Introducing the new, same old me

This is a topic that means a lot to me so I’ll be keeping it pinned to the top of my blog, and it would mean even more if you’d be willing to read what I have to say.

The past few months have really torn me up in more ways than I can count, but I’d like to think that there’s some good coming out of it at least. When I started to rebuild myself after being sick for so many months, I realized that there is something that I can’t ignore anymore and that I hope will start to change me for the better. While I’ve known about it my whole life, I’ve always ignored it for one reason or another, or just being a suborn moron to be honest. So now that I’m having to rework my life style basically from the ground up, it’s time I start being who I know that I am.

While this may not match up with the image some of you have of me, I am Transgender.
I’ve known this for literally my entire life, and that’s not me being hyperbolic. As far back as I can remember that’s been who I am, so I won’t change just because I’m presenting differently. I am still mov, and have always been mov, just like I am trans, and have always been trans. So if me saying this changes how any of you think about me, please consider that I haven’t changed between now and then.

After today, I’ll be using She/Her pronouns but I’ll still be going by mov. And don’t worry, I’ll never drop that name, it is my name <3 though you may see me use nat now and then. I hope that this is a good move for myself and the community on a whole, and hopefully I can start to be more comfortable as an individual soon.

I have a few blog posts sorted that I’ll be linking below, but if you have any sincere questions please ask. Though I’m not likely to ask any questions about transition plans right now, or in the future, due to how personal and complicated they can be.

Thank you to those of you that read this, and a double thank you to everyone who has helped me over the past couple of months as I’ve prepared for this.
You all know who you are, and I could never, ever thank you enough for being some of the most supportive friends I’ve ever had.

My coming out post, this explains how being trans feels like to me in the style of my old blog posts. Kinda explains who Naspen is too, lol

This is a “short” explanation as to why I took so long to come out, even though I’ve known that I’m trans my whole life.

Enter stage left, Natalie

I want you to imagine an alarm that constantly going off around you. It’s been there as long as you can remember and you’re the only one who can hear it. Every time you ask anyone else if they hear it, they look at you like you’re insane, dismiss your question, and move on.

Oh, you’re just overthinking it! Just do what everyone else does and you’ll be fine.
There’s nothing to worry about, I’m sure you’ll get used to it eventually just like the rest of us.
Why would you want to do that?? Just be normal and it’ll pass.
It’s a phase we all go through. I remember a time when…

Despite everything they say, it stays with you through your childhood and worsens as you get older.

You can ignore it most of the time, like the sound of the fan by a desk. You start to think that maybe it really is just like that for everyone. Maybe life is just intrinsically annoying and you’re overthinking it. Who knows maybe if you stop thinking about it so much then everything they say will be true and you might actually get to enjoy yourself.
You go about your life trying to forget about the alarm sounding in your head, trying to forget what it’s telling you. But there are things that make it louder, make it harder to ignore. You see the echoes of it everywhere. Things that you could see making it better, maybe even things you’d like to do anyway. But every time you do something to help, people gawk and stare.

You look too different...
You’re trying too hard…
You don’t know what that’ll do to you in the long term.
Stop looking for attention and just act normal like the rest of us.

So despite everything you’ve done telling you differently, you just accept that it’ll always be there and that there’s nothing you can do about it. That you should just listen to what the masses say,

There is no alarm.
I’m just like everyone else.
there’s no need to “change”, I can be happy with the alarm.

Even with all of that though, it still feels harder than it should, it feels like you’ll always be haunted by it. Even when you can distract yourself from the sound, it’s there in your mind. Everything you see reminds you of what you’re ignoring, and the alarm is right behind that thought to make itself clear. Day after day you search for more distractions. Something that keeps the quiet, alone time away.
It’s easy enough to ignore when others are around, there’s so much noise that it just gets drowned out. So you fill your time with noise, just hoping that you’ll find something loud enough that you could enjoy. You run faster and faster, always chasing those moments of balance between being overwhelmed by the sound on the outside, or falling victim to the alarm within. It’s a never-ending race, one in which you can’t reset or relax, and where losing is still an unknown.

You can’t keep doing this, it’s tearing you apart. You have dreams that are being destroyed by your drive for silence, but you’re stuck. You’re running so fast but the thing you’re running from Is inside you. So despite all of your effort, you’re just standing still. There’s no getting away from it. The only thing you can do to survive is to sacrifice your life to the noise. To just give up on anything you want to do or be and let yourself rot under the torrent of sound. Unless they were wrong. Maybe the alarm can’t be ignored?

But what would that even mean? Every time you’ve tried it’s been a fight against those you love. Everyone you’ve ever known has told you that it’s not okay, that you shouldn’t be trying so hard to fight something that doesn’t exist! But if you’re having to fight so hard to even stand still, are you even sure it doesn’t exist?

But what if they are wrong? What if there is something different about me, not unique, just different?
Well, even they weren’t wrong, that alarm is part of me now. It’s been there forever, and I’ve built my life around ignoring it. Would I even be the same person without it?
What would I even do if you didn’t have to fight it anymore?
Even if I gave in, how far would the alarm take me?

There are so many questions that you’ve ignored for so long that the alarm is now louder than it’s ever been.

What does it want?
Why did I wait so long??
How can this be normal???
Have I been lying to myself all this time

There’s nothing dampening the alarm anymore, it’s the loudest thing you’ve ever heard.

I’m done ignoring my alarm. It doesn’t control me, but I’m not fighting it.
My alarm’s name is Natalie, and I am my alarm.

My transgender self-discovery

This is a simplified explanation of how I got to where I am today in regards to being transgender. As with most things in life, there’s more to it, but this hits the important points. It’s important to stress that this is not how everyone experiences it, and quite a few people get a lot more doubt about it than I did. I have my amazing Mom to thank for me being able to accept myself and my best friend MiniPixie for being there when I needed her. Suffice to say, I wrote this to emphasize the importance of accepting your friends and family, even if they’re not sure about what’s going on yet.

-Natalie, written with love and hope to everyone who needs it

Regarding my initial self-discovery story, it’s always very obvious to me. I’ve always known that I’m transgender in some capacity for as long as I can remember. Even though my father is, well, not open-minded, my mom is an amazing person who has always been there for just about anyone who needs her. So after my parents got divorced when I was 5 my mom became an extremely active LGBTQ+ advocate all the way until I was 14. I was always surrounded by people from all over the LGBTQ+ space that I never felt like anything about me was out of place. Even though I knew what transgender was, I never tried to apply that term to myself back then. But I know that if I had, then I would have agreed in a heartbeat. I guess that’s what happens when you’re a kid. You don’t really realize why labels are important, and why telling others how you feel is even more important.

That’s where the hard part of my story starts, all the way back when I was a stupid kid who couldn’t figure out what fights were worth fighting and for how long.

As I “eased” into puberty around 12, I realized I needed to talk to my mom. But I was so wrapped up in my newfound dysphoria that the idea of having to actually talk about it was killing me, and I kept putting it off. I knew for certain that I was actually trans at that point, I just needed to talk about it. I even had the name I’m using now picked out already. So I’d already put a lot of thought into it, but I just wasn’t ready to talk. I didn’t know how to handle it yet, and with all the added stress of puberty and dysphoria, I was just broken.
Then one night around when I turned 13, I was forced into it, but it wasn’t really in a good way. I’m going to skip the details as to how it happened because it’s somewhat personal, but it was something that could have happened by accident but that meant a lot to me at the time. If there are any transfems reading this, you might have an idea as to what I’m talking about, lol. My mom and her girlfriend (who she’d been with for the past 7 years and had been with us as long as I can remember) ended up trying to make a joke out of the situation and I got really upset and shut down, then I refused to talk about any of it for the next 9 years.

At that point I ended up just sabotaging myself through my teenage years, even knowing for an absolute certainty that I was trans and that my mom would absolutely support me to no end. I didn’t want to confront what happened to the point that I actively refused to think about it and only remembered it when I was alone. When I wasn’t alone, I was just angry all the time. Any little thing would set me off. Anyone not doing what I expected of them or what I had assumed was correct would send me into an unparalleled rage. Almost everyone assumed I was angry at the world, and to some extent, I am now, but the only excuse I have for how I acted back then was that I was angry at myself. Every day I felt like I was digging myself into a deeper hole, and then at night I’d look up at the hole I’d dug and see no way out. I made the mistake that put me there, and I continued to make it worse because I didn’t believe that I could do anything else.

When my mom finally broke and had to sign me over to the state for long-term mental care, I just gave up on fighting. Just because I couldn’t get out of the hole didn’t mean I had to make it worse. I wouldn’t fight anymore. I was tired of being ruled by my anger. But without my anger, I was consumed by my dysphoria. So during the 6 months that I was at in-patient care, I redefined myself around making sure that I was distracted and still a good person. I knew who I wanted to be, I knew who I was, and I knew who I could be without having to fight very hard. On the day I turned 16 I was released from in-patient care and have only been back into mental care once in the 6 years that have passed since then. So I’d say even considering that I was still trying to run away, I did a fairly decent job at not getting worse, I guess…

By age 17 I got my first job and then I started zoning out my dysphoria as best as I could. I was just jumping between anything and everything that could distract me. Playing games, reading, listening to music, learning, and joining random communities. Eventually one stuck, and it would kind of end up being both my downfall and savior. CapeCraft was such a large and time-consuming project that it pushed me past my limits, and when I got a high-stress, fast-paced job on top of that, I finally broke in August of 2020.

I could have probably kept that up for years, if not a decade or two. But in August last year, I hit a biochemical roadblock with how far I’d been pushing myself that resulted from me hitting my 3rd wave of Chronic Migraines and a new condition called Cortical Spreading Depolarization. The effects of the two lasted for over 7 months, and even as I’m writing this I’m still trying to get back to normal. But the important part for this story is that I was cycling between being depolarized and having a chronic migraine between August 2020 and midway through January 2021. Being depolarized, at least from how I understand it, is my brain being overworked to the point that it just physically can’t function properly anymore. So going from pain and hallucinating, to basically brain dead for 5 months.

When I finally started getting treatment in January, I was hit with a massive wave of dysphoria, but I couldn’t keep running anymore. Since the main thing that triggers the depolarization is overworking my brain, they had instructed me to take things slow for at least two months until my next appointment. So I had to reassess my situation, and I suddenly realized I am an idiot and came out as trans to my best friend, MiniPixie, and then my mom a couple of weeks later.

The End. Kinda

Senseless Time

As time goes by it becomes harder and harder to trust my senses, to know exactly how and why my body reacts to the world. My interpretation changes by the second and some days it’s impossible to keep up. Each sense working on a scale that changes with every new piece of information I gleam from it, a drastically fast kaleidoscope of broken images and feelings. Brighter lights, clearer sounds, sharper temperatures, and a swaying scope of scale attack me constantly, wearing at my view of the world. Each shift defines a whole new set of actions and reactions to reinvent, a constant game of mix and match, find the value, adjust and prefix.

Check my vision, watch for space, rescope distance and speed. Always a broken game, a losing battle against a shattered brain. Skills that wain faster than their use, moments of clarity that set me free. Moments by which my motivation flys, a vision of broken skies and solid ground. The heavens lost, confounded in their great scope, with solid burning ground screaming it’s putrid truth.

Adjust and prefix

Watch the scale
A distance around you
Measure the falling hail
Shattered parts in view
Leaving burning trails
Make your perspective true
Your center motion rail
Feel each push pass through
Moving you by sail
Shaking you broken and skewed
Counter actions or fail
Reaction and survival impromptu
A new sound prevails
The world coloured in blue
Cracking foundations hollow and frail
Prefix the action in due
Lest you end with an action designed to fail
A motion written in the best of truth

Watch for Space

Hear your dreams
Become a master of seams
Find the open lost scenes
Hidden behind noise that screams

Hear the space
Watch it race
Rushing into place
Ending with a blasting face

Hear it’s words
Know what they hold
Waiting for time to scold
Teaching a lesson of life gone cold

Hear the shatter
A pattern of broken plaster
Each its own single splatter
Tearing through space and matter

A shattered brain

Men define their world
With a mind short of pure design

A preemptive idea of hot and cold
Flying truth a feature undefined

Vision is but an image to hold
Ideas forming the world they find

A broken game for time to mold
Perception built to define the sane

Brightest light

Reflect the world my light
Show the feature rich world in sight
Shape it’s contours just right
Bleeding edges of colors fight
A diming future for all of life
Brighten to fight the waxing night
A future doomed with unbending might
My vision all but burning bright
Fighting the deadend fright
Colours burn the world alike
A feature rich landscape a colours flight

The world will scream as long as I live

My senses have been at war with me for as long as I can remember, always tricking me, forever showing me more than I need to know. My earliest memory that I have a date for is 9/11 on a military base, and in it I remember nothing but mechanical screams. I remember standing on my porch as the base rallied itself, sirens and flashing lights on every car, tearing at my body with monotonous pulses. I remember the jets overhead, the bone wrenching blast of movement that they left behind. I remember the cracks in the concrete, wavering in front of my tiny face as I trembled in the wake of the neverending onslaught. Just waiting, watching the world shatter in my mind.

Even now, 19 years later, I still fight with the world my body shows me. Always having to predict where my senses will fail, where and when they will alter reality. I’ve built my whole frame of mind around constantly predicting and verifying my own thoughts against the world as it should be. Always having to watch for context and verify what should be there before trusting what I see, forever watching my step in preparation for the world to run away. A knife edge between life and agony.

The world is a changing mass laid out before me, too large to grasp and overwhelming without context. Sound and motion holding stories too subtle to put to words. Stories of interactions between man and nature, of a never ending cyclic energy. The world is on fire while color and heat make shapes in the wind, marking scenes out in oily swirls. Each ray of light showing beauty in my pain and forging a vision of non reality that burns its way into my dreams.

I will never have a quiet moment, as long as I live. There will never be any form of stillness in my mind. The very vision I wish to define is broken and mismatched. A jigsaw puzzle smashed together in reaction to so many constraints. A machine running on false information, never able to produce the desired output. But as it is, this is who I am. The man who struggles to see, who values moments of clarity and vision beyond its worth. A faulty process by all standards, but one that nature has wrought out of it’s own jagged methods.

In different tones

The world screams in different tones. From the thoughts of fleshed minds comes the multi toned cacophony of need that permeates our world. We all desire something, those desires changing in intensity and focus every moment of every day throughout our lives. Desire fuels our actions and by those actions our next desire is defined, our thoughts formed by our surroundings.

An individual voice may be drowned out amongst the whole of a crowd, but they have a plethora of actions by which they can take hold of the scene. While those actions are generally extreme, the impact they have on the world can be felt through time and across spheres of influence. Each voice has a mind behind it, a sentience that can change the outcome and desire of the hoard. Each voice a wavering solid glow that fuels the direction and intensity of those around it. We are sparks amidst an inferno, able to start our own fire by our choices, born of other fires, and kept alive by the heat that surrounds us.

I can never ignore the individual, the idea of that each of us can se`t the world ablaze is inspiring to me. Yet the scope of the idea overwhelms me all the time. Everyone has reasons for what they do, everyone has a story, a meaning to their actions. It’s the most complicated and thought out story to ever not be told. 7.7 billion threads each in their own sphere of influence and scope, each defining their own multidimensional sound while influencing those around them. A feedback loop that permeates societies of all species.

As a long standing worker in customer service, my everyday job is to make sure people get what they need, to ensure that their interactions in my store meets their desires. As anyone from the industry knows, some people come in with a very, very bad mindset. With this philosophy in mind, I still do my absolute best to get them what I can and set the situation right. Granted, this is very hard with some people, and it has been hard to do with me at times. I’ve stressed the complexity of a persons reasoning here, and this is why. Those people you can’t stand, the ones that have no idea what they are doing to your side of the line or have no shame when it comes to their expression of distaste, have their reasons for doing so. They may have come to that reason by a flawed system, but at its base, it’s the same system we all use. We rely on our past experiences for every descion we make, and it’s never easy to override those.

I can try all I want to consider the viewpoint and desires of every person I meet, to calculate what experiences could be driving their actions. But at the end of the day, there is just too much. There is way more than I can even hope to keep track of, so many steps and hitches that may shatter someone’s entire day. The best I, and anyone willing to, can ever do, is to do their best to think about their influence and what affects them. Take each interaction as it is, a meeting of two incredible beings with influence and goals. Two entities tied together in that moment with the power to change each others fate.

Of motion and meaning

The world screams of motion and meaning, of a story told in echos and shock waves. A sound contains more meaning than the information it conveys, but rather a whole scene laid out for the mind to interpret. A voice holds more than the person and the words, but the emotion and stance of the individual. The sound of a passing car can be more than an annoyance in a busy life, but can be a terrifying wind up as it nears a life altering moment.

For me, every sound has a certain… motion to it. There really is no better way to describe it. But every time I say that I feel sound as motion chromesthesia gets brought up, and it really doesn’t feel like that at all. For me its as if instead of hearing the sound, I’m watching a pendulum swing in a predictable pattern. As sounds get introduced that pattern changes in reaction to the sound and adds more meaning to it for me. That motion, whether its my mind reacting to or interpreting the sound, is how I recognize the sound. If I hear just a part of a familiar sound, or a persons voice in the background, then my mind starts reeling with that motion, searching for where it came from. Almost like getting a song stuck in your head, but its the idea of the song, an image of it effects rather than the actual lyrics.

Every day I get caught up by the motion of that pendulum, the patterns that random sounds will make as I’m going about my business. It gets me inspired over the most mundane things, like the methodical ticking of an office printer, or the sound of air around a cars tires. Things that happen everyday, 24/7, all around the world, but to me, in that moment, has every bit as much meaning as an orchestra.

Its so hard for me to describe what the patterns look like when it comes down to it. The more I try, the more flat and bland the end result looks compared to what I see in my mind. I don’t know if it’s due to my lack of geometry knowledge or if I’m looking at it in my head from more angles than i know how to put on paper, but its so impossibly complex that I don’t know that i’ll ever be able to capture what it looks like.

That is my one dream when it comes to art, and the large scale goal of this category of writing. To get better at describing the beauty I see in the world. To show how everything leaps out in fantastical ways that overwhelm my every waking moment and make the days worth the pain.
I hope I never loose the depth and significance that this mind frame brings to my life. That I will always look at, and hear, the world around me with new eyes and ears because, sometimes, they will surprise me with their elaborate brokenness.

A passion for simple knowledge

Through me, the world screams.

Every sound and vibration in the environment around me is imperative. A key piece to what approaches, to the story that unfolds in my vicinity. Every piece of information is something that I can use, something that can start its own story or be its own work. A drawing, hours dedicated to research, a problem that I didn’t know about, or a solution to something years away.

Every moment I’m on the lookout for anything, a sponge for information as its known. Trying my best to find what is there without knowing in the first place. I’ve built my whole identity around learning and reacting to that knowledge. I’ve spent every free moment of thought cleaning up and verifying my methods to scrutinize and learn. There is always more to tear apart, always more to perfect and more distance to cover when it comes to anything knowledge based.

I don’t know everything, and that’s the amazing part to me, there is so much I’ll only ever know on the periphery, and so much else I’ll just never know exists. Even from the things I’ve spent the most time on, there are angles that I’ve never come from, avenues of thought that I may never have the opportunity to explore and that get further away from me the more I peruse others.

Every person has their own perspective that they bring into any problem, and each voice changes the solution. Those perspectives, and through those the voices, are changed by the information those minds have available to them. While everyone has their own perspective on looking for things, I love seeing how that bit of information that no one notices can change the entire outcome once its pointed out.
Think about all of those times you’ve seen a streamer struggle to find something that you plainly see and chat is silent, the obvious change is that they find what they are looking for, but the cascading changes are whats important here. The time saved now puts them in a different position for all coming actions, as well as reminding them that there are viewers looking out for them.

Another circumstance that goes a bit deeper and looks more at perspective is when your fixing a bike. An entirely new bike owner has a flat tire after just blowing them up just yesterday, he has no idea why they are going flat after he just filled them up. You have already verified that he looked over the tires and found no holes or missing or parts and he’s only ridden it twice. Looking at the bike, you see that the tire cap is missing. That’s the only thing that would hold the air back once the tire is blown up, so you ask the owner about it and they had no idea that a tire cap existed in the first place, only that you needed to attach the hose to the tire.
Now, while this is a really dumb example, its one I hope everyone can understand from the perspective of the person finding the missing tire cap. The point is that one of the two people had information the other didn’t and saw what the issue was right away. It wasn’t hidden information, and it wasn’t something that took a lot of skill or effort, but rather it was something that they knew from their interactions with the world. With their knowledge built perspective, they were able to solve the bike owners problem in a way that the bike owner never could on their own.

Through me, and every other thinking acting human being, the world screams. The world cant act, its voice and knowledge is only useful when put through the processes of conscious thought. Be that cousins thought and act on it. Take what you see around you and build on it. Take every moment and learn with a passion.

The scene

To me, the world screams. Every ounce of air vibrating in perfect silence. Every detail standing out against the static filled background. Patterns consisting of objects in motion leaping forth demanding attention. Grand schemes standing out in relief against a scene so vast itself is comprised of worlds in countless scales and forms.

As I move through the world, myself one piece cast upon the scene, I see patterns so tangled and long cast it captures my whole focus. The height and placement of a tree a story so grand and old it throws my mind reeling all on its own. A shattered car on the side of the road tells the story of a ruined day and months of grief over a vast financial investment. A single cigarette but on the side of the road was thrown by a person looking for their relief with less thought towards the end this fix as the start of the next one.

People bring stories and reactions into the world every moment, whether by accident or intentionally. They and we have the ability to change the course of hundreds of people’s lives with each breath taken. Every moment is the chance to start another story, to open a new avenue of ideas. When two set pieces interact, conscious or not, the exchange changes both of them. The more malleable a set piece, the more it gains from the interaction. A piece of paper is better than a puddle of dust for example. This idea is exponentially true for humans, we are perfect companions when it comes to changing each other. If everyone involved is willing, we can change everything.

To me, the world screams. Every object a story, every motion of the air a long awaited build up. To me, every moment matters, every detail crucial in the structure of the world, every spot and set piece defined and placed by you and those you see. But thats me, and that’s why my set piece matters. I make my world change moment by moment every way I can.