Underneath my yellow skin

Agender as default

More on gender. But a quick note first. My internet was not the problem–it was my keyboard. Apparently, it was fritzing out so it was hitting the internet availibility button without me knowing. Then, it died completely. The keyboard, I mean. I am so hard on them. They’re supposed to last BILLIONS of keystrokes, and then they die in less than a year. I don’t think that’s keystrokes, though. It’s probably because I eat near my laptop and shorted the USB cable on the keyboard. Fortunately, I have my desktop keyboard until my new laptop one arrives.

Since I figured it out, I have not had any issues with my internet, knock on wood. I also talked with Xfinity and restarted my machine, too, so at least one of those things did the trick. Probably a combo of all.

I maundered on more about gender yesterday. Today, I’m going to maunder some more. Then, I’m going to call it a day and move on for now. Not really, obviously, but I’m getting tired of thinking about it. This is how I end up on almost every identity issue, by the way.

I (not-so) blissfully go about my life not aware of why I feel so weird, but acutely aware that I don’t fit in. Ever since I was a little girl, I was unhappy in my own skin. I had no idea why, but I just wanted to crawl out of it. I would have clawed it off if I could and if it would have mattered, but that wasn’t possible, obviously.

I didn’t know why  I was a freak; I just was. It took me decades to realize that my parents were not interested in American culture at all. Well, my father wasn’t, and my mother did whatever my father wanted her to do. Sometimes, begrudgingly, but in the end she always gave in.

In this case, my father was very much nationalistic Taiwanese. He was for the Taiwanese Independent Movement, and I remembered marching on the streets of St. Paul for the cause. I firmly believe that he would have went back to Taiwan as soon as he got his PhD if it weren’t for my brother and me. The fact that he went back right after I (the younger one) graduated from college was indicative that he was only here by force.

He had no interest in American culture. Not the food or the pop culture or anything else. He only wanted Taiwanese food, Taiwanese entertainment, and Taiwanese friends. We went to a Taiwanese church, and that was all the interacting he did outside of work.

I felt like an outcast at school because everyone else seamlessly fit in and I didn’t. Kids made fun of me for bringing Taiwanese food. This was before it became trendy and exotic, and now just your ordinary takeaway/delivery.

I was in college when I realized that I was a woman and that sexism existed.Once I saw it, I could not unsee it. This was roughly around the same time I made that same discovery about my race, and it was a rough few years. I was so angry. So. Angry. But it was also difficult because the groups I belonged to were very segregated. So I was in an Asian group in which they refused to talk about women’s issues. And when I attended a conference about racism in feminism, all the white women wanted to talk about feminism in general.

In the last decade or so, intersectionality has become a buzz word, but only for certain groups. No one cares about Asians, bis, or agender. Still. I try not to be down about it, but I do have my moments of bitterness.

In my fantasty world, I would just be able to be who I am in the world in general. I’m me when I’m alone because no one cares. No one’s here except my cat, and he’s sleeping and eating most of the time.

I think I would be more comfortable calling myself a woman if it didn’t mean something specific and restrictive. People may say that you can be whomever you want as a woman, but it’s not been true in my experience. I know that calling myself agender might be just handwaving over the issue because I still look like a woman to most people.

Does it really matter if I call myself agender if people still treat me as a woman? It’s hard to say. Putting aside whether I feel like a woman or not (I still have no idea what that is supposed to feel like), I obviously look like what most people think a woman should look like. At least as far as  my boobs, my hips, and my hair.

If this isn’t going to change (and it’s not), and if I don’t really care about what people call me, then why not just default to woman? Because it doesn’t fit me. I don’t feel like a woman. But, again, I don’t know if it’s beacuse other people ar e so restrictive about what a woman should be or because I legit don’t feel it.

There’s a song in A Chorus Line about reaching deep down in your soul and feeling nothing. That’s how I feel when it comes  to gender. I feel nothing. Same when I used to think about having kids. Wait. That’s not exactly true. I felt repulsion and recoiled at the thought. I did not want to have children, and it was a strong feeling. It’s still the best decision I’ve made in my life, wihch is hard to explain because people don’t understand the absence of something.

Many parents used to be so condescending when they said I didn’t know what I was missing. Which is true. I can’t as I don’t have kids and you can’t feel an absence. I can tell you, however, that I am exuberant whenever I think about not having kids. It’s such a freeing feeling, and I have never regretted it for one second.

I also used to give people the side-eye when they said I’d regret not having children because even if I did, there’s always regret to any decision you make. Also, I wouldn’t know what it’s like to have children, so I have nothing to compare it to. I don’t regret it. I don’t think I ever will. I can’t say for sure, but I have never wanted children in my life.

I think I’ll stick with agender, but I’m not wedded to it. I could take or leave it. I would rather just not care about gender at all. We don’t live in that world, unfortunately, so agender it is.

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