I am, I am

February 19, 2018
By alexanderxjames BRONZE, West Hollywood, California
alexanderxjames BRONZE, West Hollywood, California
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

I am, I am, I am.

A prayer on my lips, a plea for nothing more than validation, nothing more than acceptance

I am, I am, I am.

I am seven years old when I first ask to cut my hair. My mother agrees and I cannot contain my joy as locks of sunshine hair fall to the ground, stripping away the femininity I have not yet realized I hate. I go to school with a new-found confidence, my face beaming and bright and no longer hidden.

“You look like a boy.”

It is then I am taught that girls are girls and boys are boys and there is to be no overlap of the two lest you be something different entirely, something they cannot contain, something that will not be controlled.

I am, I am, I am.

I am twelve years old when I hear the word “trans” for the first time. I read through hateful comments, people telling a stranger that they are going to burn in hell for being all that they’ve ever needed to be. He seems like a nice young man, he’s just confused. They tell this to a girl my age simply because she was born slightly different than them.

Confused. Adjective. (Of a person) unable to think clearly.

Is that all I am?

And maybe I am confused but maybe it’s because they’ve shoved me down for so long that I can no longer get back up, I can no longer stand with my back straight and say

I am, I am, I am.

I am thirteen years old when my hips widen and my chest grows. I can no longer be seen as anything but female, I can no longer hide behind baggy clothes and short hair. I go to school in dresses and skirts and pray for forgiveness because my very existence is a sin.

I am, I am, I am.

You are not, they tell me. I am fifteen years old and I tell my mother that I am a boy.

You are not, my father says.

They say this so often I start to question it myself, question why I’m putting myself through this misery when it would be so much easier to give up, to grow out my hair and put back on my skirts and let them tell me what I am and am not.

They call me a freak. A tranny. As if my expression has offended them, has shaken them to their very core.

I am, I am, I am.

I am sixteen years old and I have become their worst nightmare. I will not let their words and their actions dictate who I am and am not. I refuse to dull myself down to fit in to their world of blacks and grays. I will shine, just like the seven year old boy with the sunshine hair and the gap-toothed smile. I will not have my life chosen for me.

My name is Alexander James.

I am a boy.

I cannot be constrained, I will not be controlled.

I am, I am, I am.

The author's comments:

This piece is a response to everyone who has ever said , "You are not." 

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