Trigger warning: abuse, physical assault, bullying
I wake up every morning.
Get ready to face the cruel world.
The mirror on my bathroom wall
Doesn’t praise me unlike
The ones in fairy tales.
The bruises on my left cheek
From the punches that a random stranger
Threw at me haven’t healed yet.
The cut on my upper lip from last night
When my drunk father abused me
And told me he would rather have me dead,
Hasn’t stopped bleeding yet.
I put on a baggy t-shirt
And a pair of jeans.
I look into my reflection in the mirror,
The feeling of dysphoria kicks in
And I notice how
My breasts weigh me down.
I feel like an imposter
Trying to fit into a body I don’t recognize.
I skip my breakfast
Because my mum doesn’t like looking at my face.
I walk to school and
I face the guys, who bully me,
In the hallway.
I know two of them are in love
With each other
But they are afraid to accept it.
I smile at them,
For I pity the weight of misogyny
They carry on their chest.
It’s heavier than my weight of dysphoria
Because at the end of the day,
I still refuse to fit into
The stereotypical gender norms
Some old men created.
I still wear my pride on my chest
Every night, when I go to bed.
Lavender is an 18-year-old non-binary person from Assam. In Lavender’s own words, “I am someone who crazily loves chasing sunsets and sky gaze from open meadows. My journey with my identity has been a ride. It’s been a blessing to know that I’ll always have a chosen family by my side.”