Every time I have to hand over my ID to someone, I get a little nervous. Not just because my gender marker doesn’t match my gender presentation, but because of my name. I like my name - a lot. I should, since I picked it.
The thing is that every single time someone looks at my name and stumbles over the pronunciation and asks “Hey, did your parents really name you that?” and I answer yes, I wonder if they’ve looked at the gender marker. What they’re thinking about my deep(ish) voice and receding hairline and little betraying F on my ID. And I wonder what I’m doing to silence gender non-normativity by staying in the closet and not sharing my life story with the random cashier or customer service agent.
My ID will get changed one of these days soon – I’m just waiting on getting the letter from my surgeon. But I’m not sure that reflexive worry over what they see versus what the ID says will go away.
Today’s exchange, though, had a pretty nifty upshot:
“Wait. So that’s really your name? Your parents named you that?”
“They did. They were kind of nerdy, which is not a bad thing.”
“Wow. You sound like a god.”
It’s certainly the first time I’ve ever been deified. Non-normativity is a good thing, and it’s moments like that which remind me how being a little bit different is worth it.