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thoughts on the transition journey of our entire family, from the proud mother of a transgender youth
January 1st marked the turning of a new year; it also marked exactly three months since Jacob’s* surgery.
These last few months have felt like a new era in our home. My child, who for so long was withdrawn and depressed, is now cheerfully making positive plans for his short-term and long-term future.
For me, this has taken some adjustment. Since i first realized how serious his depression was several years ago, i’ve spent nearly every waking moment worrying about my son. I monitored his voice for the slightest signs of a change in mood, i examined his facial expressions for hints of distress, and i questioned him incessantly about how he was feeling and what he needed to help make things better.
Then, suddenly, he got what he needed: thanks to the testosterone injections he began last April and the chest reconstruction surgery in October, his voice and body fit him, and he has blossomed.
Yet, i was still conditioned to be on the alert for my depressed child — the one i must worry about constantly. So, for example, when i saw him wearing a hoodie in the house, my first thought was that he was once again sad and trying to hide from the world. But…he was just cold.
And when i saw him taking a nap in the middle of the afternoon, it had to be due to depression, i thought. But…he was just sleepy.
And so on.
I started to feel like i just didn’t know what to do with myself. I went from worrying about him practically all the time — definitely to the point that i’d neglected other things — to no longer needing to worry obsessively. And without worrying i felt lost. In sharing this with a friend, he replied that after everything we’ve been through in the past few years, learning how not to worry must be the best thing!
And it is.
*Jacob is the name i use for my son at this blog to protect his privacy