At 15, I cropped off my long hair. The result was exhilarating. Not long after, I rented a tuxedo for my high school dance, a first for a girl at my school. Excited yet apprehensive, I couldn’t wait to try it on. Any qualms I had were quickly swept aside by how much I enjoyed the feel of each suit piece and how it made me look.
I walked and carried myself differently. Wearing a tux and tails felt much more “me” than any of my awkward attempts at wearing a dress. I was secretly same-sex attracted, deeply confused about my identity, and more and more preferred a masculinized version of myself. I described myself as “androgynous” and papered over the pain I carried with a bravado of pride in being a “non-conformist.”
Fast forward 30-plus years to Time magazine’s cover story of Ellen Page’s transformation into Elliot, including top surgery, and my heart both resonates and breaks. Had