She loved to play dress up. Her mother’s lace dresses dragging behind her as she ran barefoot through the backyard. Climbing citrus trees and catching garden snakes with her older brothers wearing pink satin and polka dots.
Lizards, hermit crabs, snails all became her pets and friends. When her parents had tried to dress her in her older brothers’ jeans and sweaters, the little girl who looked much like a soft pink rose, made it clear that would just not do. Mostly by throwing the clothing back at them and crossing her little doughy white arms across her tiny chest. She was a woman, through and through– and she knew this well before she knew her times tables.
When she’d been born, she was a surprise. The doctor had assured her parents that they were due for a third little boy. As she arrived at the hospital, her mother exclaimed, “Thank God! Thank you! It’s a little girl.”
The little girl loved her big brothers and never let their rough play intimidate her. She enthusiastically took it as a challenge, but there was no way she was going to do so any way but on her own terms. So, she dug into her mother’s closet and armed herself the only way she knew how– in chiffon, silk, and sequins.
She made no sense to many. Was she a boy in girls’ clothing or a girl who wanted to be a boy? She never thought of this as a decision she had to make.
And she never had to choose. A woman is exactly who she wants to be.
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