- I adored Dr. Johanna Olson from the Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles. A world of thanks to TYFA for their informative workshop where Dr. Jo gave me my very first serious piece of mind since Hope transitioned. As soon as Dr. Jo started explaining the option of peer congruent puberty I fought back tears. One of my major hurdles when envisioning my daughter’s puberty is that she would be on blockers for a significant amount of time. I worried what effects it would have on her health and how it would make her feel when her friends started developing secondary sexual characteristics and she didn’t. Dr. Jo explained that this is not the case for many of her patients. If it’s right for the child, they can experience puberty right along with their peers. It felt like I had my first deep sigh of relief in about 3 years. A revelation.
- After my workshop I met Jean Malpas, a therapist in NYC working with the Ackerman Institute for the Family that is working with gender diverse children and their families. Instantly I felt like I’d known him for ages. Like he was my college roommate and I hadn’t seen him in ten years. He’s that type of person… love that. Visit his site at www.JeanMalpas.com to learn more about his good work.
- On Saturday I attended Chaz Bono’s book reading with Susan Maasch, Executive Director with Trans Youth Equality Foundation and bent her ear about everything that they are doing on the East Coast. Even Dr. Spack is a Medical Consultant to their Board. Impressive!
- Now imagine my surprise when Chaz Bono, a guy who single-handedly encouraged mainstream America to contemplate/ discuss/understand trans issues, received some heckling from some folks who self identified as trans! When I got past my initial shock I realized that, just like every other group out there, there is natural conflict within the trans community as well. Some people applauded Chaz for his honesty when telling his own story and expressed their gratitude. Others charged him with hating women because of some comments he made on The View and other places. Chaz was clear, genuine and diplomatic, yet strong. Don’t think he’s a pushover, he’s not. But the way he handled this tension was inspiring. I left the session with my head spinning. Lots to think about.
- One of the authors that I presented with on Saturday stole my heart. Rev. David Weekley and his wife Deborah were absolutely wonderful. David’s book, In From the Wilderness, challenges all Christians to consider the truth of gender identity and sexual orientation as God given gifts. Really interesting mission.
- And last, but never least, I got to spend some time with Jenn Burleton of TransActive and that always makes me happy. Not only does she spark pure creativity deep within me, she unearths the optimism I feel at my core. Few people have that talent & Jenn is one of them.