I do not think of being transgender as misfortune.
I do not think of it as a curse.
Nor do I see it as a defect.
In a strange way, it has been a blessing…
I was born into a community of people with unkind values. I grew up surrounded by people who saw racism as a simple observation of reality. Their voices ring in my mind. “Some people simply aren’t worth as much as others.” “Some people deserve less because they are the embodiment of less than.” The culture of my people is saturated with the sallow hue of prejudice. It is passed down from one generation to the next, tainting all that it touches.
My childhood was a place of broken people.
I could have been one of them: thinking as they do, feeling as they do, seeing as they do. I can look at other people in my family and my community and see that I was destined to ingest the sickness of my surroundings.
I escaped this illness because the hatred of my community was turned against my difference. I knew what prejudice was because I survived it from my youngest years onward. This knowledge was beaten into my body with fists and beaten into my soul with words.
I escaped this illness only because I was different. Were I normal—were I born a girl in the first place—surely, I would have become one of them. I would have ingested the poison of my surroundings. I would have embraced the values of my family and my community. I would have learned to see the world through a lens of hatred.
I would have become a bigot…
I thank fate for what I am. I thank unknown forces for who I am. I thank my body for the y-chromosomes in my blood and I thank my soul for the female core of my being.
Were it not for this wondrous contradiction, I would have inherited a legacy of illness. I am blessed by errant DNA. I am blessed by the caprice of an intractable soul.
I am fortunate.
I am grateful.
I am spared.