Tom Selleck’s in my dream. Tom of Magnum not Blue Bloods, the smiling renegade in shorts she wakes me up at stupid o’clock to curl her hair I can’t even think, my bladder’s awake Tom don’t go! I have to curl hair that isn’t mine so I piss and she’s got one leg in her tights but sits for me anyway because she knows how much this costs without me saying a £2000 rat’s nest on top of her head she can’t know what she doesn’t feel and my voice breaks but tears don’t come I know it’s not fair she knows it’s not fair but it’s not her fault and I feel guilty that she thinks it is. She can’t go to work as an Irish Rastafarian but this isn’t all a woman is, how she looks, what she wears but she’s not a woman unless she has hair and makeup and a size B cup because that’s what the woman in HR said.
I’m in a life where needs get met but they aren’t mine.
Connected to her transition by a curling iron, I look out the bedroom window. The flowerbed that was mint and money plant with a canopy of bramble when we moved in, now Queen Victoria, golden rod, buddlea, sunflower, nasturtium, dahlia, hydrangea, those tiny pink flowers on the black grass. Mist rises behind the rhododendron, cuts off tree trunks so they float in time to a childhood where I was invisible because I was the one most likely to mention things that were meant to be ignored. I learned my invisibility well. I learned you don’t cry, you don’t speak, not so much because bad things happen but because nothing happens.
Crying means either hope or utter desolation. I’m never utterly desolated. I don’t succeed in despair. Too childlike for depression. But I’ve forgotten hope. Not childlike enough for magic. A life without gradations. The life of an invisible cog in a machine that manufactures things I cannot see, let alone enjoy.
Crying would mean things should be different, someone should hear me. Crying means hope. Hope means the Irish Rastafarian rat’s nest is actually quite funny and me tending it while she sits with one leg in her tights, Wee Bit-ler Winky, a scene from Mrs Brown.
I should cry more.