I found Venture Out Project through a friend. The moment I realized such an amazing organization existed, I was immediately hooked and wanted to book a trip. Being an outdoor person living in Colorado is a pretty common thing. But doing those activities with other trans and queer people is not as common. The idea I can be with like minded people who understand the journey I have been on, and able to share their journey felt like a tall glass of water on a hot day.
I have always been into nature and outdoors. As a kid my parents taught me young how testing yourself on a trail, or camping in the rain can teach you so much about yourself, and how to be self reliant. It taught me what l it feels like to be uncomfortable but to keep going because around the next corner could have the view of a life time. All that I learned in the outdoors prepared me for my transition and molded me into the trans man I am today.
During transition the outdoors was my safe space. I knew I could go hit up a trail and work all my frustrations and fears out in a healthy way. It was my own personal therapy and kept me from drugs and alcohol. Through my love of the outdoors I have been able to challenge myself. This summer I will be competing as male in a 100 mile mountain bike race in the Colorado Rockies. The race has a 12 hour cut off time which will push me to the limit. I know no matter what happens I will be pushing myself to see what I really can do. My reward after will be flying to Vermont and backpacking with the Venture Out Project.
As a transgender person we spend so much time on self reflecting. Wondering who we are and how to get there. Sometimes it feels overwhelming, and that we as trans people don't have outlets to express ourselves other then to talk about being trans. It becomes consuming and exhausting. We need positive outlets to express ourself. The Venture Out Project allows our community to express ourself in a healthy and positive way. To become an outdoor person, to find peace in a sometimes confusing world. Remember you are better then you think you are, and you can do more then you think you can. Get outside!