants for example. Leann wrote in and said Ginger runs a very trans woman friendly business. Plus around here (Cincinnati) there are a couple of the big specialty makeup stores which are more than happy to help a novice with her makeup needs. 

Look, I know the vast majority of us will always struggle with the testosterone poisoning we went through or still going through. On the other hand, options are becoming more accessible to help with your body image problems as you attempt to sync up your internal and external selves. 

Colder Than???

It’s downright cold here in Southwestern Ohio. Yesterday and today, wind chill temperatures went down as low as the single digits (Fahrenheit). 

Of course, as luck would have it, Liz and I had plenty of errands to run yesterday. Getting bundled up for the adventure reminded me of Ralphie’s younger brother in the holiday classic movie “A Christmas Story.” If you are not aware, his mother dressed him so warmly, he looked like the “Michelin Man.” 

For the weather and cold, I pulled out my heavy duty tan and brown 3/4 length fringed sweater coat and added a warm hand knitted cowl to keep my neck warm. Liz’s son referred to me as a character from “Game of Thrones.” No matter, I figured it was a popular series and I just wanted to stay warm. 

We needed to make three stops yesterday. The places we shopped were for food and medications so there was no lingering over any fashion needs. By this point in the season anyhow, I’m starting to reassess my Spring wardrobe. I did buy refills on my daily moisturizer, skin deep cleaning wipes and foundation. 

For some reason, my gender confidence level was at a recent all time high. You might say I was out and proud. Of course it’s so very rare anymore I get any negative reactions, I don’t expect anything else. So the afternoon of errands was over fairly quickly and we made it home to warm up with a big bowl of Liz’s home made chili. 

A good cold day, ended up a warm cozy one.