7 Weeks in Baltimore

| Feb 18, 2019
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It has been 7 weeks since my arrival in Baltimore. The fun of the cross-country trip has faded. Reality has set in. Of course, it has been hard on me. Change is very hard on me in general. I’ve been through so many changes in the last…shit…almost 20 years. 

The unexpected passing away of my father in 1999 was very traumatic and a turning point for me. My Dad was such a good person. He loved my brother and I so very much. It was shattering to our family when he passed away. He was the affable glue that held the family together. 

While my Mom and Dad had troubles and got a divorce in 1997, he tried his damndest to insulate his kids from it. We really didn’t know what was going on behind the scenes. My brother and I were chasing girls by then, and in college. My college went on a weeeeeee bit too long, but he was patient with me until I found my niche. 

I miss my Dad so much. I would like to think that he would know what to do to help me, now his daughter. I still think he was a softie and would have embraced me during transition. I think his love would have won out. 

In times of trouble, I wish my Dad was around to help. He would be 72 now and turning 73 on Feb 27. I lost him way to early. There is a hole in my life which will never be filled again. I should still have him around, based on the average lifespan. I lost the last 20 years with him.

Amanda’s Dad and his beloved Pontiac 6000.

 My Mom helps, but she is slowing down and has her own issues down there in Florida. I hate to tax her with my anxiety or life problems. She worries. She has helped me a lot already, but I feel I can’t go to her too often for fear of causing her stress. I know she likes that I am closer and that I’m in a safe place, but I am having the same issues. 

My brother is only 90 minutes away in Southern Maryland. I’d love to go see him and maybe my nieces and nephew. It’s a sticky situation because my brother’s wife doesn’t approve of me being trans. I tried to remain in the kid’s lives for the last 7 years through packages, notes, FaceTime calls, etc. It will be tough to get to know them again. They are getting so big. The oldest is 13 now. 

Now I’m here in this new/old place. It’s new because I really don’t know Baltimore too well. It’s fairly foreign to me. I have visited a couple of times and lived out in the northern country suburbs for 2 months with my ex-partner. It was her home for 50 years. I was more interested in transition and a new relationship than really learning how to get around. I just let her do the driving or give directions. But then we quickly moved to South Carolina.

Now, I am on my own except for my roommate, who is a good friend I met the first time I lived here in 2011. I am grateful for her. I live with her in her city apartment. I have my own room. It’s a small but nice place. It’s close to a lot of things. I’m very slowly getting to know the neighborhood. 

I’m not sure what exactly is bothering me inside except for the stress of the new surroundings. Sometimes, I am not sure where I belong. I know I need help. I need to find a doctor and a psychiatrist. I did find a therapist who is trans. But, I am on a sliding scale and that will cost me precious 401k money that I am living on. But…I still have a therapist. My second session will be Tuesday. 

So, I came back East finally. I came back to be closer to friends and family. I came back for cheaper living. But, it has not been easy on me. I’ve had a helluva hard time for the last 3 years. So many traumatic events have occurred in the near 20 years since my Dad passed away, but no years were as hard as the last 3. 

It’s kinda weird. I visited my Dad’s grave on my way thru Pittsburgh to Baltimore. I slipped trying to reach for old vine sticks to make my usual cross on his grave, and got a scratch and a poke on a rusty fence. Leaves made a false ground at the fence line. I got a tetanus shot just in case. It’s almost like Dad was saying, “Where have you been?!” I was thinking, “I thought you were supposed to protect me!?” I guess it could have been worse. I could have gotten really hurt on that jagged fence. Maybe he really is watching over me. I need all the help I can get right now. I miss you Dad.

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Category: Transgender Body & Soul


About the Author ()

I am a transwoman originally from Pittsburgh, PA. I have been living full time for 5 years. I work in retail but am an artist/Graphic Designer and aspiring writer. I tend to address the controversial in my writing. I would love to change the world one article at a time. I moved to The San Francisco Bay Area to start over, again. But recently moved back to the East Coast. The adventure continues...

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