Legally, I’m done

It's the little things that make us the happiest sometimes. In this case, very little.

I don’t know why it takes California so long to process a simple driver’s license. In Connecticut, from whence I came, the workers take your photo at DMV and you sit and wait a few minutes as they process something like four licenses at a time. Here, it takes two weeks from the time you go to DMV to the time you get it in the mail.

Well, it took two impatient weeks — and then two more even more impatient days, actually — but I went out to the mailbox yesterday afternoon, pulled in a honking haul of useless paper, and next to last on the bottom of this pile was an envelope for me from the DMV.

I rushed into my room, ripped it open —

Yep. My new license. At last. New photo (makes me look a little fatter than I actually am, but it was better than many DMV photos I’ve seen), Fran for a first name …

and “Sex: F.”


At least from a legal standpoint, my gender transition is finished. All that time and money distilled into a tiny piece of laminated plastic.

It was done two weeks ago, of course, but now I have the legal proof on me.

And even though this was a foregone conclusion, I wasn’t prepared for my own reaction. Several whoops and wooooos with the biggest smile on my face. And no one else around to share it with.

Took it out for a spin last night and showed a bunch of friends. No one was more overjoyed than Miriam, my favorite bartender and one of my staunchest girlfriends through much of the past year. Again, a couple more whoops. And a huge sigh of relief.

I firmly believe that now that I have this final huge obstacle out of the way at last, the cosmic gates are gonna open and now someone’s finally gonna want to hire me. And now I’ll be able to fly as my better half. And maybe I’ll finally get on “Jeopardy!”; four weeks from this very moment, up in San Francisco, I try out for the show for the third time, my first as a woman; maybe this is the charm, especially the charm this chica can turn on when she needs to. One of the goals of my life is to be at least a five-time champ.

And maybe love comes calling, too; one can only hope something good comes from all this work I’ve done to better myself the past 2 1/2 years.

Of course, there’s the hangover from all this, too. On those days when I don’t quite feel womanly — or human, period — instead of asking myself “What the hell am I doing,” as I’ve done through the transition, it’s now “What the hell have I done?” But that doesn’t seem to last very long.

But it’s a new day, a new life — and now one that’s legally been certified. As I shout every January 1 at the stroke of the new year, Onward!


6 Responses to “Legally, I’m done”

  1. jonalynn Says:

    Congrats! California is definitely the slowpoke in the driver licensing process. I got my AZ license within a few days.

  2. Michael Barone Says:

    Congratulations Fran. I’m very happy for you. The last time that I saw you which was late August 2008 at Cafe 9 (It Happened But Nobody Noticed cd release party)how far into your transformation were you?
    Just curious. You are a courageous soul Fran. I’m probably just as miserable as you were yet I am about half as brave as you are. Did anybody from New Haven give you a hard time over this whole thing?


    • franoramaworld Says:

      Hi Michael.

      The last time you saw me was the last night of a three-week vacation back home, where I had the talk with my closest circle of friends. I wasn’t quite out yet. After all the encouragement I got from my friends at home, I slowly dragged myself out (no pun intended) once I returned to Fresno. So it was still very early in the process when you last saw me.

      As far as I know, so long as everyone’s being honest, no one from New Haven has been weird about it. Actually, there’s one person who admitted upfront that he’s uneasy about it, but he’s slowly coming around, and we’re cool.

  3. It's Drew! Says:

    Congratulations, Ms. Fried!

  4. bob Says:

    live love props kudos the best is coming up. love,garvin.

  5. Ask Aunt Fran: Legally female « Franorama World Says:

    […] old boy license with a hole punched through the date. And on Oct. 7, two weeks and two days later, the new license arrived in the mail, complete with the name change and the little letter change to F where M used to be. […]

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