The early years of my life were difficult ones, but fortunately I remember little of it. I was born with a double hernia and went back to hospital for surgery after only one month. I still wonder to this day if my body had partially formed ovaries which weakened the abdominal wall.  Mom was so upset that I got a lot of attention in the early days. My childhood was wrought with pain and growth. Since I grew so fast my legs would cramp and Mom would be there in the wee hours of the morning rubbing my legs. Her love and attention soothed me in so many ways and now I look back in appreciation of all that she did for me.  First grade was racked with difficulty also, but I managed to make it through. I was too big to fit in the desks and had to sit in the back of the room. Soon after school started it was discovered that I had difficulty learning, reading and understanding, so I was sent to a school for retarded children.  Now days they call them Special Children, and indeed I was special, just not retarded. It was determined that I had dyslexia at this school and when we moved out to the suburbs I changed schools to a “normal” school where I was treated like all the other kids. It was also determined that I needed glasses and now not only was I a tall kid, but a geek too. The after school classes and training for dyslexia and reading helped tremendously and after several yrs, I could read and write like all the other kids. I have done nothing but improve my skills since. Being tall everyone thought I should be athletic too. Well, I am not, so excuse me for not going into all the difficulties here, except to say that my body was not made for athletics at all. Some fun was had, but mostly it was hard work that I would have much preferred not doing. I do see the benefits to all my hard work as I look back on it, so I am thankful that I had the opportunities that I did.  It was at this time that I started puberty around 11-12yrs old, and had the realization that not only was I tall and geeky but different sexually too. My 3rd grade teacher was gay and I can remember really liking him and his outlook on life. Not because I was attracted to him but because his bright clothes and French accent were very intriguing to me.

We would visit our family across state and the constant travel became something I am very used to and enjoy. Both my Grandmother and her sisters were very strong and active people. I would spend weeks with them in the summer and we did lots of cool things. The ceramics, crafts, gardening, and sitting with Grandma at work were the highlights of my summer. I also spent many hours at the beauty salon with Mom as she would go every 2-3wks. So this is another place that I became very comfortable with. I would sit and watch all the wonder of creating beauty.  My parents encouraged me to do “boy” things and I did, but it just did not feel like “me”. The women of our family had the most influence on me, I am sure because I spent so much time with them.  Father worked a lot, but we did have good times together in short spurts. Like hiking in the mountains and on vacation when we would hunt fossils and explore various places.  As my body started to mature I had feelings that I could not explain. Sometime between 9-10yrs old I was curious about Moms clothes and dressed up in her wig, clothes and makeup. This was fun but what if I got caught? It was not worth the risk at this point so my favorite thing became wearing makeup, it was easy to put on and easy to take off, especially the lipstick. So as I got older after 12, off and on, I would carry lipstick and wear it when I was alone. And have been doing this ever since. It was when I got to high school and in the locker room after basketball practice that I decided that I liked women better than men. Sex with a man did not appeal to me at all, although it did not disgust me either. And later in college I had a roommate that was gay, and still I found it interesting but not for me. I think I was so overwhelmed with my situation of being male, and not realizing that I felt like a woman.  My habits had already been indoctrinated as male so women occupied most of my thoughts at that age, though I was very awkward around them. Looking back now I realize that my first sexual encounter was completely lesbian in nature and this felt very natural to me. It was not till later that the awkwardness of my male body became an issue.

It was in my mid-teens that I started expressing my dislike for “guy” clothes. If I had to wear them I wanted something with color, but since finding clothes to fit was hard enough anyway, that did not happen much. I was getting older and fitting in with the others at school was very important so I did not push the issue. For a while I considered learning to sew, but was afraid of the stigma that goes with that. I also was very afraid to be labeled as a girl or liking girl things and went into a period of “macho” boy things, from the age of 16 on till in my twenties. It was in my twenties when I was considering my career that I looked at nursing or cosmetologist, but made a compromise with Radiologic Technologist. I look back now and realize that I really am a woman, but was afraid of being ridiculed. I remember studying books on anatomy and the genders and thinking I should have a vagina instead of this penis.  I also read about sex change surgery and the Harry Benjamin standards which scared the heck out of me.  Basically I was afraid of not being loved or accepted. So I suppressed these thoughts as much as possible and life went on.

                                

    Camping, Steven on Rt                          Grand Canyon, Steven on Lt                  Steven got a toy jeep, 5yrs old (don't I look excited, lol)                         

                                   

Steven at 9 w/femme look          Steven in old Bantam roadster                Steven mid70's                  Steven age 14  

                                 

                     Steven high school years 17-18 yrs old

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