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Femme Disturbance - Live/d Theory

Micha Cárdenas, Author

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Gender / Transgender / Genderqueer

Claire and I
in our first two weeks together
avoiding the snow outside in Ann Arbor
indulging our femme desires by having fun with a photo shoot
and spending hours editing and uploading to Facebook.
This is the dress I wore
the first time I saw my mom "after transition"
even though I told her over the phone about my new name, gender and life
I hadn't seen her for years
I was so afraid of what she'd say, 
conjuring memories of cruelly racist remarks she made about my friends as a child
still, on my way to the conference on Marxism and New Media at Duke
I was determined to look great, to wear my favorite dress,
and spent the whole morning getting ready, doing my hair and makeup, 
a concern many male academics may never consider.
I went to the assisted living facility to pick up my mom
for breakfast before the conference
and I walked into her room
afraid of whether or not she would even recognize me
and she said, simply, 
You look beautiful.
We both take our drugs everyday,
in orange prescription bottles,
which used to seem to me like the worst fate imaginable
and is now something I want.
How can I explain this new transition to her?
That I don't want surgery
that I want to take fewer pills
that I feel enough love and support to want to experiment again.
I'm enjoying being genderqueer
now people's confusion about my pronouns feels like a success

The Sound of Prometrium

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