The Leo Yockey Show

Walking In Your Truth (Diego A. Gutierrez)

May 11, 2021 Diego A. Gutierrez Season 1 Episode 2
The Leo Yockey Show
Walking In Your Truth (Diego A. Gutierrez)
Chapters
The Leo Yockey Show
Walking In Your Truth (Diego A. Gutierrez)
May 11, 2021 Season 1 Episode 2
Diego A. Gutierrez

Diego A. Gutierrez talks to Leo about his incredible story and the importance of living your truth. They discuss transitions: from an aspiring law student to moving up the ranks at a construction company, living life in the correct gender as a trans man, and recovering from addiction.

Receive a journaling prompt every Friday morning:  leoyockey.com

Diego: instagram.com/diego.ariel.gtz

Leo: instagram.com/leoyockey; twitter.com/leovolving; tiktok.com/@leoyockey

By: Leo Yockey

Show Notes Transcript

Diego A. Gutierrez talks to Leo about his incredible story and the importance of living your truth. They discuss transitions: from an aspiring law student to moving up the ranks at a construction company, living life in the correct gender as a trans man, and recovering from addiction.

Receive a journaling prompt every Friday morning:  leoyockey.com

Diego: instagram.com/diego.ariel.gtz

Leo: instagram.com/leoyockey; twitter.com/leovolving; tiktok.com/@leoyockey

By: Leo Yockey

All right, this is like my third take. Third time's a charm, right? How's it going, y'all? This is Episode Two of the Leo Yockey show. I am your host, Leo Yockey. I'm being super chaotic for no reason I've had generally good takes. But if I mess up in one part, I'm like deleting the whole thing and re recording. It doesn't make any sense. But that's okay. Because no matter how this turns out, I'm sure it's gonna be a great intro. Right? Right. Well, it kind of goes into my journal prompt. Did you do it? What did you get out of it? You don't have to answer that if you already emailed me. But if not, you can go ahead and just just yell it out right now. Oh, cool. Okay, so for those of you who have no idea what I'm talking about, every Friday, I send out an email with one of my favorite book quotes and a journal prompts about that book, quote. And the whole point of it is just for us to kind of get to know each other, and ourselves. Cuz I feel like a lot of the conversations I have that are gonna be here on this podcast are all about knowing yourself. And I don't know about you, but I get so fucking annoyed over advice like that, that just feels canned. You just have to know yourself, you just have to know what you want, like, What does any of that even mean? And unfortunately, there is no magic pill, there is no one stop shop to getting to know yourself. It all kind of comes with time and practice. And with these journal prompts, that's kind of the goal is to just kind of start to get to know yourself in a way that that isn't too time consuming, you can kind of do it over the weekend. And we can all do it together. And you know, I've had people share their insights with me. And it's been just really cool. And I kind of share what I got here on the podcast, it's a good time, if you want to get signed up, go ahead and head to my website, Leo Yockey, calm, that's leoyockey.com. And we'll get you all set up. So for me, I've kind of been working on trying to be my own cheerleader for a while now. And maybe six months ago or so I started writing down all of my accomplishments, at the end of every day, anything that I got done that is like a win of any kind, no matter how big or how small, I write it down. So it could be you know, the extra chores that I did when I thought I was too tired to do anything else for the rest of the day. It could be the phone call that I made that I was really nervous about and heavy put had been putting off, it could be all the things that I got done on my to do list, it could be all this self care that I did when I realized I was burnt out and that nothing on my to do list was actually that important. So why be busy for buisiness sake, you know, whatever it is, I always write it down. And after a few months of doing that, I realized that if there was a day where I was less productive, didn't get stuff done on my to do list, you know, it was kind of just feeling like a loser for lack of a better term for like not having stuff done. After a while I was able to train my mind to start thinking about those accomplishments. Because I'm writing them down every single day, I'm training my brain to say, hey, hey, hey, you're not a loser. Look at all this other stuff that she did look at, look at how much you can accomplish when you're feeling your best. Like who who gives a shit if there was one bad day, right? Like, as long as the overall trajectory is still heading in the right direction? Who cares, right? So now that I'm in the habit of doing that, it's much easier to in moments when I'm struggling to just say, Okay, I got this, I can do this. And that's, I mean, that's really all it took for me, I guess was just a little bit of practice. But anyway, my guest today is my good friend Diego Gutierrez and, man, we Yeah, we ended up having a great talk. You know, I don't I don't get to hang out with a lot of trans guys, I which is my own fault. I don't I don't reach out to the community as much as I should. And, you know, Diego when he started transitioning, that was one of the first things he asked me, he's like, Hey, where are the trans guys at? I need new friends now. I was like, I don't know. I don't I don't really talk to anyone. And, you know, a year later, I turned around and Diego's friends with like all the cool trans guys on Instagram. So, you know, that's pretty cool. And we talk a little bit about how he ended up going from this trajectory where he wanted to go to law school and become a lawyer to now he works in accounting. For this construction company. And it's interesting because you would think that someone who wanted to be a lawyer and became an accountant had this like major shift in priorities and goals and where they saw their life heading. But in a lot of ways, Diego's life still looks exactly like he envisioned it when he first went to college. Even though the specific details are different, he's still making the same contributions to the world that he wanted to be making as a lawyer. But he found a way to do it that better suits through other priorities in his life. Diego wanted to help people but he also didn't want to be in school forever, or working 10 hour days or anything like that. And he found a way to have the same community involvement that he wanted to have as a lawyer, he found a way to use his brain the way that he wanted to as a lawyer. And now he's going to be able to accomplish all of his dreams. So I think that's really cool. Without further ado, here's Diego. Alright, what's up Diego? How's it going? Pretty good man. Just got back from a soccer game this morning. So high energy and good times. Oh, nice. How was that? It's very informal. It was actually like a company outing for my job. And so we just started this thing last month, where we're trying to do like monthly soccer games, and it's just like a bunch of dudes and like their 50s. And then some of us and they just bring their wives and kids and partner for whatever and yeah, it's great. So that's awesome. And for the for the listeners, Where, where, what, what do you do? Exactly? Okay, so I am the accounts payable director for a an asphalt paving company in Southern California. Nice and accounting, its accounting, accounting, the, the good ol the good old numbers job, as they say, the bean counters yes to being the bean counters. That's right. I've never heard that before, or I have heard that before. But I haven't heard it in a while. So what I meant to say. So I've known personally for a while that you're in accounting. on your birthday, we did like a little little quiz about you. And I learned that you have a political science degree. So something that I've been really wanting to ask you pretty much ever since I found that ad, and I've been waiting until I can get you on the record. Diego How the hell did you end up being an accountant after getting a poly site agree? What is this? Explain yourself? Yeah, that's definitely not the career trajectory I ever thought that I was going to take having a political science degree, but basically got it because Okay, so I got this job back in September of 2017. It was an entry level position. When I first got there, I did not know it was going to entail accounting, I thought it was just going to be like run of the mill, like data entry type thing, you know, just like basic, like corporate stuff. Yeah. So this was just like your, I just need a job real quick. Let me just go apply here. I mean, you know, life, life can be messy. And, you know, the middle like the first half of 2016, my wife at the time, and I separated, she moved, you know, back to Central California, I stayed in Southern California. And so that whole year leading up to my current job, I left I used to work at a school I left that that was like my, you know, as a student, I work at a school type of job, it was cute or whatever. And so I quit my job right when my ex wife and I separated. And I went through like a really bad bout of like alcoholism and drug abuse. And so I decided to re enroll back in school, or you know, the the fall semester of 2017 because I literally needed like 11 more credits for my bachelor's in political science. So I'm gonna I live in Santa Ana, I go to school in Cal State Fullerton so I'm gonna find just you know, just like the quote unquote a BS job for now just like a placeholder for now in between type of job just to make some money and be able to go to school, you know, at night and work during the day. So I ended up going on indeed one day and just applied Leo I kid you not, I must have applied to like 100 different jobs in the course of like a week, right? I believe in. I mean, in that's just how it is. It's all theory, like, not in person formula. It's all just online, you just hit send, and you hit apply, and you just apply to a bunch of stuff. And I got a call back from that job. I got an interview on a Thursday. And I like to think I'm a pretty good interviewer. So I got the call back that same day, like hey, can you start the next day and I thought it was just entry level like office work and it was for the first week. We For the first week, he said, for the first week, it was my entry level. So what happened in week two, the, my, my boss, who is retired now, who was the general manager, and you know, did a lot of the accounting herself. I don't know, she, she and I asked her, I guess she just said she, like saw something in me and kind of just geared me more towards what she was doing. And at the same time, that second week, we hired somebody else to do like, not like, like administrative assistant work type deal. And that's how I ended up landing in the accounts payable department was just a random indeed, job application, and then a good stroke of luck, and I guess good work ethic combined in there. So that's how I went from having a political science degree, to now working in a field that has absolutely nothing to do with what I went to school for. Wow, that's interesting. So like, when you when you were in college, what was driving you to get that poly side? agree it? Was it like this? Is this makes the most sense? Or is the most interesting? Or did you actually have a goal in mind? Or a career in mind specifically? Yeah, I actually wanted to go to law school. Oh, I can see that for you. Yeah, I want to thank you. Compliment, I promise. Well, thank you. Thank you. Thank you. I think it is completely good. Most lawyers, but I want it to be a lawyer. And I still maybe sometimes, up until a year ago was kind of entertaining the idea of like, well, I'll just, you know, take the L SATs, see where that goes and see where I land with that. But um, being 31 not that I'm saying that age is like a determining factor for what you're going to do professionally. But I think at 31, I don't want to spend three more years of my life to start again, from like the bottom somewhere else, you know, plenty of people do that. But I just maybe if it would have been like, three years prior, I would have been more likely to make that move. But right now, it's just, you know, I'm busy living life and being married right now. I mean, I have a whole brand new puppy. Like, I don't really have the time to go back into school right now. But yeah, the original plan was, I wanted the political science degree just because I really enjoy politics, which is just honestly, like, the tip of the iceberg for what political science is. Yeah. But Blasco didn't pan out. But I am very grateful because a lot of the critical thinking skills involved in my schoolwork translate to my day to day life at the office. So there is there is a Connect. And what are some of those skills? Like why what what did you take from your, from your policy degree into your current job? Well, I mean, I guess it's also more specific to just being able to be in school, because when you're a student, and you know, if you're, it's a year, it's years long process to get your degree, right. So Time management is absolutely crucial to the job that I perform daily, at my office. And I feel like had it not been for me being in a program at Cal State Fullerton that was so rigorous. And so like, like the county Fullerton, political science department does not believe in online school, so everything was in person all the time. So it's just like being able to manage your time like, Okay, I have to physically be there, I have to prioritize my tasks. And I have this due on this day. And my job consists of a lot of daily deadlines. So that definitely translated from being a student to being a working professional. You know, just having like the time management skills in the prioritizing skills as well. Cool. Oh, I back up a little bit. So you mentioned it was about a year ago that you said that you wanted to kind of go back to law school up until about a year ago. And because you had kind of hit this this, I don't want to say deadline, but I guess kind of deadline. Like, if it hasn't happened by now. You know, I don't I don't want to start over. And I, I fully get that. I mean, in Cal newports books he talks a lot about, he's an author, and he talks a lot about the importance of like, not throwing away all the experience that you have accumulated up to this point and kind of, you know, build in from where you're at, as opposed to starting over from scratch. But I know that a year ago, you had some pretty significant changes in your personal life. So I wonder because I mean, the 34 is not really that old to be starting a new career and I know people in their 40s 50s who have absolutely started over so do you do you really feel like it's it's that you don't want to start over? Or do you think they your priorities changed and that other things became more important than become you know, becoming a lawyer like other other things became a bigger source of focus? Film and where you saw her life. I think it was a combination of, of the factors you mentioned. One it honestly, time is the, of the essence, you know, typically shade here, because my wife and I are planning to have children within the next like two years or so. So I don't know that I want to have a full time job because I don't come from money. So for me to survive, like I have to have a full time job, you know, and perform those tasks like to, to pay my rent to pay my bills to do this and that so I, I'm not too comfortable with the idea. I mean, can I can I possibly win being like a full time employee in a law student and having children? Sure, but I'm not too sure that that's going to be very, a very satisfying journey for everybody involved, you know, so there's that. So it's a personal reason why I don't necessarily want to do school right now. Like, that's one of the big ones. And another one is that it turns out, I actually really, really enjoy the industry, that I mean, it's it's construction, and it's really rough around the edges, but I feel like I fit right into it. And so while I know that I'm not going to be doing accounting in the long run for the company, I do intend to stay with the same company and just transfer departments over to a sales and project management, just because there's more flexibility with scheduling there. And there's considerably more money to be made in that department tool. So I actually dabble in project management here and there for the same company, aside from accounting, but that's the end goal. So I figured if I'm already in an industry, where I'm establishing myself as a professional, and I'm thriving in it already, why? Why get rid of a good thing to go pursue something else that I'm really not that passionate about at the moment? And I really don't like it'd be starting from zero. A while leaving somewhere where I'm already very happy, very satisfied. Well, I think the most important thing out of everything you just said was right there at the very end, where he said, Why throw away a good thing for something I'm not that passionate about. I mean, that is the key to everything else you just said, because let me tell you, my friend, and I say this, because I love you literally everything else he said about why I go to law school as an excuse that if you really want to do it, you would just overcome it like, yeah, is it hard to be a dad and a full time student and a full time worker? Like, of course it is, but people do it. And, and it's, it's, I think that we do this thing where it's like, we have a decision, where like, Oh, I'm going to go to law school, I'm going to be a doctor, I'm going to do this, I'm going to do that. And we almost feel, you know, sometimes we feel this like, pressure of like, Oh, I have to do this, I have to do this. It's like no, sometimes your priorities are going to change sometimes, that thing that you thought was your path doesn't seem as important anymore. And I think that you know, that's that's really what I'm hearing, you know, all the all the rest of it, like, I know you you move mountains for the stuff you want to do. The rest of that stuff is just bullshit man. It'd be passionate, passionate about it, and you don't gotta be passionate about it. This is your life, you know? Yeah, yeah. I mean, and you know what, like, it's, uh, if you would have told me when I was in the middle of, you know, getting my degree together, or whatever, and getting myself together. I mean, we're all working progress, and we're always getting ourselves together. But if you would have asked me, like, seven years ago, like, Hey, how about a construction job? You know, it would have been like, think about why would I ever want to go into a construction industry? Like why? Um, but sometimes I think life has a funny way of kind of, uh, when you're purposeful, for the most part, it kind of has a way of like, nudging you, in the way of your of where you're supposed to be. And it doesn't necessarily make sense as you're living it, but retrospectively, you're like, oh, there it is. That's what that was. Yeah, absolutely. I'm happy where I am, like, I'm, I don't think I've ever been more stable in my life. And a lot of that it's attributed to my personal growth and my investment in like, therapy. And finally, you know, week 50, and navigating the world through the proper gender. Yeah. And actually really quick for the listeners. Can you kind of summarize for us what some of these personal changes are, that you're talking about that have happened in the last year to what, maybe 18 months or so? Yeah, so I kind of syncs up with, you know, the whole pandemic stuff. Yeah, there's a lot of time for injury. I mean, you know, we were all in or, I never really got to quarantine because my job required me to be at my office like daily throughout the entirety of COVID. Like, even like right now, but I'm vaccinated now, but it's like, I'm at my office all the time. But as far as like the social life when I had a lot of free time in my house to just be introspective and really take a look at myself and say, Well, I don't want to be home. White Don't I know how to be home. And for me, personally speaking, it was, well, you're not comfortable with yourself, like you're not happy, you're not being honest in your existence, like you're not living your truth to any of its potential essentially. So, you know, had a lot to do with gender identity I had been. I mean, you, you told me once game recognizes game, I used to ask you a lot about your transition, because it was something that I, you know, being a kid I didn't have the language for. I didn't know anybody who was, you know, trans, any experience. And so to me, it wasn't necessarily an option. And then when I learned what it was, as an older teenager, it became kind of like, well, I can't do that, because of coming out as gay completely obliterated my parents, like, that's going to just destroy them. Right? Right. And it's all these excuses. Because at the end of the day, like, it's excuses to stop doing something that's going to make you happy. And so that's just what it was. On April 9 of last year, I started my hormone therapy, so you know, going on testosterone, and then, four days later, on April 13th, I got sober and so you'll quit drinking. And and I actually just came up on my year of sobriety, and my year of testosterone, you know, start date. So that's, and a lot of therapy, I put myself in therapy as well with an addiction therapist. And you know, we do marriage therapy now in my wife has her own therapist. So the past year, I decided to heavily invest in myself, because if I'm not gonna invest in myself, no one else is gonna do it for me. Oh, hell yeah. I love that so much. I, I was just so I was soaking in everything you said, I didn't even take any notes. But I think that that's really great that you were able to do that introspection, and then actually take action on it, because that's really, really hard to do. And to have that realization of like, it's not just a pandemic, it's not just that there's all this uncertainty, it's not just, I'm an extrovert, and I'm stuck in doors, it's, there's something fundamentally just wrong here. There's something I'm running away from. And, you know, that's, that's one of the hardest things any of us can do is having that realization and look in the mirror, realizing that the way that we're living is inauthentic, and to realize, to walk into that truth is to, you know, walk into what is considered like, socially kind of dangerous territory, where we don't know where how our family is going to react, we don't know, if we're going to be, you know, subjected to violence, we don't know, you know, we don't know all these things, because, you know, like, we, you know, like, we don't have access to it. So, you know, like, being able to do the therapy with the hormone therapy and the, like, addiction therapy. I, you know, that's a that's a big journey. That's a lot of, you know, I I've spent I spent a couple years sober at one point. And, you know, I've obviously done hormone therapy, too. And those were both big moments of growth in my life. So to have those happen simultaneously. I mean, that must have been such a journey for you. Oh, yeah, it was a best decision I've ever made, honestly. Yeah, it's a there's something so beautiful and peaceful about just walking in your truth day in and day out? Yeah. can't put a price on that. And, and he just, I mean, I'm not obviously like, if it's not safe for you to live your truth out, or, you know, because of where you're geographically located, or whatever it is. That's, that's okay. Like, your time will come. But when you do get there, there's just something so like pure about it. And being able to navigate that, in sobriety is, is also something that I didn't want to rob myself with, like, Well, why am I going to be stuck in my old ways? While I'm starting hormones, like why am I going to do that to myself, and it was just, it's, it's been great. And so, you know, my job has been also just fantastic. It's just it's been a good year for growth. Definitely. That's awesome. What do you think was like a everything that you've experienced in this year of growth? What was like the most surprising thing you learned about yourself? That I actually really do like the person who I am? Yeah, you know, I spent so many years just kind of doing life just very normally. Because alcohol is a number. You know, cocaine is very superficial. It's all fake. All that good energy. You feel this just in the absence of it. You're so depleted. You go back to like, just me Even EMI and so. Yeah, just that would be the answer for that. Yeah, that's I, I think you touched on something that I've kind of experienced myself too. You know, I, I've noticed that, you know, whenever I'm using substances to like a higher degree than normal, it's like one of the first tangible, like symptoms are indicators that something else is is wrong, you know, especially if I'm trying to do it by myself, because it's like, there's a big difference between like, oh, let me have like, this beer at this happy hour real quick, versus like, let me have several beers by myself at home, you know? And when I start doing that, I'm like, Wait a second, something's wrong. It's like the radar goes on. Like, doo doo doo doo doo doo doo doo doo. Like, what? What do I need to like? Like, sharpen up with myself? Like, what? Where? Am I straying away from my truth? No, and that's the thing. I'm very proud of you that you're cognitively aware of the indicators of you needing to check in with yourself. Because for so long, I was so numb that I wasn't even able to say like, hold on, why is it? Why is it 10? In the morning? Why are you racking up a line of cocaine? And why is your whiskey in your class I didn't even have like, I didn't care. It was just, I didn't have the cognitive like, care where with all to be like, oh, maybe I need to, like take a look inside and be like, Hey, dude, what's wrong? Whereas now, yes, if I cuz you know that being an alcoholic or recovering alcoholic, the temptation is always going to be there, you know, like the thought, well, it may be less frequent, it's still going to resurface occasionally. Particularly with triggers. So when I do have triggering events, and I do have the impulse to drink, that's what I know to say like, okay, what's wrong? Like, let's have a conversation with myself for a second. So like, I totally like, those whole check ins you're talking about, like, I I agree with that. Yeah. Yeah. And so so you, you're, you're, you've been on this journey, where you're, you're, you're kind of understanding your truth, living in your truth more. You cut, you cut up substances, and you gone to therapy and stuff to kind of figure out how to, like, fill that hole in your heart. So tell me a little bit about the community that you've kind of built up around you on Instagram in particular? Yeah, I you know, being out as like, lesbian back then I didn't really seek out community. Um, just because like, Alright, so you're gay. It's just like, who you sleep with? You don't have to necessarily like surround yourself with people who are like you and so whatever, just excuses to stay stuck without growth, right? Because I mean, we're, we're social beings. At the end of the day, well, whether you're extroverted, introverted, whatever it is, you are, you still need some form of human connection, and what better connection than people who have a similar lived experience? Like the one that you have yourself? Correct. And so what one of the things that I wanted to do, like a hallmark of me transitioning medically and socially, because my social transition started alongside my medical transition. Last April, it was a Alright, I don't want to lonewolf this, I need to I want to establish a group of individuals who are of trans masculine experience, not because like, it's better or anything is just I wanted familiarity with the topic, you know, yeah. insulitis figure, like, there's all these dudes on Instagram. Like, I'm gonna just build community and at the end of the day, like, I don't care if you have 20,000 followers, 30,000 followers, whatever it is, at the end of the day, you're a person just like I am. And we're all looking for happiness and looking for the things that make us like chicken smile and stuff. And so I figured I'm just gonna talk to these people. And if they messaged back and we click, we'll be friends cool. If not, like, that's cool, too. There's plenty of other people like to talk to and it just turns out that a lot of these dudes who I reached out to on social media on Instagram, particularly like, they're, they're awesome individuals. And it's such a pleasure to be able to call them like actually friends. Like, it's been great to be able to build that community and have people who understand things without me having to explain them extensively, you know? Yeah, I think that's I think that's great because I think so often I'm still struggling with that myself. Like I get stuck in this outsiders mentality where I'm so used to being the outsider, that I forget that I'm not you know, a 13 year old in my hometown with like, no internet and no phone. I'm an adult with Internet in a city with choices. So you know, if I'm if I'm feeling like an outcast sadder is because I'm not, you know, poking my head up and seeing who's there. Yeah, yeah. Yeah, I didn't I didn't want to transition and have it be a lonely experience, you know? So at what point, I'm going to kind of tie it back into work a little bit, sir. So at what point you mentioned, I want to now you have your eye on moving into sales? When did when did that goal arise? Exactly. Um, so it's surface level, it's sales, but it's more so project management, because in most asphalt companies, you actually have a salesperson who pitches the sale, and then that's it. And then somebody else like, schedules, the work, somebody else orders the material, but the way our company works is like, once you make that sale, like it's your project you are responsible for, like, beginning to end like all of it, right? So it's really, it's mostly project management. And I remember when I got hired first, I started seeing how much money some of these guys were making in that department. And you would never guess because they're like humble people. They don't, they're not showing what their money but I mean, we're talking like, like, one of my good friends at the company brings in last year, he made like, 800, something $1,000 just for doing sales and project management for asphalt dude. Yeah, I guess I wouldn't be looking at a law school anymore, either. If I were you. Absolutely. You know, what makes like 600,000 300,000, we had a guy hit almost a million light years. And at the base level, the guys who make less money who do it full time are making like 100 150 a year, you know. And so I saw that when I was first hired, it's like, Okay, how do I go from this entry level job. To over there. We're like, they're making good investments for their futures. And so that's just what it was. Initially, it was money motivated. And then when I actually talked to my friend, Jordan, who was a project manager there, and he started training me to learn how to price asphalt and to learn how to assess like, what paving is essentially, like, from everything that paving entails, I realized, like, hey, these are essentially just math problems. And I love doing math, this is actually a lot of fun. And it's really cool, because I'm completely extroverted. And so doing sales and project management, like you have to be like, out and socially and like, like socially, you know, invested in stuff. So it's literally the job that allows me to have like, the numbers game of like having to work with numbers, from like square footage to tonnage and all that stuff, to also being able to interact with other humans, because sitting behind a computer crunching numbers all day, like I can do it. But it's not what I want to do with the rest of my life. Yeah, see that? Oh, man. So you were sitting on this information this whole time when I asked you why you don't want to go to law school man. So okay, so you started this job? You at that point, you're thinking eventually I'm going to go back to law school, but I just got to make some money. So hey, they're hiring great. You get in? And you they you realize like, Oh, I'm sorry, you can make How much? I mean, the earning potential sounds, you know, just right, right there with the earning potential of lawyers. I mean, it sounds like there's essentially no cap. And so immediately, or I don't know, if immediately, but you know, early on, you go to Mr. Jordan, and you start a sounds like apprenticing on their head, more or less, you know, which I'm assuming is some sort of like just in your free time or not in your free time, but in between tasks that, you know, in addition to getting your work done, you're kind of shadowing him on the side, more or less in your own time. And so you're kind of building these skills and networking and getting to where you want to go. But man, dude, if you had been like focus on law school and said, This is what I want to do, I'm a lawyer, I have this poly side agree, you could have completely missed all that. You know what I mean? You could have just seen that been like, Oh, well, you know, I'm not construction. Like, that's not for me. Like he kept an open mind and said, Wait a second, how do I how do I get there that how question How, how do I do this? And so you started uncovering it. And it was only through doing that, that you realize, like, hey, this industry is actually perfect for me. Like I love this, it takes everything that I want to do, I can do it now. I'll have to go back to law school. And I enjoy it. And now you have this in because you were able to have that flexibility. You know, it gave you that space to be able to like really build this amazing community and and have like this balance and fulfillment in your entire life. Yeah, exactly like that. Yeah, essentially, that that's what it is. And so I also wanted to go to law school because I had You know, it was to help people, it was never about making a lot of money. So whether it was going to be immigration law, because obviously like I'm an undocumented dreamer myself still, to this day, I have a work permit through deferred action. But you know, it's either gonna be immigration or you know, something that was going to be helping like the little guy. And I realized that there's so many other ways to help out the demographics that I care about. And so having this job, and having more income to play with, means that I give back to my community more than Yeah, it's different. Because you know what, like, however you can, activism has many forms, whether it's going to protest or putting your money behind, you know, a cause whatever it is, um, I have found that with this job, the more money that I make, the more I find myself giving back to like the trans community and stuff, because I mean, Lord knows that we need all the help we can get sometime. And so it's been cool. Like, I've done a couple I mean, you, I think you did you ever use GC to be binders or no? Yeah. Yeah. Okay. So the owner, Marley, you met him at my birthday party on this last February. He was he was on it. And so the really cool part about that is that having more money allows me like we've done like a couple binder giveaways where like, I'll donate like a couple $50 gift cards at a time. And then because he has the social media following to like do a raffle to see like, Who's gonna get these gift cards, because it's like gender affirming, like services, essentially, right? Like having a binder is really gender affirming. So that's the way that I've been able to give back to the community through my current job. So it's pretty cool. Like, it's a really fulfilling thing to do to go to work, and then be fulfilled and be happy with what you're doing, and then also be able to put it back towards the communities that you care about. Yeah, exactly. I mean, it sounds like the life the life that you envisioned for yourself, when you first got into college and started your political science journey. It sounds like you built that life, it's just the the practical application looks a lot different than you thought it would, you know, you're still out in your world, doing all the things you wanted to do. And man, who knows how long it would have taken to get there, if you were super rigid, about the about the how, and I can't wait to see, you know, what's next for you know, when you continue to, you know, build your community and network and collaborate with entrepreneurs, and just continuously expand your horizons continuously grow. You know, like, man, I just can't wait to see like, do you have any goals for specific things that you want to do in your, like, within the trans community? I do, actually, I want to, because, you know, I'm also trying to save up money for a down payment on a house and getting ready to have kids we want to kids, so I mean, all, it's all, it's all just, we live in a very money dominated society. Like, as you know, we just face the reality of it. But eventually, and hopefully, like, within the next year or two, I want to start donating, like funds, like starting my own thing where I can give undocumented trans people like money so they can buy books for their schooling, because books are cheap, you know. And I myself being undocumented, and being a student, like, the reason why it took me so long to graduate was because I had to work and I have to go to school. So it'd be like, a part time semester here, a semester off, and then a full semester, and then another semester off, it was always like, staggered, because money was an issue. And books were always an issue for me, like, just consistently, I can't remember a year where buying books was not hard for me to do. And so if I can provide that for at least one other trans person who is in school, and who is undocumented, who needs to help like, man, I'd be the happiest guy, honestly. Yeah, that's awesome. And I totally see that happening for you. Because the way that you, you know, organize community. And again, going back to your, your poly side background, it's like, you know, that's, that's, that's fundraising that's, you know, getting people together for a good cause. And those are all you know, things that you're working on now. And so like I said, I can't, can't wait to see like, how that how that ends up manifesting. That's really cool. Thank you. Thank you. Me, too. Me too. So I guess that that totally explains also. I was like, Man, this guy can use real fire for his job. Like there's got to be other places. So now I see why it's it's part of a it's part of the long game. Hey, man, I love my job and I love my wife and you know, it is what it is. The commute is a small price to pay for happiness, honestly. Honestly. So I feel that and I think, you know, like if you if you weren't happy, you know, then that could be a refill. longer, you know what I mean? And I think that for you, it's like you're so any job that I've had that's had a long commute, they've all just been like jobs, and they've all just been like, you know, a paycheck to get you from here to there. And for you like, there's, there's this whole vision, like, it's, you know, it's like, yeah, sure, I'm director of accounting, but I'm, I'm looking here, I'm looking into sales and the project management, I'm looking forward to, you know, starting a scholarship fund for people who are like me, like you're out here, solving problems that you had yourself, you know, and finding the way to get the means to do that, and, and to support your family and to do all these things. So I think that I think that's really cool. I think a lot can be taken out of your story. As far as like, just always keeping your head up, you know, keeping your eyes and ears open for for those opportunities, and being really searching about where you want to go. And, and when you're certain about where you want to go. Those those opportunities start to present themselves, I think, yeah, you are you got me tearing up over here, man. Yeah, that's what it is. You know, the I was told that testosterone was going to make emotions lesson, but he did not do that for me at all. I find myself crying all the time. So it's actually pretty cool. is saying I cry more now. And I think it's because just in general, I mean, it's the same thing. It's like, we we're living our truth more. And I think, see, here's, here's the interesting thing that I don't think a lot of people think about when you're transitioning, and for especially, I mean, you and me, we both presented as like, Butch lesbians before, it's it wasn't like we were, you know, wearing dresses and makeup, and then all of a sudden, you know, so, yeah, for me, I feel like, back then, it was like, I was so mortified by any sign of femininity, that, you know, it's that it was like, my, my masculinity was so much more insecure back then. Right. You know, it's like any display of emotion, any display of femininity, I wire all that arrays for myself. And now, you know, the hormones helps, but it was also just the inner journey. You know, I feel so much more comfortable, you know, standing here as a man, that, you know, it's like, so what if I cry, like, Oh, well, like men cry, like, that's fine. You know what I mean? It's like, I don't feel like it's threatening anything. So I feel I feel much more free to express it. And I think I think when we're living our truth, it's a lot easier to like, recognize and express emotion. I yeah. It is living authentically allows me to feel the world authentically. So therefore, if I want to cry, who am I to tell myself not to? For what preconceived like, I mean, sorry, like society and post gender norms, or whatever you want to call them? Like, no, if I want to cry, I'm gonna cry and it is what it is. So they weren't? Yeah, exactly. You know, I think, I think people forget sometimes, you know, people who are outside of the, the, you know, you who are who are not cisgender we kind of make people face how the fallacy of these gender norms and how unnecessary they are. Yeah, and I will say that though, I had a lot of trepidation about even dabbling into project management at my current company, because, you know, construction is a very male dominant industry, like, and then there is a lot of massage in the in construction, which I do not partake in, but I've seen it, you know, second handedly, and so, I mean, okay, like, a lot of a lot of my setbacks were not going into it sooner was that if I'm a masculine presenting lesbian, you know, you're a butch lesbian. My chances of landing that project are less than like the dude over there who's probably like a smell right? Just because it's such bullshitting construction, sometimes it's that ugly, when it comes to like gender and all that. So I will say, though, that now also being a year into living my truth, and you know, living as as the man that I am, it gets easier to navigate that and to, to not like the more I pass, the easier and I mean, the politics of passing are just so ugly to begin with, like, why do we feel like we have to do that to fit in in the first place? Right. But um, it has gotten easier to navigate and to network at my in my career now than it was before. Yeah, well, I think for me, again, it always goes back to cuz I think you're like me, like we're the kind of people where if we want to do something, we're gonna fucking do it, like just period and a story. And I think for me, it was almost more of that, like the the further I climb, the more I'm like, like, as Bernie Brown says, it's like you're stepping into the arena. And so I'm kind of putting myself out there more. And when I'm not living my truth, I don't want that, that false version of me to be put out there more, you know, like, so like, in your case, it's like, oh, if you're a director of accounting, you're, you're sitting in an office the whole time, you know, people are like interacting with you, versus when you're this project manager, and you're having to deal with all these different moving pieces. So for me, it's like, the more I'm living my truth, the more that, you know, like these, these opportunities, I can actually focus on them, because I'm not focusing on the fact that I'm dissatisfied, I don't feel comfortable with myself, you know, want to one of the things that you said earlier was, you know, that was most surprising for you, in this year of growth is that you actually like yourself now. And you know, and in actually liking yourself, you actually see yourself as someone's like, yeah, I can do these things. Because, you know, I'm saying, I recognize you that, that, you know, if you want to do something, you're going to do it. But I think that for me, when I'm living my when I'm not living my truth is harder to see that, because I'm afraid of how people are going to react to me, I'm afraid of exposing myself. So I'm kind of putting my power in other people's hands more so that if I'm, I'm feeling good about myself, and I'm good about like, who I am as a person. Yeah, I mean, it's a it's beautiful when you get to a place in life, where you're comfortable in your own skin, and in your own mind. And for me, you know, transitioning in sobriety, and my career they're all blending in very well together, but it's not by accident, because I, I'm pretty sure that if I had continued my very toxic alcoholism, and then transitioned and then like, it would have been a nightmare for me, like, regardless of, you know, presenting in the correct gender or whatever. But, uh, yeah, yeah, you have, for me speaking for myself, I have to be very intentional, very purposeful this last year, to really make moves that are, you know, alongside with that my professional, you know, my professional advisor, I gave you my therapist, but she advised me She lives in she's fantastic. With her health, and with me being very aware and intentful of what I was going to do with myself, like I, I'm happy like it, it's almost day and night where I am today than where I was two years ago. Yeah, I mean, as someone who had just met you, you know, not long before he transitioned and to be able to, to witness this growth has has been incredible. So, listeners, the main takeaway, Be true to yourself, so that you can actually be honest about what the fuck you even want. Because if you're not going to be honest about, you know, how you're presenting to the world, how the hell are you going to be honest about what you want to do when you're out in the world, because the inauthentic version of you is the one making the decisions, right? And I think the path of what we want to do how to get there becomes much, much more clear at that point. And I feel like people get annoyed when when people say like, Oh, you have to like have like, self esteem and blah, blah. But it's it's deeper than that. It's like knowing like, are you sure that you're actually on the path that you want to be on? And if not, how do you get there, and it's going to take work. It's it's the the biggest Odyssey of our life, I think, is to figure ourselves out to really face those demons. Because if it's not alcoholism, it's something else that we're holding on to that's making us be able to to cope with this mask that we're wearing. Because I think it's harmful and painful to not live our truth. And so we have to, we have to remedy that pain by either basing our truth or numbing it. However, numbing looks for us whether it's workaholism, alcoholism, meddling, and other people's bullshit is whatever that is that's distracting us and making us feel better about ourselves artificially, you know? Yeah, yeah, absolutely. And I have found that a, being able to live my truth also has allowed me to give back to my community. Because before that wasn't really like a priority. But the way I see it is, like, if I'm happy with myself right now, and I'm reaching a point in my life where like, like, shits good, you know, I don't have a lot to complain about, like, life is beautiful right now, because I work to make it beautiful. And if I'm not giving back, I'm not doing something right. You know, the picture isn't complete until they reach back and help people out. People who are in places where I was before, you know, like, not that I'm anybody's favorite. That's not what it is at all. It's just, I wish I would have had certain role models in my life growing up that I could have aspired to be similar to. Yeah. And in the absence of that, I, I did a lot of damage to myself to you know, along the process of being a 31 year old man now but um, yeah, you know, giving back to the community. is a, it's paramount. It's important. It's, it's essential to my existence to be able to do that. So, I would have never gotten to that point either, though, if I wasn't living my truth. Yeah, absolutely. professionally and personally, you know, exactly. It's all it's all you know, it's two sides of the same coin. It's all just dismiss us. It's just like, you know. Yes, sir. As I say, this phone, I guess I could, I could keep talking for another two hours, but I'm sure our listeners have other things they gotta go, dude. So do you have anything that you would like to promote or plug? Now I just want to promote the, obviously this podcast that I'm sure you know, it's gonna have amazing success. But a review, subscribe, man gotta promote mental health just all the time. If you want to be happy at your job, you want to be happy in your relationships, you want to be happy, like, in every area of your life. Well, you know what, it starts right here. It starts inside, it's in your mind. So mental health, there's no stigma, there's no shame in getting help just go out there and get healthy. You know what, there are programs that will help you because mental health can be expensive. So hopefully we can work to dismantle how expensive mental health is to begin with. But um, there are places that will offer support. So just find community reach out, do what you can with what you have. And and yeah, man, just do it for yourself, because nobody else is going to do it for you. That's exactly and I love that. Diego, I love chatting with you. I love spending time with you. I love watching and witnessing your story unfold. And I cannot wait to see where you're at in 510 20 years. I mean, it's gonna be lit. Yeah, same with you today. I love you. I got a lot of love for you a lot of respect for you. And also seeing your your growth is it's inspiring, honest, newer, my my first friend of trans experience, and I would not have it any other way, sir. So thank you. Thanks. I love you too. And it's it's been great to be able to share this journey with you to be on this journey with you together. Yep, yep. Similar boats. Yeah, it can be a loving ocean, man. Thank you for having me. Thank you for having me. It's a this is the highlight of my Sunday and my week. So thank you. Hell Yeah, me too, man. All right. Until next time, well, I'm just gonna stop recording. But until next time. Yeah, for sure. Until next time, Leo. Oh, man, I love Diego. I'm so glad you got to hear that conversation. And hey, thank you for listening. I'm glad that you enjoyed it. I'm glad that you're still here. If you haven't already, please do me a huge favor just on this app that you're already listening to the podcast on. Just go ahead and give me a five star rating. It'll help me out a ton. If you if you have something you'd like to say, you know, a review would be even better. And man, I'm gonna I'm gonna just eat my words every week now because on episode one, I said that I don't like social media. But seriously, if you liked this episode, just you know, take a screenshot and put it as your Instagram story. You can tag me at Leo evolving l EOVOLV. i n g especially if you don't already know me and you're looking for a way to like start a conversation. You know, just let me know that she likes the show. And I'll you know, I'll write back. I don't bite. It might take me a while because like I said, I don't really like social media. But I love people and this is where other people are. So thus here I am on Instagram. Anyway, to get signed up for our journal prompts. Don't worry, we are finally getting into some money stuff because I know a lot of you listeners y'all are business people. You want to talk about the Benjamins. I have a quote from Barbara Corcoran from Shark Tank this week. I think it's going to be a good one that comes out this Friday. Let me know that you want it by visiting my website and and signing up for the email. That's leoyocky.com and I'll see y'all next week when we have my friend and financial advisor Lucas casera is on the show. Stay evolving.