Nothing of me is original. I am the combined effort of everyone I have ever known.
―Chuck Palahniuk, Invisible Monsters
I wrote a book once. Stories from my life. Essay about sex, drugs, and spiritual shit. It was laborious to write because I did not know who I was. It was a process that I did not enjoy, despite an intense desire to tell stories that I have had since adolescence. This process ruined writing and storytelling in a manner I believed to be permanent. I did not write again, for years. Chronic depression, agoraphobia, and more left me housebound for some time over the last few years. Writing on twitter and then on here is how I communicated with the world. Here, I found my voice again, and in a real way, for the first time. My first voice was an imitation, a facsimile. To paraphrase a line from Running With Scissors—like cubic zirconia, I only looked real. I was an imposter.
Transitioning, and the chaos, carnage, and fallout that resulted stripped away everything that was false, leaving me only with a rich life experience, and this community of wonderful people from all around America and the world. It has a village to get me to this point. The reality is, there is simply no way that I survive the last three years without the help, the love, the support, the patience, the kindness, and the incredible generosity of so many people.
Now more than ever, it is easy to focus on the negative. Everything is trash right now. Fascism has experienced a resurgence around the world as Power continues to lose its strength. With social media, the staggering and unrelenting ignorance of so many has been readily apparent. Everyday, we are reminded that the State and its institutions do not serve the best interests of those whose best interests they claim to serve. Everything that we were raised with is a lie. Yet, in the last three years, easily one of the lowest points in my almost 34 years of life, I have never met more amazing people. The quote at the beginning of this was in that book I wrote. It was more true now than it was then. Countess Blackwell is the combined effort of everyone I have ever known.