Heather Coldstream is a bit of a hero of mine, she writes so deeply and so beautifully about her life and experience as a woman who was AMAB (assigned male at birth). In this post she uses a metaphor to explain the power, and indeed, the challenges, of transitioning. It gives me so much to ponder and so much to be grateful for- that Izzy was able to strip those young shoots away before the concealed her completely. It also further fills my heart with love for those who approach this stripping away, or don’t. Bless you Heather xxx
English ivy is a noxious weed where I live and I hate it. It’s also a perfect fucking metaphor for gender dysphoria.
Left alone to grow, its leaf cover and epiphytic roots will choke trees and understory plants and take years or decades off their lifespans by making them more susceptible to pests and toppling in windstorms.
Besides creating shoots to creep along the ground, it sends vines up trees to reproduce. At first, it’s just a few shoots here and there. It’s easy to peel off the strands when they’re thin, but the roots will leave little marks on the bark. If you let it go a season or more, the vines grow thicker and require real effort to remove, often with small sections of bark.
If ignored for years or decades the vines turn into woody cables thicker than your wrist, requiring a saw to cut through and…
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