Compassion for #GirlsLikeUs
“Compassion is often thought of as akin to pity, but whereas pity may be condescending, compassion springs from a sense of the equality and interconnectedness of life. Genuine compassion is about empowering others, helping them unlock strength and courage from within their lives in order to overcome their problems” – SGI Quarterly July 2010
It seemed as though the world would not show me compassion, but instead introduced me to rejection from the moment I was born. Unconditional love became some sort of folklore or fable because any love I had known had conditions on it. I was even being told that God’s love had conditions on it, and if I didn’t meet those conditions there would be hell to pay…literally.
Night after night, I’d have the same dream over and over again that some monster would always chase me out of the house, and at some point in the dream I began to fall from what seemed to be the highest of altitudes. Those nightmares became reality as I was no longer welcome at home or at church, I felt I had been chased out by monsters, and had fallen from grace.
I became livid with the Lord! “You know my heart! Why would you do something like this to me! I have prayed, and fasted, and prayed some more. I skipped lunch at school just so I could study your word and pray some more! Where is the compassion that Jesus spoke about? Where’s the love? “
And I’ll be damned. The answer came back at me while exhausted from the incessant thoughts, and tears I lay there silent. “There’s nothing you have to do. I know who you are. I created you.” The silence seemed to say. “Do you really think you have to try so hard to make me love you? ” In that moment, I felt that if there was a God and He was for me, than nothing could stand against me. But I was still resentful and did not understand why I couldn’t have just been born normal. Little did I know, there was a greater story unfolding, and that I would soon set out on a journey with Buddhist breadcrumbs leading the way.
That’s when I learned about suffering and compassion. Transition is never easy, nor are any two journeys ever exactly the same, so it is futile to compare. Instead we need to cultivate compassion for every person who sets out on a journey to becoming their true selves, not just in physical form, but in spirit as well. At times you’ll be asked to give guidance, and at other times you might be the one in need of guidance, but it is through sharing out stories and helping each other that we become a powerful force that no political or religious organization would be able to deny. Support from the GLBT community and straight allies is helpful, but not required. We are capable of becoming our own heroes.
We cannot expect the world to show us compassion if we don’t show it to ourselves and to each other. When it comes to #girlslikeus, some of us are artist or entertainers, doctors or lawyers, writers and educators, porn stars or prostitutes. But whatever we are, and wherever we are in life, we have all shown tremendous courage in just continuing to live our lives courageously, and not giving up. This is just the beginning. There’s so much life after transition to be had and accomplished. Just look in the news, on the internet and television. We have transgender women who have realized their dream of transitioning into a women, and who are now going after their other dreams. We need to support our transgender brothers and sisters by providing ourselves and each other with the compassion, love & support that we so deserve and desire, and the rest of the world will come around in their own time, and by then it won’t even matter.