Gender Stories

Heaven Come Down: The Story of a Transgender Disciple with Chrissie Chevasutt

October 24, 2022 Alex Iantaffi Season 4 Episode 54
Gender Stories
Heaven Come Down: The Story of a Transgender Disciple with Chrissie Chevasutt
Show Notes Transcript

Chrissie Chevasutt facilitates the online community Transgender Church and is well-known as an advocate for transgender awareness in the Church. She and her wife Pam have lived, worked and witnessed in Oxford for more than thirty years.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Chrissie-Chevasutt-107698101263187 

Heaven Come Down: The Story of a Transgender Disciple by Chrissie Chevasutt (Darton, Longman and Todd, £12.99) is available from all good retailers

https://dartonlongmantodd.co.uk/titles/2324-9781913657208-heaven-come-down

Support the show

Twitter: GenderStories
Instagram: GenderStories
Hosted by Alex Iantaffi
Music by Maxwell von Raven
Logo by Lior Allen

Musical Intro:

There's a whole lotta things I want to tell you about. Adventures dangerous and queer. Some you could guess and some I've only hinted at, so please lend me your ear.

Narrator:

Everyone has a relationship with gender. What's your story? Hello and welcome to Gender stories with your host, Dr. Alex Iantaffi.

Alex Iantaffi:

Listeners, welcome to another episode of gender stories. I'm your host Alex Iantaffi. And today, I am thrilled to be here with Chrissie Cevasutt who is the author of having come down a memoir of being a transgender disciple. And Chrissie facilitates the online community transgender church and is well known as an advocate for transgender awareness in the church. She and her wife, Pam have lived worked and witness in Oxford in the UK for more than 30 years. So welcome, Chrissie, thank you so much for being here today.

Chrissie Chevasutt:

Thank you for having me.

Alex Iantaffi:

Already, so I want to talk about your book and start from there. I think one of the things that really makes it stand out from other memoir of trans people, is the fact that you really focus on your spiritual journey in this book is not just a journey to yourself in terms of transition, but it's really a journey to yourself, as a spiritual being as a person of faith. I would say, from what I've read in the book, is that what you wanted to put across in in your memoir, or just tell me a little bit about kind of how this book came about?

Unknown:

I think one of the awarenesses I have is that as trends, being different and being other from an early age, there, it involves quite a lot of suffering. And I think any suffering causes us to question more deeply. Who am I? Why am I here? What's the meaning of life? And so I think this first to understand ourselves, who we are, and make sense of it, when there's nothing around us to give us any information. There's no, I didn't have any reference points to understand being trans till much later in life. But I think also there is some kind of spiritual hunger and thirst, that being trans almost essential ated almost heightened. So yes, it was a spiritual journey from a very early age, I think.

Alex Iantaffi:

Absolutely, I think that definitely comes across in your memoir. And I definitely resonate with that being transformed was kind of enhances or highlights there's kind of hunger for kind of spirituality and meaning and you found meaning in your faith, but also you found kind of meaning in your relationship and I do want to talk about that in a moment that you also found come to some meaning and also form of maybe I would say scape, almost maybe it's not what there was for you in cycling, do you want to talk about that a little bit more because I feel like that features throughout the book too.

Unknown:

When when people asked me what my religion is I say I'm a cyclist. And it's my cycling is the only thing I'm really religious about because it's it determines my my days and my weeks and my years. My diet, my friends, when I go out when I don't go out. And I'm I've always been very disciplined about it. And I've always found it a deeply spiritual practice cycling but in my in the pain of being trans I think, just to say briefly that when my body started to masculinize, my my sort of puberty I was really distressed, suffered extreme dysphoria and dysmorphia. And I started attempting suicide. And coincidentally for my ninth or 10th birthday, my mother and my stepfather gave me a racing bike, a psych racing cycle, which was a scaled down replica of lightweight, all the best equipment. And all of a sudden I found that I had somewhere to go somewhere to escape. And I found riding the bike that I would forget my In dysmorphia, and my dysphoria. But as I started to protect myself with a masculine persona, I started racing cycle racing. And that became highly addictive. I didn't realize why. But the I became very quickly addicted to endorphins, the endorphin you got the rush you got from extreme exercise, the adrenaline of racing and training and riding, and the testosterone that pumped through your body for muscle repair. And so, yeah, my cycling became an escape. Very much. So. It was pain relief, you know, I was self harming. Basically. Yeah.

Alex Iantaffi:

Yeah, I mean, it. It is interesting, right? Because in a way, it's like that extreme sport, like you said that in the self harming, but it also sounds like it was really helpful in terms of your mental health, to have this escape, you know, and our strengths, people, it's not unusual that many of us do experience kind of that suicidality, even as young children because it feels like we don't understand, you know, we have no framework often to understand, we are what are places in the world, in the Enter to wonder about kind of how cycling changed us as you transition to in your life and kind of moments where it really did help kind of with managing your mental health, but also how your relationship is tackling change as you became more yourself, if that makes

Unknown:

sense. So initially, a race to to sort of quite a high national level, quite a high standard, I had a serious accident, when I was about 1516, which crippled me with pain meant I just couldn't race competitively. I couldn't put any power down through the pedals because of back pain. And so I stopped and fell into like many sports people do who have a sudden and abrupt end to their careers, ended up on almost immediately on hard drugs. But fast forward, probably another 10 or 15 years, and my rehabilitation from drugs, I started running. And then when I could afford it, I bought a bike and make some bike and I started racing again. And initially it was with the same escape escapism, the same addiction, the same reliance on the endorphins and testosterone and adrenaline. But when I came out as trans, the realized I was trans. One of the first things that I my attention was drawn to was my my addictions, lifelong addiction. And I finally realized why didn't know why it took me so long, that I'd been an addict all my life. And I think most people recognize that addiction is rooted in in pain. It's pain avoidance. And I realized that I had been hiding from my trans self or my life, I've been trying to bury and deny who I was. And that was the driver. That was the motivation in the subconscious motivation in the addiction. So as I came out as trans, I found that my mojo my, my motivation for racing and training just evaporated. Because I had no I had nothing to prove I had nothing to hide from any more. So yeah, and I, I've actually stopped racing after having raced most of my life and been addicted to it. Again, right, I wrote to top national level in my mid 50s. And all of a sudden, there was just no need for I'm happy in there, I'm out. And I'm no longer hiding. So I don't need the self harm. I don't need the addiction. Yeah.

Alex Iantaffi:

Absolutely. Do you find that you still enjoy cycling though? The pleasure of it?

Unknown:

Yes. Because it is it is a it's such a beautiful pastime. You know, I generally ride on country lanes. I don't see cars, people are just soaking the countryside and the beauty. And I find it an incredibly beautiful, peaceful, healthy, relaxing pastime. I've done it all my life so I'm not going to stop

Alex Iantaffi:

Good, I'm so glad you found a new relationship with cycling because like you said it is it does come across kind of the how devoted you are to it in the book, you know, when you said cycling into a religion, I was like, I couldn't believe that that comes across from the pages. And I love what you said about addiction as well how addiction comes from pain. And I think a lot of trans people do struggle, often with addiction issues. And, you know, when I think about it, as a therapist myself, even that addiction is really a disease of intimacy, sometimes we call it right. I wonder, you know, how that kind of yearning to have understand yourself, but the challenge to understand yourself and to be seen by others, how you want it to be seen kind of how that kind of may be played into your addiction patterns or knots or, you know, in this kind of search for meaningful connection and relationship as well, that is also part of the book and the memoir.

Unknown:

Yeah, I think, what is not totally unusual with me, but I think the depths of my denial about being trans was so total that I, I almost had a split personality, and I thought for many years, I was schizophrenic. But I think what it was it was so deeply repressed and suppressed because I'd been shamed, or had been shamed as a child, about my feminine self. And when I joined the church, I was shamed and judged. And so what that caused me to do was to bury it to hide it to deny it. And the denial was so total, that it just made me very vulnerable to addiction. Because I wasn't, there was no, there was no honesty within me no reality within me. And although I was living a supposedly Christian life, it was a life of dishonesty because I couldn't be myself. I was cut off from myself. Yeah.

Alex Iantaffi:

Well, in in a way, the way that a lot of Christian churches are almost made it impossible for you to be yourself within kind of Christianity, as it's often as it's often kind of portrayed in some congregations, right? But you did find a way to reconcile being yourself and being a Christian, do you want to share a little bit more how you did that? Because I think sometimes people feel I need to choose myself and my trans identity or my faith, right? And it's, you know, talking about how can we keep whatever faith is our faith, and also be ourselves? I think it's such an important topic of conversation within our community.

Unknown:

Yeah. So I probably go around in circles a little bit in terms of my story, but that's okay. I became a drug addict at the age of 17, became a drug dealer, ran away to India, and ended up being addicted to opium. And I had a total breakdown in India. Sure, as all my what felt like a miraculous series of events, I ended up in the church. And the first vicar, the First Minister, who ever saw me sort of interrogated me in a very compassionate way, and concluded that his conclusion was, you need an exorcism, which I was horrified by because I've never been involved in anything that I thought was occult or so yeah, so I went through this exorcism early on. And my mindset understood the language that Jesus was talking in the Bible, the stories in the Bible, when Jesus cast seven spirits out of a woman, and I know this is an issue that divides the Christian community, and it's one that I think non Christian people are horrified by this concept of spirits. But in the book I try and briefly describe my own understanding is that when there are violent disturbances within the human psyche I don't think anybody really knows how they are what they what they are. And so you know, the the primitive biblical language that Jesus used. I'm okay with whether I believe in literal demons, I don't know, literal spirits, but I do believe that the disturbances in the psyche can be so deep and so profound. And I I have experienced, very powerful and almost instant healing on a number of occasions from things. So fast forward to when I came out 30 something years later, after falling into church, I'd kind of come out to myself and come out to friends and family that I was trans. So I was processing. And I was still suffering suicidal ideation, I was still tormented and oppressed. I was 55 years old. And I'd been suffering from suicidal ideation, I would say, for 50 years, I've always wanted to kill myself to win this life to find a way out. And when I came out, I was I was overcome with grief, grief, that it felt like my life was over. I'm 62 now, and I thought it's too late. It's too late to transition, I can't afford to transition privately. Our National Health Service is broken. And it will probably take me seven years to even begin the process, with which time I'm 70. So I was filled with grief for a life I'd never lived, I'd never been able to transition. And I thought, you know, I want some photos to remember myself, the woman I could have been should have been, might have been that when I'm this old person, this old man sitting in a rocking chair in an old people's home, then I can look at my photos, and I have some happy memories. So I went to actually went to a trendsetter transgender dressing service, sort of, I suppose you'd call them life coaches in the way they teach, you know, when you come out at 50 and you know, makeup skills, your knowledge of hair products, and fashion and clothes, which is non existent. So I went to this dressing service, lovely lady. And as I was driving down, I felt like Jonah in the belly of the whale, I felt like I'd run as far away from God as you possibly could, you know, I, I was, I was under God's wrath, I was under God's judgment. And very nervously knocked on the door. And everything in me wanted to run away, because I felt like this was total shame. It was here I was a grade one alpha male to all my friends. And you know, in the building industry, I'm a top cyclist. And everybody only knows me as a as a male. And here I am. So Carrie does my makeup does my hair. And I go into the changing room and put my dress on. And when I come out and look in the mirror, Carrie says I'll get my camera and I'll take some photos for you. And I can only describe that I was washed in liquid love. It was pure liquid love. It was like heaven come down. It was an incredible, incredible feeling, and my inner awareness, my inner awareness of God, or of how I think God can speak to us. I felt God was saying Chrissy, I love you, just as you are. And that broke me even further, and I just crumpled up to the floor and started to weep with the knowledge of God's love. So my reconciling my face with my trans identity was primarily an experience, very profound experience of encountering God encountering God's love, and God saying Krissy I love you just as you are. I don't think God had ever spoken to be my name before we'd never called me by my male name, so to speak, spoken to by name was precious. Now, maybe that's just in my imagination or my understanding of God. But for me, it was real. So that left me with a huge problem, because I think our theology is, is constructed of two things. It's constructed of our experience on the one hand, and our understanding on the other. So all of a sudden, my experience told me that God loved me, but my understanding my understanding of the Bible, and what the church was telling me all my life was that I was indeed the sentiment, the judgment. So I had to reconcile my experience with my understanding. And that led me to pick up the Bible. I hadn't read the Bible for years because I just felt condemned by it and the church. And exactly the same as when I first heard the word transgender, and I knew it was me. I didn't know what transgender meant, but I knew that somehow it described me you know, it's Laverne Cox on the cover of Time. In 2014, Caitlyn Jenner in the UK, Frank Malone transitioned to become Kelly Malone famous boxing promoter. So all of a sudden word transgender was trending. It was everywhere. And I had a real problem I couldn't I anymore. Who I was I just knew I was trans. And it describes me. And in the same way, I'd come across Christians who were talking about Unix. And as soon as I heard the word eunuch, something in me related, it resonated, I thought, they hold the answer to my relationship with God and my understanding. And so I started to dig and dig and dig in Scripture in the Bible. And I just fell in love with the story of the human acts through scripture, because it's just the most incredible beautiful story over hundreds of years. And so, then my understanding, fell in line with my experience. Sorry, that was a lot.

Alex Iantaffi:

I love No, I love it. i When you describe that moment of God talking to you, as you were seeing yourself really, you know, in that moment, I got goosebumps, Chrissy because I feel like that is such a beautiful moment, right to be recognized not just by yourself, but by this loving God. And, you know, I was brought up Catholic and I definitely had my own journey in terms of reconciling my faith with my identity and, and while only partially walked away from Christianity, I did truly feel that God loves me, even though the Catholic theology does not recognize that and so I resonated with a lot of what you said, and I really loved how you expressed it. And now you found your, your way to this beautiful story of the unit in the Bible. So now wasn't wasn't too long of an answer. I think it was a beautiful answer

Unknown:

is that within Christianity, all the the anti trans Christian books and all the anti trans Christian rhetoric, no one can explain to me the power of what happened to me. Because in discovering that God loves me justice, I am trans 50 years of suicidal ideation stopped. And I haven't suffered suicidal ideation in seven years. The shame, the guilt, the self hatred, the oppression, the torment, the suicidal ideation, it's called gone, it's gone. In seven years, I haven't had anything. And that is the fruit that's the result of the encounter. And that leads me to believe that it's real. It's the most real deliverance is the most real healing I've ever experienced. And it didn't happen in a church. It happened in a transgender dressing service.

Alex Iantaffi:

And I feel that that makes sense. I don't know that makes sense to me, right? There's so much in the Gospel about how, you know, sometimes the experiences of God don't always happen in a temple, right. And that's a beautiful illustration. Another powerful thing that you talk about in your memoir is something that so many trans people are afraid of specially when we come out later in life, which is telling a spouse what's going on. And I thought that when you start talking about this letter that you wrote to Pam, your wife, it was so beautiful, Senator, if you want to talk a little bit to the listeners about, you know, what was your experience? I know it can be such a scary, I would say experience for so many of us to disclose to a spouse how we're feeling about our agenda.

Unknown:

Yeah, so 2014 I really some time over that. Summer, I came out to myself to a few friends and I started meeting other trans women at meetings, to hear their stories to try and understand myself. And the guilt and the pain that I suffered at deceiving Pam or not being honest with Pam with my family, and even with friends. Just it was eating me from inside. All my life I've I've committed to being transparent, honest, vulnerable. And it had never been able to. But it was a principle for me. I've always tried to be honest. And so I knew that I had to tell. But at the same time, I thought, I'm going to lose my wife, I'm going to lose my children. I'm going to lose my home, I'm going to lose my job. I'm going to lose my community. I'm going to lose everything. And it was with that fear that I wrote the letter. It took me 24 hours almost nonstop to write the letter, I stopped for a couple of cups of coffee, something to eat. But I basically wrote for 24 hours solid, and poured my heart out and tried to explain the who and why, of where I was and why I was, and that I couldn't go any further in life, because I had been trying to kill myself. And I didn't want to hurt my family anymore. And I thought the only thing I can do is be honest now. So I gave the I came home from a job I was doing. And I gave the letter to Pam and we sat and read it together holding hands. And my wife has stood by me, loved me, supported me, cried with me, wept with me being angry with me. And she's gone through incredible grief, that losing hairy man, husband. And I think the other thing is that as a conservative Christian, as I have come out from shame, and walked away from shame and and free of shame, she has come on the shame has felt the judgment of church, the judgment that society has lived in fear, and shame, and grief. And I think it's tragic that the, you know, after 30 years of serving church, almost none of her Christian friends have actually followed up to see how she is. Which I find a damning indictment upon what we call church and Christian Fellowship. She has one or two friends who have been faithful and and check up on her but yeah, it's heartbreaking.

Alex Iantaffi:

That that is heartbreaking. Absolutely. But here, you are, like you have this beautiful relationship with your wife. And like you said, you've gone through a lot. But you know, you're still together, you have your family, you have your children. And I think that's a story with Don Hoffman ear about we hear about all the breakups and the divorces, and especially for trans women, you know, the losing of children or grandchildren and all of that. But there there is a happy ending for you. And that just wonder, where are you at in your marriage now? And how have you found maybe a new fellowship? You know, coming out of that kind of more conservative Christian background?

Unknown:

Yeah, I think, you know, as Pam said, you know, if I'd have had an accident, and being paralyzed and lost for use in my lower body, you know, she would have stuck with me. And this is, I guess, a disaster for her, in which she's lost her husband. But in the same way, she has decided to stick with me. Not that I'm paralyzed or crippled. Far from it, I feel liberated and, and free, but so our marriage has kind of transcended norms. And I think we enjoy a richer friendship, or deeper love than we ever had before. The boundaries are change pan is not a lesbian, she doesn't. She's conservative, she's heterosexual through and through. She likes hairy men. Nice bumps. So no, it's in that sense. We've we've experienced the death in our physical relationship, but then many couples do. Yeah. But the other thing is, I've got an increasing number of trans friends who have kept them out his kept their jobs kept their families. And I and it's a beaut, it's really encouraging because Christians, particularly I spoke to somebody on Sunday on church and they said, Oh, what's happened to your wife, when they realized I'd come out? Almost as if it was assumed that default position that we would have separated? And when I said no, we were still very much in love. She looked more shocked than she did when I said I was coming.

Alex Iantaffi:

And I love that the sanctity of your marriage, I would say, really transcended this, this change, right? Because as Pam said, there can be so many changes that happen to you know, that's the difference between a wedding and a marriage, right? We marry a person and then if that relationship is long term, we change for life. And even though this was a hard change, Pan really recognize that and kind of you found a way of kind of nurturing your love kind of, you know, there wasn't just kind of romantic or sexual love, but because there's so much more that makes it marriage, I think. And I think that that's a beautiful illustration that you have of this.

Unknown:

Friendship is, I think, culture today practices, disposable friendships. And I'm horrified that the churches I belong to seem to particularly practice disposable friendships. So if you're in their club, great, you, we love you. But the moment moment, you no longer blacken their doors, you're forgotten. And I find that tragic, you can spend 20 years building relationships with people you leave their club. And that's it relationship over. You know, I think Pam and I have both experienced people that we thought were really good close friends. And they just seem to do this disposable throwaway friendship thing. So in our marriage, I think the deepest thing that we have, and we model is friendship, you know, and it's not for us, it's not a throwaway, it's not a disposable. It's rich, it's rewarding, it's painful, and it's you know, we do the nitty gritty, we, we don't argue like hell, but you know, we do conflict we we grieve, we get mad with each other. But we choose to, to love one another and serve as best we can.

Alex Iantaffi:

I think that's a beautiful description of kind of a marriage. Honestly, I think that if we don't know how to do conflict, it's hard to stay in long term relationships, whatever those relationships are. Well, I feel like I could talk with you for so long. But I also want to be respectful of your time. I mean, one, one more question that I want to ask is what made you write a book because in a way, so many of the experiences you describe in your book are so deeply personal, and you do such an amazing job of really taking the reader with you in this really deeply personal rich in a world of your essence. So what motivated you to want to write this book?

Unknown:

Yeah, I think having been through puberty, and childhood, and suffered from gender dysphoria and dysmorphia to such a crippling degree that I was suicidal and tried to take my own life regularly, as a pubescent kid. And realizing how judged trans people are and how the church judges trans people. So I wanted to write a book, to try and explain to try and get people to relate to come on board. And to see us as no different from them, to see us as human. So I wrote the book, I had to be totally honest and authentic all the way through. And people will either love or hate me. Because I wrote the book for two groups of people, I wrote it as a love letter to the trans community really, to say, look, we can come to this no matter what hell you've been through. You can come through service, there's a message of hope for the trans community that no matter how messed up how broken you feel, that actually there are there is a way through. The love does win always wins. But then I wrote it to the conservative Evangelical Church to say, you need to understand us before you judge us. Please, would you take time out and read this book? And would you rethink your judgments? And I hope that you know, the conservative churches can learn from my book, maybe to listen it's a bridge building exercise. And then I wrote it for my friends in though I just a lot of people what on earth this happened to you? So it was it was way of explanation? Really. So yeah, that was the motivation. You know, I wrote the book for the nine year old kid that I was to try and save them going through hell. You know, 40 to 45% of trans people attempt suicide. And many trans youth take their own lives. You know, I've mentioned one or two in the book. And when I realized that and experienced that that ripped my heart wide open and I thought the church needs to know that they are causing the shame, they are causing the judgment, they are causing the transphobia and they need to be held accountable. You know, the beautiful thing is it I don't call myself a Christian and I don't want to be called the Christian. I don't have any time for Christianity, the religion, the industry, you know that pie in the sky sales market. But I love Jesus and I, you know, I've given my whole life to Jesus. And what the most beautiful thing I say about Jesus in the gospels and in, in the Bible is that everywhere he went, he broke shame from people's lives, whether it was the sex worker, whether it was the tax collector, the leper, you know, the unclean woman with the issue of blood, people that you couldn't touch he embraced. So he broke shame off in people's off people's lives. And what I see is the church loading shame on people's lives, crippling people with shank, so their judgments and their opinions, and they are only opinions, they can't prove them as they can't prove their, their theories and their opinions as being absolute truth. Their theories, and to judge and condemn somebody for a theory and an opinion is callous beyond extreme. So, yeah, I see Jesus breaking shame. Often people and I see the church laying Shame on people, I do have some beautiful Christian friends and ministers, priests, who are doing everything they possibly can to break shame from people's lives who are affirming of trans people. And, you know, I will, I will back them, serve them, love them, respect them, with everything I've got. So yeah, very mixed emotions.

Alex Iantaffi:

That's understandable. And I hear that one of the first people a long time ago to tell me that I just needed to go live my life and be myself was a vicar, you know, which really horrified my mother was like, You mean like, Christian like, person. And, you know, a man of God told you this? And I said, Yes, ma'am. He looked in my eyes and said, the church is not ready. But you need to be yourself to be well, you know, and I have so much gratitude for Father James, you know, for telling me that so such a long time ago. And so there are beautiful people, and also the church needs to be accountable for putting this shame on on trans people, and especially children and young people. Is there anything that you want to say to like a child who's struggling, or maybe a parent who's struggling to accept their child because of their Christian faith for anything that you want them to really know or understand?

Unknown:

That you're loved just as you well? A child's gender, sexuality. You know, if there is a God and if God judges for us for anything, He judges us not for our gender or sexuality. He judges us for the attitude of our hearts. I see. I see faith as a, as a heart, religion, of purity of heart to having a heart of love. And when you have a heart of love, and you can't, it's hard for darkness. It's hard for meanness and ugliness to dwell there. And I think, if we understood God is love, then we wouldn't suffer like we do. And so, you know, parents of trans kids and trans children, if you are trans, then know that God is loving you or love, just as you are. And accepting yourself and loving yourself is is your life's biggest task. Self love and being kind to yourself. It starts with you. But you have to junk the ideas of God or some vindictive, wrathful, vengeful, judgmental, old man in the sky. Because that's the it's just religious who can Pokken

Alex Iantaffi:

love that? What a beautiful message. Ha. So one question I always ask at the end of my interviews is if there is anything that you and I haven't talked about so far, they were really hoping to talk about and if we covered everything, that's the two but I always want to give an opportunity to my guests to address anything that I might have missed.

Unknown:

Yeah, and I think it's very easy for us all in the conflict. That, you know, since 2014, since that kind of the transcends the transgender phenomenon broke. Big time. The backlash from conservatives has been really ugly, really nasty, in the same way that it was against gay people in the 70s and 80s. You know, all the, the evil, you know, AIDS is God's judgment on the, you know, the vileness of the judgment that we are under as a trans community. So we get locked in conflict. And I think we as a community are traumatized. And I think we, as individuals are traumatized by daily judgment spoken over us by opinionated people who know, very little, they're frantically trying to find out about trends, and they're pumping out their first thoughts without really having spent any time with the trans community to see the reality psionic reality. So I think what I want to say is that we, we need to move beyond the conflict, to celebrate who we are. And I think perhaps my closing message and it's one I don't get across in the book enough, the books very much unfinished, unfinished business is that I am fulfilled and happy for the first time in my life in a deep, deep sense. When I see my trans friends who are transitioning and have transitioned, I see them flourishing and flowering, into incredible people of real beauty and sensitivity. And they don't show an ounce of the ugliness that I see within many Christians. They are far more gracious, they're far more sensitive, far more thoughtful, far more measured. And so I see beauty in being trans. And I think most my trans friends are the most sensitive people I know, the most gracious people I know. And so I'd say being trans is absolutely beautiful. Yes, it comes with pain and suffering, but it's one of the most beautiful things that could have ever happened to me. Because it's made me it's made me make me more more aware of what love is what loving other people about and people who are other people who are not like me. So if you like it's broken me but it's broken me in a beautiful way. So yeah, I want to say being trans is is something beautiful, it's a gift. And I'd go as far to say as I think that's a gift from God. No, it says

Alex Iantaffi:

what a what a beautiful message. You know, being trans is beautiful. And I would agree it is the gift from the Divine a gift from God. Absolutely. What a beautiful message to end on. Thank you so much, Chrissie for coming on to the show today. Then, this was so delightful. Oh, yes. I was gonna say thank you for reminding me we need to we all survive under capitalism. Please dear listeners do buy the book. It's called haven't come down the story of a transgender disciple, like Christie Sheva suit. And it's really good. I really love to read in this book, Chrissie. So buy the book, buy a book for friends, maybe for family members who are having a hard time reconciling their Christianity with accepting trans folks, this would be a perfect gift for those relatives. And yes, buy the book. Read the book. And thank you so much, Chrissie once more. I will also put a link on the little episode description so you can find it easily. And thank you again, Chrissie for coming on to gender stories today. All right, dear listeners. Until next time, keep loving yourself and being kind to yourself and I'll see you soon for a new episode.