I am sitting on a puffy chair in a small but charming house we had rented for a week. My back is facing the window and I am slowly but surely picking all the skin around my fingers off. I look up once in a while and see my dad sitting across from me, sitting straight up, relaxed in a black t-shirt and shorts, his standard outfit. He is slim and fair with glass blue eyes and laugh lines around his eyes.
Suddenly he says to me “Listen, you have shared something that was really hard for you this week.” We were here because I had just finally told them I was OCD. Extremely OCD my doctor had told us. “So, I only think it’s fair that I share something with you.” He looks at me waiting for my response.
Now if you knew my dad you would understand my surprise. He is a perfect specimen of a human being. He can do anything. I admit I have always held him has a king of super hero in my mind. What could he possibly share that would be like having OCD?
“Is that ok?”
“Sure” I manage.
He goes to his room and closes the door.
Now when you suffer from anxiety as bad as I do, time is difficult to gauge. I can pass hours in the span of a minute. However, there was a clock. One hour later the door opens.
Out walks my dad, wearing a long wig, smoky eyeshadow, red lipstick, a black dress and black heels. Walking to the center of the room he looks at me with the shyest look he has ever given me.
“Oh” I say, “That makes sense.” She smiles, and just like that, my dad is a woman.
I moved past that realization quickly I now realize. Faster than anyone else I know anyway. When she sat down in that chair, straight and relaxed, like a man. I said no, we have to work on this. I set out to make it my mission that she would “pass”. Although I didn’t know the term then.
We worked on sitting, makeup, where the wig should hit the forehead. Even what style suited her.
The one thing we never had to work on was our relationship. I’ve always been close to my dad, we understand each other. And yes, I still call her dad because I see it biologically not gendered. I didn’t have to ask if she was still into my mom, of course she was. I didn’t have to ask if she wanted this full time, although I did ask so I could hear it from her.
She is so happy like this, happier than she was and she was very happy as a man.
So, life goes on. I still have to go to doctors who pull long faces and dad still stands by me, helping me through. Only now she is much more fashionable, and more likely to give that little satisfied smile she has when I know she's thinking about being Jess.