My Transitional Sweet Tooth

When I was in the process of getting my prescription for Testosterone, the last thing on my mind was the side effects of changing the complete hormonal balance of my body. The potential complications, many of which I should have genuinely taken seriously; were completely overshadowed by the idea that I would no longer stare at my friends with the envious gaze of someone who wanted a beard more than anything else in the world. It is an awkward time where people assume you are fourteen and you spend time angling your face in a way that gives your voice […]

To My Best Friend

Christmas Eve 2014. It is winter break, the perks of working in a college town, and the lack of structure has turned my life into chaos. It had been chaotic beforehand, ever since finishing college in 2013, my life had been falling apart around me. Never been a big fan of alcohol, I learned in my freshman year that cheap beer will never taste good, especially not coming back up walking back to your dorm; but post-college me tried hard. I am going to be blunt: I was awful to everyone in my life. Snapping at loved ones does a […]

The Past, Present, & Future

Thursday, I spoke at a local high school’s gay/straight alliance (GSA) about growing up immediately before America’s marriage equality shift. Walking the hallways, I felt the impending doom from my own youth slowly creep back over my shoulders. I was there for half an hour before meeting with the students, and during that time, I felt 15 again. Awkward, confused and trapped; all of the terrible emotions teenage me had long since buried came flooding back as I sat among the future of our community. Possibly a side-effect of second puberty, but I feel like we could learn something from […]

The Kindness of Strangers

As a short, skinny kid with an eye patch who became a short, less-skinny, permanently-winking adult, people always assumed what I could not do. As a child, people took one look and concluded that I was either feeble-minded or -bodied. I applaud my mother for always being vocal with others about that reality, but I never thought about how exhausting that must have been. Now, as an out-and-flag-wearing trans man, I realize that I’ve traded one assumption for another. Between my work for Hagerstown Hopes and my slowly-growing potential reader base, I realize that I’m constantly representing something bigger than […]

Liberty or Death

The feeling of being transgender in America The best way to describe the feeling of being a transgender American is constant nausea-inducing dread. The nausea has been as constant to me in the past two years as is finding myself having to be excused from conversations, needing a moment to compose myself, while people who continue to live in the safety of their heteronormative-ness discuss our political situation as though we are in a classroom, and not watching millions of our fellow citizens lose every freedom and protection that keeps us from becoming another statistic, from becoming another memorial or […]