Musashi Mix Inq

True Trans Soul Rebel

Posted on December 12, 2016

True Trans Soul Rebel

"All dressed up and nowhere to go
Walking the streets all alone
Another night to wish you could forget
Making yourself up as you go along"

— Against Me —

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How Can I Keep From Singing?

Posted on November 19, 2016

How Can I Keep From Singing

"When tyrants tremble, sick with fear,
And hear their death-knell ringing,
When friends rejoice both far and near,
How can I keep from singing?
In prison cell and dungeon vile,
Our thoughts to them go winging;
When friends by shame are undefiled,
How can I keep from singing?"

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Trans Day of Remembrance 2016

Rest in Power

Transition Day – 2016

Posted on November 11, 2016

David to DanielleToday marks my one year journey into HRT.

In truth, the last three years have felt like one huge transition for me. I could only start the journey in earnest a year ago because, before then, I just didn't have the spoons for such an adventure. I am privileged to be living at the right time in history when there are solutions for the problems that have tried to tear me down for as long as I can remember.

Little meOne of my most vivid early memories is gender dysphoria. I was 4 years old at the JCC preschool where my best friend and I would always play dress-up together. One day she insisted we get married. Sounded like a plan. But she took the dress and handed me the suit, tie, and hat. After putting them on, I looked in the mirror and was knocked back to see a desperate emptiness where my eyes used to be.

My chronic pain condition began at age 13, just as my body started committing hard to male puberty. Frustratingly, there was no clear cause for my severe constant neck pain. Testosterone powered rage fueled a spiraling fire of dysphoria, shame, fear, confusion, and doubt. None of my doctors and specialist could properly treat or even diagnose my "phantom pain". A war on two fronts.

judo jr. national champion, 1996Growing up as a judoka, my Sensei always told me that I was too strong. In truth, the only way I could cope with the physical pain and dysphoria was to push myself harder. If no one could help me, I resolved to be my own champion. Sadly some battles just can't be won alone.

Along the way, some part of me resigned to the fact that if I couldn't win, I simply had to manage the best I could— brick by brick and day by day. School. Judo. Family. Art. Friendship. Love. But a body can only handle so much pressure before it starts to break down.

d

For the next 17 years, I did what I had to do to:

Winter, 2013

I survived.

Then at age 30, the miracle happened: I got my diagnosis (cervical facet syndrome) and soon after the treatment (radio frequency ablation). Only then did I finally open up to the world of possibility that had been waiting for me. On the eve of my 32nd year I began my medical transition.

And so with access to the right medicine, counseling, advocacy, a supportive family, and growing community, I continue to overcome these challenges on the path to living life on my terms. No more closets, manageable pain levels, and very few sleepless nights. There's no feeling quite like being able to finally start seeing myself in the mirror.

2015-2016

I'm one of the lucky ones.

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p.s. I wrote this before 11/9/16. I wrote this for myself as a marker in the road. I wrote this for anyone who has ever felt lost. Just so there's no confusion: Always forward. Forward always.

Filed under: Blog, identity, new half, Pain, Q, RFA 1 Comment

Transit of Venus

Posted on October 10, 2016

Transit of Venus

"Do not go gentle into that good night. Rage, rage against the dying of the light."

— Dylan Thomas —

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New-Half

Posted on August 21, 2016

So it's time for a reintroduction of sorts:

Me

My name is Danielle Musashi Tanimura (she, her)

I've been here all along and can't say how much I love you, for all of the support that I've gotten from you who have been here with me thru this strange journey called life.

Transition

Art. Chronic pain. Redemption. Identity. Miscarriage.
And now for another type of Transition.

Luckily, the show is just getting started, and there are many more worlds to create.

I hope you'll join me on this next adventure.

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Pride 2016

Posted on June 16, 2016

pride 2016

“Love is the voice under all silences, the hope which has no opposite in fear;

the strength so strong mere force is feebleness:

the truth more first than sun, more last than star...”

— E. E. Cummings —

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Filed under: Art, Pain, Q No Comments