Not literally. I have no plans to undergo gender re-assignment surgery anytime soon. I like my chick-hood. I like dresses, when I can find them. I like my red toenails. We've been through all that, though.
Seriously, though, it's time for me to "man up" in the metaphorical sense.
I'm pretty sure that in the next few weeks- months at the outside- things in my work are going to come to a head. Without going into boring details (because really, when you get down to it, the details of anyone's work but your own are deathly dull), I'll sum it up this way:
There is confusion about where I stand, officially, and where people like me stand, unofficially, in the institution. Perhaps I should say Institution, because it's a freakin' nuthouse. In the past, I've been able to depend on those above me to step in and take care of things. It's no coincidence, I think, that those who did so successfully were White Guys of a Certain Age, but I don't think that's all of it. Right now, the WGCA in the role is just not going to step up for me. He's a good guy, a nice guy, but I don't merit the outlay of political capital it would take to defend me. And I'm a little ashamed to discover that I expect him to.
Which is to say, I need to stop being a freakin' damsel in distress, pull up my big girl panties, and stand up for myself.
It's a bit embarrassing to be nearly 40 and just now recognizing this in myself. I like to be defended. I like to stand back while someone else puts his (or her) ass on the line for me, while I sit back and watch- gratefully. Always gratefully. I'm not sure if this is some latent girly tendency or laziness or an old habit from back in the day when a swish of my skirt could get me all the free drinks I wanted, but it needs to stop.
Enough with that. No one is going to save me now- and they shouldn't have to. Help me? Fine. Support me? Absolutely. Stand behind me when the time comes for the showdown? You betcha. But stand in front of me? No more. Because when someone saves your life, you owe them. No thanks.
Don't mess with the dress.