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Sunday, December 17, 2006

Chrismas the Great Inclusion; PART EIGHT

Christmas; The Great Inclusin
Part eight - The Giving

Our Puritan forefathers came to our fair country to escape the corruptness of the European church. They did not celebrate Christmas. They had no desire to participate in the inclusion of wild riotous parties and the like. For many years, their perspective held traditional celebrations in check. There still are Christian sects who refuse to celebrate the holiday.

It wasn’t until the 19th century until business decided to include Christmas as a new marketing tool to sell products. And it quickly became an instant hit. The Christmas season is now watched carefully as an extremely important financial indicator for our economy. The average American will spend $769 on gifts this year, according to Gallup. As long as middle class America can afford Christmas shopping, we are in good shape.

Yet, the word on the street from many is that we have “lost the true meaning of Christmas”. Just what is the true meaning of Christmas? Let’s review some important points:

- The original Jewish sect did not celebrate the birth of Christ. The significant Christian event was that of his resurrection. (By the way, that too is based on a pagan holiday celebrating the spring equinox.)
- When the birth of Christ was established, it was a random choice based on the popularity of a pagan Italian holiday.
- Every holiday tradition we practice has roots in various cultures of the world. All were originally non-Christian.
- The popular practice of exchanging gifts was maximized during the past two centuries by business. This has been good for our economies.
- All traditions we celebrate during Christmas time have inclusionary roots. Some are religious based. Most are not.

So, what is the true meaning of Christmas? It is a holiday of giving. It is a time when we spend our hard earned cash to give something of value to someone else. It is a season of song and the arts. It is a time for parties and happy socialization. It is a time to spend with family. Sure, the baby Jesus, pops in occasionally. And I suppose it is good to remember a poor man who taught of love, charity and grace. But our current holiday does not exist to celebrate the birth of its namesake. That does not take away from the message of giving, sharing, and sacrifice.

Our holiday is rich in inclusion. That is what I view in its celebration. There is spirituality in the commercialization through the gift giving. Love is in the air. To me, that is the true meaning of the season. I love the colorful decorations. I love my fake Christmas tree. I love to purchase and give gifts.

I suppose that if we truly can capture the sentiments of giving and sharing, we have instilled something of the teacher’s message into the holiday named for him. But I can absolutely guarantee you, that it is not a Christian holiday. It is one we celebrate with all people.

Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS feeds allowed

Christmas the Great Inclusion; PART SEVEN

Christmas; The Great Inclusin
Part seven - The Tree

Our most popular modern Christmas tradition is decorating everything. We’ve got to have tinsel, bows, bright colored paper plastered everything. And if that isn’t enough, we string lights made in China to waste countless kilowatt hours powered by fossil fuels.

It all started with the Christmas tree.

The Christmas tree has no connection to the birth of Jesus. In fact, trees have long been gone from the holy lands. A tree relegated to decoration would have been something of a luxury methinks. Two of the priceless gifts presented to the baby Jesus according to the gospels were myrrh and frankincense. Both of these products were produced from tree sap and were used as incense. Tree sap valuable? You know why? They didn’t have many trees. Now, this sap truly was special!

In the seventh century, a monk from Crediton, Devonshire, traveled to Germany to preach. Much of his time was spent in Thuringia spreading the gospel. The people there revered the oak tree for all the reasons great oaks are admired. It was old, it was strong, it was a virul symbol of life. Our monk friend used the idea of an evergreen to convey teachings of the holy trinity. A cut fir was triangular in shape and in his discourses, the three points of the triangle represented the three personages of the godhead.

It took 5 hundred years for the idea to catch on, but by the 12th century, fir trees were being hung upside down every where in Europe at Christmas time. Yes, the gift of the monk was to take a long standing tradition of respect for the living mighty oak and turn it into a frenzy for killing trees and hanging them upside down.

But this was not all that the monk left to us. Decorating the trees became popular at some point… .and his work came to great financial reward to Thuringia which soon became the greatest manufacturer of decorations in the world. Until they learned of outsourcing.

The message of our monk was devised to include the Germans into his faith. It unintentionally became a strong tradition which we enjoy with fervor today.

Deck the halls! Kill a tree!

Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS feeds are allowed

Christmas the Great Inclusion; PART SIX

Christmas; The Great Inclusin
Part six - Viscum Album

Mistletoe (Phoradendron flavescens or Viscum Album) is a parasitic plant that grows hardwood trees for the most part. As mistletoe grows on a tree, it sends out its roots right into the tree's bark and takes nutrients from the tree. Mistletoe does not kill the tree but it is known to cause deformities in the branches. Mistletoe stays green all year long and is easily spotted in the winter time when the trees lose their leaves.

Image of Mistletoe

Ingesting mistletoe can cause severe stomach cramps and diarrhea, and in some cases can be fatal. In Europe, mistletoe is used for medicinal purposes. Here in the United States, we haven’t figured it out yet since we can’t legally grant a patent to Pfizer for a plant.

The name for mistletoe comes down to us from second century Anglo-Saxons (yes, the white people) Mistel is the word for dung. Tan is the word for twig. They called it mistletan. In the good old days they saw the birds crap on the tree limbs and then this parasitic plant would grow. Of course, the birds were leaving seeds from the berries they had eaten, but it truly did appear that this plant was the direct result of birds crapping on the tree.

In the first century, British Druids believed that this plant could perform miracles. It was used as an aphrodisiac (believe me, the human race always checks out this use first for any drug), medicinal uses, and to protect people from witchcraft. They would harvest mistletoe five days after the new moon following winter solstice. Fearing contamination if it touched the ground, it was carefully caught in a special white cloth. They would then sacrifice two white bulls while prayers were offered. Sprigs were then passed to the people who would then be protected from evil spirits and storms. Because of the consistency and color of its berry juice, it has long been recognized as a sexual symbol. Now I looked this one up. What this means leads my mind to wander.

Correct etiquette for kissing under the plant was for the man to remove one berry when he kissed a woman. When all the berries were gone, there could be no more kissing under that plant. (Yea…just try buying some mistletoe with actual berries on it.) If an unmarried woman was not kissed under the mistletoe, she would remain single for the coming year.

So, why in the world was this gnarly plant drawn into the great inclusion? For the best recurring reasons of all. It helped celebrate the very creation of life. And besides there were lots of Druids in that neck of the woods to convert. Since bulls have been hard to come by, that part of the tradition has been relegated to the hamburger chains for year round processing.

Anyone for some mistletoe berry mash?

Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS feeds allowed

Christmas the Great Inclusion; PART FIVE

Christmas; The Great Inclusion
Part five - Amanita Muscaria

The fly agaric (amanita muscaria) with its fiery red cap and white “stars” is one of the most spectacular of our forest fungi. Down through the ages it has been compared to bull testicles and male genitalia and worshipped as sthe earthy incarnation of infinity, divinity and virility. It’s characiature appears on common objects from key chains to lawn furniture. It is unusual to find a societal icon to be, in fact real. This species is named the “fly” agaric from the old practice of using the mushroom mixed with milk to stupefy flies. It is also notable for its ability to concentrate vanadium – a rare, malleable, ductile metal used to add tensile strength to steel. (paraphrased from Mushrooms Demysitified by David Arora).

Amanita muscaria is a member of the same family of other well known but seldom recognized mushrooms such as the death cap and the destroying angel. Yes, they carry toxins which can be deadly. But it is commonly known that it has hallucinogenic properties. Before I continue, let me reiterate, that consuming this mushroom can be deadly. Do not eat them.

Now where am I going with this mushroom that is prone to maggot nurseries? You are going to love this.

A Russian folk tradition puts our muscaria as a central character in a Christmas story of sorts. You see, many years ago, Russians hanging out in a snow soaked frozen wilderness of the mother country’s famous nether lands had nothing to do. The winter freeze forced them inside. So what to do in those cold winter nights but eat, drink, and get high. The muscaria was considered food, a recreational food of sorts. The story goes that these fellows charged up on muscarias and recycled the chemicals by consuming their urine into a hallucinogenic frenzy. Yes, hanging out with friends sharing a few good fungus was THE thing to do. The mushroom of their interest became heroic. It became their icon, a football hero of their day.

So what was to do with such an icon? Today we plaster our walls with artwork with NFL heros. Back in “the day”, good old Saint Nick was a pretty drab dude. If you look back at the old artwork, his clothes were pretty boring. These wacked out gents decided to decorate their patron saint with the bright and festive colors of their favorite fungus. Yes, they clothed good old Saint Nicholas in red and white. And to their saint, they granted him the mystical powers we are familiar with today. He was attributed magical skills divined by a group of men in a hallucinogenic state of mind.

May we give thanks to our old Russian compatriots this sacred season for the tender gifts of magic and wonder they gave to us. Yes, child, what can Santa bring YOU for Christmas?

Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS feeds allowed

Christmas the Great Inclusion; PART FOUR

Christmas; The Great Inclusion
Part Four - Yule Tide Log

The Scandinavian tribes also celebrated the winter solstice. It seems like the ancient peoples all understood astronomy to some degree. Many experts give the civilizations in the old days a lot of credit for becoming expert astronomers. But here’s the deal. Other than getting smashed on alcoholic beverages, they didn’t have all that much to do at night. So, they sat around at night looking at the stars and making up stories about them.

You know, if you were to watch the stars for a couple of years or so, you would soon recognize their dance across the heavens. It doesn’t take a rocket science to figure out that their motion tells a story of the seasons. This knowledge was important; for they relied on it for their very survival.

It’s not hard to understand why the winter solstice became so important. It marked the shortest day of the year. It marked the coldest and longest night. It was the march towards springtime planting. It was a time to celebrate. One particular celebration of note was called Jol to honor Jolnir (or Odin, the chief god of the Norsemen). The pronunciation of Jol became “Yule” to us.

In those cold regions of northern Europe, the burning of a large log became a very popular traditional way to celebrate the festival of Jol. They’d go out into the forest and drag in the biggest log they could find. Into the communal lodge it would go to the fire.
Out would come a big pig and in it would go for roasting. (Could this be the origins of the traditional holiday ham dinner? It certainly didn’t come from the Jewish traditions!)

The party started when it was lit and it would not end until the log was completely consumed. The lodge would be filled with smoke, food, laughter, dancing, brew… and the other things that naturally accompany such an event. I’m sure that if we could go back to those times, there would be many who also celebrated birthdays in August.

Yes, I would consider the party an uncontrolled orgy of sorts. Why not? It was cold outside and there was not much else to do in the time of longest nights. It wasn’t uncommon for the log to last several days. I wonder how much imbibing a person could take in over several days? I have no clue. I’m not an imbiber. I really don’t know.

When celebrations of the Christmas holiday caught on in these areas, the log was included by the local people as part of the local traditional way to celebrate the season. Oh yes… all of the other trappings came along with it much to the chagrin of the church I’m sure.

Nevertheless, it was an inclusionary act to adopt the Yule log as part of a traditional Christmas.

Oh yea. Come on baby and light that fire.

Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS feeds allowed

Christmas the Great Inclusion; PART THREE

Christmas; The Great Inclusin
Part three - The Birthday of a King

There is only one surviving historical account of Jesus made during his time. Josephus, a historian of the time, wrote of Jesus being executed as a criminal. He elaborated no further. He did not write anything of the life of Jesus or his influence… only that he was killed as a common thief. Intuitively, however, you might think that there was more to it than that, for if Jesus were indeed a common thief, it would not merit historical annotation in that day. So, according to the people of that time, Jesus was a figure of some notoriety.

My husband tells of how his sister would help her son understand the “true meaning of Christmas” as he was growing up. She was a single mother with little money to celebrate the holidays. Yet she still found a unique way to make the event special for her little boy. She would make a birthday cake that they would share for the baby Jesus.

I hear often that we have forgotten the true meaning of Christmas. I’ve never quite understood what that topic is meant to convey. Yes, this particular day supposedly marks a great Christian event…..

The books of the New Testament give us little to work with when establishing the real date of the birth of Jesus. In fact, these writings work against us in helping to determine the actual date. They can’t even agree in which city he was born. Two cities are identified.

The season of his birth is further confiscated by the description of events in the gospels. These indicate spring or fall time events, not winter.

Additionally, the year of his birth is totally masked by historical facts that contradict each other. has gratiously provided this concise example of what I'm talking about:

“The Gospel of Luke (1:5) states that John the Baptist was at least conceived, if not born, under Herod, and that Christ was conceived while John's mother was in the sixth month of her pregnancy (1:26). Luke's Gospel also states that Christ was born during the reign of Augustus and while Quirinius was the governor of Syria (2:1-2), . Blackburn and Holford-Strevens (2003, 770) indicate Quirinius' governorship of Syria began in AD 6, which is incompatible with conception in 4 BC, and say that "St. Luke raises greater difficulty....Most critics therefore discard Luke" (p. 776). Some scholars rely on John's Gospel to place Christ's birth in c.18 BC”
So we, quite honestly, do not know where Jesus was born, which day marks the day of his birth, or even the year he was born.

So, when to celebrate Christmas? Quite honestly, it wasn’t a concept followed in the early church. Celebrations of any kind (other than the sacraments) countered the doctrine. In early church history, it was believed that Jesus was born and killed on March 25. Jewish tradition mandated that a prophet live an integral number of years.

However, there came a need to further define Jesus. The church membership needed more to believe in. And, it was also important to use the concept of inclusion to help provide a step for non members into the organization. As the church became more of a Roman entity and moved from the lands of Jerusalem, it made sense to include the them.

In Italy, a well established festival was Saturnalia, a holiday held prior to the winter solstace. Small gift giving was common and the holiday lasted several days accompanied by much singing and drinking. Natalis Solis Invicti (the birthday of the unconquered sun) was a celebration of winter solstace on December 25. The date marked the shortest days of the year. The celebrations marked the rebirth of the sun… when the days would now grow longer. Many sun deities were worshiped. These holidays were popular among the Roman population. They marked a new beginning, new life, and serious party making.

It made sense to include these celebrations, these dates, into the Christian life. For, a religion to survive in Rome, it needed a Roman membership. This inclusion has its first recorded mark in history dated 221 AD by a traveling pastor named Sextus Julius Africanus.

And indeed it was. The church officially hijacked the festival of the unconquered sun. The Catholic Encyclopedia freely states that this Roman celebration has the strongest claim on the celebration of Jesus’ birth.

The date of his birth is ultimately unimportant. The inclusion of other peoples, the marriage of common beliefs, the celebration of life is what is important.

Copyright by Cindi Jones 2006 RSS feeds allowed

Christmas, the Great Inclusion; PART TWO

Christmas; The Great Inclusion
Part two- Saul of Tarsus

What do you do when you have a struggling new religion and you just can’t get it off the ground. You’ve got some new ideas, some fresh perspectives… you want to get the word out.
Yes, this is what the early Christians faced. The Romans had really done a number on them. Early Christians were a sect of the Jewish faith. Oh yes. They were Jews. It is a little recognized fact, much to the chagrin of the KKK that Jesus was in fact a Jew. I don’t know that he ever denounced the Jewish faith as a matter of fact. But I digress.

So, here we had the Romans actively persecuting the Jews. They had the audacity to give the Romans the proverbial finger. And the fledgling religion was caught up in the struggle. The once great Jewish nation was nearly cleansed from the earth as the great Roman armies invaded to clear the insurrections. Oh no… the Christians were not the first to go after the Jews (oh… but back then the Christians were Jews!).

So, here we have a decimated nation with a new sect impoverished by the cleansing of war. And in its Jewish state, it had moderate acceptance but was not growing. In fact, in all likelihood, it could have died had not Saul of Tarsus come along.

Saul described himself as an active persecutor of the new sect early in his life. He was a fundamentalist Jew and a legal Roman citizen. There was no room for these free wheeling liberal hippies spreading love all around. Persecution in those days was not an act of publishing pamphlets and yelling hatred in the street. No, it was a driving people from their homes, whipping and killing sort of thing. Somewhere along the way, he had a vision where upon his heart was changed. He saw the error of his ways. Love was the answer and he joined the new liberal sect. Although he never met Christ, nor was he given an assignment by one of the authorities, Saul took it upon himself to spread the good word.

His first act was to change his name. For you see, you need to do something to convince people that you’re not the same ole murdering SOB they used to know. A name change is good. It completely eradicates all that old history… at least it did back then. Paul traveled and could see that the easiest way to grow the membership was in the liberal act of inclusion. He stepped outside the borders of Judah and started teaching to the Gentiles, those not born to the Jewish cast. He was ridiculed by the fundamentalist Jewish Christians for this act. Are we confused by this liberal, fundamentalist, conservative ping pong ball yet? Okay… let’s let it go. The thing to see here was that Paul was an inclusionist.

The practice wasn’t a new idea. Egyptians, for example took no chances. They would write prayers from just about every known religion to include in their burial rituals just to make sure their loved one would be properly carried into the afterlife. Believe it or not, there are Egyptian burial records with even Christ mentioned in later years.

But this was a first for the new faith. It was not to be the last. Religious sanctity depicted in art… holy angels with halos, for example, would be taken from the old Greek religions.

Paul would come to be the principal figure in shaping the structure and very nature of the new Christian faith. Christianity ceased being a Jewish sect with the acts of Paul. New members coming in from surrounding nations carried it to a new faith to stand on its own… sort of.

It needed more followers. And to do that, the Christians needed to attract people with better marketing. That marketing would lead to the unofficial policy of inclusion. Other religions and nations had long held traditions which they could not abandon. Christianity gave them a way to follow the new path and still hold on to their closely held traditions. For Christianity would embrace those traditions and make them its own.

The holiday we now celebrate as Christmas would become an amalgamation of many traditions from many cultures. Now this, my friends, is a wonderful thing.

Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS feeds allowed.

Christmas, the Great Inclusion; PART ONE

Christmas; The Great Inclusion
Part One - The War on Christmas

In our day, we declare war on anything we don’t like. I remember when we declared the war on drugs. I remember thinking at the time that this was a war we would never win. We didn’t have a known enemy to conquer. We had no idea what we would be fighting. There have been other wars declared in the meantime. The war on poverty, the war on terror, and others come to mind. None have been effective. The names are misnomers.

Last year, I heard a new one: “the war on Christmas”. It was odd. I’d never really thought that there was a need to beat down Christmas, put it on trial, and throw it in jail. Oddly enough, this war was declared by the same political factions of other declared ineffective wars for the same political reasons. It was a war conceived to portray an enemy that did not exist, conceived to enflame and divide the people of our fair country.

I saw on the tube recently, an interview with a Jewish man on the street concerning some aspect of the war on Christmas. At the end of the interview, totally off script, the Jewish gent wished the interviewer “Merry Christmas”. Here in the states, it is a national holiday of festive decorations and gift giving. You see, it is shared by most everyone from every walk of life. Regardless of your faith and spirituality, the holiday is a fun holiday to share.

Most of you know that I am “Druish Royalty”. Yes, the church that I pastor has no official religious holidays. But Bill O’Reilly had better not take my Christmas away from me just cause he wants me to declare a war on it!

Historically, this holiday has spurned creativity from the world’s best composers. Sure it’s religious. But it is also wonderful art of enduring quality. We should remember it. We play these classics every year to celebrate. Some of the newer stuff won’t have lasting value I’m afraid. But who doesn’t recognize tunes from the Nutcracker or Bing singing white Christmas?

It is a time when we get together and share with family and friends. For most of our society, it is the only time that gift giving is given a passing thought. I like to give out presents all year long… but it is especially fun at Christmas time. For you see, someone took the time to make festive wrapping paper that always fits the season. Just try finding themed paper to wrap that perfect gift for the summer solstice!

So here, may I present some of my favorite Christmas stories for your enjoyment in “The great inclusion; Christmas”

Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS feeds allowed

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Wishing My Life Away

Wishing My Life Away

The days are countin down
No more messin round
In that time I'll be found
doing the inevitable.

Am I wishin my life away
wantin this thing but still stay
focused on what must be done today?

Time clicks by so slowly
The seconds seem like minutes
and the minutes seem like hours
Bla bla bla, you've heard it before.

But can I say the interum is
precious to me?
Can it be that I just can't see
beyond this thing that just can't be?

Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS feeds allowed

Monday, December 11, 2006

Standards of care are very worthwhile

In dealing with transsexualism, medical professionals require us to follow the Harry Benjamin standards of care (SOC). These standards are a minimum set of requirements that a transsexual must follow prior to obtaining irreversible gender reassignment surgery. They include reasonable requirements for therapy, hormone treatment, and living full time in a role of the new gender for one year. Many self diagnosed (aren't we all?) transsexuals have a difficult time in following the standards of care for various reasons. This is usually for financial reasons or the individual feels that living in the opposite role is not necessary.

The standards of care are reasonable. I believe that variations on these standards are acceptable and necessary depending on each case. These can be worked out between therapist and patient. However, we must maintain the standards of care. I believe that they should not be abandoned on a whim. We are telling the rest of society that we are different and we have set up some definitions, some rules, things that HELP us get along with the disbelievers. This is another perspective to the SOC I've never seen discussed.

On the other side of the fence, for the rest of the world looking in, we have some labels, some definitions, procedures, and safeguards that help THEM to understand and deal with us. It helps us to be able to use a restroom if we can say that we are following a well established procedure. You all know how I feel about labels, boxes, and definitions. But sometimes they are beneficial and necessary.

The SOC is much more than what applies to US. Remember, WE are very self centered. The world does revolve around US. Step outside the hoola hoop kids. Try to see what the SOC means to your average citizen who has no understanding of our problems other than what they have been told all their lives. Many are perfectly open to accept us if we show them that yes, although we are different, we have safeguards, we have a methodology that we are following. They know, although they may disagree, that we have medical professionals working with us to change our lives.

Our public's education and experience with transsexualism for the most part is watching us go through our transition as we follow these standards of care. People we know and strangers alike watch us as we change. They see us transform our own lives and deal with the problems we face in real time. There is no better teacher my friends than this real life experience. They all learn from our experience in our real life test, part of the standards of care.

A perfect world would not require it all. But we live in a society. A lot of this stuff benefits our society. It helps it to learn, to grow along with us, and hopefully to some day understand. When that day comes, I'm sure we'll have a much different set of rules to follow. Perhaps we'll be able to dismiss them altogether.

In the mean time, following the standards of care will help us as we transition. And in a very big way, this will help our society learn to accept us.

Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS feeds allowed

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Bible quotes that come in handy

I really hate to get involved in religious discussions when hatred and bigotry are involved. Yet it happens. Some of my friends have asked me for appropriate quotes that they may pass on to friends and family.

These references work in almost any situation:

From Mathew chapter 22: 37-40

Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
This is the first and great commandment.
And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

Luke 6:37 Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven

Luke 6:41 And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but perceivest not the beam that is in thine own eye. (a mote is a splinter and a beam is a large piece of lumber)

Will this help you in a tirade of religious exchange? Probably not. People will believe what they will. But here it is... just in case it can help you.

Enjoy life. Chin up....

Your Druish Princess

Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS feeds are allowed

Monday, November 13, 2006

Is the kingdom of heaven among us?

"The kingdom of heaven is among us." I borrowed one of my dad's DVDs recently. He didn't like it because he said he couldn't follow it. It is called "The Kingdome of Heaven" and was released two or three years ago. I encourage everyone to watch it. I guarantee you that if you catch the real kingdom of heaven in that film, your life will be enriched.

I know that when I die, my ashes will be scattered below a favorite oak tree. My ashes will help enrich the soil to help feed that tree which is a home for birds, lichens, various creepy crawly things, and even mistletoe. The cycle of life will continue.

I am hopeful that some of my words will live on. For as long as I'm remembered, I'll still be alive in someone's heart. This is why I write.

If there is indeed life after death, I will embrace it fully. But I refuse to live my life in the here and now giving up what this world has to offer by the promise that my afterlife shall be better. I believe in making life here better, right now, for everyone.

If life is a test, I will likely fail. I was never good at tests. I can't believe a loving parent would expect a child to embrace a set of beliefs to follow and then damn that child because he/she could not divine the correct path left by 2000 year old bread crumbs. What would you do with your child who has "strayed"? You would love your child no matter what. Right? Is our capability to love greater than what God would have? I don't think so.

Copyright by Cindi Jones 2006 RSS feeds allowed

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

What seperates us from the animals?

Ahhh... interesting question. Yes there are similarities in the animal kingdom. Scientists have been studying gay mice for some time.

I raised pigeons when I was a kid. I had a hen. She was beautiful and was my favorite. All the cocks liked her too. They all mounted her. Well go figure... she mounted another hen and they had chicks. Once the chicks were raised, he went back to being a she and started up with the other cocks.

Pretty pigeon never "fathered" any additional chicks. I made sure to point out this interesting story to my father as it played out. I was hopeful that it might someday serve as a handy reference.

So did my gay bird imitate humans? Or is the gay “lifestyle” something that some are born with? What are the real differences between us and the animals? There aren’t too many to put on the list, that’s for sure.

What separates us from the animals?

1) We write stories and write music. We pass them over the generations.
2) We have created religion. Animals are too smart to get into this kind of trouble.
3) We are the only species capable to work together to leave our planet, visit another world and return.
4) We have the capacity and desire to protect and rear defective offspring en masse.

Where are we so much like animals?

1) We are territorial. We kill those not like us. The only difference between us and animals in this most animal of instincts is that we give the glory of carnage to god.
2) We protect our young.
3) We pass on learned behaviour to our young through our actions.
4) We procreate uncontrollably. We depend on nature and our own warring ways to cull the herd.
And like that.
Chin up....
bending light and time

Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS feeds are allowed

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Welcome to the machine

Have you seen it? Everyone is in a quick lunch place; the camera angle is looking straight down as people move around the tables and through the line. The music is quickly paced and peppy. The image presented is a machine, the cogs are people as they move in tempo to the music. At the end of the line, everyone zips their Visa card through the pay machine and zips on through. The cogs turn, everything is in rhythm, people get their food, people come in, people leave. It is a colorful metaphor for what lunch “should be”.

And then a fellow steps up to pay with cash. As he opens his wallet, the machine breaks down. Chefs drop something in a big dish of creamy stuff, trays drop to the floor, the cogs break and bunch up against one another.

Really. They are telling us that we are cogs in a giant machine collecting money for them as efficiently as possible. WE ARE COGS IN THEIR MACHINE! And they are brazen enough to present it forthwith. There is no hiding the message. And I suspect that for the most part, most Americans think that it is a cute ad. And many will be convinced that using cash breaks the machine of business and get others upset. Wow. Can you believe this?

Hey folks… I’m convinced that I’m going to the bank tomorrow so that I can get out some cash. For the next several weeks I am going to use cash to pay for my groceries, gasoline, and whatever else. Let’s just see how many people I can piss off.

And while we are talking about the big machine, don’t forget to study up on the issues and vote on Tuesday. This is the one way we can help drive the big machine that has become our country. Perhaps we can’t change what they do while they are in there… but we can sure vote them out if we don’t like what they have done.


Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS feeds are allowed

My dream last night... was it a vision?

I ventured out on the lawn... we were having a cookout. The Queen of England was sitting at a table with my mother and the sprinkler was soaking them all. I had a towel and sopped up as much as I could but I needed a fresh towel.

So I went back to the house and got in the elevator. Well the elevator was very tiny and I found myself on the outside of the building. I pushed the buttons for the 6th floor of the furniture store and it over shot but the door opened and I had to step across the bottomless elevator shaft to step in through the door to the bath and grocery department.

Then I stumbled onto the King's yacht with fresh tomatos. But the yacht was very tiny. He wasn't a very rich King. There was barely enough room for everyone. Three guys were using the wall long urinal in the dining room and as I turned, three chefs were passing around veggies to cut up.

I got off the Yacht but I could not see the boat itself, and I was in the middle of the street. I collected my sister and we got back on the yacht somehow and it was even smaller than before......

And then I woke up.

What does it all mean? How should I incorporate this all into my everyday life? Is it religious validation of a fundamental belief? Am I now a "profit"? Do I need install a wall long urinal in my living room? And where does my sister fit into all this? Is she the one to save me from suffocating in an invisible yacht that sails the neghborhoods? Or should I have picked up TP instead of tomatoes in the bath and grocery department?

I'm afraid these mysteries shall have no answer in my life time. They are just too confusing to deal with. Or perhaps tonight, I shall receive another revelation.. a parking spot to fit the yacht so that indeed it can be seen.

But then, another question shall be raised. When do we break down and paint the beast?

I'm sorry for sharing such an intimate thing with you all. I hope that you don't think that I am sane or something. But I really don't need help in sorting this all out.

Chin up... and all of that!


Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS feeds are allowed

Shall we stay in the public eye after transition?

In an online forum we are discussing whether living in stealth hurts the transsexual cause. Most of us tend to go our ways, disappear from the transition scened and blend back into society. There are many however who will never pass completely. Wouldn't it be nice for everyone if those who could pass well come out publicly? I'm not in those ranks folks. I like my private life. This internet incarnation gives me a mask so that I can pop in and do what I can to further the cause.

One online acquaintance wonders how she would ever answer questions about her past. "If I were ever asked about the labor of my child, I could never tell anything but the truth, that I am her father."

I've only been presented with a question like that once. It was in chat with an old work acquaintance. She asked that very same question... well very close. She asked "What was labor like for your first?" I told her that "for the birth of my first, labor was no big deal for me." That was the only time I've ever had to answer a question about the birth of my kids. I'm not sure how I would handle it in person. I'd probably tell them that I am not their birth mother and leave it at that.

I have never lied. But I've learned to talk about my "ex spousal person" even with my hubby who knows everything he wants to know. It's sort of a valley girl thang I picked up when I lived in LA. I know that it is old hat... but let me tell you, it works for me. It's my personality. When I'm asked about my excommunication from my church, I tell them that "I told a church authority that he was fulll of..." which I truly did. My kids are now married and the issues about their younger years and my part to play are non existant. Usually, people know that I went through a very painful divorce and left my home state. If anyone intrudes by asking a personal question, I just tell them that it is too painful to talk about and I don't want to go there.

I went through hell to live my life as a woman. I would never want to confirm anyone's doubt by telling them stuff they don't need to know. For those who are starting out or are in transition, believe me... when you get past all of this, you'll not be wanting to wear a sign. You will want to do your very best to blend in and disappear.

Now with that said, there are times when the issue is almost sure to come up.... like the little kid giving you the eye. I look straight back and do something totally female. I scrunch up my face and give them a big smile... and play peek aboo. My smile does work. The issue fades.

If an adult asks me point blank "Were you a guy once?" I learned to diffuse the situation immediately by saying "Yes I was. And it was a pretty boring life, let me tell you." In the last several years, this has totally been a non issue.

I have turned down interviews to promote my book. Yes, it would be nice for the extra money in book sales. But I'm confident that those who need it will find it. I wrote it only to help others by telling my story. I don't need to plaster my face across America for a few extra bucks. I've come here to help some along the way... and you know what, some of you have helped me in return. For that I am eternally grateful.


Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS feeds are allowed

Saturday, November 04, 2006

HRT not working?

An online friend of mine confessed today that she didn't think that she was getting much from the HRT she is receiving from her doctor. Hormone replacement therapy is one of the medical procedures we go through prior to surgery as a transsexual. It is similar to what a normal woman goes through after having a hysterectomy. The difference in transsexuals is that the doseages are elevated in an attempt to counteract the effects of testosterone. Many transsexuals experience feminization in their physical features. Most experience some breast growth and some redistribution of body fat.

For what it is worth, I didn't get a whole lot from HRT prior to surgery. There were many times when I felt like you. And there were many times I took a step back to reexamine my decisions... sometimes at great personal and mental harm.

When I hear someone playing up how wonderful HRT is, I always think "what's with that?" For in my personal experience, HRT did almost nothing. And you know... in all likelyhood, I seriously believe that there are many just like me who are afraid to admit it. We do have a culture, like it or not, where we feel we "must" show something for our efforts. What happens when there is no progress? What do we have to "brag" about? What do we have to show ourselves that what we are doing is showing positive results? Does it matter? ... really?

6 months after my surgery, I finally noticed what a lack of testosterone was like. My mind finally cleared and I no longer felt depressed ALL the time. I didn't have that thing churning in my mind pushing me to do crazy things. As I look back, I'm glad that I did have periods of introspection. I'm glad that I did try to return those times. It helped me solidify my decision. It has given my life a stronger drive to move ahead and not linger in non productive thought.

Unfortunately, there is no ruler against we can measure our progress physically or mentally. The only measure we track is amongst the people we know. And for that, our TG/TS community sometimes will drag us along to some degree. I always advise not to get caught up in that aspect. Caution is always best when considering such life changing decisions.

If you are on HRT and have doubts , spend a weekend totally in drab (as a guy). See if it floats your boat. Slick back your hair and go spend a weekend in another city. That may give you a better idea where you are going. But don't worry about the HRT drugs. In my opinion, there is way too much attention given to this part of the process.


Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS feeds are allowed

Friday, November 03, 2006

Learning to Pass - Walking

I've been asked to start a conversation on passing. I was already thinking of something when I received that request. Please feel free to join in this discussion. If you'd like to see me write tips on other subjects, please PM me.

I watched a documentary on Discovery last night called switching sexes. Among a few topics they chronicled one fellow before he started his transition and ended with her living her new life as a woman but still not yet having SRS. One of the problems I noticed she carried yet unto the end of the production was her walk. She walked like a guy. She had a lovely face and was tall, but the biggest tell was that she lumbered down the sidewalk like a gorilla.

While I was still in my CD days, I met with my buddy Matty, in the bay area when I was traveling on business. I had been passing successfully for some time. I had the walk down. We doubled with another couple for lunch at some swank restaurant. I was dressed nicely in my punk dark doo and a form fitting knit dress with 3" heels. As we finished up a fine meal, we walked out to the car. The other fellow and his wife followed Matty and me out to the car as I held on to his elbow.

When we got in the car, she asked me: "Cindi, will you please show me how you walk like that?" "Huh?" I asked. She followed: "You walk very sexy. I want you to show me how." When we arrived at my apartment we had a walking lesson.

With all the tells to work on, walking was one that I had studied with a strong eye all my life. It is the easiest tell to fix (no surgery or money) and it is one of the most important. It came easily although I had never walked that way as a guy. So, what does a guy look like?

A manly man has a long stride. His arms swing back and forth palms pointed slightly backward. Each step is bluntly taken as if anything in the path will bend to his will. With every step, his heel firmly hits the pavement. The bulk of his weight is instantly transfered to the new step. His shoulders will move forward with each stride. He often will look down. He looks straight ahead with a singular purpose of reaching his destination. Here are some tips for walking in feminine fashion while wearing normal shoes if you are an MTF.

1 - Turn your elbows in toward you some. This will turn your palms more towards the front. Ask a woman to stretch her arm out. It will bend slightly backwards at the elbow. Guys can't do this. Turning your elbows in a bit will compensate for this inability.
2 - Lift your chin a bit and look forward. If you are walking with someone, look at them more often.
3 - Take smaller steps.
4 - Glide. See the movie Miss Congeniality to see how..
5 - Smile. Men don't smile.
6 - Take in the sights. Men ignore the sights.
7 - Swish your hips a bit... .from left to right in rythm. Women's hips are set out farther from the center of gravity. This action comes naturally for them. We have to practice.
8 - Think "keep my knees together". Keeping them close together will allow you to more slowly transfer your weight from foot to foot.
9 - If your feet point forward or slightly out when you walk, put each step down and think pivot ankle in a bit as you take the step.
10 - If you carry a shoulder bag, rest your forarm on it with a limp wrist. ...
11 - Don't hold your hands straight, rather, bend them out a bit.
12 - Don't let your shoulders follow your feet. Your shoulders will follow where you look, and your feet follow. When you get distracted, every thing follows in that order.

Now, my new friend didn't need to know all that to walk like a woman. She wanted to walk sexy while wearing high heels. And I think that it is good practice for an MTF to practice wearing walking in modest heels. So this is what I showed her:

1 - Take smaller steps than when wearing flats.
2 - When you take smaller steps, you set your feet down more level. The heel is not set down to the pavement squarely. Rather, the ball of the foot comes close behind.
3 - Set your foot down facing forward. Note that this is different than when wearing flats.
4 - Let your ankle wobble. This is a natural tendancy, let it happen. If your ankle wobbles, it shows weakness; a truly feminine charactersitic. Keeping your ankle stiff will be a dead tell for you as an MTF. For a GG, it just doesn't look very feminine.
5 - Swivel your heel in (your toes out) as you lift each foot. Note that this is just opposite as when wearing flats.
6 - Glide and swish

So you can't get all this down? Don't worry. Practice. Watch women you think are feminine. See what they do and practice in front of a mirror. Have a friend help you experiment. Get this down so it is something you do without thinking. The walk is your most important tell to change.


Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS feeds are allowed

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Cindi's Beliefs

I've been asked many times during the past several months what I believe. My writings have invited many curious questions from my readers. In another forum, I am answering questions concerning Mormon doctrine and history. I am not sharing my beliefs in that thread.

I have been hesitant to do this for various reasons but I think that posting my beliefs may answer questions for some, clear up perceptions for others, and just bore the rest of you to tears. I welcome comment and criticism. So, here they are... my beliefs.


Cindi's Beliefs

People have beliefs that they hold sacred. I do not believe in denigrating them. I honor their faith with an honest heart.

I will not be a member of an organized church. I believe that any organization that exists to the exclusion of any people has the potential to become powerful and exert harm towards minorities.

I do believe that there are many churches that are honorable and perform great good. I believe that there are many believers of almost every faith who are righteous and good.

I do not attribute things that I do not understand to be understood only by God. We have been given curiosity to learn and discover. I believe that it is a holy mandate for us to experiment and learn.

I do understand that most scientific facts have numerous flaws in definition or understanding. I understand that many scientific tenants continue to be redefined. However, we should not ever cease our pursuit for learning in all things.

I do believe that we should teach science in schools. I believe that religion is best taught by parents. Religion should not be taught in public schools.

I believe that we have power we do not understand. Some define this as faith. I believe that this power can be used for good, for healing, and understanding. I believe that many people can effectively use prayer.

I believe that Science and Faith can and do come together. We no longer pray for the rain god to release rain for example. We now understand how rain is made.

I believe in propagating the religious stories and traditions of our forefathers. These spiritual lessons learned for generations are important to understand. They can be used in an uplifting way. I do not condone the use of them to persecute any minority.

I do not believe anything anyone tells me to be absolute in any form. I believe there is truth but I believe no one can tell me the absolute truth, especially when it comes to living my own life.

I am a very spiritual person. I live my life by sharing love, charity, and grace. I have no need to forgive. I let things that offend me slide away.

I strive to protect the minority in any situation.

I hold all life as precious.

I am responsible for my own actions.

My beliefs are mine and although I will share them, I will not push them on anyone else.

Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS and Atom feeds allowed. All other use by permission only.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Another birthday

Today marks a milestone for me. I’ve been here on our pale blue dot, our planet for 51 years. That’s just a hair more than half a century. That’s a long time in human years. I’ve had friends who have died along the way. Both of my parents still are alive. My brother and sister are still doing well. And I have two children who in turn have their little daughters. That’s a lot of family.
Why am I waxing about my family? I don’t feel old. But that number is creaking up. I’m getting older. A glimpse of my own mortality is shaping up somewhere in the back corners of my mind. Shall I run out and get all religious? No… I’ll just keep trudging along. I do my best to live the kind of life my mother would be proud of. I think that I’m a pretty decent person. I’m pretty humble too.

Mom sent me a check with a card. My folks live several states away. It might as well be half way round the world for as often as I get to see them. I usually get up to see them once a year. And they come out for a visit once a year. I can certainly use the money, don’t get me wrong. I’ll throw it in the good stuff for Cindi fund. But really, I’d be just as happy if she gave me a ring to talk for an hour. Hmmm… it’s only 2:30 PM. I’ll give her another half hour. If she doesn’t call me, I’ll call her.

I’m terrible about calling. I’ve inherited the cheap gene. I have a plan that allows me to call as often as I want. But the cheap gene has been a harsh taskmaster and forced me into a life style that I can not bend. Dad has a cheap gene too; he has the same phone plan as I and yet only rings me up once a month or so. I suppose that I can blame my dad for the cheap gene. He was the one who gave it to mom by osmosis. Our whole family is cheap.

Now, I have a cheap gene but I manage to spend a lot of money. My cello developed a crack in it this week. That is very bad. It's like having a crack in your engine block. The company I bought it from offered to fix it for free. Or, if I wish, I can use the full value that I paid for the instrument to purchase another. Ooooh I like that better. Yes, for a mere 3500 dollars more, I can upgrade to a nicer instrument. I’m not cheap when it comes to good quality. I’ll blow my wad there. For what my ultimate instrument will cost, I could replace your car. I am of course assuming that you drive a really cheap car.

For my birthday I stayed up all night. I rented a couple of very good movies and pigged out on popcorn. After the movies, I got interested in writing. I always write my worst when I’m dead tired. That’s when I write the most content. It’s now 2:35 PM. Oh wait… I mentioned the time just a little bit ago didn’t I? Oh yes, Cindi is very tired.

But I’m also watching the politics on the tele. Republicans VS Democrats. Hey, it’s an easy choice for me. Republicans don’t think that I, a very attractive and charming transsexual woman, deserve to have any personal rights. They frown on abortion, and spew hatred to people like me. I’ve been told I’d be better off dead. Hey, I work hard and pay my share of taxes. What should they care? So what’s the other party? Oh yea… they look a lot like the Republicans in so many ways. But at least they’re not out publicly demanding that my rights be limited. That’s a good thing isn’t it?

I suppose it doesn’t matter much. I’ve already voted by mail. This was the first time in my life that I’ve voted a straight ticket. It was an easy choice. If they vote in a block, they can be voted out in a block. I think that if my political guy can’t think for himself, then he doesn’t belong in office. I’m registered as an independent. Wouldn’t be great if we could all just get along? It’s a nice dream.

Wow.. I was just going to jot down a few notes on today, the birthday of the New and Improved Cindi Jones. It’s turned into a bit more than that. And speaking of turning, this room I’m in doesn’t look all that square anymore. It’s kinda, sorta, wavy like. Yea, I’m tired. I’m drunk with no alcohol to blame. All I can blame is a wonderful night of some good entertainment and great inspiration to knock out a couple of really good articles written elsewhere in the ether sphere.

Take care my web readers. Vote your conscience. Know the issues. And think of us people who live in the nowhere land who deserve our rights just like everybody else.

Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS and Atom feeds allowed. All other use by permission only.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Why is it so unreachable?

How can I describe this feeling to want,
this need to hold and to console?
Depression it is not,
perhaps it borders there.
So many I must help,
but they labor so far distant.
Oh, that I could be with them
to embrace and console.
My spirit flitters hither and thither
crying for their calming.
Anxiety cruelly tugs from the edges,
hoping to pull me to another plane.
Am I so different,
so disconnected,
that my thoughts defy my very existence?

Could it be that I crave that very love
I so desperately want to give?

Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS and Atom feeds allowed. All other use by permission only.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Religious Persecution

Copyright 2006 Cindi Jones. This essay may not be reproduced in any form without explicit authorization from the author.

Have religious zealots got you down? Does your mother make you feel guilty? Does your dad tell you that you will burn in hell? Take heart. YOU have the power to overcome your sins and transgressions.

If you pull out your rolodex and cross reference religions that use some form of the old testament as scripture, include your JC's, RC's, ED's, and STD's or any other acronyms, those that make mother's guilt a hereditary trait, and those that post letters, symbols, or pictures on a stick... Make sure you include those that dress in clergy drag for services. And what you'll have is a big messy stack of cards.... perhaps more than you started with.

You see, that's the miracle. From any of these recognized sources, you have the ability to really wreck someone's day. That's what hell is my friend; cleaning up someone elses messy stack of cards.

Now, what I like to do when I admonish someone, is pick and choose from the holy text.... you know, form interesting combinations such as:

- Blessed are those who eat pork on the sabbath for theirs is a time to dance.
- Yea give unto ceasar he who would cast the first stone for he is certainly a harlot.
- And yea, he who says Lord, Lord hath forgotten where the queen layeth down.

or my favorite

- And he went forth into the river and changed it all to wine. And the wedding supper twirth revived.

Some you can leave as is, you know, like Lot giving his two daughters to strangers. Or the songs of Solomon are favorites where the author continues to dote on his lovers breasts. These are truly spiritual morsels that should be committed to memory. Or you can commit yourself. It really doesn't matter. The results are always the same.

So what do I pull from all of this?

Before you go to the wedding, make sure that Solomon's performance contract is up to date and that he has been paid. Invite your guests to bring rocks as gifts. Most definitely stop off at Lot's house. Pick up the babes and a couple of large cups. Light your lanterns and have a good time. Yea verily, saith Cindi.

Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS and Atom feeds allowed. All other use by permission only.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Smart Pills

I've read a lot of online posts recently of TG's self medicating. Some are purchasing creams and all natural suplements at exhorbitant prices. For any who fall in this camp, I have a story.....


So there's this kid standing on the corner rattling some rabbit turds in his hand.

"What's you got there?" asks another.

"Those are smart pills, they make you smarter!"

"Welll I want some, how much?"

"Five dollars for the lot!"

"Okay, here's a five, now give me the smart pills."

He's handed the smart pills and he pops them all in his mouth.

"Gawd, that tastes like rabbit shit!"

"See there? You're getting smarter already!"

Sorry... I just had to through it out there. To those of you spending so much money on the crank medications, give it a rest. Swallow your pride a bit and go see a doctor. Do it the right way and you'll save many hard earned dollars.


Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS and Atom feeds allowed. All other use by permission only.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006



Some people fear it.
Cause they can't get near it.
It hurts, cuts quick to the bone.
They see it and hear it.
Surely it's a skill they wont hone.
Perhaps they admire it,
they want to hire it,
next time they're alone.
Shirley's cat calls.
Yes, may I feed the kitty?
That'll be a fifty won't that be nifty,
an even hundred per couple if you care.
You know that they'll hide it,
a business expense for conference,
it's done every day don't you know.
Yup those homos are cut ups,
they'll always fake up
and turn up on O'Reilly's show.
Transsexuals faggots and queers,
O My goodnes gracious and my sakes alive,
don't tell me they're poets too?

Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS and Atom feeds allowed. All other use by permission only.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Book comment by Andrea James

Andrea James has been kind enough to offer the following about my autobiography "Squirrel Cage":
"In this autobiography, at times whimsical and at times serious, Cindi continues to hold strong to her principles in the face of so much rejection from those around her: family, faith, friends. I believe this story can be a source of inspiration for others facing similar difficulties, by showing that acceptance from others must start with self-acceptance." .. Andrea James
Thanks for your kind words Andrea. I appreciate it so much!

Sunday, September 10, 2006

My dog is better than yours

I’m not a psychologist. I don’t have formal training; I don’t have the sheepskin claiming my expertise in human understanding. But I have graduated from the school of hard knocks. I’ve met and had more than a casual passing relationship with more transgender people in my life than most professionals will ever see in their careers. So why do I start tonight’s article this way? There’s an aspect to our condition that I’ve never read about, nor heard, but I have experienced.

In my own young life, I had a miserable time connecting with the others in my classes at school. My parent’s attributed this to the fact that I was a year ahead of my classmates as far as age was concerned. But as I look back on my experience, I know that it was something else. And I’ve seen it in others with the dysphoric experience. I was hopelessly immature.

I honestly can not believe, although I did feel, that the other children could see through my outer shell and observe the feelings I had of my physical sex. They could not comprehend my secret thoughts; wishing I were a girl. They could never hope to understand those things not demonstrably displayed in the way I was dressed. Yet, they treated me differently. Their actions were often times cruel and deliberately hurtful.

I was different. My abilities to interact were not developed. And in this respect, I was truly a dweeb. My physical attributes did attract young women. And for my early teen years, I managed to chase away every one of them after a casual introduction. Nothing could explain the burning and hurt I would feel after every episode. My skills in communication, body language, and thought were totally emotional. I could not introduce the thought process, evaluate, and further refine them. They existed in their grade school form for much of my teen years and took several years as an adult to fully develop, much less understand.

In the transsexual world I entered in the mid 1980’s I saw similar traits play out in others I would meet in their gender dysphoric movie. Failed careers, failed relationships, and a complete loss of structure in their lives appeared on the screen. Some had been able to transcend devastation by focusing on their education. Yet the characters were the same. The plot lines were nearly identical. The sadness and desperation were all too common. Trans gendered people all portrayed pictures of undeveloped personalities. We acted in so many ways like a bunch of young teenagers.

So why, did this never come up in a group therapy session, why did I not encounter it in personal therapy sessions? Why was this an unaddressed issue in helping us? I’ve never found out. Is it something that we are able to hide from professional therapists? Is the transgender dysphoria such a powerful problem that they are unable to see it? Are the two things inexplicably intertwined? Why can they not help us with this important problem in our lives?


Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS and Atom feeds allowed. All other use by permission only.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Diabetes, HRT, and Cinamon

I'm sure that some of you know that I have Diabetes type II. And for this reason, I have discontinued HRT for some years now. There is some evidence that suggests that HRT can help bring on the condition, especially if it runs in the family.

So if you have a family history of Diabetes, I strongly suggest you share that information with your physician so that you can watch for the signs and take appropriate action.Type II Diabetes can sometimes be managed with pills or injections of insulin. But in some cases like mine, the medications are a hit and miss situation.I've been working with my physician in the use of a natural spice, cinamon. It is now available as a supplement.

It's just cinamon compressed into tablets. You can also make a cinamon drink with the spice and water. My experience is anecdotal at best. But I have been able to remove two of the 4 medications I was taking and my blood sugar levels are on average 60 to 80 points lower than before the treatment. Now, my blood sugars for the past few weeks are running on the low side instead of dangerously high.I'm not suggesting that you run out and buy cinamon supplements if you have Diabetes type II. But I am strongly suggesting that you do some research and discuss it with your doctor. In my case, I'm very sad that I did not find this sooner. I do have irrepairable nerve damage from the disease.


Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS and Atom feeds allowed. All other use by permission only.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Adversity's Mountain

Night's crushing black fades to day
The world caves in as you make your way
Adversity's mountain adds to the fray

Despair's thoughts tear through your mind
Tearing and shredding their way unkind
Odiously reaping their unending grind

All paths ahead seem erased
Brambles and thorns lay waste
Contentment gone all plans replaced.

Anguish and agony must end
The fragile branch no longer bends.
Life itself now condescends.

Yet, here we are, your friends.

Love shimmers through advocate panes.
A wall of hope offered, no disdain
Caring arms protect and maintain.

Live for now, agony will wait
Don't give in, don't take the bait.
Loving friends carry sorrow's weight.

Copyright 2006 Cindi Jones. This article may not be reproduced in any form without written permission of the author.


During the past few days, an online friend has been grieving for his friend who OD'd and may lose his life. A group of us have banded together to lend our proverbial shoulders to cry on. We've called and written and done everything that we can to lend him our support. But when life is darkest, it seems that nothing can ever be happy again. I've been prompted during this episode to write a few poems to express my feelings. This work attempts to find something good in the dreariest color.....


Black, the abscense of light
where the fetus develops
and learns to fight it's way from the womb.

Black, devoid of light
where stars are born
and readied for flight
as givers of life.

Black, held from our sight
All's still there in the night
awaiting a new dawn.
Copyright 2006 by Cindi Jones RSS and Atom feeds allowed. All other use by permission only.