Recent experiences have opened my mind in ways I never dreamt imaginable.
When we are born no one asks us what hair color we want or if we would like to be short or tall or athletic or funny. We come into this world with traits that are predetermined by our genes and by nature. The biggest question we are never asked upon our birth is what gender we want to be. Boy or girl? Woman or man?
Gender, socialized to an extreme by society has such a hold on how we as people perceive one another.
When we see a man or a woman, we make assumptions about what they like or what they do. We may think a woman likes to shop as much as we may assume that a man enjoys sports.
These assumptions plague the world. Recently, I was given a reason to truly consider how gender has the ability to a person individually and how not being able to afflict a person. That the inability to ask if someone wants to be a boy or a girl may generate situations of uncertainty and longing. Creating a situation where the body they are born with doesn’t feel ‘right’ and the skin they adorn is not the gender that resides within the heart.
I have seen shows that detail the transformation from one gender to another and outline the feelings of the person going through the transition. Skepticism always rang in the confines of my mind. The shows felt so distant and unrelatable. I wanted to keep an open mind, I wanted to understand, but as an outsider looking in, I couldn’t comprehend.
Today, I bare renewed vision, less fog, and a mind more educated. I have had the pleasure of meeting and getting to know someone who was born in the wrong body, whose skin may be all their own but the gender chosen for them fits like an over sized t-shirt, uncomfortable and bothersome.
I do not question that this young person was blessed with the wrong body. Not even for a second; everything about them screams that their birth gender is unsuitable. They have begun the long journey toward the gender of their soul.
Life is something we are given and the way we come into this world is not a choice but a hand that we are dealt. We are blessed with a body, a mind, a soul, and a heart and if those things tell you each day that you are not the gender that society and your body deems you then so be it.
This young person has truly captivated my brain, unleashed my mind, and allowed me to understand what it truly means to be transgender, what it means to fight for what you feel in your heart is right.
Life is difficult enough but feeling like you don’t belong in your own skin is a feeling I cannot even begin to comprehend. Being transgender is a battle that many face, fighting skepticism, cruelty, and misunderstandings at every turn. But one thing I know for certain is that even if you are not walking the path yourself, you can find a way to walk with another who is desperately battling to be who they are.
I commend anyone who can stand up, brave the scrutiny, and be themselves.
So thank you to this person and their family for shining a light on something that many of us fail to understand or acknowledge. The strength of this person is something I strive to achieve and I am hopeful that awareness, improvement, and more love will continue to growas time goes on.
Live as you will, love who you are, and never stop fighting to be you.