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Happy birthday

Samantha Gervais

Assistant Opinions Editor

Photo via Lisett Kruusimäe/Pexels

During this past week, I celebrated an incredibly special event: A dear friend of mine revealed her authentic self, coming out to the public as a transgender woman. She had been carrying the weight of fear and possible rejection for so many years and as a friend of hers, it was incredibly hard to watch.

To have a friend suffer and not be able to be their authentic, true self is infuriating and heart-wrenching. To know you can’t help in the particular ways they may need makes you feel helpless. Though on the other side of things, the more positive side — to see that friend finally be able to be their true, authentic self and have what seemed like an unbearable weight lifted from their shoulders is incredibly heartwarming and even makes you feel better.

My friend decided to come out in an incredibly clever way. Having been fortunate enough to have some incredible connections, amazing friends and a pretty cool sibling, she was able to put together a music video chronicling what she envisioned her coming out and transition to be like.

After I first watched this video, I hadn’t anticipated it to be as cinematic as it was. It was everything I could hope for for this friend and more. Having been a part of her excitement to see the final product, finally seeing the video come to fruition was worth the wait.

Seeing the outpouring comments of love and support was like the most monumental breath of fresh air I haven’t felt in so long. It made me feel so relieved to see that she was accepted.

On a similar note, it also made me realize how sad it felt to know that she even had to be “accepted.” I wish that the world could be more accepting of people being their authentic selves, especially if what their decision is isn’t harming anyone.

My friend's choice to feminize herself in the way she wants to be isn’t harming any other human beings. She now feels happy and comfortable in her own skin. Isn’t happiness and comfort what we should strive for in our lives?

Of course, there will be times in life when we are forced into uncomfortable situations that we aren’t happy with or that are difficult to face, but we can learn to accept one another for who they are. Live and let live, as they say, right?

I would love nothing more than to dedicate this article to my beautiful friend. Here’s to her and the many others who have yet to come out, are in the process or have. Cheers to you, my friends, for being who you were meant to be. May you continue to be happy and may you be safe and protected.

To my friend: I am forever happy and proud. Happy birthday to the woman you were meant to be.


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