"I want to be a boy." That’s what my four-year old self told adults who asked what I wanted to be when I grew up. I didn’t tell them I wanted to be a firefighter, vet, doctor, writer, or any other career I ever considered when I was younger. No. I told them I wanted to be a boy because that’s how my four-year old self interpreted enjoying the games and toys that were associated with males. I liked Legos, tag, wrestling, climbing trees, guns, the color blue. If I liked these things and I hated Barbies, playing house, arts and crafts, dresses, the color pink, etc., then I must need to be a boy. That’s what society taught me. It taught me that I wasn’t supposed to be a girl who liked playing with boys. So my solution was to want to be a boy.
As soon as I was old enough to dress myself, I began picking out boys’ clothes to wear: loose-fitting shirts, guys’ jeans, cargo shorts, hoodies. Not so much because I wanted to be a boy anymore, but because those style of clothes were what I felt comfortable wearing. I felt much more like myself in a pair of cargo shorts than in a summer dress. When puberty started, I was scared - probably because I had never wanted it to come. But after a few years, I was finally growing into my body, and I realized that this was what I was given. I began treating it right, working out, eating healthier, and today I absolutely love it.
I. Love. My. Body. I love everything about it because it’s mine and no one else’s. I respect it, and it respects me back. According to society, I still dress like a guy. I still wear cargo shorts and bow ties (although usually not at the same time). But I’m just dressing like me. I’m dressing in clothes that I feel comfortable wearing. Oh, and I’m majoring in Mechanical Engineering, so my interest in male-dominated activities hasn’t diminished.
Sometimes people who don’t know me will refer to me as a he. And while that’s not how I’ve considered myself before, it doesn’t feel wrong. In the past several months, I’ve realized that it feels just about as right as being called she, and the only difference between the two is that I probably respond better to female pronouns just because that’s what I’m more familiar with.
So where does that leave me in terms of gender? I’m not both. I’m definitely not neither. I don’t really think I’m one any more. Mainly, I just don’t give a fuck. In other words, I’m genderqueer. Or at least that’s how I’m beginning to think of it. I am a genderqueer lesbian. Go have a field day with that one all of you who believe in heteronormativity, because I’m breaking about every box that you tried to put me into while I was growing up. I am a genderqueer lesbian, and I am completely okay with it.