Stealing “me”


There is an intruder in my life,

This intruder keeps score of what I “should” be.

They ask of me to keep my life as a crystal-clear pane of glass.

They make me think of crystal-clear glass as something that is fragile, needing to be protected.

But what I think it is a boundary separating me from the life that I want!

As I look through this glass, I see a vast world waiting for me.

But then I remembered that this crystal was made from a flowing liquid that cooled into its form.

Once I came to this realization, I became muddled into my liquid form and joined the world that I knew from my maps.

Before this time, I thought to be right, you had to be clear and concise.

I was taught that to be jumbled and muddled is a waste of life.

But then I figured out that this is my life to live with the world.

I worried that I would not know where to start or where to go.

I worried that the maps that I had were crumpled and ripped with the life that I repress.

But then I remembered…

I am the map and I build my territory

But I also remembered that “I” was the intruder.

“I” was the one who painted their previous life as a work of art,

But now I look back as me and realize that that art was missing a whole part of me,

I did not let my “total self” create the art which is why it did not have the dream-like magic. The question is, why was “I” the intruder?

What was “I” trying to steal from me?

In my past life, they always told me to own my insecurities and move past them.

But now, I will not move past them.

I will not label insecurities.

I am actively stealing back “me” from the intruder,

And “I” will join “me” in this new life of possibilities.

“I” and “me” are taking their time understanding and misunderstanding each other

I have found that I must not crave success or solutions but instead opportunity and possibilities.

Although, as I am trying to be gentler with myself, I know these changes will lead to difficulties.

But I find solace in the fact that I only know the feeling of failure because I know success.

Without one, I could never comprehend the other.

Like grieving a cavity but knowing that the sugar makes everything worth it.

Perspective makes everything worth it.

I must look at the parts of me that I do not favor as a double-sided stick,

One with a side that I feel and see, and another with possibilities of difference.

Because now I know that it’s okay to not know.

It’s okay to not have grace, because the idea of fighting for grace immediately takes it away.

So, because of that, I will not fight for “me” or “I,”

I will just be.

I will aim to be less judgmental of myself and my thoughts.

But I will not be judgmental when I do not succeed at not judging myself.

I will be whomever I am in that moment, second, minute, hour, day, year, etc.

I will honor me.

Maybe the intruder was not “I”, but more of an entity from the life that I now live that pushed me to get to this point.

Maybe the intruder intruded at just the time.

Not the right or wrong time.

But just the time.

Emily M. Garcia, MS, AAMFT PreClinical Fellow
Department of Family Therapy,
Dr. Kiran C. Patel College of Osteopathic Medicine,
Nova Southeastern University

Gender Identity Therapy Topics

Other articles

Gray Divorce: Splitting Up Later in Life
A Message from the CEO

Community, Hope, Resiliency

This issue of FTM marks the one-year anniversary of swift and radical changes—and they are not over. You have had a tiring, challenging, and undoubtedly frustrating year. Balancing home and work are difficult but that took on an entirely new effort over the last 12 months.
Tracy Todd, PhD

Meaning of Aging in a Time of Crisis


Data and Research on Transgender Populations and where AAMFT members are worldwide.

Gray Divorce: Splitting Up Later in Life
Ethics + Legal

Ethical Decision Making in Unilateral Client Termination

Years ago, when I was in graduate school, there were no discussions on this subject. I don’t know if there are any now, but all of us who have practiced for any length of time have come face to face with situations where we have needed to end therapy without it being a mutual decision. While clients can and do terminate therapy unilaterally without the burden of ethical constructs or constraints, therapists must be guided by ethical justification for doing so.
Carl Greenberg, MS