Sarahjanus's Blog

December 21, 2011

New boots and “on being me”

Filed under: crossdresser, shopping — Tags: , , , , — Sarah Michelle @ 5:37 pm

Finally, after what feels like months of searching, I finally found a pair of season appropriate boots. The boots don’t really qualify as “winter” boots for a Canadian winter. They are not lined and they do have a significant heel. The lack of lining means the boots will be worn from the car to the mall and not much further, although I will be able to wear them in the city as long as it isn’t too cold. The heel means they will be treacherous in slippery conditions, especially if the ground is “broken” or uneven. However, the boots fit, and they fit properly. I have been in and out of dozens of shoe stores looking for just the right boot, tall, tight to the leg, and a wide size which is unfortunately rare. Going up a size to get the width has proven to be the wrong choice too many times in the past. The shoes often fail to stay on my feet when I’m actually walking, as compared to just moving about the house.

I’ve written previously about being out during the day. It was a recent milestone and one that can only be described as “casting off a burden”. My spirit was lighter, brighter and consistently happier since that experience. Today I had to do my Christmas shopping and I had a bona fide reason to travel a distance from my home. A specialty item was only available in one store, and once there I remained in the area to do the rest of my shopping. I was making some returns, before the gifts were even given. The items were discovered to be wrong for one reason or another. I also had to do the “liquor run”. We don’t drink much in our house, so when we play host to a couple of dozen people, there is always a healthy list of staples, and curiosities that need to be acquired. All of the guests like to be able to make their “drink of the moment” for the gathering.

Back to the theme; being away from my hometown allowed me an opportunity to blur the lines again. I dressed in women’s jeans, and a top that wasn’t outrageously feminine but wasn’t male attire either. I took a man purse (shoulder bag) and wore a pair of shoes with flat square toes and blatantly obvious heels. What were absent were the breast forms, the wig and the make-up.

My first stop was a Winners/HomeSense megastore, where I had to return and replace an item with one of the proper size. It being just before Christmas, the parking lot was full and chaotic. I had to park far further from the store than I would have preferred. Doing so was a double edged event. It meant that I had an opportunity to adjust to the shoes and heels before I entered the store. I have learned not to assume that all heels are the same when walking. On the other hand, it meant I was clearly visible to cars and pedestrians coming and going, which is somewhat intimidating.

The feeling of being observed turned out to be an irrelevant issue. I’ve written before about the sense of “completeness” that I feel when dressed in a feminine manner. I wrestle with the proper terms to use and I struggle to find a better description than “completeness” so bear with me. I don’t want to say that I feel like a woman when I’m dressed as such because I don’t truly know what a woman feels. But I do feel very different when dressed “en femme” or in clearly female clothing. I feel natural and complete.

Once I was out of the car and had straightened my jeans, shouldered my purse, and taken the first few steps, I was not concerned about the stares of others. I felt “right” and because of that, I was able to disregard the stares. I went into the shop, accomplished my goals, walked the aisles, stood in the impossibly long check-out line and knew that I was the subject of looks and whispered comments. I am so much stronger now, more confident. The looks didn’t make me nervous. I didn’t cringe. I didn’t flush or blush. I simply was and wished that I could continue to be.

I went from that store to a liquor outlet and a major mall and from there to Costco and Wal-Mart. I loved my being for the entire time. It felt so good to be completely natural in my presentation and behaviour. I started this blog on Monday, added to it Tuesday, and here we are on Wednesday and I have no opportunity to complete it properly. So, it will be posted as is. Merry Christmas to those who are Christian, Happy Hanukah to those of the Jewish faith, Happy Holidays to everyone-else.

December 3, 2010

A letter to my wife

A short letter to my wife; it is truly unfortunate that you are not Sarah’s friend, or even aware that Sarah exists. In my own strange way, I wish that we could be friends. I know what your feelings are about effeminate men, and I know what your feelings are about men who make dramatic life changes. So the chances of you and Sarah being friends are next to nil.

Today I felt an inner beauty that is new to me. I would have liked to share the feeling with you. I know, other considerations aside, that you would understand the emotion and the importance of it. You, who are so in tune with your emotions would have appreciated the moment.

After a morning in which all of my appointments and engagements fell apart and the morning seemed to be lost, I resorted to Walmart for mental refreshment. I wandered the aisles, gathering groceries as I saw thing we needed and I shopped the shoes. There was a pair of size 10 heels, a muted gold strap with three cut glass ornaments down the front. I could use your line here; they called out to me. Actually the shoes called out before I even knew that my size was there but I resisted. I have too many for the amount of dressing I do as it is. Besides, I’ve sort of told myself that my next shoe purchase needs to be a pair of boots that I can use between leggings and skirts in the colder weather.

I did find a simple sweater that I bought. It is that open front style that is popular right now, with a handkerchief hem. It’s very lightweight but I did need something for wearing in the house because most of my tops are short sleeve and lightweight material. I’m left feeling chilled often.

As you now know, the last child standing decided to hang out with friends for the day, so the house was mine for hours. This was an opportunity I didn’t expect but was certainly going to enjoy to its fullest.

Once home, and out of the male clothes, I took out the green houndstooth dress. It’s a really comfortable fit across the bosom and through the waist but it is just a touch too short to be completely comfortable. I matched it with the newer gray metallic tights and the black patent heels. The necklace from Ardene, cheap as it is, was a perfect match, green baubles on a series of silver chains. The sweater finished off the outfit so that when I looked in the mirror, I was truly pleased with what I saw. I sparkled from the inside out.

There was no make-up and no wig, but in spite of that, I really liked the look and would have happily gone out to the mall, short hair and all. It’s too close to Christmas to rock the boat so significantly by going out in semi-dress close to home.  I wish you knew of my dressing and were at least tolerant. I would have been out the door in a flash if you knew.

I moved around the house in comfort all day. I got a good deal of work done on the computer. It’s too cold and I’m dressed too formally to work outside but I wish I could.

You have asked me so many times what it would take for me to be happy, and why it is that I don’t seem to know. Well, now I know and unfortunately what it would take for me to be happy would make you very unhappy.

At the end of the day, I had to put the clothes away and resume my public persona. You know from the telephone chat how bright my soul was while we talked. I was singing the praises of the afternoon sun, with its cold near-winter brightness. I waxed eloquent about the big snow-flakes drifting down through the light. I wish I could tell you why I am happy and how I could be happy so much more often.

My wish for the moment is that I can take the lightness that comes with dressing and carry it into my drab side. There is more irony for me in describing male attire as drab than there may be for most. Truly, my male life is drab. My female life is so much brighter, peaceful, and comfortable. I know that you are happy now and that it is significant after all we have been through. I know you are wondering why I’m happier at the moment, fearing that it has nothing to do with you, and fearing that your own happiness will be short-lived. I’m walking a tight-rope here. I’m happier on the tight-rope than I was when I wasn’t.

I wish you could be Sarah’s friend.

November 18, 2010

I’m here to stay

After my 5 days of opportunity which included 2 trips out of the house in full dress, I felt like I had reached a plateau, a point that I probably wouldn’t regress beyond. It felt a bit like reaching the high board in diving. Once there, why would you want to dive from the lower board? I think anyone who has progressed through a set of skills probably understands what I’m trying to say.

After Sunday, there didn’t seem to be a point to dressing “just for the house”. There wouldn’t be anyone to interact with. I was aided in this delusion by the number of errands I had, that required me to be in male attire. The delusion of not needing to dress didn’t keep me from shopping for short boots though. I recognized that part of the problem with the leggings (on Saturday evening) was the inappropriate shoes for the season. Leggings and heels are fine in the spring, summer or fall, but for the winter, leggings need a short boot (or a tall one, your preference) so that portions of your bare foot aren’t showing. It’s just my opinion.

While I was out, running from store to store, I stopped into a couple of shoe stores to check out boots. I was deterred from by a really nice ankle boot in Payless, black, decent heel, pointed but not elongated, with a fold-down top so that they appeared (slightly) like they were longer but collapsed. I didn’t buy them because they were $84.00 and I couldn’t justify the expense for something I might wear a couple of times. And, I kept telling myself, when are you going to get another opportunity for a full-scale outing? Probably not for months, there certainly aren’t any opportunities on the horizon.

Here we are. It’s Thursday. Every-one went to work. I did my dishes, tidied in the house and had my shower. Any guesses how I dressed to come to work? Yup, here I am, skirt, nylons, shoes, bra, forms, and top. I didn’t bother with the wig or the make-up because I have to go out again in a couple of hours but I couldn’t resist dressing. I’ve also noticed that I’ve stopped calling it cross-dressing. It may be cross-dressing to those who are trying to describe it or slot me, but it is just dressing to me. At any other point in time, if I am in male attire, I am not dressed. I may be casual, or slovenly, possibly even tidy and presentable, but I am not dressed until I am wearing feminine attire

I guess this means that it is not going away anytime soon. Addiction when it is used to describe behaviour is a recurring compulsion to engage in some specific activity , despite harmful consequences, as deemed by the individual himself, to his health, mental state, or social life. I think this dressing qualifies as a behavioural addiction. If it became public it certainly would be harmful in the short-term and probably in the long-term as well. I can’t see my parents inviting Sarah to their home. However, and I’m clearly not a psychologist, so forgive me, the flip side of this compulsion is the comfort I get from it. I am at peace when I am dressed as a woman. Perhaps the true psychological harm is what I am doing to myself by not being true to what I feel. I was raised by W.A.S.P. fire & brimstone parents. I know Martin Luther died centuries before my parents were born, but I swear he was watching them as he drafted his comments on the Protestant work ethic. I was raised to work, contribute, support my family, raise my children and conform to the expectations of those in whose realms I existed. Pleasure is what you got from doing all these things. It is this expectation of rigid conformity that has shaped my life until now.

 Thanks to all the contributors at Crossdressers with their advice about tucking. Many suggested buying thongs one size too small to hold everything “up”. While it is far from perfect, it does work for loose skirts and it’s effect is reinforced by tight pantyhose. It is more comfortable than tape.

So, hello world, I’m Sarah. I exist. I am real and I will continue to be real. Now I have to go and do my host’s work so that he can afford to indulge me with a pair of short boots for my leggings.

October 26, 2010

The devil is in the details

The devil truly is to be found in the details. I bought a pair of plain low heel pumps on Saturday. I don’t really need another pair of shoes. I have seven pair as it is. I mean, really, how many pairs of shoes does a closet crossdresser need? That’s one of the riddles of life, how many is too many. Apparently seven isn’t too many.

I was shopping in a mall that is on a path I travel every few weeks. The mall is familiar but the chances of running into “one of the old boys from work”, or “that girl that we know, you know the one, she’s friends with” … are slim to nil. So I shop there feeling relaxed and with purpose. I don’t look over my shoulder to see who may be watching me go through a rack of blouses one by one.

I don’t want to get side-tracked here but men, when they are shopping for their wives, scan the displays and then ask the clerk for the right size. The clerk, if she is on commission, will then suggest two or three things that go with the first choice. This is a double bonus because the man has now done all of his gift shopping in one quick stop and the clerk has boosted her sales. I scan the displays, find my size, and then, I try to decide if it looks as good in an XL or 1X as the S does pulled tight over the mannequin.

The shoes, I tried them on (size 10) in the shoe store. I got a few looks, because I had to pull off my clunky great man shoes and socks to put the pump on a bare foot. It was snug but I figured they would stretch. I also probably got a few looks because I was in a predominantly visible minority mall and I’m white. The mall was probably 95% visible minority, Indian and South-east Asian, so I stood out, a bit. I may have been looked at a second time because I was trying on women’s shoes while dressed as a man. I’m not sure; it may have been a factor.

I bought the shoes. When I got back to my car, I put them on for the drive home, thinking they would stretch while I wore them and the discomfort wouldn’t be too much because I wasn’t standing in them. Surprisingly (not), that didn’t work. By the time I had driven 45 minutes, my feet were in pain. Off came the shoes, but I really liked the simple conservative look of them and the low heel was appealing. The next day, I was the first one up in the morning, so I went outside, to the driveway, and put the shoes on so that I could walk up and down the driveway to see if they stretched. No luck, my feet still hurt.

Yesterday, I gave up and took them back. Unfortunately (in terms of risk) I was going to the mall closest to my home, where I shop as a man and a husband but that mall has a Payless Shoes. In I went and returned the shoes, trying not to attract too much attention. Just before the transaction was complete, I asked if the store had the same shoe in a 10W and lucky me, they did. The 10W fits like a dream but I’ve now purchased shoes from a store my wife frequents, and in a size she couldn’t possibly wear. I’m betting on the greater world’s indifference to anything that I do.

The devil is in the details was a reference to tucking, but I got side-tracked to the new shoes. Of the three new dresses I bought last week, one is snug and one is form-fitting, (think sheath). I took some pictures of the form-fitting one and realized that I had an inappropriate bulge. I returned to the Crossdresser Forums for a quick review of the tucking lessons and was quickly and easily successful in hiding the bulge. It was too quick and too easy but that’s another story for another day. Today in the snug but fitted houndstooth, I am tucked. It is freaky easy to put the junk away and still not feel any discomfort.

October 8, 2010

Putting me away

I’ve gone beyond my safety limits. I enjoyed the afternoon too much. I was sitting in my favorite chair, a book in hand. Everything felt perfect; I could only improve it by having someone to engage in conversation. Someone who wouldn’t care that I was an older man dressed as a woman. I loved the look of my shoes on my bouncing foot. I loved the look of the patterned nylons on my crossed legs. I loved the feel of the dress material against my hand when I smoothed the material.

I went to the closet and took off the wig. I wore it for hours today and I’m beginning to get comfortable with the bangs and the whole hair in the face thing. I took off the shoes, strappy little heels that feel like slippers when they are on. I took out the forms and put them back in the box. I had enjoyed the weight of them against me. I had admired the swell they put in my dress. I had noticed the profile in the mirror as I walked by.

I pulled the dress off over my head, hung it carefully and returned it to the garment bag that serves as its hiding place. I’m taking my time, savoring each action, knowing that it may be days before I can go through the reverse process. I took the other sweater dress out of the same bag and made sure it was hung properly before I returned it as well and zipped the bag up. I dropped the straps of my bra off my shoulders, and pushed it down so that I could spin it and unhook it. I pushed the nylons down, both legs at the same time until I could take my feet out and shake the nylons out before folding them with care, feeling the material slide across my hands as I did.

The panties were all that were left, somewhere between red and purple, thong, that holds me snugly, and little bows on the front. From La Senza, I think they are beautiful and I love to pull them on. I have four pair, each a different brilliant color.

I’m naked in every sense of the word and I feel it. I’m putting me away in boxes, out of sight, hidden. How I want to be out in the light. How I want to be seen for what I am. I know why I waited so long before changing. I’m wishing to get caught so that I don’t have to own up by myself. It would be my way, the coward’s way, of giving up my secret. It’s wrong on so many fronts but I linger in the closet, wishing it didn’t have to be so. I head into the bathroom to finish the undressing, washing my face, removing the last vestiges of the secret me.

I remind myself that my wife married a man, my children know me as a father and none of them asked for this assault on how they know me. I re-affirm that this is, for the moment, my burden, my secret. I was beautiful today. I know it, I felt it. I wasn’t the person they all know but for an afternoon I was beautiful. I was me, a truer version of me than they have ever seen or known.

I stand in the middle of a room, close my eyes and think through every step of the process to be sure that everything is away. I feel the burden pressing down on me like the winter darkness outside.

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