I always knew something was, not quite right. When I was little, I wasn’t in the right body or state of mind. But it’s that in which people don’t quite understand. It’s not exactly a “state of mind,” it’s so much more than that. It’s a part of who I am, as well as so many others! It’s not a way of thinking or feeling, it’s a legitimate thing, and it’s overall what makes me, well, ME! I must say that I am pretty proud of who I have become.
When I was a little kid, my mom would always buy me girl toys and girl stuff. While wearing those clothes and playing with those toys, it didn’t feel right. I never acted like a girl; I always wanted to play with the boys, wanting to rough house, play with toy guns, and video games. You always found me up a tree or rolling in the dirt. I never saw much fun playing with the girls or playing with the girl toys. I was more interested in their little/big brothers. I loved acting boyish.
In case you haven’t gathered it by now, I am transgender female to male. Don’t know what that is? Let me explain it in 1 sentence; I am a boy born in a girls body. I was assigned female at birth (or as the abbreviation: AFAB). Growing up for me wasn’t the easiest. I always had to deal with people that forced the stereotype of “You need to be more ladylike,” “You need to wear dresses and do your makeup,” and “Stop hanging out with the boys, you’re a girl. If you hang out with the boys and act like one so much, people will put titles on you, and you will get bullied for that.” It was rough. I was forced to be the person I knew I wasn’t but at the age of 5 or 6, what do I know? I had a pokémon shirt that my mom bought me; it came from the boy’s section of the store, it was my favorite shirt ever. My mom always got on me for wearing it so much, but I didn’t care.
As time went by, I slowly began to figure out who I was and who I wanted to be. In middle school started the time when I started figuring things out. I was dating a girl named Hailey in 7th grade; she was the first person I told. I told her in July 2014. I sat down with her and told her that I didn’t feel like a girl or like I was like the rest of the girls. I knew something wasn’t right and she said to me that she knew. I started dressing like a boy, changed my name to Jayson and began to use masculine pronouns (he, him, his, brother, son, nephew, grandson, boyfriend, etc..)
All of my friends were super supportive and helped me in any way they could. In September 2014, I came out to my dad. I was afraid to tell anyone else in my family, I was mostly scared to speak to him, but I did it anyway. After I told him, he acted cool about it; he didn’t make a scene or anything. He spoke to me about it as if he knew, as though he predicted it and he was waiting for me to say something. Soon, I told all of my friends and my whole family and my mom’s side of the family wasn’t as supportive as my dad by himself was.
In 8th grade, my dad bought me a bunch of boys/men’s clothes and I got a bunch of hand-me-downs from my dad and uncle. Then I went to get my first haircut. After that, I looked in the mirror and began to cry. They never understood why, but it was because I was finally able to show the real me and I was finally starting to become happy with my appearance. I always hated looking at myself in the mirror because I hated the fact that I once looked like a girl. I let all of my teachers know that I wanted to go by the name Jayson and they supported me as best as they could.
When I reached 9th grade, I was so scared because I didn’t know what to do, how to react or if I would be safe with who I wanted to be. I never used the bathrooms at school, and I never spoke. I would wear a baggy sweatshirt every day because I was THAT scared! It was one of the scariest moments of my life, I swear. And then I met Ms. Wallach, one of the counselors at Vestal High School. She works with students who are part of the LGBT community and other students.
Now that I have reached senior year, I am more confident than ever! I am using the bathroom that I want to use, and I am so much farther in my transition than I thought I would ever be. I am less than a year away from starting hormone therapy, which will decrease my estrogen level and raise my testosterone level and I will go through puberty again but as the other gender.
The last thing is in my near future; I plan to get gender reassignment surgery which will change my genitalia/”privates” to the other sex. Today, as I sit here writing this essay, I have come to understand how many opportunities I have and where I can go with my story. I still struggle with people who like to tear me down but I have learned in the long run to not let it bother me and that people are just ignorant. Brush it off, pick your head up, and walk it off like you got nothing to lose. I learned from this that if people think they can tear you down for wanting to be who you want to be and make you feel small, all that does is show how small THEY are.