Why pronouns?

I’ve been having thinky thoughts about my gender lately.

I’ve always been ‘okay’ with using she/her, but lately (For the past year really, I take my time with decisions, part of my autistic nature) I’ve been wondering why that’s been the case?

I think it’s because I’ve always been called she/her/girl.

I think it’s also part of a mid-life re-evaluation of myself that has been going on for me.

Ms and Miss and Mrs have always irritated the living fuck out of me. I have hated those terms applied to me like one would hate being forced to wear a hair shirt.

When I was around four or five, I asked my mom when I’d get a penis, because I wanted one. She laughed at me so hard I never asked again.

I’ve always loathed pink, like… with a freaking passion, it’s only as an adult that I’ve learned to like a few shades of it. It’s not likely to ever be a favorite color for me.

Dresses and heels, can we talk about those? Um. Yeah, they aren’t for me. I like broomstick skirts cause they’re cool in the heat and I have curves so shorts never look good on me, but just to buy a dress to wear because I like dresses? Erm. I can’t think of a time when I’ve ever done that.

I almost have to twist my own arm to go buy a fancy dress for something that requires me to wear one, (like a wedding).

I love being a mom, but I’ve never felt like a girl. A lot of my hobbies are decidedly ‘male gendered’.

I looooove muscle cars, as in utterly adore them. I’d own one if I could. I love motorcycles too, (I’m a Harley person in case you’re curious).

I dress very androgynously, my favorite outfits are beaten up jeans that fit, flip flops or combat boots and a loose fitting shirt or a muscle shirt.

Decidedly non-feminine.

Except that I love getting mani-pedis and I wear my hair long. (Undercut at the back and sides, but long on top) I love make-up, even though I’m horribly unskilled in its application.

I loathe the trend of shaving/waxing for females as a matter of course, but I like to shave my legs in the summer, not for looks, but because I like the way it feels.

If I were to wear what I *want* to wear as a dress up? It’d be a suit vest, well tailored slacks and a dress shirt. Not sure about a tie, I’ve never tried one, so I don’t know if it works for me.

So… gender. I’ve decided to give myself permission to claim the terms AFAB (assigned female at birth, cause yeah, technically I have girl parts and there is no way on earth I’m ever going to be mistaken for male, not with my curves) and NB, non-binary. These things fit me so well I’m kind of sitting here wondering why it took me so long to realize their veracity. I’ve used the term genderqueer for over a decade, so I guess the leap isn’t that large of one.

I’ve decided that it’s okay for me to use the XIE/XEM/XYR pronouns, because they fit the real me better than she/her.

I doubt I’ll correct anyone who misgenders me in real life, it, like a lot of ways that I pass, are just too much of a fight for me most days. I don’t have the spoons to fight being white-coded, or passing as non-autistic, I doubt I’ll have the spoons to fight being misgendered either.

Online though? Yeah, I need it to be clear that I want my pronouns respected every bit as much as I try my best to respect others.

It’s absolutely amazing to me how free this decision has made me feel. I can’t even find words (and me a writer!) to express the depth of emotion claiming these terms and pronouns for myself makes me.

The closest I can come to is Joy.