[Published retroactively on 2021-09-03, unedited.]
Something I've been enjoying a lot in the past couple of months is the feeling of freedom in how I move. It's incredible to me... not just that certain physical motions are intensely gendered, but how utterly invisible that is to most people. I mean – they can probably spot something "wrong" but that's probably the extent. I don't think it's typical for people to be low-key conscious of every muscle contraction in their body because they feel compelled to make sure it's gendered "correctly."
I like moving around, when I can, in a fashion that feels more natural to me. Maybe it's feminine? Hard to tell at this point. It's definitely not straight-guy.
The dancing is definitely the distilled, refined, pure form of this. There is something amazing about just dancing like a girl.
I thought about this a bit ago, and realized that I have wanted to move, freely, for a very long time. I remember a moment in I think 5th grade or so. For a while I would spend time alone in one room in the house, carefully isolated away from everyone else, and just dance. I think there was probably music involved but I honestly can't be sure.
I remember feeling so right – moving, unfettered, just expressing myself by flowing around the room. It was like a direct tap into a spring of some kind of primal, beautiful joy.
I am much less certain about why that ended. Maybe someone saw and said something, maybe not; maybe I just thought too much and got myself scared. I think I remember a rush of the shame and fear. Whatever happened, I left the experience with a very loud and clear lesson, which is that proper boys do not do "that" and I better not do it ever again if I knew what was good for me.
It still churns in my soul... that I can't remember much of anything, that the pervasive abuse even happened in the first place that led to all that memory loss, that it's taken so long to re-emerge, that I still have incredibly conflicted feelings about the people who hurt and abused me in the first place. It hurts to know that an ecstatic, happy little girl once got told she wasn't allowed to dance, and she had to carry that lashing in her heart for so many years.
But now... now it is 2019. It may have taken a while for her to heal, to find the smuggled memories from so long ago and lovingly dust them off again, but they're intact.
I still love dancing like a girl.
And for the first time in my life, I really understand why.