Another Open Letter to my Readers

Pride flag

Sh*t! A pimple has popped up on my chin with all that mounting stress aka the countdown to reunion dinner with Mom on Sunday.

And its presence couldn’t be more untimely – now, my new asymmetric fringe points directly at it.

To compound the stress, BFF will be joining us.

I should be grateful. Really.

BFF has been my moral beacon for the longest time. And the mediator between Mom and I.

While BFF dotes on me – and I do love him to bits – I fear him too. For he’s my worst critic and I cringe just thinking how I might disappoint him with my behaviour towards Mom’s nagging and plea for me to return to my male self.

Well, Mom (hey, I might as well practice my speech, and experiment with different tones), believe it or not, I have been very happy living my life as a woman.

Despite your dire predictions that I will never find a lover or an employer willing to give me a job, I did manage to find both. Not spectacularly, I’ll admit. And yes, I’m single at the moment, and my chosen career (ASPIRING WRITER, WILL WRITE FOR FOOD AND A ROOF OVER HER HEAD, please imagine this in the most extravagant font – ever! – in neon) has not exactly taken off. But I have never been happier in the fourteen years since I left to pursue my heart’s desire.

I know Mom will burrow in on my returning home two years ago. I was broke, down to my last cent figuratively, I had to beg my parents to take me back (God bless Pa). Of course I had to cut my hair and never dress as a girl. But I managed to stash at least one bra at the bottom of my knapsack, under piles and piles of books that I never let out of my sight.

For four months, I was forbidden to use the bus-stop closest to home – Mom and Pa feared the neighbours would spot me, and thus invite gossip that could besmirch the family name. So I walked – to work. I could never understand my parents’ logic: They would rather allow my breasts to hang out, nipples out and proud for all to see, than consider the option of a sports bra.

I didn’t mind the walk, for I had always been an avid walker – even in heels, a considerable distance will not faze me. That’s 14 years of practice, baby!

Plus the office had a gym and a shower, where I could practise yoga and belly dancing after the walk that quite properly served as warm-up, and hit the showers after. I was much slimmer then. (Note to self: New Year resolution: To pick up yoga and belly dancing again).

So okay, back to mommy dearest.

Well, Mom, like it or not, get this, I have not considered returning to my male form at any point during the last 14 years, including the time I was down and out, and had to come back to live with you folks. And I only wore baggy T-shirts so I could have a roof over my head. If that ordeal – breasts hanging out and nipples pressing against my shirt in the cold wind, remember? – didn’t do it, don’t hold your breath. Not unlike this pair of skinny jeans that hugs my ass so so snugly, but doesn’t quite allow me to take in full nose-fuls of breath.

Happy Solstice, mom.

And oh, I am woman, hear me roar.


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