There’s nowt so queer as folk

I really would suggest that you put your coffee down for this tale from Arizona as I do not want to pay for your new keyboard.

I’ll take it slowly:  Daniel – she’s the father; Shirley – he’s the mother; Joshua – he’s the daughter and Mason – she’s the son.  (I think I’ve got that right.)

Shirley, Joshua, Daniel, Mason Photo by Stina Sieg – KJZZ

[…]for Daniel Harrott, who lived most of his life as a woman, just everyday existence as a man is alchemy.

“It feels like you’re getting to live for the first time,” he said. “And my children are getting to be who they’ve always wanted to be.”

Eleven-year-old Mason — he’s the one with the bike — is living as a boy, after being assigned female at birth. And then there’s Joshua, 13, whose brown hair falls around her shoulders as she sits in her wheelchair.

Her birth sex was male, but she knew from an early age that she was a girl.

“I think I was only, like 6 or 7,” she said.

Then there’s Daniel’s fiancée, Shirley Austin. She’s tall and blond and smiley. And transgender, too.

In Shirley’s words: “The whole family is in transition.”[…]

Or in a parallel universe …

[Daniel] kept waiting for makeup and women’s clothing to feel right. But that never happened, not after he got married to a man, not after he gave birth to two kids. Then, just last year, Joshua wanted to join Girl Scouts – despite being raised a boy.

That’s when Daniel was introduced to a word he had never heard before: transgender.

“And when I finally looked it up, and I realized, ‘Oh my gosh, they’re trans, and I know it’s true – because I am, too, and it’s been my whole life,’” Daniel said.

Soon after, Joshua came out as a trans girl. Mason came out as a trans boy. Daniel knew to protect and support his kids, he had to live as his authentic self, too. So he cut his hair and went shopping — in the men’s section.

“I opened my eyes, looked in that dressing room mirror and went, ‘Oh this is it. This is perfect. This is me,’” he said.

About the same time, Daniel met Shirley, who was volunteering at a nonprofit for parents of trans youth. Like Daniel, Shirley had been married before. When she started transitioning, she figured she’d be single forever.

“I was never accepted before by people that really loved me, and we were married,” she said. “So why would any of that change?

As the kids befriended Shirley, so did Daniel. There’s an age gap — Daniel’s 41 and Shirley’s 62, but still, they fell in love.

“It was so freeing, because I knew I could be me, and they’re going to understand me for who I am,” Shirley said. “They’re going to know the hurts that I feel and how we can help each other.”

Shirley taught Daniel how to use a chainsaw. Daniel taught Shirley to memorize all the stones in her engagement ring, in case another woman asks. Daniel does the yard work. Shirley, the cooking.

Daniel explained that they’re actually “very traditional” people, who really see each other.[…]

Apparently 150,000 US teenagers 13 – 17 identify as transgender. (The Williams Institute).

Donald has his work cut out to “Make America Great Again.”

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Dr Seuss may have been describing WH when he wrote, “He was shortish. And oldish. And brownish. And mossy. And he spoke with a voice that was sharpish and bossy.”  WH, however, is tallish and only just fits in his MG.