Only .03% of the bodies in this world are like mine. Now I just started my transition but I know for a fact that, that makes me pretty darn special. To understand my perspective on my transgender body, you need to know a bit more about me.
I'm a very happy person even though I also live with bipolar disorder and I've been through a lot. Nothing keeps me down for long. In fact, one of the nicknames I had in high school was Smiley. A wrestler I was competing with gave it to me after he couldn't help but notice that I wouldn't stop smiling even when I was pushing myself through grueling trial after grueling trial. The reason I'm telling you this is because contentment and happiness doesn't just come from my body it also comes from my spirit.
There are many ways to look at my transgender body. I could be unhappy because it isn't perfectly female, or I could look at it and find happiness it what it means and symbolizes.
A Lesson From the Maniac Lioness
I often think of my bipolar mind like the gaze of a lion. Whatever catches my eye, my maniac mind hones in on. If I think of beautifully painted worlds filled with love, then my maniac mind will fill with a thousand beautiful thoughts. If on the other hand, I focus on the stigma against mental illness or transphobia, my mind will fill with a thousand paranoid thoughts. The manic mind can be both beautiful and ugly for this reason. It also taught me a lesson about finding happiness by choosing to gaze at the beautiful instead of the hateful.
The Lionesses Journey
My whole life I've been repeatedly taught to hate myself. It wasn't until very recently that heard anyone other than transgender celebrities say it was OK to be trans. When right-wingers falsely claim that transitioning is a fad, they fail to empathize with the gender dysphoric. They fail to understand what it was like to look out into the world and only see their hate. Their hate is now being overrun by the love and acceptance of our transgender allies. Their voices have finally allowed us, transgender men and women, to see a place for ourselves in this world.
Gazing at the Symbols
The hate I was taught as a child has now become offensive and my self-hate and fear have become irrational. My transgender body has in effect become a symbol of our journey to love and acceptance. While my body is completely unscarred, it speaks to the many battles and many lives lost in our fight for acceptance. In this world, there are still people dying so that I can others can have their transgender bodies. In my life, there are still people fighting so that I can live in peace.
While our world may appear to be violent and barbaric, the truth is you can find peace and love if you just turn your gaze. You can find happiness and beauty in the broken transgender body you were taught to hate. Who we are as a people is present in its flesh, blood, and life. My transgender body says to me that, we are good and we are of love. The world and my body will never be perfect, but I love and appreciate both.