Throughout my childhood I was frequently mistaken for being a boy. Honestly, it makes sense now. I hated everything that society considered "girly." Girls have pig tails and barrettes--I had the Jamie Lee Curtis bob. I had the same hair cut as the neighbor boys down the street who I played sports and climbed trees with. I hated girly stuff, but I still needed everyone to know I was girl.
"I'm a girl, god damn it!" I screamed at the Wal-Mart employee who just asked me "what's the matter, son?" while I was crying over a pile of Ninja Turtle t-shirts my mother refused to buy me.
I always made it a point to want the opposite of what girls were supposed to want. Remember the Pretty Pretty Princess game? If you get the gaudy black ring you lose. I was the girl who clearly lost on purpose, because the black ring was obviously the only cool one. I was like a more chatty Wednesday Addams personality in neon colored clothes--because early 1990's fashion was a bit cruel to the younger kids. You would never think ballerina if you saw me, but that is in fact what I was destined to enjoy according to my mom who enrolled all three of her children in dance classes, one of whom is my older brother. I was an awful dancer, my heart was never there.
My main beliefs were that brushing your hair is a waste of time, always sleep in your dirty clothes, and that my prized possession black Converse hi-tops always looked better covered in dirt and mud.
Getting your first pair of Chuck Taylor's was the greatest feeling ever, it was like a right of passage. I cried when I grew out of them and learned I wasn't receiving a replacement pair.
Barbie's were not welcome in my room. Any toy that was not a plush stuffed animal that had an actual person's name was no toy of mine. My first favorite toy was a pink stuffed bunny named "Bunny" who I decided was male. After I lost Bunny in a grocery store I came to the conclusion that my stuffed animals needed real names so everyone else would know how important they were.
Being as gross as possible was something I loved so much. I adored anything that especially wasn't for girls. I always wanted to learn how to burp ridiculously loud and make fart noises with my armpits on the first try. I usually practiced these things alone in the back yard or when no one was in the house, just in case.
I was alone a lot, but I never noticed until my second grade lunch lady asked me why I was sitting by myself. I always sat by myself, why does it matter now?
My imagination was never not active. I'd spend hours in the backyard with a paint brush in the dirt pretending I was excavating dinosaurs ever so carefully, or you could find me hanging upside down from our swing set until too much blood went to my head. Five subject, spiral, college ruled notebooks were the greatest things ever invented, I practically lived in them. I was voted "most imaginative" in class one year and that wasn't even a given category, they had to specially add it for me. "Where does this kid fit in?" In her own world.