(And year 4 total :-))
Every year I dress up as a different inspiring woman. I have considered Hillary Clinton a couple of different times at this point – including this race! She is killing it, running in the primaries. And she especially did a fantastic job in her Benghazi hearing mere days before this race. So, I really wanted to go as her from that hearing.
However – I did not realize this until I was trying to dress up as Hillary Clinton – she wears very specific pantsuits. It’s fairly easy to find women’s pantsuits, but it’s tough to find pantsuits that are cut like hers, in the specific colors and hues she wears.
On the plane home to Los Angeles (from New York) for the weekend, I was talking about my plight to the strangers next to me. The man next to me suggested perhaps I’d want to go as Caitlyn Jenner, and I thought that was a pretty fantastic idea.
As per usual, I overthought this a little. I asked a trans friend of mine if she thought it was disrespectful in any way to run as a trans person. (It’s not as though one’s person’s opinion dictates what an entire community would feel. But nonetheless, I felt good with her input, which is that she thought it was a loving tribute and not offensive in any way.)
I also wondered… I go as a woman every year partly because as a country, we still celebrate men more often than woman. So, is going as someone who was born a man undermining what I’m trying to do in any way?
I don’t think so… Because if I think being a woman is hard in any way, I can only imagine what it’s like to be a trans woman. There is so much hate and transphobia (and bullying and such) in this world… I don’t think once being a man really gets you much once you begin transitioning.
I also wondered if I felt comfortable going as someone who is a reality show personality. I don’t have a super high opinion of reality shows. I’ve worked on a lot of them and all the manipulation we do often makes me feel bad about myself and my job when I work on them. So, they’re never something I really have a desire to celebrate…
BUT Caitlyn Jenner is famous because she was an Olympian. Yes, her family has gotten into reality TV. But I don’t want to blame her for that, or wipe away her other accomplishments. (Also, it’s 2015. Who hasn’t done something related to reality TV?)
Ultimately, not a single one of us are perfect. And she did something amazing by being herself and helping pave the way for others to be themselves as well. And that was worth celebrating.
(And practically and selfishly, it was much easier to find a white dress than a pantsuit… Plus,I’d been gaining a little weight with all the traveling and such. And there was something nicer for me to try to wear something where I could be a little curvy, hoping that detracts from the gaining weight part. 😛 It maybe makes me sound like a worse person to talk about the practical and selfish parts… But it’s real! And the race seemed to work out just fine!)