It's cold in here.
I've been sitting in this white-walled room for what feels like forever, waiting for the doctor to come in. I squirm a bit as I sit on a hard metal table, staring at my reflection in a mirror hanging crooked on the wall. My dark blue eyes stare back at me, a look of scrutiny in them. I look up at my brown hair, sticking up randomly and still quite short despite the fact that it's been a month since it was cut. It bugs me that it's so short it doesn't feel natural. I sit on my hands and look down at my feet. They touch the floor despite the height of the table, thanks to my long legs. My feet are also quite large, as are my hands. They always made me feel cumbersome, like I was a little kid trying to control a Semi-Truck. I never liked my 'handsome face' or 'sexy voice' either, or the way people assumed they knew what I was like. I never liked having to hide who I was.
None of that will matter now.
The doctor comes in, apologizing for the wait. The only thing he brings with him is a tiny syringe. I honestly expected more than just a shot for this brand new procedure - or at least a bigger shot - but he assures me that this small dose is all it takes. One shot. One time. He wraps elastic around my left arm, making it tingle with numbness. I squirm as the needle punctures my arm. It's not really painful, but it feels so foreign that I react to it. My dad used to say 'toughen up' whenever I squirmed like that, but my dad never did understand me. He could never understand how one's self could be foreign to them.
The doctor unwraps my arm, and the feeling returns to it. I ask him how long it will take for the serum to finish its work. A year, he replies. A whole year to spend staying out of the public eye until it's done. I've lived through 18 years of this, though I'm sure one more won't be too much to face.
I'm led out to the lobby, the doctor reminding me to check in once a month. I step outside and breathe in the fresh air and bask in the white glow of the sun. My first step on the road to becoming a woman. My first step to a new life.
My first step in the warmth.