“Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish.”
~ John Quincy Adams
If you have not heard yet, there is a critical pandemic spreading across the globe. The Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a novel virus (Novel virus refers to a virus not seen before. It can be a virus that is isolated from its natural reservoir or isolated as the result of spread to an animal or human host where the virus had not been identified before.) that is ravaging major metropolitan, urban, suburban, and rural communities alike. I urge everyone to practice “social distancing” in order to flatten the curve of contracting coronavirus so that our front-line first responders and medical professionals, supplies, and facilities can keep up with managing persons currently testing positive with this disease.
With “patience and perseverance”, as John Quincy Adams wrote, we will eventually come out the other side of this pandemic. With so much information—and misinformation—there is such a proclivity to panic in this situation. Deep breathing and the use of calm common sense based on the best data and the most informed subject matter experts will help us best. Now, with the obligatory sermon and lecture out of the way, we can focus on another matter that affects us dual-gender, bi-gender, and crossdressing folx even more viscerally than the threat of running out of toilet paper.
What happens to the closeted crossdresser when their windows of opportunity shrink from “not often” to “not at all” as governments urge their citizens to stay at home or “stay in place” in an effort to stave off rampant spread of the virus infection? Before, many of us dressed in feminine clothes in those short moments when the wife was still at work or away for the weekend. Now, with most of us quarantined at home with our families, the idea of occasional dressing is as much a pipedream as the certainty that the coronavirus will burn away tomorrow with the rising sun like a vampire with a broken watch.
I guess, at this point, there are several choices that could be weighed and considered (remember, only you can make the right choice for you). You could wear feminine articles under your male clothes as a way to stay connected to your feminine side. You could come up with an excuse to get out of the house in order to dress in private. You could even use this time as an opportunity to come out to your family. The reveal of being a crossdresser certainly seems to pale in direct competition to a raging pandemic… food for thought. All of those options carry their own levels of risk and require a fair bit of thought and consideration before pursuing.
One idea, from the other side of the spectrum—the one that sounds like the plot of a terrible transgender horror film—is to return willingly to the closet for the short-term. In this case, you steel yourself for several weeks of the inability to dress in feminine garb. We’ve all had to hide ourselves away for one reason or another; hide ourselves from one person or another. In this case, though, we are not sacrificing our authenticity because of fear, but in consideration of the greater good. Patience, persistence, and perseverance… a trio of alliterative terms that may be the difference in your mental state, your focus, and your ability to stay positive in the unmade-up face of this pandemic.
Personally, I have suspended #SavannahStarbucksSunday for the obvious reason that the majority of stores are relegated to drive-thru only service at the moment. I am observing the recommended levels of quarantine for our area of the Upstate of South Carolina (Greenville/Spartanburg), as well as keeping vigilant with social distancing, frequent 20-second hand-washing, anti-bacterial applications, and keeping at home or close to home. I have a two-week-old beard at the moment. It’s itchy in spots under the chin and I will probably shave it before too long. Full head-to-toe dressing has subsided for the moment, but may come back in some fashion on a random weekend day or evening if I am inspired to be fashionable enough to take more pics for myself and my fans on FaceBook and Instagram. For now, for me, I am content to stay a bit more masculine for the duration, with the option always open to be more feminine when the urge requires it.
Remember, this is a unique and strange time for the majority of us. It doesn’t just affect us and our dressing. Every person is affected in some way. Many of my friends are now without a job because of business closures. Some of my friends have personal connections to people who have tested positive to the coronavirus and have lost friends to the same disease. Many of my family and friends live in New York City and on Long Island, New York, the hottest epicenter in the United States at the moment. I know one very good friend who knows they had been exposed to someone else with the virus.
We are at risk with every touch of mail, every squeeze of the gas pump, every turn of a door knob, and every interaction with those outside our quarantined dynamic. Maybe, our feminine sides can be used to channel our empathy, caring, and love for others in a way that dressing the part—in and of itself—cannot accomplish. Be safe, stay sane, and be good to each other.