Tonight was the holiday party at work. It’s a tradition where I work to have the holiday party after the holidays are over, and it was tonight.
It was a typical kind of work party with an open bar. There were a few gaming tables (craps, roulette, and blackjack), a bar, and finger foods being served made by really good chefs. Fairly standard faire for this sort of thing.
I went out of my way to look pretty. I had on a nice long black skirt, a cute purple shirt, a purple sweater, and black tights. I also had on a range of jewelry as is quickly becoming my norm. I also took a shower this afternoon and washed my hair really well and got it all fluffy and pretty, as well as put on makeup just right to cover up all the shadow that I had (which is a lot right now sadly). In other words, I went outtta my way to be as girly as possible.
I don’t do well at these kind of parties. I don’t handle crowds well and it was super loud. I pulled out my DB meter (just an app on my phone) a few times and it was consistently 85-92 Db in there. (Pretty darn loud.)
I am very soft spoken. Even before I transistioned I had a pretty soft voice, but now it’s really bad. I have to make a point to speak loudly or else people can’t hear me unless it’s a really quiet room. (I’ve changed my voice as best I can, and moving it up to a higher pitch killed the volume quite a bit.) This means at parties like this I feel like I have to yell to be heard. (Which, for a really shy person, is hard.)
As I’ve talked about before, I’m really shy, to a fault. I will not stand up for myself. See the post about Bothering People if you want to know more.) This came to bite me in the butt a few times tonight.
Despite the fact that I was at a party with my co-workers, and I am completely out at work, a few of them kept calling me a guy. (Remember I was dressed as girly as I know how, within the realms of a sorta formal event.) This made my heart sink real low. One guy introduced me to his wife as April (my real life name) and then kept on calling me a guy the rest of the time. April is a pretty girly name, and I did my best to look feminine. I also come across just completely girly in every way in the IRC chat at work.
This happened several times tonight. The problem is that because I’m just so darn shy and won’t stand up for myself, I wouldn’t go back and correct him. I know all I have to do is say “it’s ma’am, actually,” but I just can’t bring myself to do it. And then I don’t and I feel like crap for not standing up for myself and because I failed to pass under the most perfect conditions possible.
Lots of good things happened tonight. I got to finally meet some people I had only worked with on IRC. I also got to introduce myself to other people and made sure to point out that I’m the “new girl.” Some of the ladies that I *DO* work very closely with on a regular basis came up to me and told me how nice I looked. Lots of nice things. But overall I feel like tonight was a huge failure.
I really need to stop beating myself up. I have a problem with this. 😦
I guess my therapist and myself will have a lot to talk about next week.