Watch out, I’m about to get nerdy. I’m a big fan of Doctor Who. For a long time now I’ve been obsessed with the man who can change his face and body, regenerate, every time he’s dying so that he can save his life. I guess it’s probably important to mention that this man is the Doctor, and he’s an alien. Oddly enough, that didn’t stop me from emotionally connecting to this character, the Doctor.
Maybe it’s because I’m transgender, but I was obsessed with this alien’s culture of people who could literally change their entire bodies to save their lives, sometimes changing genders as they do. That was deeply important to me as someone who is transgender. I identify as a man, but when I was born the doctors took one look at me and assumed that I was a girl because of my physical characteristics. But my physical body does not define me, much like the Doctor’s body does not define him. He is the Doctor, no matter what he looks like. He is himself.
I feel like that’s me. No matter what I look like or what I choose to do, I am myself. I am a boy through and through.
More on that though. One of the hardest things I had to do was change my name. My old name was highly feminine, not unisex at all, and I never liked to hear it. During my childhood I constantly tried to change my name to something else, but no one ever took my new names seriously. I was always my old name. That never changed.
Deciding to change my name seemed like a logical part of my transition. While I didn’t exactly like my old name, I was sentimentally attached to it. It was the name of my grandmother, whom I love. My middle name was my mom’s middle name, another person I love. To change those names would be to erase a precious connection, and that’s not something I wanted. But with my mom’s love and support, she helped me pick out my new name, a name that I could be proud of and still be attached to knowing that my mom helped pick it out.
And now, back to Doctor Who. In one episode, the Doctor stated, “Your name is like a promise you make.”
For me, my name means home. More than that, with the act of changing my name, I promised myself that I would always be true to myself. Much like the Doctor, my name represents who I am as a person. My core beliefs have always been to be kind, loving, and genuine. With my name change I plan to live out these beliefs unapologetically and be myself.
To me, that is the promise of my name. It is one that I am happy to carry and one that I can be proud of. Kason.