A Better Version of Me (Making the Switch)

A warning: This entry is mostly about hair and clothes, things I profess to not be interested in but obsessively rant about. This might be one worth skipping, as it’s more planning and thinking out what I’m going to do.

I’m not likeable. At least, not easily likeable.

It’s something I’m coming to terms with. I know people pick up on the fact I am playing a part, and doing it poorly. I don’t pull off the soft feminine woman thing very well. It comes off strange. People’s guts pick it up. They don’t know what it is, but they assume the worst. That I’m not what I seem, that I might hurt them or behave strangely.

I’m tired of playing girl. I want to be myself. That means no primping, no preening, no high heels or perty dresses. I feel the pressure to do these things and I feel a sense of horror, like being forced into an existence I never asked for.

It’s time to make the switch, to formally and visually signal to other people that I’m not really very feminine. Time for delicious short hair. Time to dress as minimally feminine as I want. As much as I want the short hair, I’m not ready for it yet. I need to drop some weight, since a short cut right now will only amplify my naturally butch look. (Wide shoulders, wide hips, thick arms, thick ankles, no waist, thick neck, large face, large hands and feet.) I don’t want to look butch, but I don’t want to look femme either.

So, I’m thinking July for the cut. Enough time to drop some weight. Maybe I’ll cut it right before we go out west to Colorado for vacation. What a wonder it will be to hike for miles and miles without a thick long mass of hair on my head. And the vacation pictures will be my “coming out.” Haha, look at me making such a huge fuss about having short hair. Most people probably won’t care at all. I’m still deciding what style I want, and I’m not sure what will even suit me. I might go pixie cut, I might go faux-hawk (shorter sides, some hair on top), I don’t know.

As for clothes. The girliest thing that I wear most often is leggings. The closest thing to a dress I wear are tunics and big, oversized t-shirts, mostly over leggings. If I wear a skirt, I wear floor-length flowing Indian skirts. I like these quite a lot, but I only wear them in the summer. Otherwise, I can’t be bothered. I think I will continue wearing these, when and how I want, and if a situation calls for a dress I’ll just laugh and wear nice pants or a tunic over leggings.

I don’t like formal parties, clubbing, weddings, anything that requires strict gender-related dressing. But I’m almost ready to make the switch. To wear dress pants instead of cocktail dresses. I’m lucky that there’s a woman in my husband’s family who seems to be like me. She has short hair, and doesn’t seem girly. And she seems to be well-loved. She even has her own nickname in my husband’s family, “Mitters” short for Michelle. So there’s precedent.

A problem is my husband’s sister, H. She is the biggest princess you’ll ever meet, and has no problems with criticizing anyone who toes the line of “normality.” She reminds me of my stepmother in some ways, petulant and entitled, prone to random rages. I am sure she will comment on my new hair in her way, which is barely disguised contempt. I will be questioned about it by people that know me, my own version of a gauntlet.

But it’ll be better. It’ll be better than this constant unrelenting anxiety that I don’t pass. That I don’t pass as a feminine girly girl, which is what I’m supposed to be. What my stepmother and father told me I was supposed to be. I am in charge of sexualizing myself, not anyone else. No one has that control over me. Not advertisements, not the disparaging words of femme women, not my husband, not blood relatives, not in-laws, not “friends.”

Only me.

Here it comes, the better version of me.


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