“When enough people crinkle their nose at you, you begin to think you stink” Zeke Smith
Last week, I watched an episode of @officialsurvivor_cbs where a character on the show was outed as being transgender. It was done in a malicious way and it was really painful to watch. I couldn’t stop crying and my heart went out to Zeke and I really wanted to check that this stranger on my TV screen was ok. So I went onto the internet and found an article that he had written.
In it he writes about how there was a point in his life that people started distancing themselves and he said the quote above. He then moved to New York and had the opportunity to build himself a new identity and not just be seen as the “trans” person.
I couldn’t help but connect with this. I can’t imagine the struggle a trans person faces on a daily basis and I recognise my privilege in that aspect. It’s why I believe his story will inspire others.
It certainly did me.
As someone who experienced this unanimous crinkling of noses when I became “the sick girl”, my heart ached for him. In my situation, the distancing occurred because I was seen as fragile and people found it too difficult to talk about it. They’d rather be silent than risk awkwardness. He couldn’t be more accurate about the fact that this loss of people in your life leads to a hell of self doubt.
That rebirth that he was afforded, also happened to me. It was in uni and mine only lasted 4 days until my deep dark secret was revealed in a game of truth or dare but 4 days was enough in an intense atmosphere like freshers week to have already created bonds and be seen as “normal”. It’s why I want to urge everyone that follows me to be brave enough to have those conversations that scare you. Don’t be too scared of saying something wrong that you don’t say something at all. That applies to everything, LGBTQ+, body positivity, feminism, physical health, mental health and of course scars. You are such a warrior Zeke #scarrednotscared