Everything we do in our lives becomes part of the stories we can tell; whether it's riding across the country on a bike, going to college, fighting an addiction, or feeling stuck at home with a deadend job and a mountain of debt, we are always changing, growing, and learning. I've been spending my time in Portland at my friend, Ben's place. I haven't seen him since college and I'm so grateful our paths could intersect while I'm out riding my bike. Ben may not be on a bike but, he's on his own amazing journey. For the last 5 years, Ben has been working to make his outward appearance resonate with who he really is inside while dealing with the physical and emotional gauntlet that this sort of metamorphosis demands of all transgender folks. Many people out there don't even have the goddamn guts to face the emotions they feel inside, they just bury them and try to move on while something weighs on their mind like a small pebble finding its way into your shoe.
But not Ben, or anyone else that has been on the same path, is in the middle of it, or anyone that's taken the very first steps. To know yourself so intimately takes strength and dedication and it all amounts to a truly beautiful being, someone who takes control of their own life and their own happiness, doing what they need to feel human. I'm so happy to have met Ben back in college while he was still Ashley, and now to see him so happy, bearded and handsome overwhelms me. All of us on this big blue space ship we call Earth deserve some comfort and happiness although, we can't always get there on our own. So please, help out my dear friend with anything you can, especially the folks that asked if they could donate anything to MY trip, I don't need or want anything but, there's a fine young man that could use some kindness from strangers right here.
Ben has made these notebooks to reward anyone that makes a donation to his surgery fund. You can follow the link below to donate and learn more.
Any money leftover will be donated to the Transgender Surgery Fund, a link to their page can be found below.