Ten Years Later…..

When I posted about my journey as a transgender football fan last May, I never pictured that I wouldn’t write anything for nearly a year. There has been plenty to talk about, but the problem really has been finding the motivation to do it, but the reason I have decided to write something today is that March 16th marks ten years since the collapse of my friendship with Jodi, something that ended up leading to my decision to finally change gender.

Infact, I’ve set this to publish at the exact minute that the friendship ended ten days ago.

Before I go any further, as tradition, a song….

Before I go into the Jodi anniversary, a little life update. Life has been a bit hectic since my last post in May. At the time I was working for a company in Edinburgh, before then having a stint working for the Gender Dysphoria Referral Service, which was an amazing opportunity, albeit only on a contract basis. I then started working for Virgin Media, who I intended to stay at for the rest of my career and I was genuinely enjoying it, however, an opportunity that was too good to turn down came along after I was headhunted (well, I say headhunted, I’d unsuccessfully applied for there previously and another role came up, with me getting a straight offer), and I am currently working for them, enjoying it.

In between all that, I gained a horrendous back injury. I don’t know what happened, but one day my back just went and I wasn’t able to stand up, let alone walk, for months. Even when I was able to stand again, I couldn’t do it unsupported, hobbling around on crutches. It was only after intensive physiotherapy that I am now back to normal, but because of the injury, not being able to move, I put on all of the weight back on that I lost in the lead up to my operation a few years ago. Unfortunately, I’ve also now reached the age where weight doesn’t come off that easily, so it’s taking a long time.

Other than that, being open, I’ve started feeling a bit lonely. I’ve never really been that lucky in love, and now that I am creeping towards middle-age, I’m starting to think about not wanting to be one of those people that goes into old age alone. I even tried Facebook dating, but despite my profile clearly stating I’m going into girls, it seems like men who like transwomen don’t know how to read. It’s literally the first sentence on my profile, yet 95% of the likes I get are from men, and the other 5% just aren’t what I’m looking for, whether it be location, having no mutual interests, or they have loads of little signs saying “cute” all over their face. That sort of vanity is a big turn off for me.

Finally, before I move on to the Jodi stuff, I’m about to have my first grandniece. My eldest niece, Laura, is due to give birth at the end of the month, and I can’t wait to meet Isla. It feels so fucking weird that I’ve now reached an age where my sister’s kids are having kids themselves. If I didn’t feel middle-aged yet, I do now.

So, I suppose I should really talk about the Jodi situation. Jodi and I first became friends in 2003ish, maybe, I’m not entirely sure. She and I had a mutual friend and we just happened both be in a group chat on MSN, and it went from there. We were friends for several years and it was easy. Jodi was cool, funny and whilst we didn’t talk often, whenever we did, we got on really well.

In late 2011, I was on my way back from a German course that I was taking at the time and saw she was online, so thought I’d start the chat. Then we started our longest ever chain of days in a row talking, and I started developing feelings for her. Because of this, our friendship started falling apart, and whilst I’d rather not go into the full details, mainly because revealing it all online (again) would just reopen old wounds, for me at least, and I don’t think that really helps.

I often think of how it ended and I do wonder if Jodi does too. With ten years of hindsight, I see the mistakes I made and I’d like to think that I’m now a considerably more mature person than I was when I was 27, that being said, the mental breakdown of 2019 probably helped me get to this stage. Thankfully, I had some good friends around me at the time who helped me over that, I’d specifically like to thank Shantel, Marie and Neeve, who helped me on the right path at my worst point. I was far from home (I was living in Portugal at the time) and, whilst I won’t go into full details, had it not been for them, who knows what would have happened.

Anyway, because it’s coming up to ten years since that happened, I’ve started to think about how I’ve changed in those ten years, and I don’t just mean that I no longer have a penis. I, as 37-year-old Kate, look back at 27-year-old Nathan and you would never think that they were the same person. In those ten years, my interests have significantly shifted, such as with football. 27-year-old me never missed a Lincoln City game, and I would religiously watch things such as Match of the Day, EFL highlights, matches of teams that I didn’t support, and even going to random games. Now, ten years on, I don’t watch any of them, and often get bored at matches. I got so bored that I rarely actually stay for the entire game, often leaving well before the full-time whistle, regardless of what is happening and the scoreline.

At 27 years old, I had never been outside of my native UK, whereas now, at 37, I’ve been to Spain, Portugal, France, Norway, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Germany, Croatia, Slovenia, Austria and Italy. Almost ironically, I’ll be adding Canada to that list, arriving in Calgary near enough exactly ten years to the day after the incident with Jodi.

I think, in hindsight, what happened with Jodi was a good thing because it helped me actually start living, and that isn’t a dig at Jodi at all. Sometimes things just need to happen in your life, and I think it comes down to that I was living in my comfort zone for far, far, far too long. Most people will live a safe life and they need a kick, and this was mine. Whilst it sucked at the time, and I still regret some things that happened, I can now see the positives that have happened since then.

Realistically, if that hadn’t happened, I would probably still not have been abroad at any point, and from a trans perspective, I still probably wouldn’t have even started, whereas I type this having been post-op for about three and a half years. That’s still crazy to even think about.

I’ve now reached the point where I’m over it everything that happened (you’d certainly hope so after ten years), and I think the biggest piece of advice that I could give to anyone going through what they perceive as a tragedy or heartbreak is to be patient with the healing process. When a major part of your life goes, via one method or another, you’re not going to recover instantly, and the sooner you accept that, the better. For years I was bitter about what happened and would think about it every now and then, but now, I rarely think about Jodi, other than on Facebook memories when she occasionally pops up in the comments.

Be patient with yourself, and with others.

For what it is worth, Jodi, if you ever read this, I hope you’ve had a good last ten years, and the door’s always open if you want to talk. In the unlikely event that that does not happen (the talking part, I suspect this blog post will find its way to you somehow as we have mutual friends), I hope you live your best life (as the kids say).

I think that’s a positive note to end on, so with that, I will take my leave.

Peace out!

One thought on “Ten Years Later…..

  1. Good to hear what you’ve been up to and also that you’ve made peace with what happened in the past. The past, well, it can cast a long shadow over, but with time, and help from friends, we can get out of it.

    I hope your back issues get better and good luck traveling.

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