March 22, 2008

Hair

Posted in friends, life, transgender at 7:30 am by Michael

I hadn’t had my hair colored since mid-November. While it’s not falling out, and is pretty thick, the sides of my head are probably 80% gray. If hair grows at half an inch a month, and it’s been three months, that yields a good inch and a half of gray. Root City! At least for me, I don’t have it on top of my head as bad, creating the part line gray.

Why no color for three months? Well, remember I have this whole crazy incision/scar line thing running from ear to ear up over top of my head? I was waiting for it to heal completely, which it finally did about two weeks ago (yea!). I really didn’t want to get the chemicals into the scarline – I thought that might not aid in healing.

Anyway, I made an appointment for Thursday night, after work, at Gene Juarez in Redmond. I’ve had my hair colored there before, and this is also where I got my hair cut all the time.

But that was still when everyone called me Michael.

The same person had been cutting my hair for six years there. Color was a new thing for me, I’ve only been doing that for less than a year, and I don’t have a regular “person” for that.

(Note, I’m going to use fake names for the people there. Really.)

I had stopped going to “Sue” for my haircuts more than a year ago, as I started to grow out my hair – first somewhat unintentionally, then more purposefully as I knew that I would transition. I really like Sue a lot, and loved going to her. She is great at what she does, and we’d chat about any number of things. I did go back a couple of times over the past year, and Sue really gave me a hard time. “Where were you? What’s going on?’. The last time that I saw Sue, I hadn’t transitioned, and I hadn’t come out publicly. I hadn’t told her.

When I walked in Thursday night, who was standing right at the counter? Sue.

“Where have you been?”

Sue is very direct.

She asks about Samwich, and the big kids, and Anh (she’s met them all). She says to me:

“You look different! So stylish, your long hair, your skin, nice jeans, what’s going on?”

Sue was looking right at me. She 100% recognized me, but didn’t notice that I was now presenting female. Not at all.

Sue says: “Your face looks good, but different, what did you do?”

I said: “I had some surgery on my face.”

“Anh let you do that?”

This went on for a minute or so, and then I leaned over, and quietly said to her:

“Sue, I’m transgendered. I’ve changed my gender.”

She looks at me, and says “Why did you do that?”

Oh, this is going to be a long conversation, but neither of us have time….. I say:

“Because it’s who I am. It’s all good. We are all good… really.”

She says: “Ok, but why didn’t you tell me! We need to talk more.”

At this point, the hair color person comes over, and brings me back to start with that process.

About a half an hour later, as I’m sitting under the dryer, Sue comes over, sits next to me, and we have a good long talk – although its honestly hard to talk under a dryer.

She says “I’m going to do your hair when you are done with the color. It could look better, I’m going to fix it for you.”

Again, Sue, very direct.

I agreed, and when I was done with the color process, I went over to see Sue, and she did my hair – little styling, a little cut (not much).

Sue chided me for not telling her, yet again. I told her about the blog, all the stuff we had done. She was first and foremost wondering about the kids – how were they doing. She has kids too….

As she was finishing up, she said “Well, know when you walk down the street, and say to people, ‘Hi I’m Megan’ they won’t even question it. Hair says a lot you know!”

Thanks Sue! Good to see you again…. I’ll be back soon.

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4 Comments »

  1. Karen C said,

    Dude! You can’t post a post like that and not include a picture. 🙂 I’m dying of curiosity – what does your hair look like?

    Megan>> I know, I’m lame. I didn’t take a pic on Thursday. Right now, its all sweaty, as I just came back from a run… not sure you want a picture of that. 🙂 I’ll post new pics soon…. its just a little browner, more shaped at the back.

  2. Davinia Louise Hilton said,

    Totally agree with Karen!

    Altogether now:
    “We want a pic! We want a pic! We want a pic!”

  3. SarahR said,

    > they won’t even question it. Hair says a lot you know!”

    She is right. And its my greatest give away, when I start my real life test in two month – but getting a solution for my male patterned baldness will at least be “fixed” one month into it. I will need to where some hat or cloth all the time.

    From picture to picture you look prettier 🙂
    Sarah

    Megan>> Thanks Sara!

    Remember, you are who you are! No one else can define you…. be bold, be confident, be the rockstar you that you are!

    All the best… – Megan

  4. Jenn said,

    I got my hair cut and colored the day after I went full-time. I came out at work on a Friday, got my hair done on Saturday and came into work as Jenn on Monday. I can’t understate what a help it was to get my hair done — Not only did it give my appearance a much-needed boost, but it also worked wonders on my confidence.

    I just got my hair cut again, this time I cut about 8 inches and I love it. I too owe my blog an update, with pics!

    Great site, by the way! I’ve been lurking since seeing the Nightline piece, but thought I’d finally comment on this bit about the hair because it reminds me of big events in my own recent transition.

    I’ve also found that some of the hardest people to come out to are the acquaintances and others whose names I don’t even know. The people at the coffee shop I go to, the people who work at the restaurants I’ve been having lunch at for the past decade and recognize me, etc. It’s always gone well, but I think because I really don’t know them I have no idea how they’ll react. It took me several months to go back to the coffee shop near work after I made the switch. Coming out to friends and family has been easier for me, oddly enough.

    Good luck with your transition! You look great =)
    Jenn


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