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  • Writer's picturePaakhi M

A Tomboy like Me

Updated: Jun 29, 2021

She wants to be the person she identifies with; it doesn't matter what people think.

Well, wasn't that a decision that could haunt me for the rest of my life.

I contemplate the reason of my existence as I stand in front of the mirror, holding the weapon. My eyes are the aftermath of infinite tears, and my face the very definition of pride and sorrow. The scene in front of me will be ingrained in my mind for the rest of eternity.

Scissors in my hand.

A bloody cut near my earlobe.

A messy, possibly disgraced halo formed around me.

A halo of hair.


The Marvel t-shirts, loose hoodies, and the ripped black jeans were quite enough for my parents. The dresses my mother bought for me have been stuffed in the deepest voids of my closet, and while she never compelled me to wear them, I see the disappointment in her eyes when I don't act as girly as she would like me to be. As of now, following the insult my 'friend' threw my way for not agreeing to wear a saree for the farewell, my head bears the most boyish hairstyle I could think of: buzzcut on the sides, a fluff of hair on the crown., cool, cool. It's cool.

So, I kinda did something that I was not supposed to do. Or should have done. It was impulsive...but it feels liberating. An anvil has been lifted off my chest, and I can finally breathe. I brush through my hair with a comb, and the face that looks back at me in the mirror is smiling latently, the sorrow in her face disappearing, bit by bit. I leave the bathroom, leaving the door open as its light invades the darkness of my room. The dark grey and light pink walls seem so symbolic, one knows who I want to be, the other shows who I am supposed to be. The digital clock tells me that its past midnight. It's a new day, possibly a worse one, because my parents will finally have to accept that being a 'tomboy' is not a phase in my life.

I run my hand through my hair, feeling the lightness on my head. I don't know what sexuality I identify with. But I know I was never straight. Black and white, plain and boring. I don't completely identify as a woman. Maybe I'll decide to come out when it's the right time, but for now, my parents will have to deal with the fact that I am not girly. My mother may have forced me to don pigtails and wear dresses until I was a teen, but I know who I am. I always knew who I wanted to be.

I wanted to be myself.

I want to be myself without the scrutiny of every person around me. I want to wear jeans and t-shirts and sneakers, without the aunties of the society asking me why I dress like a boy. I want to burn all the dresses I have, without seeing the unshed tears in my parents' eyes. Will I ever be accepted for who I am?

Probably. Probably not. I always thought I needed to change, but now that I know better, I know that others need to change. And stop judging.

Like, seriously, who's paying you to judge and score me on the basis of my identity? "Yeah, she's like, a 5 out of 10."

Guess what? No one cares.

I snicker inwardly, my head hitting the soft pillows as I bounce on the bed. I am smiling, teeth and all. I am happy. Scared? Yeah. But so happy.

She is happy because she feels like she's not playing a role anymore. She is happy because she finally feels like she is who she seems to be.

Author's Note: We understand that the term 'tomboy' is wrong to say. The title of the story is a taunt to society that labels change in sexuality as a 'phase'.

The protagonist of the story might identify as a demigirl: a person who is female at birth but doesn't identify with being a woman. But, conclusively, it is upon the person to decide who they identify as.

Though this story is fictional (not the story of the author), it might be the story of thousands of other people. We encourage everyone to identify themselves how they want to be!


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