This project reveals the relationship between body and self.

Ruby / Toronto / 05.13.16

Ruby / Toronto / 05.13.16

photo by caroline brassard

my body is my enemy. my confidante. my betrayer.

on my first day of soccer practice when i was eight, all the other little girls got their shiny purple uniforms but i was too big to fit into any of them. the coach had to get a special uniform made just for me.
i was mortified.

on my first day of soccer practice when i was nine, all the other little girls got their striped yellow uniforms but i was too big to fit into any of them. except the special uniform they had waiting just for me.
that was worse. 

my body is my enemy.
tomboy tendencies don’t stay cute for long.

when i was ten my aunt asked me what kind of ice skates i wanted for christmas. i pointed to the graceful white figure skates in the catalogue. not because I wanted them, but because i knew i was supposed to want them.
she asked again. i answered again.
“are you sure you don’t want hockey skates?”
i made every excuse not to wear them that winter and by the next year they didn’t fit anymore.
i still don’t know how to skate.

my body is my enemy.
a collection of pieces from different puzzles.

i started the seventh grade at a new school with a brand new short hair cut. 
really short.
i loved it.
on the third day of classes a girl i’d never met before marched up to me on the playground and declared that her best friend had a crush on me … because she thought i was a boy.
i didn’t cut my hair for the next two years.

my body is my enemy.
womanhood: a skill I could never master, a mantel I never learned to carry.

when I was twenty, a girl i’d just met took me back to her apartment after our fist date. she kissed me like I meant something to her and actually wanted to see what i looked like without clothes on. all of a sudden, i’m down to just my panties and she laughed.
surprised by my girly underwear.
it had never occurred to me that boxers were an option.

my body is my enemy.
provoked.

every sunday I stab a needle full of testosterone into my thigh and hope it makes sense there. there is no roadmap, no treatment plan, no end destination. simply medical guesswork in milliliters and reflection. scars left to fade in time. do i make more sense now?

my body may not always be my enemy.

 

Chief Lady Bird / Toronto / 05.13.16

Chief Lady Bird / Toronto / 05.13.16

Joy / Toronto / 01.18.16

Joy / Toronto / 01.18.16