I was going to wait to post this photo until I could accompany it with a poem about the street harassment I experienced in this outfit. But then I started thinking about why I needed to define the narrative of this outfit -- of myself -- by other people's hatred. Which goes to say, recently I've been thinking about how all of the narratives out there about trans people, and especially transfeminine people, are defined by the violence we experience. 

What gets lost here is the joy of being trans. 

I've been thinking a lot about joy recently. What makes me wake up and look like this when I know that people will try their best to bring me down? What makes me keep going even though I don't see an expiration date for being harassed, disregarded, shoved, insulted, laughed at? 

And what I started to realize is that the delight I experience when I look at myself and who I am femmifesting is unparalleled, ancestral, soul-affirming. The joy of not having to define and live my life by imposed standards and borders. The joy of being able to constantly change, adapt, re-invent, shift, transform. 

And that got me thinking: Could it be that the reason we experience so much oppression is because of their repression? Could it be that the reason we are harassed is because others too recognize our joy? Could it be that they cannot take us because they have become accustomed to their own misery?

I want so badly for the world to feel entitled to its joy, to its pleasure, to its delight. I want so badly for people to give themselves permission to try, transgress, transcend. I want so badly to be able to walk down the street without having the joy punished out of me. I want so badly to share this with you. This (un)becoming. This invitation. This joy.

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