I posted a bit earlier on an encounter at the Phoenix airport, but I thought I would go into a little more detail here.
The day before went really well. We ran around a bit and I went in and met some really great people at Senza Pelo Med Spa who would do my electrolysis. They were pretty damn spectacular and deserve a post later. They did nine hours of electrolysis and while my face was puffy I was (and still am) happy with the result.
That night was fine, my face looked like a prize fighter had worked me over but my goatee area had never been that smooth ever and I was ecstatic. I woke up with the bruising on my lip and chin area and puffy. I was tired, hungry (as I haven’t been able to keep down food the whole time I was down there) and I just looking forward to getting out of the 110 degree Phoenix heat. The one good thing I had was my hubby who was doing what he could to take care of me.
We drove back to the airport and I couldn’t get out of Arizona fast enough. The last two days I have been getting a lot more rude side eye, or absolute straight on staring at me. I get that at home in Seattle area of course, but I get a hell of a lot more support. Also, I don’t have to panic every time I go into a bathroom, or get the annoyed looking women when I step out of a stall.
Don’t get me wrong, I understand that Arizona might have “come a long way” but it certainly isn’t close to the Pacific Northwest (where I still have to be careful). Not once did I feel safe, not even in boy mode when I had my beard grown out.
There were supporters of course, not nearly as many but I did get smiles, head nods and some people would come over and talk with me. Not everyone is bad, and I don’t think a majority is necessarily bad, but the majority is silent and that is almost as bad. Combine this to the stupidity of the Fox News channel that was on everywhere made me remember I am not safe and I am not home.
Fast forward to the airport. I had crossed security and that went incredibly well. They were respectful and there was a lot of levity when once again I got patted down. This time it was an elderly lady but she was pretty sweet. The only weird thing is when we arrived they seemed surprised that the hubby and I got in the first class line. They obviously assume all transgender people would only fly coach and were poor. I am struggling financially but only due to student loan and FFS payment, otherwise we do pretty good for a living.
We were in the main gate area and the hubby needed to use the restroom. So I did what I normally did and stood against the wall outside the bathroom. I watched the people go by and I felt super uncomfortable. I couldn’t put much makeup on due to the swelling, I was hot, uncomfortable and was getting a lot of stares (not even side-eye, but full on staring at me as they walked by).
That is when this one conservative looking douchebro steps up, not more than a few feet from me, pulls out his phone as he is making some snide comment I didn’t quite catch and took a photo of me standing there.
I am not sure at what point of what he did that I decided “fuck it” but that was it, that was the last thing I was putting up with and for a brief moment I stepped off the wall and up to his face. I honestly don’t know what he saw but he panicked and backed up. He obviously did not expect me to react aggressively, and for some reason even though I was standing straight I don’t think he realized I was as tall as I am.
I shouldn’t have reacted like that. It is dangerous there, I could have been broadsided by someone else. I am in a hostile state, with a hell of a lot of hostile people and the worst part if I get arrested (which undoubtably would be the case if it was his word against mine) I probably go to a male jail and if I am lucky it would just be solitary.
I stopped myself and he scattered on his way like a scaredy cat. I was really angry at that point, and disappointed in myself for doing it, and disappointed I had stopped myself. It was just a natural thing to step up and part of me thought I failed for not shoving him (growing up with bikers and a father who in my childhood definitely taught me what should be done when you are insulted… although I think by the time he got older and passed he would have been happy I didn’t do something to get hurt, weird how people change over their lives). I also felt like a disappointment that I might inconvenience the husband, or if I had caused a ruckus I don’t want to add any negative press to my other trans/non-binary people.
So I stepped back against the wall. I knew he had a picture, and I knew it was a useless idea to go chasing to get it back, so instead I took a picture of myself so I could post it. It gave me some sort of feeling of control (stupid I know). For some reason I felt I needed to get my picture out there before him. So here is my picture:
Pardon the grumpiness, the tiredness and the not even close too presentableness. Tired, sweaty and no makeup with bruising starting up on my face made this not my favorite picture. Oh and Fuck Him and the horse he rode in on.
Fortunately we flew out about an hour later, and four hours later I was in Seattle and immediately felt safer, and that I was home. So here I am now home, in my house and comfortable and still really upset by that guy.