Last week I answered a question that was sent to me via email from the photographer putting together the Butch Project, S.D. Holman. The response she received for calls for models at the conference was so incredible that they had to choose who they were going to photograph this weekend. In making their decision they asked everyone to tell them something about their butch identity. This was my answer to them:
I challenge gender stereotypes on a daily basis simply by existing in this world. I’ve grown comfortable and almost proud of the fact that I am called “Sir” on a daily basis. On the outside I may look like a man, but under these boots, jeans and t-shirt, I am all woman. Comfortable and confident in these clothes and in this skin. I am me.
This has become a part of my definition of me. My first workshop of the day in this conference was a writing workshop. Writing our stories, which is what I’m doing as my book project, is so important. Everyone has a story and they should all be written down. During this workshop we did an exercise that was basically the same free writing that I’ve been doing everyday, only we timed it for 10 minutes. I wanted to share what I wrote during that time but became very shy. I need to get comfortable again with reading my stuff though so I’m considering writing a piece for tomorrow’s spoken word at In Other Words and reading it during the open mic session. I want to share with you what I wrote.
It’s interesting how the Universe brings me to places to hear exactly what I need to hear exactly what I need to hear when I need to hear it. It’s happened on a daily basis ever since jumping into the arms of the Universe. Trusting that it will catch me. Listening to it’s guidance. Going where it takes me. Remaining present in the moment. She talked about a book I must find and read. It’s author is a Zen Buddhist. Being present. That is my goal lately. Experiencing this life. Savoring each moment, each relationship, each being I come in contact with. Fully feeling my feelings. Separating that which is not mine. Owning what is mine and finding the lesson in the challenge I’m faced to over come. Standing in my power. My power. I am strong. Fluid. Genderless. Outside of those mere words. Words are so limiting when searching to explain feelings. Feelings of loneliness, grief, love, joy, feelings. Love. Love being the grandest of them all. I miss the intimate. Miss the touch. The kiss. The need. The want. Physical contact. We don’t experience it enough as humans. We’re afraid to touch. Afraid to be touched. Why? Where does that come from? For me it stems from those first 5 days of my life spent in the cold nursery. Untouched. Unloved. Who am I? Who am I to think I can do this? Walk this new and unfamiliar path? I am me. Strong. Creative. Powerful. Loveable. Competent. Handsome. I am butch. Aggressive. Tomboy. Boi. I am me.
This 10 minute free writing was filled with so much for me. I have so much more to write about but I’ve got another event to get to tonight. I will most definitely come back to this!