Celebrating LGBT Pride Month | Lisa’s Story

June 26, 2014 - Serving Seniors

June is Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Pride Month and we’d like to highlight Lisa, a regular client at the West Senior Wellness Center, cancer survivor and transgender woman. We at Serving Seniors have a very diverse clientele including many gay, lesbian and transgender individuals. Lisa is very open about the fact that she spent the first 68 years of her life as someone of the opposite gender. She enjoys sharing her story in an effort to educate others and spread awareness about what it means to be transgender.002

Lisa was born in 1936 and her birth certificate indicated that she was a male. However, Lisa knew by the age of three or four that she wasn’t really a boy despite what she was told. “I knew something was wrong with my body,” Lisa says. Transgender people often experience a genuine disconnect between the sex assigned to them at birth and their internal sense of who they are. It can cause undue pain and distress which Lisa is all too familiar with.

Lisa went on to join the United States Air Force and served for four years. After her service, she attended college where she earned her degree in journalism and went on to work for several newspapers. She did what she thought was expected of her by marrying a woman and having a child. She says her parents would never understand or accept her living as a woman; so instead, Lisa waited to make that change. Once both of her parents passed away she immediately went to see a therapist and began the process of transitioning.

10 years ago, Lisa officially became Lisa and has a new birth certificate to prove it. “I feel more normal. I’ve become more talkative. In my other gender, I was afraid to talk.” Today she is healthy, vibrant, confident and full of joy. It can be challenging to find an accepting community as a transgender person which is why Lisa is grateful for the folks at Serving Seniors. She says the staff and her peers accept her exactly as she is and Serving Seniors is a community she is glad to be a part of. Lisa truly embodies LGBT pride and even has a tattoo to show it!  She is an inspiration and a reminder that it is never too late to live the life that makes us genuinely happy.

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