I Love Being Transgender! Don't You Love Being Trans?
We were getting ready to hit the clubs. She said this with such confidence. The joy in her voice was innocent, genuine, and I felt her words. The way in which she said this while applying setting spray to her make up with a smile as if she was enjoying the sun on a summer day, it made me smile. It made me feel that there was no one else in the world: there were no cis people or anything, just trans people. It was as if our world was the best and we were the lucky privileged ones to be in the VIP lounge. These words were said by a person who at age 25 has experienced being kicked out of her home by her parents, and then moved to California at age 18 to do trans porn. She did that, and she did well in that field. Now at 25, she is an expectant mother of a wonderful little baby (her and her husband are having a baby through a surrogate), and is excited to bring this child into the world.
Sometimes it's hard to see the love in being transgender. You try to make the best of it. To embrace who you are. Then doubts creep in, and the real world comes face to face with us, and sometimes rejects us, ridicules us, and defeats our hopes and aspirations. We then turn our attention and seek help from within the LGBTQI community. We find comfort mixed with the struggles of others, so we try to raise ourselves. Problems seem easier to handle with others by your side. Especially those that face similar struggles. And then you feel it. That love of belonging to this community. That love of being trans. Everything seems easier to affront. Pride comes along and the morning of, you get ready. You're so happy to get up, eat some breakfast, shower, put on your most rebellious and supportive clothes, you maybe paint a rainbow on your face and off you go. But as soon as you leave your home, you're there, in the real world. In that drive, or walk or bus ride or metro ride, you're amongst the so called real world and you may feel fear. Do you love being trans at that precise moment?
"HOW WOULD ALL THIS MAKE YOU FEEL? DO YOU LOVE BEING TRANS AT THAT MOMENT?"
You arrive at the Pride grounds and cannot help but notice the people protesting your gender or sexuality, or both. They have bibles in one hand and a sign on the other quoting something from most likely Leviticus. You may have to walk by these people in order to get into Pride. Depending on the group they may say hateful things to you, such as repent or what you are doing is wrong, or that God doesn't want you to do what you are doing, and the ever more famous "you're going to hell.” All these words from supposedly wonderful church loving people. Maybe they missed the point that their God loves everybody, and that means everybody. How would all this make you feel? Do you love being trans at that moment?
Or maybe you are just out and about on a regular day. You go to a mall to do some shopping. You may want to be as stealthy or as "passable" as possible. You want to go into this one specific store because you love their products, but you always get misgendered in there. It may not be on purpose, but it happens. Maybe the cis people working at this store look at you and see a butch female, when you're really trying to be passing as male. Or maybe they don't say anything at all in terms of pronouns, because in their eyes you are clearly a man in a dress with a wig on your head. That fear of walking into that store again is like jumping into a deep pool knowing you can’t swim. It has been almost six months since you came here, because you love the products but hate the fear of being called out. As you walk in the mall, you feel nervous at anyone you notice looking at you. Do they know? What do they see? Am I doing this right? Am I owning who I am and being confident? Am I loving being trans at that moment?
"FOR ME, IT HAS TAKEN SOME TIME TO FEEL COMFORTABLE IN MY NEW SKIN."
Please understand that you are going on a journey. One of the bravest journeys a human being can embark upon. Ok maybe you don't pass as well, maybe you haven't had top surgery yet, or you still need to use a wig because your hair just won’t grow out. For me, it has taken some time to feel comfortable in my new skin.
My point in this, is that we need to support each other, and I mean "we" as in the LGBTQI community, and more specifically amongst ourselves: the T. We don't always do so. We let things like popularity and "passability" get in the way of supporting each other. We don't want to go to an event because maybe the majority of people don't pass, or they are newbies and we are done with supporting baby trans people. In fact, these are the people who need the most support and they are the ones we need to help the most. To fully understand "loving being trans” means to embrace the entire spectrum of it. Maybe you are one who "passes" well. You may or may not know it, but you inspire people to do better. You can inspire others to love being trans!
We receive enough discredit from the cisgender world. We cannot be receiving that from within our own community as well. We have the power to change that. One person at a time. If we all embrace the love, then maybe we can fully understand loving being who we are.