A link symbol  How did I not realize I was trans sooner??

Well, to be fair to myself, I suppose I had some extra hurdles. I do think that there is a special sort of struggle when it comes to realizing that you're trans when you're multigender, like I am. Specifically when one of the genders that you are is the one that you were assigned at birth. (I personally hate 'AGAB' language, so I try to avoid it whenever possible, but I do not have any other way to describe what I mean here, unfortunately.) It's a common experience for multigender people like this to notice that they feel comfortable with their 'AGAB', say, "Well, that's that," and not question it any further. It can take an extra push to realize that you are trans because of this.

But, still. It's really funny to look back on my 'egg moments' and laugh in retrospect.

For those uninitiated: 'egg' is a transgender slang term which means a person who hasn't realized that they're trans yet; usually used in relation to incidents that are signs of being trans, like 'ironically' crossdressing. The word comes from the idea that they haven't 'cracked out of their shell' yet. Likewise, to have your 'egg cracked' or to 'hatch' is to realize that you are transgender.

So! Let's have a look back and a laugh at my egg years.

For context regarding the rest of the story: I am intersex, but my parents raised me as a girl. That doesn't make me 'AFAB'. I am still intersex. And the specifics of my identity are that I am a male and female bigender. This is to say, I am a boy and a girl at the same time. I am also both WLW (a woman who likes women) and MLM (a man who likes men) at the same time. In other words, I like both men and women 'in a gay way'. That'll be relevant later.

My introduction to the queer community was as early as late elementary school; pretty early, given that I live in Texas, which holds onto LGBT+phobic beliefs just as hard as it holds onto confederate monuments. It was through fandom, predictably enough; more specifically, the DeviantArt fandom for one of the arcs of the Legend of Zelda manga. This is, more or less, how I was introduced to 'yaoi'. A word that now makes me cringe for reasons I'm sure you've heard before... To be fair to myself, though, I never called myself a 'fujoshi', and I didn't participate in any fetishizing behavior that I can remember. I was, like, 10. But, nonetheless, it was through this lens that I found my first pieces of MLM fiction, and, soon after, WLW fiction.

As early as my very first introduction to the queer community, I was having my very first egg thoughts. I distinctly remember thinking that I was a 'gay boy in a bi girl's body'. (Yes, I already identified as bi at this time; I saw the word for the very first time and immediately connected it to my own experiences.) But, wow, already starting off STRONG with the 'you are transgender and you do not realize it' vibes. Like, 'a gay boy in a bi girl's body' is QUITE the transgender phrase (harkening back to the 'boy in a girl's body'-type phrases to describe trans people).

But, at this time, I didn't really know about trans people yet. I was introduced to the LGB, but I was only introduced to the T by a friend in middle school. The way that she described it; using the 'one gender trapped in another gender's body' definition; sounded like a medical condition to me. I remember my immediate response being, "That's weird," verbatim. I know, I know, middle school Azure transphobic moments!! But, hey, I'm transgender now and I've decided to forgive my past self. She'll get there.

As I began to learn more about the transgender community, I (again in middle school) decided to toy a little bit with the idea of being genderfluid. But, the thing was, when I tried to talk about my questioning to my transgender friend (the only one at the time that I had), he responded, "I... Don't think that you are."

This response shocked me. He rushed to explain himself; saying that I just didn't "seem like" I was. And, since I had only been questioning my gender at this time, and I hadn't officially begun to identify with anything, I decided that, if my actually-trans friend thought that I was cis, I had to be, right? He was the only authority I had. So, I discarded my questioning, settling into a cisgender identity.

(I'm actually still in touch with this friend. I came out to him as bigender recently, and he was nothing but completely accepting. I asked him if he remembered the incident I detailed above, and he was horrified, saying that he didn't remember it until I brought it up. He apologized profusely, and I forgave him; it was years ago, after all, and we were both middle schoolers. So, no worries; that particular story has a happy ending.)

Besides. Being genderfluid never felt completely right, anyway. From the way that I understood the term, it meant that I was fluid between male and female, as if they were two ends of a line. I could be binary female, binary male, or in between the two... But somehow, that didn't feel right. The idea of being just a binary male at any point felt wrong, and the idea of being any sort of 'in between' identity also felt wrong. So, I came to the conclusion that, if being a binary boy felt wrong and being neither a boy or a girl also felt wrong, then that meant I had to be a cisgender girl!

And that's how I identified for a long time. For reference, my questioning my gender took place over 2 months at most, and all took place in early-ish middle school. So, now that I have, officially, at this point, decided that I 'had to be' a cisgender woman after questioning my identity, we skip to the very end of high school. That's around 6 years! And, during those 6 years, I still had those thoughts of, 'I'm sort of like a queer man in a bi girl's body.' But I thought that those were ~ just cisgender girl things ~ !

Yeah. Denial is one hell of a beast.

Late into high school, I met who would later become my boyfriend, Verdant. Verdant was already out as trans at the time that I met him; zie identified differently at the time, but currently, sun identifies mainly as genderqueer.

A little peak behind the scenes here... Verdant has told me that he knew that I was trans from the very first time that I passively mentioned to him that I felt like I was MLM. After all, it's common for people to discover that they are trans from their attraction; take, for example, a transgender woman realizing that she is trans when she notices that her attraction to women feels sapphic in nature. According to him, he was more or less just waiting out the days until I realized it for myself. Extremely funny in retrospect.

And, because of the fact that we shared a Discord server to talk in, and we began it before I realized I was bigender, I can now provide actual, direct quotes of me being an egg! Including hits such as (yes, directly copy and pasting my messages here):

"I'm not even MLM but whenever I see (the word) 'yaoi' I fucking retract into myself"

"Whenever I look at Randall I think 'im gay' even though I'm presumably a female so Oh You Know"

"Bc I've been feeling that lately. Like both WLW and MLM. Its wack"

"I'm the only cis person I know who uses they them pronouns"

And yes! I did, indeed, start to use they/them pronouns (in addition to she/her) as an egg. Which is... A lot. (According to Verdant, pup celebrated when I did this because it meant that my egg was cracking, if only a bit.)

The thing that was mainly holding me back, by that time, was that I didn't have a word for what I was. Men and women are painted as opposites that never intersect, even in the queer community; it had me convinced that any sort of inclination towards being MLM was some sort of fetishization on my part. So, even though I was now wondering if something was Off, gender-wise, I was too afraid to look for what I could be.

So, what was it, exactly, that cracked my egg for good?

Well, allow me to introduce you to the game that Transed My Gender: Professor Layton and the Miracle Mask.

This game... Well... It... It transed my gender because... Um, because...

Randall Ascot from Professor Layton, swiping his hair asideOkay, there's no easy way to say this, but I was so incredibly and intensely attracted to the character Randall Ascot from this game that it brought my attention back to my attraction to men, and, thus, back to the fact that my attraction to men felt gay. (You'll notice that this was even talked about in the Discord messages above.) This led to me actively researching if there was any way that I could be both MLM and WLW at the same time... And that's how I found out about the bigender identity.

So, yeah. I was so in love with a video game character that it transed my gender.

Honestly, I could not think of a more in-character reason for my egg to crack.

There was a little more to it than that, though. I saw the bigender identity, and I felt like it would make me really euphoric to be it, but I hesitated. I got caught up in the question, "What am I, ACTUALLY? Am I REALLY this thing, or do I just WANT to be it?" An incredibly daunting question that I had no idea how to answer. I got caught up in that for a long time; trying to figure out what I was 'really', when I usually can't even tell what I want for dinner.

In the end, it was two things that led me to finally accepting my bigender identity. Both tumblr posts, actually. One by user unknought, which reads, "Reminder that if you're questioning your gender, 'what do I want?' and 'what will make me happy?' tend to be much more useful questions than 'what am I, really?'", and one by another user, actually not on the topic of gender, but instead reading, "Wanting to be a lesbian… Is a symptom of being a lesbian."

Seeing these posts in succession one lazy day inspired me to try the label on. After all, I WANTED to be bigender. I WANTED to be both a boy and a girl. Not just going from one to the other, like the genderfluid identity, but at the same time. And, as I kept trying the label on, more and more, I found that the posts were right. If you 'want' to be a certain thing, that is the ultimate sign that you are that thing, but you are denying yourself the ability to feel as if you are. Whether that be because of self-doubt (like mine was) or something else.

Verdant celebrated when I came out to him; no more having to put up with me being an oblivious egg! But, pup is also WLW and MLM, and pup admitted to being happy that we could be both of them together. Sun then subsequently got extremely confused when I said (again, copy-pasting here), "What if we kissed at Garfield Eats (and we are both WLW and MLM!!!!)", having to demand what the fuck Garfield Eats was in all caps.

Gender identities may come and go, but me saying stupid shit is forever.