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We Need This

Trans Cabal is a new website for trans people to, in the words of its editor, Sophia Banks:

“…share work, essays, articles, and other projects that celebrate the beauty of being trans and to also help educate the public about trans people and some of the amazing stuff we do.”

I follow Sophia on Twitter and that’s where I learned about the website. The heart and soul of Trans Cabal is a project co-created by Sophia and CN Lester, called Songs Of Ourselves, a place for trans people to celebrate all the beauty they find in their lives and bodies.  This is important.  Positive self-image is a daily struggle, especially in a society that still feeds the public with so many negative images of what it means to be trans.

The premise of Songs Of Ourselves is wonderfully simple: submit a photo of yourself that makes you feel joyous, or confident, or beautiful…a photo that makes you feel good, and explain why.

I’m happy to have submitted a self-portrait along with a few hundred words about the experience.  It was liberating to go public with my smile, something I never liked to do before I transitioned.  There are eleven stories and photos published so far, and I hope the number of contributors grows.  And for all trans people, I hope the future offers many more reasons to smile.


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A Voice

It’s odd.  I’ve always considered myself a writer, but I’ve always found it hard to write in my own voice.  As myself.  Poetry, Fiction, commentary–these genres were infinitely easier than writing a mere letter to someone.  That seemed too personal.  The task made me uneasy and anxious.  As much as a simple thank-you note could involve dozens of drafts and hair-pulling fits of exasperation.

But since beginning my transition, I’ve found a voice.  I don’t think it’s a new voice.  Rather, it’s a voice long buried by fear and anxiety.  Fear of saying the wrong thing.  Fear of being misunderstood.  And fear of emotion.

It’s my real voice.  A voice yearning to express itself after years of silence.

It’s still unsure of itself, sometimes.  Halting here and there.  But it flows from my imagination without the restraints of timid self-censorship.

My voice is not afraid anymore.