We want to hear your stories. Transpire is not only an educational site, but a community in which trans people and allies and come together and support one another. This is Stellan’s story…
Telling My Story: I wrote a poem a year or two ago, called Exo Adaptation. Here it is:
“As the snail retreats into its hard shell,
And protects itself from life’s sharpest blows,
I so envy its exoskeleton.
Mother Nature, hear me out now. Please.
I demand the armor you fashioned for
the animals of this senseless Earth.
Why engage in a world that hurts and hates?
Why not withdraw into a safety net,
Only soaking up sunlight when needed?”
I try to recall the headspace I was in when I wrote it, but I honestly can’t place it. While I was only daydreaming about buckling down into some sort of armor then, I’m now a deeply guarded person. If it takes a battle to build a soldier, I guess I’m a Captain, because I’ve been through a war. Religion made my parents the enemy. I did my best in coming out to them. I tried texting it lightly first (“I’m agender”). I tried a letter and knowing just what to say (“I’m transgender”). I even tried not taking any action and going about my business (I’m wearing a nonbinary flag today!). That’s the path I’m on to this day. I hate that it was my best course of action though, because of how isolating it’s been. My phone call with a Plume specialist, my trip to the pharmacy to pick up my first container of testosterone…. Not a single person in my Christian family was there to cheer me on. Why did I make my efforts? Well, I couldn’t force myself to suffer in silence- not when I spoke up from the start. It inwardly feels like I screamed my truth until my heart grew hoarse. I just wonder why they couldn’t listen.
I feel alone a lot of the time. Luckily, I built a support system from the ground up. Online support groups, as well as people like my partner, gender-affirming therapist, and creative mentor, saved me.
My parents have their suspicions, so I don’t have a phone right now. I get watched like a hawk, but my secrets are worth it. I’m worth it. That’s the most critical thing I learned. No one’s going to turn you into the person you want to be. Not some Fairy Godmother, and not Mother Nature. You have to decide to take the leap of transformation for yourself. Isn’t change worth all the life you’ve yet to live?