So tomorrow at 6 a.m. I go to surgery to claim the breasts that testosterone denied me.
No, anatomy isn’t destiny, and being able to do breast augmentation doesn’t make me more “real” than other trans women who can’t afford to, or chose not to do so.
But it is addressing something that’s been a major source of my gender-related body dysphoria.
It’s hard to love your curves when you don’t have any. (Well, except for the beer belly that makes me look male.) Much of the language body of language falls flat for me because I’m not the “right” kind of big-bodied. I don’t have hips, period, let alone ones that would balance with my wide child-bearing shoulders. Hormones added a bit of junk in trunk, but I still don’t all that much back there. I can’t change them; I can only learn to love them. (Right now we’re still in the detente phase.)
But breasts… breasts are something I can change. They’re something that unequivocally signals “woman,” even in the absence of other signals from the rest of my body.
It’s not that I hate my body, rather it’s that — as Sam Dylan Finch put it in his excellent essay, “I’m Transgender and I Need Body Positivity Too” — I hate “the way it tricks others into seeing me as something that I’m not. And no amount of self-love and validation can change the fact that, when I step out into the world, my body precedes me and erases a very important aspect of my identity.”
So I’m changing it. Because “sometimes modifying our bodies can be our greatest act of self-love.”
See you on the other side.