Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Sophie at 60: A writing exercise

No, I'm not 60.  I'm not even 50.  Or 30.  Ok that last one was stretching the truth.  "Not intended to be a factual statement."  I'm 47 currently.

In any case, my dear friend Tammy Matthews challenged me to write about me at age 50.  But that's only three years away, so I chose to make it 60.  I hope that's ok with you, Tammy.

And I'm posting it even if it sucks.  Here you're getting raw Sophie writing

Scenario 1:

The alley is dark, cold, and strewn with trash.  The rusty dumpster reeks of the leftover waste from the Indian restaurant.  In the back of the alley is a steam grate which usually billows steam into the winter night.  However, the steam is obscured by something blocking the grate.  The body of the homeless person is covered in old, tattered blankets that smell worse than the dumpster.  The hair is graying, long and matted with dirt.

Until the previous day, the body had been a living person.  She tried to transition from male to female in her 40s, but ran out of money, and, fired from her jobs and unable to find other work, eventually ended on this rusted grating.  Her masters degree means nothing, nor all of what made her special.  Now she's just a lifeless body- and the police will call her "John Doe" before cremating her.  Her nineteen year old daughter will never know whether she's alive or dead, nor will it matter as she hasn't spoken to her in over a decade.

Scenario 2:

I did it for my daughter.  De-transitioned.  Cut my hair.  Went back to the painful life as a male hiding their true self.  Denying Sophie her existence.  But daughter is dead. Plane crash on her way back to school. Wife blames me for letting her go to an overseas school.  All my sacrifices in vain.

I look down the barrels of the shotgun between my legs, pointed at my head.  A fireplace poker I bought an hour ago is on on the triggers, as my high school classmate did way back in 1984.  I think of Lisa and smile... then use the poker to compress the triggers.

Scenario 3:

Has it really been ten years?  Ten years since my re-birthday?  Ten years of being the woman I was meant to be.   I look across the table at my spouse.  they smile and raise the champagne glass that the waitress just filled.  "Here's to the most beautiful ten year old I know" they say, and we clink glasses.

Me at 60.  What- you think I'm going to age?  

Scenario 4:

"And what kind of a freak are you?" the customer says.  I'm a retail manager.  Been at the bookstore twenty years now.  I'm paid to take abuse, but not like this.  I ask her to leave and never come back.  The old woman wearing the "Cruz for President  TEA in 2020" holo-button glares at me and says "you liberals think you can even mock nature.  We'll show you!" and storms out.  I smooth my skirt, take a deep breath, and walk back to the managers' office for a good cry.

OK.  Four is enough, I think.

Comments welcomed.


  1. Add this one...

    The lady is celebrating her daughter's birthday with her ex-wife. Both still love each other, but have found accommodations to deal with their needs. But amidst all the problems, their daughter comes first - and any issues are put aside, so that their daughter can have a wonderful day. (BTW - the MIL passed away 5 years before, allowing both ex'es to find what they had in each other again....)

    It's not perfect - but it's a good news/bad news kind of thing.... I hope you have better than this.

  2. Sophie some scary scenarios. Hope you discuss those with your therapist. Good Luck