Loving Myself Unapologetically

Guest Post by L’lerrét Jazelle Ailith

Marc Lamont Hill asked me once whether or not I ever felt like the
burden of being trans was too much and I wanted to give up. I thought
about it for a second and then proceeded to tell him that I love my
being unapologetically.

What was the pause for, though? I paused because
for so long, I internalized hate from the folks around me who couldn’t
see the beauty in my unique identity. For years, I would take off my
makeup and look into the mirror and cry because I wasn’t proud of what
stared back at me. I thought that seeing this being that wasn’t what
society ideally thought to be a woman was to be abhorred. I felt that I
didn’t deserve happiness or love because I looked like an atrocious
blend of man and woman. But once I met my chosen family amongst the
#blacktransrevolution and realized my worth and worthiness, those
thoughts and feelings began to slowly fade away.

Yesterday was such a
weighted, stressful day for me and to practice self care, I hopped in
the shower and cleansed myself thoroughly for an hour – head to toe.
When I stepped out, I took a look in the mirror and cried. I cried not
because of shame. I cried not because of disgust. I cried because I was
able to look into my own eyes and feel beautiful. I was able to admire
the rawness of my face. I saw the happiness and joy oozing out of every
orifice. My mouth couldn’t stop smiling. My skin was glowing. My eyes
were apparent. I cried because never in a million years did I think I
would find myself in a place where even without my beauty routine having
been implemented, I would take pride in my being. I cried because I
have been through SO FUCKING MUCH to get to a place where I feel worthy
and content and to finally feel that being actualized was so
overwhelming.

F**k beauty norms or ideals…. this is about loving the
brown skin that I’m in! I didn’t pick away at my features like I
normally would. I looked at myself and I told her how much I loved her.
She smiled and blew me a kiss. She thanked me for releasing her from her
prison of shame and insecurity. She was free. I am free. And with this
freedom – this pride – I was provided with a voice to announce my
existence and honor my journey. Terrell and L’lerrét’s voices have
intertwined to produce something so fantastic…. something so
unstoppable. I fought and fought and now look at her! All vivacious and
unapologetic and whatnot! haha

And I thank my #blacktransrevolution
family for helping to see that happen; for fostering and nurturing this
blossoming security. Y’all so cute! I can only wish to continue building
community and loving on you all so that more and more girls and boys
and anyone in between can feel the same joy that I feel in this moment.
This is infectious and I want every single one of my revolutionary
comrades to catch this too. I can’t wait to go into the house of worship
in late November and fellowship with my people at #TransVoices! We are
the revolution.

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