I Am Here.

Such a simple thing to say, but it’s a powerful statement. If only you knew what it takes for me to say that right now.

In 2014, I was diagnosed with severe depression. Prozac and my bipolar medicine wasn’t working, and it was a pain in the ass to even get out of bed before 10 AM most days. The fog didn’t even begin to lift until I was hired by Sam’s Club in September 2014 to do carts. As much as I didn’t like the job, I knew it was the difference between being unemployed and employed, between having money and having no money.

2016 came, and I knew I had to let Amber out. This caused a lot of stress and angst, but I did. Granted, I only came out to 5-10 people, but it was a start. By 2017, Amber Marie was in the front seat of the car, but not driving. But later that year, I had socially transitioned, and I was on the path to medical transition as well. But I still wasn’t happy.

For the longest time, I was stuck in jobs that didn’t pay well and weren’t right for me. At the end with Tyson, I was making $14.90/hour, but no one was using my pronouns and it was a fight to use the bathroom. By November 2019, I knew I had to get out, and knowing most of the social work jobs I was looking at required an MSW and years of experience, I had to bail on Tyson. First I ended up with Developmental Enhancement, then I ended up with Centria. Centria is doing well with me.

In 2006, I graduated from Northern Michigan University with my BS in Psychology. But my BS in psychology and $2.53 bought me a large coffee from Biggby. Seriously, ABA therapy was established in 2006, but not prevalent, and the position of Behavioral Technician didn’t come about until 2014. There were no psychology jobs I could have accepted. Then in 2016, Maya, an old professor friend from Northern Michigan University suggested I get my MSW. I started applications at Grand Valley and Western, but I was so messed up at the time, I couldn’t finish. But 2018 came, and I knew I couldn’t stay at Tyson forever. Donna at Tyson flat out told me to get out of there. By November 2018, the application was submitted to Denver University, in January 2019 I was accepted, and in April 2019, I began. My student loans from my undergrad were in default though, so I had to take a long leave of absence to get those rehabbed. On March 30, I will be back in school.

So yes, my life is a story of you can’t get there from here. And it’s been a fight to stand up and say “I am here,” regardless of what life throws at me.

By adventureswithambermarie

Just a 38 year old trans girl roaming around Holland, MI. My old life wasn't as glamorous as my webpage made it look. Transphobic comments will automatically be deleted and you will be blocked.

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