Pink Girl's Dress Code

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“Femininity is depicted as weakness, the sapping of strength, yet masculinity is so fragile that apparently even the slightest brush with the feminine destroys it.” ― Gwen Sharp

I woke up in a warm sweat at three in the morning. I had a nightmare about my parents burying me alive. I knew the underlying cause was my fear of my parent’s reaction to my new identity. I got out of bed, stretched, and grabbed a bottle of water from my dresser. I downed it and tossed it in the garbage bin. Normally I would have recycled it, but I wasn’t ready to leave my room yet. I crawled back in bed and tried in vain to go back to sleep but after and hour, I gave up.

I turned on my my laptop and turned on my “beast mode” mix and spent the next half hour working out vigorously. I was drenched in sweat and as reflective as a lake by the time I was done so I jumped in the shower before breakfast. Before I could take a bite of my whole wheat Belgian waffle, my phone rang. I answered it without looking at the caller ID.

“Hi, Cory.” I gulped. It was my mother. “How are you?”

“I’m a little tired,” I said truthfully. “I had a rough workout this morning.”

“I’m glad you’re keeping up with your training,” said Mom.

“Me too,” I said. “How’s the trip?”

“It’s so much fun! Your father and I have met so many nice people and the food is so different. I’ll show you the photos when we get home next month.”

“I’m looking forward to it. So why did you call so early?”

“Oh, yeah. I wanted to remind you that you need to register for school this week. You know all your information. If you don’t, it’s in my folders in my bedroom. You’ll have no problem.”




I hung up the phone and stared at it. Now what? Should I go to a different school? I thought about my classmate’s reactions when I showed up dressed like a female specimen and I would have to explain myself over and over. I didn’t want to have to do that. The more I thought about it, the better a new school sounded. So I waited until breakfast time, and I called Mary Ann.

“Good morning,” said Mary Ann.

“I’m going to go to your school,” I said.

“That’s wonderful!” said Mary Ann. I could hear her excitement over the phone. “Do you want to go register today? We’ll make a day out of it. Also, let’s make your femininity official and get you a state ID at the DMV and then we’ll go out to dinner. Get ready and be at my place in two hours. I’ll call the girls! This is so exciting!”

Mary Ann hung up and I was left smiling. I hurried to my parent’s room and dug through my mom’s files, looking for my birth certificate and my social security card. I hoped it was there. I found my certificate and grinned. I was marked as female. There was no argument that could be made against it.

I got dressed in my favorite outfit, (cream lace top with a silk ribbon belt and black leather pants) and applied makeup focusing on my eyes and smoking them out with nude colors and black winged liner. I messed up my hair a little and hurried out the door. I grabbed a protein shake on the go and hurried to Mary Ann’s. Her mother answered the door.

“Hello, Cory,” she said. “Come in.”

“Hi, Mom,” I said. Mary Ann had been right. I was calling her mother ‘Mom’ and it just felt natural.

“So, big day today.”

“Yes! We’re making me an official girl. I’m so excited!”

“Hi, Cory,” said Mary Ann. “The girls are all on their way. You look fabulous! You pull off lace and leather so well I’m jealous.”

“I think it would look great on you,” I said.

“Not leather pants. I don’t have the right legs.”

The door bell rang and Mary Ann grabbed me and dragged me out of the house. I should have been used to being dragged but it was still surprising. We headed to the other side of town to the second high school.

“First stop, school!” said Daisy.

“We’re all going to register today,” said Nancy.

“Thanks, guys!” I said. I couldn’t believe how lucky I was to have these girls. I was glad I went to the library instead of staying home to use the Internet.

I walked onto a large campus and followed the girls to the main office. My first impression was that this was a much better-run school. The office was clean and very well organized. My other school office had papers just stacked in the corners of the desks with colored sticky notes. There were a few staff members working and when they heard us come in, they all looked up.

“Good morning,” Mary Ann said.

“Hello, Mary Ann,” said one of the women. “Registrations are in the cafeteria and ID photos are being taken in the gym.”

“I know, but I have a girl who wants to transfer from another school,” explained Mary Ann. “It’s a little complicated, but she wants to come here.”

“I’m assuming it’s the lovely young lady with short hair,” said the woman.

“This is Cory,” said Mary Ann. “Cory, you’re going to have to explain your situation to Mrs. Rochester.”

“I’m the counselor,” said Mrs. Rochester. “Anything you say to me is confidential.”

“Let’s go to your office,” said Nancy.

Once behind closed doors, I spilled everything. Being forced to dress like a boy, being registered at my old school as a boy, my parents unannounced trip, my journey to becoming who I wanted to be, and my fear of my parent’s reaction when they came home to find their daughter had become feminine.

“Cory, do you feel safe at home?” asked Mrs. Rochester.

“Yes,” I said. “I realize that being forced to be a boy has caused some issues with me, but I’ve pinpointed them and I’m working on them. I’ve had tons of support from my new friends. I don’t want to be removed from my parents. I just want them to come to their senses. My birth certificate even says I’m a girl.”

“Well, I don’t think you’ll have any issues here, now that I know the situation. We do have to get your files from your old school, but that won’t happen until you register. Okay, so go ahead and go to the cafeteria and I’ll start the transfer process so it happens quickly.”

The next hour went by slowly. We were busy filling out the paperwork for school so no one spoke much. I nearly cried several times as my new reality sunk in. For the first time during my school career, I was going to be myself. No more changing in the boy’s locker rooms, no more being rejected because I was different. I could go to homecoming, Sadie Hawkins, even Prom! Once all the paperwork was filled out, Mary Ann and the girls took me on a tour of the campus. Then it was off to the DMV to get me a state ID card.

Waiting in line was the worst part of the day. Luckily I was there with my friends and there was a great deal of chatter going on about my future. When my number was called, I made sure I looked okay and went to pose for the photo that would identify me for the next several years or until I got a driver’s license.

“Well, I guess it’s all official now,” I said. “It’s too late for my parents to do anything about it.”

“Hooray!” said Carrie. “Now let’s go celebrate!”

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