As just one example, today (I think it began when I was practicing my womanly stride in spare time at work) I asked myself, would I really be happier as a woman? Not much physically would change, there would be consequences with the change, and given my bipolar disorder, I likely will never feel like I'm living a satisfied life. (That sounds overly harsh, maybe a self-fulfilling prophecy. But I know me. No matter how much wishing it to not be true may help, it'll never stop existing, that dissatisfaction.) There will always be a lingering sensation that I could be "more", and I'd endlessly be plagued by the "what if"s of life.
Yet I looked into this painfully-honest evaluation of my future. It's realistic...but do you know what I found? If I transition, my life may not be happier, but I'd feel better from having done it. (How does that make sense? It just does. Like I said...this is something I actually put serious, serious thought into and tried to attack as realistically as possible, neither optimistic nor pessimistic, not idealistically naive nor cynically harsh, to paint an accurate picture. And that was my conclusion.) That, alone, is proof enough that this is no delusion, that I am not lying to myself, that I'm not making a mistake. It is me. (There's various other ways I know, like the happiness the name Bree brings and the pain my real name brings, the happiness of having done a female version of me, the happiness in seeing the addressing of me as 'she', and so on and so forth, but we're dealing with moments of the low which prove it, rather than moments of the high which prove it.) It might not ALWAYS seem like that, but it's one of the few things in my life that I have little doubt in.
Now, don't get me wrong, that doubt's gonna be a pain to deal with, because it keeps coming back. Yet let me tell you what I know will happen, for a FACT, when I'm about to begin transitioning. I have absolutely zero doubt about this happening, I'm not gonna lie, and it's going to sound freaky unless you've gone through similar and know what I'm talking about. When the day would come for me to begin transitioning...one last time, I'd second-guess myself. There'd be no going back, so if I later decided it was a mistake...whoops, too late! And that? That's terrifying. That's a horrible, fear-inducing feeling. "What if this wasn't such a good idea?" I know I will think it. I absolutely know that thought will come up to me and punch me in the gut. It'd consume me, this doubt, about the path I've chosen.
...But then...I'd ask myself, truly, if that fear was justified. And you know what? I already know it isn't. I don't care what those niggles of doubt say. They'd be last-minute nerves. Having gotten that far...I'd take the plunge. Because, yes...that is who I am. Deep down in my soul, I know it's true. The deeper I go, the more I know it's the right course of action, no matter what my horrible paranoia may try to drag me down into thinking.
I am not a guy. I am, always was (even before I realized it!), and always will be, Bree.