Sunday, October 9, 2011

High School....

I rarely write about my high school days. But its mostly because I have mixed feelings about (1) writing about it and (2) the people who know me to read and look at me funny (don't look at me funny now!). But something crossed my mind today. And I thought I'd share. Interestingly, it has little to do with trans issues.

In high school, I was in the school christian union's music team. This saw me lead praise & worship during church services and be (on most occasions) the lead soloist/leader in the cu choir. But this post is not about that.

If there's something I noticed was that whenever we visited girls schools, (which I envied heavily!), and during church service, almost every girl was dancing and singing to the praise and worship session. But the boys, where I was, umm... half at least were interested, and mostly a half of that half were actually enthusiastic about being in church. The rest? They couldn't be bothered! They either sat down care free, or stood just so they don't be labelled as bad by other boys. And quite a number cursed the fact that they had to attend service. It was mandatory.

I never quite understood why. Is it a female thing? Or is it a peer pressure thing? I have no clue.

Just thought I'd share.

Have a pleasant Sunday.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Changing My Bank Account Names

Hey all, did you miss me? Hehehe

So I had quite a good time the other day at the bank with changing my name on my bank account from the old to the new, even the signature, photo, forwarding address and cellphone numbers.

Initially I'd been informed that banks usually require one's PIN (personal identification number) to process a new account and so I had made my way to KRA (Kenya Revenue Authority) offices to see if they'd accept a change of my PIN using my deed poll documents. Sadly, they said no. They informed me that I'd need to change my ID card details first and use the new ID to get a new PIN. I couldn't even use my new passport :(

Anyway, I went to my bank feeling frustrated and talked to an account manager there asking if it were possible to change the details on my account with only my deed poll and my passport. And he said yes! I was surprised and happy and I asked him to tell me what he needed. I explained to him that I was trans and that was the reason for the change of name and what not.

The guy didn't even flinch! He was like "Oh, okay.. so these are the documents you need to bring...." Yea! Just like that. I'd expected a tirade about oh how I'm harming God's wonderful work and bla bla bla but nothing! He never even asked why I did what I did, if anything we were talking about how our jobs are wearing us down! Talk about information & awareness!

Even the legal department staff didn't have questions. I was listening to his conversation with them and he was like "Yea she changed her name from bla bla to bla bla. Yes its one of those cases...."

And within about two weeks all my details were changed. The only thing that remained the same was my account number. The name, the signature, the address, the cellphone number, the photo! All changed! I was so so happy.

I'm now yet to go and get a new debit card. I'm still using "my brother's" card.

More updates to come soon. Thanks for reading :)

Remember, if you have questions, do not hesitate to ask. Feel free to ask  me anything.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Alien No More!

Hi good people!

I know I've been out and quiet for a long time but its because I've been celebrating! I recently got my passport!!!! Hooray!!!

Remember this post:

Okay, maybe I am complaining a wee bit too much, but honestly, can't you see my frustrations? Lemme give you ten things I can't do now because "I don't exist".

1. I wanna travel outside country. I can't do that because I don't have a passport. If I go apply for one right now they'll tell me "you can't apply using your brother's documents, go bring yours"... oh wait, I have none!!
2. I wanna go back to school. I can't because, again, I can't use 'my brother's' documents!
3. I wanna open a bank account. I can't!!
4. I wanna travel locally using an airline. Can't!
5. I wanna invest my hard earned cash somewhere. Can't!!
6. I wanna start a business. Can't!!
7. I wanna go for driving lessons. Can't! You need an ID or Passport to get a DL!
8. I wanna buy a car... Can't!!
9. I wanna get into a certain society and save money for my old age. CAN'T!!
10. I wanna buy a mortgage for a house for my mom. CAN'T!!!!!

I. Am. So. Frustrated!!!!!

The above list is what I'm working on now. I've checked off number 1! The next few months will see me checking off more stuff on that list :)

I. Am. So. EXCITED!!!

But there are some downsides. For instance I hit a snag when I went to try and change my PIN (personal identification number) at the KRA (Kenya Revenue Authority) offices. They informed me that one can only change their PIN using the ID only. And therefore I'd need to change my ID first before I can change my PIN. Drats! Anyhoo, I will deal with that soon.

In the meantime,


Friday, July 29, 2011

Good News! I'm Not An Alien Anymore!!

YAAY! Its finally done! I'm no longer an alien to the Kenyan Government!

This happened a while back yes, but I didn't want to say it before I got my passport but... ah I've said it! The above document states that my name change has been approved and I used the said document to apply for a passport.

I went to Nyayo House to apply for a passport and we went straight to the supervisors office just to avoid questions with the service people at the booths. The team there was very friendly. The supervisor took my documents, asked me a few questions, such as ensuring I understood that the passport would only show my new name but would still indicate "M" for sex because the documents only approve a change of name and not a change of sex. After we had that discussion he asked me to wait for a while as he seeks approval from his boss. A few minutes later (actually a while) he comes back and asks me to go with him to see his supervisor. We went in and had a similar conversation with the boss, i.e. about the M. We also had a bit of chit chat about the situation of other Kenyan trans people and how difficult it is for them to get by, e.g. getting jobs, passing, living, acceptance and so forth. They then informed me that my application was fine and I would now go to pay, take a photo and wait for a week and I'd get my passport!

I am so so excited about this news! This means that all the things I spoke about here will be fulfilled in due time!

Thanks for the support people. I really appreciate it.


Monday, July 11, 2011

On The Other Side

There's a question that just came to mind. How does it feel to be on the other side?

I personally have no issue with myself; with who I am (duh!).. but what of others? How do they feel when they see me for the first time since for ever?

I can't imagine how it must feel like to meet me after 10 years, where the last you knew of me was that I was a boy. What's the underlying thought that crosses your mind when you look at me now, and compare that image with the last mental image you have of me?

I can imagine the shock, disbelief, confusion and everything. But I can't really tell how it feels.

All I can tell anyone that I've shocked and is as a result not yet able to even look me in the eye, let alone give me a hug to say hi or bye, is that I'm sorry and I hope you can someday come to terms.

What I know is that not everyone will embrace me. Not everyone will accept me. And I'm not just talking about my being trans, its more than that. Its about life and living. Every aspect of it.

Sadly, not everyone gets along. Its one of those things about humanity we may never understand.
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