I think sometimes, about what it means to be transgender. I probe and probe for answers, because as the possibility for a new age of enlightenment and safety increases, the others want to know. I’ve come up with many answers, but I can hold to none. I don’t deserve to paint the definition of a culture with the limited experiences I’ve had. I don’t see myself in the transgender identified people allowed on television. I don’t see myself in the transgender identified people making news feeds and giving high profile interviews. And as my nation’s exposure to our culture increases, likely will their curiosity. Am I transgender? Do I have the right? I’ve heard doctors, psychiatrists, may refuse transgender patients access to hormone therapy based on how dedicated or convincing their portrayal of their identified gender. If you want to be a man or woman, you’ll have to look like the women and men on TV. If you want to be transgender, you’ll have to look like the trans identified people on TV. Every single one of us who has an active role as either participant or observer in our society is prey to the crisis of validity. Am I pretty enough? Am I strong enough? Am I brave enough? Mom enough? Dad enough? Competitive enough? Successful enough? Rich enough? **** enough? Pious enough? It never ends. We’re, as a nation of people, being crushed and compartmentalized by this ever present lens, looming over us, exploiting our weaknesses and fears so it may grow wider, and support itself as it follows us, seemingly forever into the future. And one of the worst fears this camera of existential torment exploits, in most of us every day, is, “Do I have a reflection?” “What does it look like?” “Do I look like me?” What does it mean to be transgender? I can’t get away from that question. But I don’t have an answer. There are varying degrees of anguish, depression, panic, anxiety, and other wonderful emotional states that creep up on you and breathe down your neck nearly every waking day. Absolute contempt for the lie of a life you’ve lived till now, and contempt for the fragments still stuck to you, in memories, attached to your body and mind. Fear of those in your own community who would purposefully humiliate, invalidate, or attack you, choosing their own universal moral code over the innate urge and capacity to support the health and continued well being of another human. A ******* neighbor. A ******* pupil. A ******* employee. A ******* sister, brother, son, daughter, mother, father, cousin, ******* blood. What is being transgender like? By my experiences, it’s just like being anyone else in the country. But with a lot more fear, death, exclusion and medication.