There are a ton of ways that I am afraid in this world and it’s definitely grown over the years. From spiders to public speaking, I’ve had a few scary obstacles cross my path. And not to mention the world teaches us that if anything isn’t normal then it must be harmful. But most of those types of scares are easy to rationalize and overcome. I am afraid that I, as an adult, still don’t have complete rights in this world as a human. As a woman my body is a topic of discussion even if I am out of the room. Being black makes me afraid to deal with authority. Being tall, being fat, being assertive and simply being myself. I am afraid of making friends and opening up to them out of fear that they will use me or make me their token. I am afraid of the law that is supposed to protect me. Being trans puts a target on my back, and that makes me afraid. I am fearful of those who see my existence as a ploy to erase me.
They want to erase me because I am not normal. I’m not cis passing and I don’t fit into the cookie cutter mold for what society says a woman should be. There are men and women with limited experience on the topic and are so close minded that they rest on antique epistemology as a cushion. I am afraid of feminism because it hasn’t always been for me, and feminism has not tried to make space for my sisters and siblings.
If you haven’t been paying attention to my community in the news then let me fill you in. As of today there have been 20 transgender women killed this year in the united states alone. Its close to impossible to know how large the number is internationally. And this only includes the women who were out and open about their identity and/or accepted by those who laid their queens to rest. There’s more than one reason as to why this number is so high and this has sent me into a deep spiral of feelings. As someone who is visible, vocal and assertive in my voice and presence, I find it hard to get myself out of the state of awareness that I am constantly in. I’m always on high alert. And i need to be. Over the years we have seen the numbers increase and we stay resilient to the hate that has found itself over shadowing our existence.
Safety is a top concern of mine and for those that identify as trans and gender non conforming. There are not a lot of safe spaces for us in the world, even when we are trying to be part of our own community. It’s a drastic mind fuck to be in a position where the heterosexuals are confused by you and the homosexuals don’t understand you. But bravely we find our way and we make it work.
I’ve been asked and been questioned about why I am so hyper vigilant about this. I wish it wasn’t the case but it’s simple to answer….
I’m afraid that I won’t make it to 35 because I’ll die in the hands of hate.