It’s as if I had just discovered a new color and now had this entirely new dimension to my life. I was able to paint a holistic portrait of what I wanted the rest of my life to look like.
Dipping into my summer wardrobe for the first time reminded me just how far I’ve come in learning to love my body.
“Not all of my experiences as an intersex person inform my being gay, and vice versa, but the overlap is there and it affects things in ways that are both good and complicated at a time in history when homophobia and intersexphobia are alive and kicking.”
If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. After losing my first pregnancy at 24 weeks, how could we face the conception process again, with the added physical and emotional complications?
Sometimes, even the best laid plans are, well, decimated. Even a type-A mega control freak like me couldn’t control my own body when I was pregnant — and I certainly couldn’t control what happened to my son after his premature birth.
“Despite all the planning, and all the talking, and all the money we had spent, it was THAT moment that suddenly made the wedding feel very real. This was the dress I was going to get married in, that I would be wearing when I affirmed my desire to spend the rest of my life with my amazing partner. But, it also touched something deeper, more complex, more fundamental to my transition and my womanhood.”
“Dating broken white women became a way to reprise a powerlessness that years of sexual abuse and generations of blackphobia had tricked me into believing in. I drowned this feeling of powerlessness in weed and seeking out relationships in which I could engage in yet remain completely hidden from view.”
“If we think too hard, we’ll never do it,” Kellie said. She was right. A cost-benefit analysis would yield no practical reason to grow our family. The only reason to make a new baby was that we felt like it, and we could.
“I felt I was gradually becoming like those newly married Indian women with henna on their hands at JFK or Heathrow… Of course, I didn’t look anything like them and my wedding bowtie was probably the only equivalent to their bridal henna, but I couldn’t help noticing parallels.”
“Why do we only collect coming out stories, it-gets-better stories, these stories that are set in the past, that tell of a particular set of experiences that not everyone can relate to? Stories that treat the future as if it doesn’t come with a problems of its own.”
“I didn’t even tell her when the notes started getting specific. Someone calling out my “crossed eyes” in a Tumblr ask. My “pocked skin” in an email. My “hillbilly teeth” on Twitter.”
“Since the wedding has made me come out to more people than I had ever intended, this trip back to my place of origin makes facing their reactions inevitable. Will my physical presence stoke the intensity of their opposition?”
“If Simón was a girl, then I was a dyke and if my father let the song play, then maybe I could sing to him and we’d finally be able to speak to each other.”
Really, I’m not sure why we feel like we have to keep on amplifying this fight. A solid two-thirds of trans women are on both sides of this so-called divide. We’re a part of both communities.
“One morning, while I was applying my new lighter makeup, I accidentally put too much banana powder on which created a shroud of ashy yellow veil all around the center of my face. I stopped and stared back at my reflection. I looked absolutely foolish. Here I was relishing in this depigmentation of my beautiful ebony skin that I no longer looked like myself.”
Gay districts are safer, more open and more profitable than ever before, but for whom?
“Not being an asshole” to myself meant admitting that my mom’s death and her illness permeate every single part of my being, and always will.
“When I’m worrying about how to teach without coming off as a bitch because I expect students to be quiet when I’m talking, I’m not thinking as much as I should be about whether my students are really learning.”
People would look surprised and say, “But…you can’t be a girl. You’re a blacksmith!”
Accepting ambiguity feels like being welcomed home.