I Survived: A Run-in with my Ex

No, literally the worst time in my life, because my brother had just died, and I’d told her early on, when things seemed like they could go either way that I wasn’t interested in the back and forth games, and if she was into me then I’d be happy to date, but if she wasn’t, then I needed space to deal with my grief and not with her. She chose to date me, even though she’d later tell me, when she left me for someone else, that she was never really that into me. Oh, and she also threw the fact that I’m transgender in my face as something she could never get comfortable with, despite the fact that I was out when we’d met.  So there was that too.  That may have been something of a harsh blow to hear, and maybe it pushed me halfway back into the closet for a few months.  Maybe it delayed my starting hormone therapy by at least a year. Little nuances like that may exist.

So that history in a petite 5’6” frame and the same faded brown cowgirl boots she always wore when we were dating came walking towards me and informed me that she thought she should come say “Hi.”
Female With Cowboy Boots

And you know what? It turns out that she should have, because as it happens, speaking to her now didn’t send me back into the dark days of late 2012.  It was a short, bittersweet conversation that had its highs and lows. The best and worst part about the whole thing was that while catching up, she informed me that she’s moving to Sweden soon. Best part because it means I can freely walk around in her neighborhood again without fear of any more awkward catching up,  worst part because of the slightly annoying detail that she’s doing so in order to assist in some sort of cancer research.  I feel like she has an obligation to me to be doing something evil, like moving somewhere to kick baby seals, not kill them for their fur or anything, just to be a jerk about it.  Instead she has the incredibly selfish audacity to be doing something noble and benefiting all mankind.  Knowing her, they’ll probably find a cure for cancer and I’ll have to deal with seeing her on TV all the time.  That’d be just my luck.  And that’d be so like her.

What I ultimately took away from it though was for the first time realizing how glad I was that we hadn’t stayed together longer than we did, that her chewing me up and spitting me out was at least efficient on time. I suppose somewhere along the way, the process of learning to live with the grief of my brother’s death and of insisting on surviving as an openly transgender woman, I actually don’t feel all that focused in my day to day life on being sad that a lady who never really cared about me has continued on her path of doing just that.  This year I’ve started hormones, this year I’ve put out a comedy album, and started headlining some shows.  Who knows if I’d have been on that same timeline if we’d stayed together, but either way it felt pretty good telling her that I was doing all those things.  It felt good letting her know that she hadn’t broken me after all, and it felt even better letting myself know that too.

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I Survived: A Run-in with my Ex

About The Author
- Riley Silverman is a Los Angeles-based stand-up comedian and writer whose prolific voice has been described as sarcastic and dry with a hint of dark silliness. Rye has performed at the Women in Comedy Festival and was the first transgender performer at Portland's All Jane No Dick comedy festival. Her debut album, Intimate Apparel, was the #1 best selling comedy album on Amazon.com in April 2015. That same month the funny fashionista was also featured as the #FashionTruth girl on ModCloth.com instagram.com/ryesilverman