6: Here We Are

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This week, our cast focuses on self-reflection, and also learns that recovering might be only the beginning of a long journey. Chloe recovers from her facial feminization surgery, which is physically grueling, at a time when she is also faced with a tough emotional decision over whether or not to move back to New York. Meanwhile, Jeff lands a new job on his way to achieving his dream of being a TV writer, but it sparks some concern about what it might mean for his relationship with his partner Emma, as the couple is already dealing with long-distance dating and the aftermath of Jeff’s recovery from alcohol addiction. Finally, Mariana celebrates her birthday, but also confronts the feeling that she’s losing herself to her job.



Sy, Emma, Chloe, Mariana, Carly, Jeffrey, Fernando, John, Robert, Cadence

Sy  00:00

This is Sy, ever since Robert and I had our big conversation, you know, we’re both starting to get more serious about taking what we both see as the next step for our family and become homeowners. My kid is turning four and we’re finding a birthday party for him

Mariana  00:19

Going back to my country is, it brings a lot emotions. I don’t know if I share with you but I experienced horrible things over there. I was in the middle of a horrible moment and people wanted to kill me.

Jeffrey  00:31

This is Jeffrey I wanted to be a TV writer since before I wanted to be a comedian. Me and my girlfriend Emma are navigating a long distance relationship right now. She’s in school and she is currently studying to be a helicopter pilot.

Sy  00:45

How’s the long distance thing working?

Jeffrey  00:47

We do a lot of like dating things. My parents have been there for me through transition through my alcoholism. On the fourth is to full last year sober.

Chloe  01:03

This is Chloe. One of the big pieces of my transition that I’ve been really looking forward to wanting and needing is Facial Feminization Surgery. Hey, Mom, how’s it going? I just got off the phone with my mom. There’s some potential health issues going on with her and that’s scary. Good. Good point. But you know, doctor’s orders. I’m really thinking about moving home for good. Hi, good morning. Checking in for surgery. They’re about to wheel me away for surgery and I’m really scared. All I want right now is my mom

Jeffrey  02:03

Close the door real quick. All right. How are you feeling? Oh my god. This is Jeffrey. I’m heading home. I just dropped Chloe off at her house after getting surgery. It’s insane. The things that trans women go through to be themselves and Jesus. I feel so stupid. Like I get scared of the tiniest little see-through needle and she has had massive reconstructive surgery on her face and she’s like, she must be in so much pain. And she’s like, she doesn’t make any noise. She’s like the strongest person I’ve ever met in my whole life. How is intense? Chloe is in for one hell of a recovery.

Mariana  04:32

Thank you, please come in, […]. So I’m the program manager of a Trans Wellness Center. We provide services to our own community, people can access services for employment, legal services, hormone treatment, mental health, and housing. So this is your first time at Trans Wellness Center?

Speaker 2  04:55

It is and I love the family spirit here.

Mariana  04:59

You know We work together for trans Awareness Month. On top of that, they also wanted to make a donation to somebody that you know was trans related. So the work that providers something that I’ve been doing for more than 20 years making relationships with people that want to get involved in how the trans community I That’s the fun part of my job. A lot of people want to get involved just like my friend Gia, she was in […], she’s a trans woman and she’s always supporting us.

Speaker 2  05:28

I know that you have on your site to in kind donations for clothing as well as menstrual supplies and so that’s what we’re here today.

Mariana  05:36

Thank you so much. So these are like wiped, like to refresh your beautiful parts. Thank you for stopping by.

Speaker 3  06:01

No, really, it’s okay. I’m waiting. I’m taking my money.

Mariana  06:06

What’s happening? Is this person our client?

Speaker 4  06:09

You got to stand up. You can’t sit on the floor.

Mariana  06:21

Let me take care of this. Sometimes we get clients who are in a lot of distress. And we have to do our best to keep calm and help them. It is a tough job. But it also is something personal is something that I see myself in a lot of people that come here seeking services. I have a job to do we all have a job to do. Now we just call 911 for an ambulance because that’s what she wants.

Speaker 5  07:04

Hello, good afternoon. My name is April Seraya. And I work at Trans woman center…

Chloe  07:21

This is Chloe and I am trying to record an audio diary here. Definitely losing track of my days here but I think it’s Tuesday around 11 I think from what I remember and definitely freak the eff out when I got home because one of my eyes swelled completely shut and the other one was about 90% shut you know I’m not really going to be able to go outside or do much for a long time because I’m not comfortable with how I look at, because the swelling is immense. It’s really intense. Somebody told me that there’s an emotional or mental kind of crash after surgery like this. And I think I’m starting to feel that a little bit which is weird because it’s next with still an immense amount of gratefulness and thankfulness that I was able to have the surgery so I don’t really know what that’s all about. But I’m sure I’ll work through it that’s all I got going on for right now just wanted to check in and talk to you later.

Mariana  08:54

Hi Jeffrey. So happy to see you here.

Jeffrey  08:59

Yeah, I’m excited and was excited you have some like clothes or shoes or something that she gets to have?

Jeffrey  09:15

So what’s going on with you? There’s somebody have a birthday coming up?

Mariana  09:19

Oh my god another one.

Jeffrey  09:23

They happen every year.

Mariana  09:26

But it’s good to celebrate, they’re gonna be celebrating the abbey we’re gonna have a party over there. We also doing tabling you know for transplants in there.

Jeffrey  09:39

Mariana, you can’t have like, well of course it’ll be a birthday but it will also be a fundraiser.

Mariana  09:44

The Abbey is the most famous gay club I believe in the world. and I are going to be celebrating my birthday there. And well not only celebrate my birthday I also going to be doing some work and creating some awareness is going to be tabling with coworkers and talking about the work we do at trans woman center, it’s gonna be fun.

Jeffrey  10:04

Is it a work thing? Or did it start as a work thing? Or is it like your birthday thing?

Mariana  10:14

Yeah, it’s both.

Jeffrey  10:17

Is there any aspect of your life that isn’t tied to your work?

Mariana  10:25

Not at this time in my life. Look at me, I, you know, I go to places, I meet people, I introduce myself, I try to not talk about work. But I always ended up talking to about a son, something that we need to fight, some people want to get involved. And some people are asking, like, how can I help? How can I support some people want to transition and they went about hormones, someone knows someone that is trans that is struggling, looking for a job, and I had to say something. But I also want to be drinking, like a celebration should be fun. And I want to be something fabulous. How are you?

Jeffrey  11:06

I got a job. And writers room. I’ve just been an assistant. It’s nothing big, big. But my whole goal this year was just to get into a room. And I did it. I’m so excited. A writers room is how you get shows a bunch of writers and their showrunner, who’s the person who typically created the show sit in a room together, and they create the ideas. And then they write the scripts for the shows you see on TV. And I’m a writers PA, which is supposed to be the person who sits in the room and gets coffees for everyone. But I get to see how every single thing works. To me, it’s like the perfect first step.

Mariana  11:56

Baby steps, baby steps. How is Emma? How’s everything?

Jeffrey  12:06

Always, it’s good. It’s really good. We don’t see each other too much right now. She’s in training. And I’m here. So it’s also a little tough. Because her love language is like being intimate and such, but I’m not, like, I just, I’m not super sexual feeling right now. I don’t know. We already don’t see each other as much as she would like. And with this job starting, everything’s […] so much harder. I just like, I don’t know, it gets sometimes a little bit rough, because I just don’t. I don’t want her to feel rejected.

Mariana  12:58

Yeah. I mean, like, I mean, rejection is a horrible feeling.

Jeffrey  13:05

When we are together, like it’s the best, it’s the best. It’s the most wonderful, lovely relationship. And when we’re intimate, like it’s amazing. So it’s not that.

Mariana  13:17

But are you guys talking about this?

Jeffrey  13:19

We try to communicate about it as much as possible, because I was an alcoholic for a long time. So we that sex and stuff is different. And like, I don’t know.

Mariana  13:32

Well, maybe at the moment, maybe things will change.

Jeffrey  13:35

Yeah. And I think that’s the journey is just understanding it. I started dating Emma when I was a super alcoholic. I mean, I was a raging alcoholic. She’s the one who helped me get sober and I put him through a lot of shit. And I’ve had to work really hard to gain her trust back. We’ve overcome a lot of obstacles, and we continue to go through hurdles. I mean, it’s a lot, but I just, I just always want to make sure I’m doing the right thing. And the best thing for her.

Mariana  14:12

I’m just leaving my birthday party and that was fun. I got to see a lot of friends and we got to do some work too, now I’m going to go and have dinner with my dear friend John. You know, who this is. John is 82 years old, he is gay, John call himself like Uncle John. But he is more than that to me. I think I always want that male figure in my life, like someone who advised you someone wants the best for you. So he’s like my father, and I always try to make him proud. Hello, hello, there you are. So good to see you. John is retired, but he understand the work of public service very well. John is my mentor, the person that I always go back to, I always listen to his advice. He dedicated his life to public service, and then after retire, he is still volunteering and giving back to communities. That’s why he understand perfectly what I’m going through. Remember, I told you that I was going away for a week. I don’t think I can take a full week; I think I can only take three days, I probably gonna still have to check my emails somehow.

John  16:19

I think that’s a better time for you. When I was practicing, my then companion and I went on a long trip. When I got back, things are in slightly disarray. The thing is, I was a trial lawyer. And if I go out of town for five weeks, that means that my clients have to be agreeable, many of them are in jail, and they have to stay there because I’ve left town.

Mariana  16:50

I mean, at work, things are gonna change. It’s always something happening there. But I think the responsibility falls on me a lot of times.

John  16:59

It will. Trust me, it will. It’s important. They’re providing the service. They’re there to serve the clients and, and the best interests of the clients.

Mariana  17:11

But I cannot also stop living. True. I’m having a hard time making that like, you know, boundaries between what is my life and what is work. That is my struggle. That is my problem. I’ve been through a lot in my life. I live so many lives. And right now I have this big responsibility that I appreciate so much. But sometimes I feel like I’m getting lost about like what direction I need to take my personal life. I think I’m having difficulties to find myself outside work. I need to I need to figure things out.

John  18:01

Let me ask you a question. Do you consider that you have fulfilled your ambition?

Mariana  18:10

Yeah, I don’t know. I don’t know what because I have a clear idea what I want for others having a job having friends, good communication with their families being in love but I’m still looking for what is that I want for myself. So I get lost a lot, a lot of times about what I want. And I don’t know if I have accomplished everything I want to accomplish.

Mariana  18:59

I don’t always open that with people about the way they feel. Especially about work. I believe that we all have the power to do something for someone. But for me at this point, it feels like it’s too much. I’m always questioning how much longer I can do this. I don’t know what to do, but it’s a lot. It’s a lot. I just […] me, to make me angry with life, to see only the negative. I’m having a hard time with everything. I question everything lately.

Chloe  19:47

Hey this is Chloe, and I finally know what day it is. And it’s about a week and a half since I had surgery. And I’m still a little bit swollen and most of the bandages are off, I’ve still got a head wrap, but I can see myself. And when I say that, I mean that I can see myself for the first time like this. And it’s mind blowing. It’s bringing up a lot of emotions. There’s a lot wrapped up in this, but I’m, I’m so excited that I can, I can see some changes already. And I’m excited to see where it goes. My family has been really good about calling and checking in seeing how I’m doing. It’s been really nice to talk to my mom. There was a scare, you know, kind of before I went in for surgery, and we’re just in a holding pattern right now trying to wait for results and news. Fortunately, she seems to be in good spirits. And we’re just doing the best we can. Can you hear me?

Jeffrey  21:22

Hello. This is Jeffrey. I’ve been thinking a lot about me and Emma and this relationship. And we’re in two very, very different places. The biggest thing is the lack of intimacy. I’m just worried that she’s missing out on things because of me. I don’t want her to settle. And I don’t know, I just want her to have everything that she wants and needs. And I’m worried that not that. I was talking to somebody. And they asked me like, how long has it been since you’ve had sex? And I was trying to do the math?

Emma  22:11

Yeah, I remember exactly. Back in February.

Jeffrey 22:16

Well, that’s terrifying. And you’re like, yeah, I know, exactly to the day. And that is pretty heartbreaking.

Emma  22:25

Yeah, but we have different like, libidos and sex drive for the past, like, two years, basically, since you got sober have completely shifted a lot. And every time you’ve had a period of sobriety, your sex drive would completely change. And I don’t know if I’ve ever said this. That’s one of the ways I knew you had started drinking, again, was that your sex drive would come back. It’s been something that’s taken me a while to get used to. But also like libido shifts are a natural thing that happened and never relationship anyway, I think that’s a normal thing. And I don’t think it’s the worst thing in the world or anything like that.

Jeffrey  23:07

I mean, you see that, but it bothers me enough to know that it bothers you. And it can make you not feel loved.

Emma  23:16

Which is true. But I think it’s also about redefining the ways that you show love to each other.

Jeffrey  23:22

Hold on. What part of that is true?

Emma  23:26

That it can feel frustrating.

Jeffrey  23:29

That doesn’t make me happy.

Emma  23:31

Yeah, everyone makes sacrifices in relationship.

Jeffrey  23:35

I get it, but some of them are larger than others. And this whole long distance thing you’ve said to me, you hate it.

Emma  23:41

And it’s hard for me for sure. But I’m not going to break up with you.

Jeffrey  23:45

Okay, we’re definitely going to table this. He said that, that’s fine. I just think we need to make sure we communicate about it as much as possible. I’m finally getting all of these things that I’ve worked for. And this job is so important to me. And you know that and I knew you accept it, but it’s going to make things just harder and harder for us. So I just think that we need to constantly keep it on the table is something to communicate about, because you can have everything you want in a relationship you can I think people can fall into traps, where they say well, this is my partner and you stay with them because it’s expected or it’s safe or it’s whatever. It definitely bothers me. Because like there’s nothing in my relationship with you that makes me say, yeah, I deal with it.

Emma  24:42

I love you. And at the end of the day, all that matters to me is that I love you and I get to be in a relationship with you.

Jeffrey  24:51

I love you too, Baby Cakes. We’ll talk about later, in between these things I get to process and journal and stuff.

Cadence  25:36

I work from home today. That’s what it made so easy.

Mariana  25:41

You like coffee?

Cadence  25:42

I love coffee. I feel like I need it.

Mariana  25:45

I’m grabbing coffee with cadence. We never get the chance to just hang out and have a good time outside work. Because we’re always talking and taking care of other people always busy and crazy. And we always have to be on for our own community. You’re always working super hard. How’s everything going? It’s been a year already that you work in there?

Cadence  26:08

Yes, it’s been a year. I just can’t believe it. My supervisor, she just did a whole evaluation on me. Actually did got a raise. And she said you did so much within a year. She said she was in shock.

Mariana  26:25

Trans Wellness Center is going on the four year. I know I’ve been with the Center for 10 years. And I see a lot of things and I’m always like thinking about like, what are things that we can improve? What things can we do better?

Cadence  26:37

I still feel like, I feel like we need more visibility. So people can see that there is a center. Even though it’s been open for four years, some people still don’t know. I did not know when first going in. I did not know that the program I was in it was in jeopardy because it had no clients. And that saved the program, I’m like y’all just don’t know how many people of color and trans non-binary is in the street that needs surfaces. I remember doing outreach with unique women coalition. It was like an eye opener, you know, because I saw the girls you know, right there in broad daylight working the street survive in the streets. I’m like, this is so surreal. And one girl. They told me she recently died. She was of color. She was at the bus stop and a car ran her over. I was like, are you serious? They said […] I can’t believe she’s dead. Oh my God. And they didn’t do nothing. They didn’t really don’t care for us. They really don’t. This awful.

Mariana  27:50

Black woman, Latina woman is still like struggling to get jobs to get services.

Cadence  27:56

Nobody wants to hire; the people don’t hire people that are trans. You know, it was very hard. I think a lot of girls they throw in the towel. So went back at home, some do transition. Some still stranded out there in the streets.

Mariana  28:14

And that’s why I wanted to ask you because you one of the success stories that definitely able to, you know, to move forward and to be, to get a job and to get a place to stay and all that.

Cadence  28:26

I survived you know, being homeless in the streets. I survived a lot. I really did. This was so hard, but I felt like it is possible. You know, you got to have that willpower. I told myself I know good things around the corner. I just have to keep holding on, keep doing what I’m doing. Keep working harder everyday working harder, you know, so I kept moving forward.

Mariana  28:54

I always get amazed about the power that we have to improve our lives. Caden’s is a living example of someone that faced a lot of adversity but she never gave up. Now she is in a better place. And I’m glad that I can be part of that.

Cadence  29:12

I’ve been practicing driving. I’m studying now to get my license. Get my car soon.

Mariana  29:25

And happy that you’re going to get your car. Let me know if you need any anything okay, I can help in any way. Like myself, Cadence was the client at some point. And we needed help and now she’s the one they’re going to be providing support to others inspire other trans woman like her to do and accomplish everything they want. Thank you Cadence I’m sorry, I just got a call from my boss. I don’t know something’s happening in their office. I need to take this call; this week was not easy for me. I have a lot of moments like this. But I also have great moments where I remind myself that this work is not done. And I’m just a part of a group that keep pushing to create possibilities and opportunities for other people. I just cannot walk away from this job just because I have a rough day. I have to keep going. Even though this is a difficult job, someone has to do it.

Jeffrey  30:45

Hi, what are you up to?

Carly  30:50

I have like a very intense like couple of weeks.

Jeffrey  30:53

Carly is one of my best friends in the whole world. We met in an online writing class. And we became immediately I guess, online inseparable. I was calling to initially get like, friend advice a bit.

Jeffrey  31:11

I just had like a, like a big old talky thing. It was just about, like everything about our relationship. And thing is we’re in this long distance thing. And it’s about to get a lot more intense, while doing a really demanding job. I don’t know how much I’ve told you or been open about this one. But Emma comes into town, we’re not always intimate. And it just, I don’t know, just kind of feels like she’s getting the shit end of the stick. And I talked to Emma about it. And she was like, hey, no big deal. Like, really, it’s just something we will deal with. It made it worse for me. I don’t want to have a thing in our relationship that we just deal with.

Carly  32:11

Oh, so you’re like, kind of like, I don’t want it to be like, the burden that I brought or something.

Jeffrey  32:20

When you see younger people, you know, she’s 23. But I think about my age which is 35. And when I was 23, the people that I stayed with Rose, like, I’ll do this for you. And it’s like, why did I do that for them?

Carly  32:36

Yeah, that is a great thing to keep in mind. But also, that’s not your job, you know what I mean? Or, like, I think that you can even prevent or, like, whatever she’s doing now, she’s just gonna do, you know, be the best. Be the best that you can be. But like, also, like, as an adult lady. She’s going to do the stuff that she’s going to do, and you’re just part of that stuff. So […] you know. Don’t be a big jerk.

Jeffrey  33:19

I think what I’ve come to is, I think it just keep giving her 1000 doubts to be like, I’m too much of a hassle, right?

Carly  33:29

But like, there’s no way like you guys already. You guys already got through the rough patch. You know, like, at this point, whatever you throw is going to be like smooth sailing comparatively.

Jeffrey  33:43

Is it neurotic to say that I’m giving in and out? Is it horrible? Is that?

Carly  33:50

No, it’s not horrible. It is neurotic. Most of the time, not in this relationship. But every now but like, most of the time, I’m just like, it will be like, rather than I’ll just be like, I’m out of here. You know, I’m just gonna save us both the trouble, you know, and then just kind of like walk away. And also, for sure been really actually quite cared about somebody and then been like, I actually care, like too much for me to handle. And then I all like, do something to sabotage and like leave because like, oh, that’s like a very, that’s a very intense, scary emotion to be having, you know?

Jeffrey  34:27

I think that’s probably closer to I think we’re at endgame here with Emma. Where it’s like, you know, we’re talking about marriage.

Carly  34:45

And you’re doing some classic brochette right now. Like, what about this? Oh, yeah? Or what about this?

Jeffrey  34:53

This happens what if this happens, I need all of the options before we make this leap.

Carly  34:57

I mean, we want to hitch your wagon to this, I think that’s like normal. Anything that it’s hard to be fully accepted. It’s like, it’s like a hard trust thing. You know, like, like, you’re just like, you know, you want to test it because it’s like, I don’t know what is like a full acceptance, you know, like, how far does it go? Is it like unconditional is unconditional? Like, a thing? Is it a possibility even is anyone unconditional? Yeah. It sounds like Emma is just like a very understanding compassionate person. And she’s like, offering you that stuff. So I think, you know, you could just take it and just let it be beautiful, you know, because it’s really beautiful. Let yourself kind of have that sweetness. You don’t need to like work for it or anything like that. You just need to let it and I feel like, you deserve that. What a cool life journey you guys are going to be on, you know? Because stuff is gonna continue to change and morphin.

Jeffrey  36:11

I’m so lucky to have her and you.

Carly  36:15

I love you very much. I’m really happy for you. This is such like a good it’s, it’s a good thing you got going on. Like I’m, I’m really happy for you. And for Emma. Like, you guys seem like you’re bringing out the best out on each other, you know?

Jeffrey  36:33

You just trying to get into that helicopter when we get married.

Carly  36:39

Like, what does this button do?

Chloe  36:40

This is Chloe. So I’m getting ready to kind of step out for the first time in a way that I feel good about. I’m meeting up with Cadence, Mariana, Sy, and Jeffrey and we’re gonna have some drinks and some desserts to celebrate my birthday. Coming up in a few days, I’ll be turning 40 I’ve already gotten some kind of cool skincare products from good light. And that was really sweet. It’s been a fun thing for me to play around with during recovery. And yeah, I’m really looking forward to stepping out tonight. Yeah, like I’ve been out for coffee and stuff like that. But this is my first time like going out to see people I know and see people I care about and you know, I had a bit of a depression when I know a few weeks after surgery, which I hear is normal. But I seem to be on the other side of that. I like how I look and I know that there’s still swelling and things need to settle and it’s a process and everything’s a process but I’m happy right now. And I’m excited I’m nervous but I’m excited.

Chloe  38:31

Hi, everybody.

Jeffrey  38:40

Oh my God, you look amazing.

Sy  38:46

Amazing. And you look fantastic. And you look like yourself like plus.

Cadence  38:53

Yeah, thank you. Oh my god. So are you recovered?

Chloe  38:57

So still recovering still a little bit swelling to go down, but I’m mostly there.

Cadence  39:01

Oh my goodness. Your smiling glowing. Oh my goodness. I have to say take it. Oh my goodness.

Chloe  39:08

So we’re at the restaurant. I’m with Jeffrey Marianna cadence inside. And we’re gonna celebrate my FFS my birthday and just some other things that are going well to

Jeffrey  39:20

the birthday Chloe.

Chloe  39:22

Thank you. I’m so glad you could be here tonight. And many, many more.

Chloe  39:29

This is going to be a big year. 40 is better than 30. I’m super excited and I think it’s gonna be really good year. I got good feelings about this. I really do feel very lost.

Jeffrey  39:48

I made you a birthday present. Can I give it to you? I made these. There’s two of them in there.

Chloe  40:00

Wait a second, I’m holding it the wrong way. It’s New York State.

Jeffrey  40:05

And then there’s another one in there. Two places where your heart is.

Chloe  40:13

Jeff got me something so meaningful. He got me wooden frames in which he burned in the shapes of the state of New York and the state of California. And hearts pinned on my hometown of Rochester, New York and here where I live now in Los Angeles.

Jeffrey  40:31

And then you can hang pictures of your different groups of people that you love.

Chloe  40:38

I can’t thank you all enough for everything for coming out tonight through these beautiful gifts for taking care of me for being amazing. Thank you all whenever people ask me where I’m from, I always say well, I live in LA for now. And I think that’s because a lot of my heart is still back home in Rochester, New York. And I’m also learning at the same time that I do have people here in Los Angeles in California that care about me and want the best for me and will help me in ways that I may not even know that I need, there is a community here for me and having those relationships makes all the difference in the world.

Jeffrey  41:19

I’m so happy.

Chloe  41:21

Thank you all so much. This means a lot.

Sy  41:45

This Sy. We’ve had so many birthdays lately and today is Egon’s. We invited a few of his friends over for cake and fun. All right, it’s birthday cake time, everybody. Let’s bring the cake out this way instead of getting the kids all over here. Wait. Nope. Go over there. Everybody over there. All right, we’re waiting for one more candle on your birthday cake. Okay. It’s been a pretty positive year for me. Robert and I are closing on our first home together and we finally found a school for Egon who will start there in the fall. All right, are we ready to sing Happy Birthday to Egon, alright, everyone. That’s right, Egon is four years old. I’m just really overwhelmed with gratitude. And so looking forward to all the things that life has coming my way both positive and challenges. All right, blow them out

Emma  43:17

What are we doing?

Jeffrey  43:19

I don’t know I was just having dinner and like hang and maybe play game or something. We have to pack a lot into five days of being together. Emma managed to sneak away and she and then headed down to Los Angeles. And so we’re having a date night tonight. And we’re gonna play board games and just, I don’t know, be goofy and have a blast. Honestly, I can’t wait. I can’t wait until like, either I need a stylist friend. Or just get enough money to get a stylist that like, takes both of us shopping. Because

Emma  43:56

Because I’m too lazy to do it. I just were like

Jeffrey  43:59

I think you need someone other than me to tell you like, hey, this looks really good on your body shape. Yeah, that’s true. And I need somebody to tell me like enough with the onesies.

Emma  44:11

Oh, you always ended up trying to dress me like I’m from the south? Because that’s your entire No,

Jeffrey  44:17

I guess. No, I fight this. I fight this a lot. I do dress you in some like, dress you like your child. But I do think that certain things really look good. Like there are certain tops and things like that.

Jeffrey  44:18

Yeah, but I’ve also like put on an outfit that was like, it made me look like I was like I was born in Galveston and like raised there.

Jeffrey  44:45

I’m not saying none of these words are coming out of my mouth. I am saying things and you are making assumptions. All relationships have their challenges and even more so because We’re both trans. I love Emma so much. I know we’re gonna get through this. And I’ve, I’m so excited, I’m excited. And every bit of it’s worth it. Whatever challenges are coming our way, I’m up for it. I’m in it for the long haul. And we’re gonna do it together. It totally looks good. All the freedom of a skirt with all the function jeans, why are jeans kids a thing? I don’t know, they can look at but I don’t know if I worry so much about others. Because I was an alcoholic. And for so many years, I just, I was selfish. And some of it might be conditioning from being trans half the time I think is probably protecting myself, or just not wanting to inconvenience other people or make their lives harder just for dealing with me. But I have to remember that Emma can make her own decisions. And I mean, everyone in my life can make their own decisions. I don’t need to protect anyone. It’s all about just being kind, being honest, and working hard. And I hope people see that that’s who I really am. And I hope that they like that person. Because I’m getting there.

Mariana  46:38

Hi, I’m Mariana. Anna. Nice to meet you. Cameras ready. My outfit looks great. My shoes are high. And we are here ready to do a photo shoot at this park for the cover of the fight magazine. I’m so excited. Of course, I’m not by myself on the cover. I have this two hot and amazing guys next to me, Eddie and Steven. They do great work in Los Angeles, with the LGBTQ community. So we’re gonna be together on this?

Speaker 8  47:16

Yeah, basically, you guys are gonna stand out here naked and jump up.

Mariana  47:20

Nice. I love the idea. As long as both jump on top of me. The fight magazine is one of the last LGBTQ magazines left in Los Angeles. So being part of this is very important. And because they’re going to be part of history, I think is the highlight of my life. A little bit. So I see shoe and leg. Do that’s good. Yeah. As part of my job, I get to do a lot of fun stuff too. And being on the cover of magazine is one of those.

Speaker 8  47:50

switch around a little bit do the code of when your […] opens I see color of yeah, like that. That’s nice.

Mariana  48:05

One day, I will be able to break away and find something more than my work. But that doesn’t mean I live a life without great meaning. I am beyond happy for those who are able to follow their dreams and passions. But some of us have to work. So others can run. And until that time comes for me. Until that time I have to hold on to those beautiful moments of doing my work. Yay. I’m gonna be in the cover.

Chloe  49:02

It is Monday, my birthday. And I am at the beach. The ocean is the best thing in the world to me. And I really wanted to be near it and be a part of it. Because it’s a big birthday, I’m turning 40 or, I guess turned 40 at midnight, or early this morning. I guess my mom would say. You know, I spoke to my mom this morning. And fortunately things aren’t as bad as we thought they might be. I’m just entirely grateful and feeling incredibly fortunate about that. It kind of bailed me out of having to make that decision about moving home in a way but I do like to think that I would have been able to take a step back and make the decision that was really right for me right now. And I think that’s what my mom would have wanted to. I think Rochester will always be home for me But LA feels like home too. I’m not gonna lie, LA has grown on me. And there’s no smell in the world like the ocean. The salt air is everything. And that’s what’s hitting me right now. I gotta say 39 was a big year, 39 was a good year. I mean, it’s good way to roll into 40 I think the big difference is now that I have belief in myself as a person, knowing that I can do things and I will do things, but I can handle a lot more than I ever thought that I could. And this whole experience of being on a podcast was not something I ever thought that I would do. Here I am, baring my soul in a lot of ways to people I’ll never meet and the idea of having children, getting back involved with sports. Some of my feelings about romance and lack of romance in my life. Engaging with those things is not easy. I am absolutely humiliated. You know, these are moments in time and I’m really glad that they’re being recorded in a way and I hope that my story and the story of the other people on the show can help somebody else.

Mariana  51:31

It’s funny that I’m offering your support when you give me so much strength.

Robert  51:36

It makes me happy when you’re yourself as authentically as you possibly can be.

Sy  51:43

That’s a really sweet thing to say.

Jeffrey  51:46

I love you very much. And I really do want to marry you.

Chloe  51:53

Sure sometimes we fail I know I do. I’m just trying to grow. Thank you. Thank you very much and thank you all for being a part of this.

Fernando  52:42

BEING: TRANS is an audio reality original from Lemonada Media’s BEING studios, executive producers are Jessica Cordova Kramer, Stephanie Wittels Wachs and Kasey Barrett. Our co-executive producer is Sele Leota. Our associate producer is Myrriah Gossett and our assistant producer is Greta Stromquist. Our consulting producer is Sarah Jossel, Scott Hanlon is our audio supervisor and field Recordist with additional field recording by Maurice Mahiya. Makes him sound designed by David Herman and Michael Raphael. Additional mix sound design and consultation by Ivan Kuraev. Our music is by Signature Tracks. Special thanks to the Hot Donna’s club and the Glendale room. BEING: TRANS is brought to you with generous support from the Marguerite Casey Foundation and Wellbeing Trust. You can find us online at @LemonadaMedia and connect with us across all social platforms. Subscribe to Lemonada Media on Apple podcasts you hear bonus content, deleted scenes and more from our cast. If you like what you heard today, please tell your family and friends to listen and subscribe. Rate and review us on Spotify, Apple, Stitcher or wherever you get your podcasts. Until next time, thanks for listening and thanks for BEING.

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