For the first time, I can run my hands through hair so short it feels fuzzy and natural, albeit unfamiliar. Sitting in the chair, I told the stylist “tighter” and watched as she clipped a new guard on the clippers and went to work over the ear and down the back of my head. I tipped her well, not because the haircut was spectacular, but because she had switched pronouns halfway through the haircut and I wanted her to know I didn’t care. I wanted her to know I liked it.
For the first time I can feel the wind tousle the hairs on my legs. Occasionally I sit and stare at my legs. I wonder if this is how attractive people feel all the time; if they could just stare and look at their bodies forever and think, “Yes, this is great. Wow. I am so happy”. I like the way my hairy calves look when I wear sandals. I like them with black calf length socks and tennis shoes. I like them barefoot on the beach. Most of all I like feeling that this is how they were supposed to look all along. Saving 10 minutes in the shower doesn’t suck either.
For the first time I understand the joy that is the boxer brief. I suggest we outlaw bikinis, briefs, and thongs all together. I have never worn a thong but it looks like the opposite of fun. Boxer briefs provide all the security and support with ultimate comfort and mobility. Seriously, if any underwear company needs a new PR person, I could gush over boxer briefs for days. And the bit that shows above the waist of my jeans? Yeah, that’s totally on purpose; not only am I completely enamored of boxer briefs, but I’m also a douche bag.
For the first time I am wearing a bow tie and having fun being dressed up. For the past 20 years, formal events have been met with hesitation and anxiety on my part. Sometimes I still have nightmares that I show up somewhere in a dress and everyone is wondering what is going on, myself included. Also, shopping for dress shirts and ties is infinitely easier than dress shopping. All you have to do is know your size and pick out a shirt with a tie to match. I have three dress shirts and all I have to do is change my tie and it’s a different outfit. This perfectly complements the fact that I don’t enjoy things that require effort.
For the last time I am letting the sex I was assigned at birth dictate the rest of my life. This is an irrelevant detail that unfortunately has caused the first two decades of my life to be filled with confusion, guilt, and tears.
If you’ve been told that you can’t wear an article of clothing because it comes from one side of a store as opposed to another, don’t give up. If public restroom signs fill you with fear and trepidation, stay strong. If people call you “honey” or “boss” and it makes you want to cry, have faith. Soon you too will be feeling happiness for the first time.