No more my mother’s daughter

I let her. I never modified her when she called me her daughter; I rarely correct her when she calls me by my name. She would buy me tight V-neck shirts, and I would smile. None of us wanted, or could, admit that I grew up to be someone who wasn’t her daughter.

In the end, however, the pain in my body outweighed my fear of changing my relationship with my mother, and I scheduled a consultation and then the day of surgery to get a mastectomy. both sides confirm gender. In March, when the surgical center called me to schedule the procedure, I called my mother shortly after.

“I have my surgery date!”



“It’s far.”

“It’s only been a few months.”

“You will have to buy a lot of things. Surgery is a big deal, honey. I don’t think you’re ready.”

I sometimes wonder if she feels like my surgery is a criticism of her and her body, a rejection of her genes. Once, on the phone, she cried that she had given birth to a perfect baby and didn’t understand why I messed it up. When I was a child, my mother, who was an artist, used to take me to art museums, and whenever we saw a picture of a woman with a baby, she would say, “That’s it. child and mother”.

A few weeks after I called her to find out the date of my surgery, she texted me an article about the sex mark X on my passport for non-binary people, with the accompanying text, “Go transgender tourism”.

“Oh, great!” I texted back.

“I know,” she wrote, “it’s worrisome if you don’t look like the gender on your passport. I keep my hair short, wear jeans, sometimes no makeup. At a Mexican restaurant, a waiter called me ‘sir.’

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