On Being Mistaken For a Boy


1. For the first few years of my life, I was bald. For some reason the thick black roots I should've inherited never came, leading some to believe my baby self to be a male. My parents would correct this mistake, leaving the person to be embarrassed. Even now, my niece looks through my baby book and thinks she's looking at her father.

2. Ever since I could walk, I could run and I wanted to run with my brother. To jump, to climb, to explore and feel heat on my face. I wanted to play in mud, to be dirty in a way that wasn't endearing.
3. I went to pre-school clad in overalls and short hair. This led some of the teachers to take me to the boys' bathroom, only realizing their mistake when it was too late.
4. As I grew up, my hair grew as well, and my friends started treating me differently. Calling me 'princess' and saying they can't be seen with a girl; I guess cooties posed too much of a threat. Some said they'd ignore my gender, some said nothing at all.
5. As I pitched a baseball and my brother swung too early, the worst thing my dad could call him was a girl. The worst thing he could do was compare him to me.
6. When I started to fill the shape of a woman's body, I couldn't "bro down" like I used to. Now everyone was scared of ruining the nice clothes my mother told me to wear.
7. In my middle school choir, all the other girls were thin-voiced sopranos, and I sounded like Morgan Freeman compared to them. The teacher had me sing and stand with the boys. They thought it was funny to snap my brastrap.
8. When a girl cornered me in the hallway and demanded to know why I kept my hair short, I told her it was short so she'd have nothing to grab when I attacked her... then I attacked her.
9. When my mother was pregnant with me, she said she wanted a boy. She'd rub her stomach and tell my older siblings, "your baby brother's in here."
10. I was the opposite of what they wanted.
0. I was a letdown before I was even born.
11. My dad wanted someone to play ball with.
12. My brother wanted a partner in crime.
13. My mom didn't want to raise another girl.
14. My grandma didn't pass on her son's old toys.
15. My cousin got those.
0. I was a letdown before I was even born.
10. I was the opposite of what they wanted.
10. I was the opposite of what they wanted.
10. I was the opposite of what they wanted.
16. How many numbers I count doesn't make a difference.
17. Nothing I can do will make a difference.
18. Why should I even care?
19. I don't have to feel bad about this.
20. I'm not changing who I am.
21. I couldn't change even if I wanted to. 
22. I don't "act like a girl."
23. I don't "act like a boy."
24. I am the result of 4 billion years of evolutionary success.
25. I act like that.


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