Tuesday 31 August 2021

Interview with Mira Eskelinen

Monika: Today I am going to interview Mira Eskelinen, also known as Miss Vinyl Envy, a Finnish writer, actress, producer, performer, and queer trans woman. Hello Mira!
Mira: Hello Monika!
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Mira: Sure. :) I'm 31 years old, and I live in Helsinki with my 8-year-old cat Minttu. I've spent the last months recovering from the gender confirmation surgery I had at the beginning of last December, and I'm slowly getting better and feeling very happy with the results (and two days ago I had my first post-op orgasm!). I'm currently working on a video series about trans issues and writing my first book.

Sunday 29 August 2021

Interview with Chrissie Chevasutt

Monika: Today I am honored to host Chrissie Chevasutt, an inspirational woman, writer, and transgender advocate from Oxfordshire, England, the author of the recently published biography "Heaven Come Down: The Story of a Transgender Disciple" (2021). Hello Chrissie!
Chrissie: Hello Monika!
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Chrissie: I'm 62, married, and have two lovely daughters aged 23 and 25. I've worked in graphic design and illustration, catering and hospitality, the building industry, and the church. I've been a missionary, pastor and preacher, and teacher, but my heart is to love, serve, pastor, and create a safe space for the vulnerable and marginalized. My lifelong passion has been cycle racing and riding.
Monika: Why did you choose Chrissie for your name?
Chrissie: My family surname is French in origin, deriving from the monasteries in the 11th century. I've been trans all my life but never had a name for my trans self until I came out. I chose the name Chevasutt to honor the beautiful woman who helped deliver our two daughters, the richest gift of our lives, and Chrissie just seemed to fit, sit and roll off the tongue.

Friday 27 August 2021

Interview with Pavie Valsa

Monika: Today we are going to meet a talented and inspirational woman from Czechia. Pavie Valsa is a young makeup artist, model, Britney Spears impersonator, poet, painter, and writer living in the United Kingdom. She is the author of "Twenties and Happy: A complete guide to happiness in a little pocketbook" (2019), published in the English and Czech languages. Hello Pavie!
Pavie: Hello Monika, it’s nice to talk to you.
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Pavie: I never know what kind of words to say to this question. Ermm I’m a human being? (Laughing) No, seriously, I'm a 27-year-old girl from Czechia. A proud trans girl, to be specific.
I am an author of the book Twenties and Happy, I’m also a Britney Spears impersonator and a signed model, also a professional makeup artist, which I studied for 4 years. In addition, I am a very typical Cancer, I am left-handed, and I have green eyes.

Wednesday 25 August 2021

Interview with Bree Fram

Monika: Today I have invited an inspirational woman. Lieutenant Colonel Bree Fram is the President of SPARTA, an organization that advocates and educates about transgender military service and is dedicated to the support and professional development of over 1200 transgender service members. She is currently the highest-ranking out transgender officer in the Department of Defense.
In addition, Bree is an active duty astronautical engineer in the US Air Force. Her writing has been featured in the Washington Post, Military Times, Inkstick, and LGBTQ Nation. She is the co-author of the forthcoming book With Honor and Integrity: Transgender Military Personnel in Their Own Words due out in November 2021. Hello Bree!
Bree: Hello Monika!
Monika: How are you doing in these crazy pandemic times?
Bree: We're getting by, though are concerned with the massive rise in cases of the delta variant. I'm hopeful that someday soon we can reach that magic of herd immunity with enough people getting their vaccines.

Monday 23 August 2021

Interview with Aliyah Tam Casari

Monika: Today we are going to the sunny state of California where my guest is living. I would like to introduce to you Aliyah Tam Casari, a U.S. Air Force veteran and air traffic control instructor that shares her story on social media. Aliyah and I are going to talk about being trans and the challenges related to her fascinating journey towards womanhood. Hello Aliyah!
Aliyah: Hello Monica! Thank you for inviting me to your interview and I’m very happy to be here and share my life story.
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Aliyah: I was born in 1965 in a small town called Hazleton, Pennsylvania. Around the age of eight years, I realized something was different about myself. I was interested in playing with the girls and doing things all girls do. Thus, there’s a whole story in between up until the age of about 52 that I began my transition as a transgender female.

Friday 20 August 2021

Interview with Rukshana Kapali

Monika: Today We are going to the beautiful country of Nepal where my guest comes from. Rukshana Kapali is a transgender activist, blogger, and writer. Hello Rukshana!
Rukshana: Hello Monika. Thank you for having me in your blog.
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Rukshana: I am Rukshana Kapali. I am 22 years old. I am a trans woman. I come from the Newa ethnic nation of Nepal. I am currently doing my Bachelor’s degree in Law at Purbanchal University and Bachelor’s degree in Linguistics at Tribhuvan University. I aspire to be both a lawyer and linguist. I am also the Executive Director at Queer Youth Group, a not-for-profit working for SOGIESC rights.
My work involves policy advocacy and the advancement of SOGIESC rights in Nepal. I also work to create resources about SOGIESC issues, mostly in Nepal Bhasa and Nepali, and also in English. I am a part of the Nepal Bhasa movement and advocate for reinstating Nepal Bhasa as an official language in Nepal. I am also involved and enthusiastic about the upliftment of my native language Nepal Bhasa. I am a language nerd and I love learning new languages. However, I haven't been able to actively engage in language learning.

Wednesday 18 August 2021

Interview with MikaelaVille

Monika: Today I have invited a special guest. Most of you know her as Mika or MikaelaVille - The Adorkable Girl Next Door. She is an American social media influencer, YouTube vlogger, parent, digital artist, gamer girl, and transgender advocate. Mika and I are going to talk about being trans and the challenges related to her parenthood and fascinating journey towards womanhood. Hello Mika!
Mika: Hi, thank you for having me. When I opened your message on Instagram and saw that you wanted to interview me, I couldn't be happier. Let me tell you, to open a DM and NOT see a stranger's genitalia is a real treat these days. So, I was honored and thrilled to receive your message.
Monika: Haha, so we have a nice introduction to our chat. Could you say a few words about yourself?
Mika: Oh wow, let's see. I'm 36 years old, which means I'm officially at that age where I can't get off a couch without grunting. I have 2 amazing kids who are quickly becoming more intelligent than me. I'm an Artist with a passion for creativity, and I've been a letter carrier for the United States Postal Service for the last 15 years. It's not my dream job, but it gets the bills paid. I've been on social media for the last 4 years, and I recently started a YouTube channel.

Tuesday 17 August 2021

Interview with Joanne Leung

Monika: Today I have invited an inspirational woman. Joanne Leung is a transgender activist from Hong Kong where she became the first openly transgender politician. Joanne is the former chairwoman of Pink Alliance and the founder and chairwoman of Transgender Resource Center (TGR), both non-governmental organizations that aim to service the LGBT community and promote LGBT equality. Hello Joanne!
Joanne: Hey Monika!
Monika: I am so happy to talk to one of the icons of the Hong-Kong transgender community! How are you doing in these crazy pandemic times?
Joanne: I am now doing a Master’s degree in Taiwan in Gender Studies and being locked down means I can be more focused on my studies. After more than 11 years servicing the trans community, I found that research data is so important in providing a better environment for transgender people, especially there were much less empirical data in the area of China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. That’s why I planned to step down in 2019 for my ongoing learning path. Yet the new chairman after a year of service has got a studying offer and decided to resign.

Sunday 15 August 2021

Interview with Petra Wenham

Monika: Today I have the pleasure and honor of interviewing Petra Wenham, a British woman from Suffolk, UK, the first transgender woman to star on the front cover of the Women’s Institute magazine, WI Life. The Women's Institute is a community-based organization for women in the United Kingdom, Canada, South Africa, and New Zealand. Petra is a speaker and activist for a Suffolk chapter of the branch, the Cake and Revolution WI. Hello Petra!
Petra: Hi, to give your readers some additional background. The WI in the UK is a charitable organization and started in 1915 although its roots are in the late nineteenth century in Canada. There are numerous local WI groups organized into geographic federations generally based on a County. These county federations are in turn federated together under the national federation (www.nfwi.org.uk). It is the national federation that publishes the WI Life magazine and who commissioned the feature article on myself.
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Petra: I am a retired 74-year-old transgender woman who transitioned to living full-time as a woman in 2018. I’m married and earlier in 2021 we celebrated our 48th wedding anniversary and we have two children and two grandchildren.

Thursday 12 August 2021

Interview with Jessica Crockett

Monika: Today I have invited a special guest. Jessica Crockett is an American actress, model, and admirer of Arabian horses. She was the first-ever trans actress to play a trans woman on American television in an episode of Dark Angel (2001), the well-known TV series with Jessica Alba in the main role. Hello Jessica!
Jessica: Hi Monika! A pleasure to meet you.
Monika: How are you doing in these crazy pandemic times?
Jessica: Very well thank you. Staying safe and fully vaccinated.
Monika: It has been 20 years since your appearance as Louise in the Dark Angel series. How do you recall this role?
Jessica: The first thing that comes to mind was how hard it was to land in this role. In the business, it's called a principle role. Lots of barriers to overcome. The audition process was super grueling. I was prepared though. I was obsessed with the art of acting and studied with the best.
My very wise acting coach said, "Forget everything you've learned and be yourself." That was the hardest part. Playing a trans character was extremely challenging for me. 20 years ago survival was the main priority. To survive back then you had to blend in. Be stealthy.

Sunday 8 August 2021

Interview with Jessa Kay

Monika: Today I would like to introduce to you Jessa Kay, an inspirational woman from California, the USA, that shares her story on social media. Jessa and I are going to talk about being trans and the challenges related to her fascinating journey towards womanhood. Hello Jessa!
Jessa: Hi Monika!!! Thank you for selecting me to interview.
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Jessa: I’m a 39-year-old transgender woman. Originally from West Virginia, currently living in Los Angeles, CA.
Monika: What inspired you to share your intimate life moments via social media?
Jessa: There was a time when I was coming to terms with my internal struggle of knowing that in my heart, mind, and soul that I was a woman. I took comfort and drew inspiration from other transgender women who were brave enough to share their journey. Now that the shoe is on the other foot, I feel it is my responsibility to share my journey with other budding transwomen who might need some comfort and inspiration.

Wednesday 4 August 2021

Interview with Aeri Gosselin

Monika: Today I have the pleasure and honor of interviewing Aeri Gosselin, an American scientist and transgender woman that shares her transition story on social media. Hello Aeri!
Aeri: Hi Monika! Thank you so much for the introduction and for taking the time to chat with me!
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Aeri: I am a 27 year old transgender American, raised in Vermont. When I wasn’t in school or skiing I was generally eating fresh maple syrup on snow from a horse trough. I have just completed a five-year Ph.D. program in inorganic chemistry where I studied a class of porous materials known as porous coordination cages.
And most recently I’ve moved to Berkeley CA to begin a career as a synthetic chemist making materials to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. When I am not in the lab I enjoy spending time in nature, reading, painting, and caring for my plants!

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