What They Don’t Tell You About Being Trans

Posted March 3, 2020 by Blue

What they don’t tell you about the power, about the magic, about the joy.

What they don’t tell you is that
It isn’t just your gender
That already seems hard enough:
Change your name, change your pronouns,
grow some tits, shave your face,
razor nicks on your neck giving you away
“Actually, it’s ma’am,” a dozen times a day
Coming home at night and wondering if you’ll ever be enough

They tell you all those parts
They prepare you for the worst
What they don’t tell you about
is the freedom
Like stepping outside in your first pair of glasses
Looking at the vague shapes of trees and seeing for the first time
that they’re made of hundreds of leaves
Like running through the house as a child with all my birthday balloons and they surrounded me
and there was a magical moment where I felt something, a joy and painful longing,
And I spent the afternoon trying to recreate the sensation but never could

They don’t tell you about becoming a person
Not a woman but a person
About what it feels like to suddenly care
About having opinions instead of apathy
About how joy bursts out of you like fireworks

They don’t tell you that you’ll look around the world and see so many rules binding us all
And maybe they once seemed like chains
But now they seem more like tripwire
Tense and brittle
A fragile spider web of control
And you say to yourself:
I’ve already broken so many,
why should I stop there?

They don’t tell you about family
About the familiar nod from the six-foot-tall girl in a choker at the board game store
About the burst of pride at seeing the scars on a friend’s bare chest as he goes shirtless for the first time
About fighting tooth and nail for partner’s pronouns when they can’t do so themself, your love a fierce mantra: They/them. They/them. They/them.

They don’t tell you about coming from that world full of brittle strings
to a home full of gentle words
About hand-me-down dresses that fit you better than anything in the store
About a lover stitching your new name on your Christmas stocking
About your spouse by your hospital bedside, sneaking you Frappuccinos and fries as you lie in a Percocet haze,
your crotch now matching your life: flipped inside out

What they don’t tell you about
Is the realization that your life is yours
And the fear and the power
of making decisions for yourself
No longer a passenger but behind the wheel
Driving off for who knows where
But enjoying the ride on the way there

Reposted with permission from the author. Find the original piece here: