Perpetual motion, an asthmatic commute, outfits lined up like uniforms on laundry day. I took such great care to avoid the dreaded ‘uniform’ that plagues so many trans women early in their transitions. A clothing rut, dug through self-consciousness, a maladapted body, brokeness, cluelessness. No, I will not wear the same shit every day. Almost, some weeks I almost do, but not quite. No, I’m going to enjoy my wardrobe in all of its pastel, beginner’s luck, genderfuck, wild fashionista glory.
My experience has morphed and blended itself into something soft, something fast, something that needs not be comprehended. I don’t need to know what I’m doing on any particular day, it’s all memorized or written down somewhere at my various workstations. I just sit down and do my job, do my routine, buy my groceries.
Oh, the groceries I’ve bought! After nearly a year of hiding in my apartment and having them delivered, I finally ran out of money and had to go to the grocery store. Luckily, I passed by then and everyone at the store is too focused on their food to pay attention anyway. Nothing emphasizes what I’ve done like pushing a cart down an isle I’ve walked for a decade, after not doing so for a year, and just knowing that I move differently through that space.
I surprise myself. Almost every night I get home and it’s dark. I’m half out of my mind with exhaustion, so I hang my shirt on a chair. Something catches my eye, the many reflections in the mirrors and 70’s-modernist windows of this small, dimly lit place, and it’s me. Tall, standing there in her camisole, her curves over a militaristically lithe figure. I am her, and I feel elated through the exhaustion.
But it feels like I stole this. Like I stole my life and myself from somewhere, someone, grand theft personhood. And I don’t care.