I’m sorry that I missed posting last week. I’ve been incredibly busy with school and my research clerkship. My research professor gave me a much bigger project than I think either of us anticipated, and I’ve been working long hours to try and finish. I keep running into 40 page case after 40 page case that I have to go through…
So a lot has happened over the last couple of weeks. Like I mentioned in my last post, I did spend inauguration day changing my gender marker on various identity documents. I started with the Social Security Administration. The woman of color who handled my case there was wonderful. She asked how I was, and I said that I was good but a little sad. She said that she hoped everything got better for me, and I said that it will take four years. We locked eyes in a moment of solidarity, and she said she understood. She happily corrected my gender marker for the SSA. As I left, I wished her the best, and she wished me the same.
My next stop was the DMV to change my driver’s license. I was most worried about the DMV. The DMV should take a surgeon’s letter or court order as proof for a gender marker change, but I wondered if a surgeon’s letter would actually work. As I approached the first line of defense at the DMV, the woman asked what I was there for. I quietly said to change my gender marker. She quietly asked if I had all the documentation, to which I affirmatively replied. I took my number and grabbed a seat. For the first time ever, I got to check “Male” on a government document.
I was worried about which DMV worker I would end up being at the mercy of. I was assigned to a woman that seemed to be the manager, which was nice. I was afraid of getting someone who had never changed a gender marker before. She was very polite and changed it with no problem. You can be sure that my heart was pounding as she read every line of my surgeon’s letter, which at the time seemed like it took her forever to do. I could tell that the letter’s wording was what helped her make the decision to change it for me.
I ended with applying for a passport in the Tate Student Center, which was largely uneventful. Once I get my passport back, I’m going to file for a legal gender change so I can amend my birth certificate. I think that will just be a matter of time and money, both of which I have little of…
Anyway, this past Wednesday was my 25th birthday. The day itself wasn’t that special. I was at my externship all day. My supervisor did pick up some amazing chocolate peanut butter cookies from Fresh Market. I did go to Atlanta yesterday and had lunch with my mom and sister. We saw Hidden Figures, which was amazing. I especially appreciated all of the underlying bathroom access issues that Katherine had. Who knew we would still be worrying about where people use the damn bathroom? I think the movie made it clear that worrying about where one is going to the bathroom seriously hurts not only productivity but well-being.
All the best,