Looking in the mirror, staring at my narrow hips, broad shoulders, and boyish body, I can’t help but envy the female figure. 

Since I was young, I've wished to have the same soft sensual curves whenever I grew up. Even just a bit here and there. I remember playing pretend with my cousins and I would always choose to be the badass Chun-Li or super sexy Mai Shiranui, whom both are known to have death defying curves.

While getting ready, I would always pull back whatever shirt I was wearing and search for a glimpse of a curve. And now, everywhere I go, I compare my shoulder, waist, and hip ratio to other females to find validation for my trans femme self. Like, “ok. I’m not too far off from that person and they’re a cis female.” 

My gender dysphoria has opened the doors for body dysmorphia. Lovely. 

A twist here, a twist there. I always try to pose and manipulate my body to create an illusion of narrower shoulders. I rarely use a photo of me straight on, as my “man-shoulders” are just so prominent. They skew my body proportions and distance my physique from the feminine form that I strongly desire. So I’m not exactly the biggest fan of them. They’re a reality check, which triggers my dysphoria, induces anxiety and creates a distaste against my body. 

I never felt completely comfortable and understood why I was in this body. 

These thoughts run through my mind on a daily basis, either in a Shinkansen form or an extremely delayed MTA subway that just won’t seem to move, forever lingering and miserable. 

Starting HRT (in the new year!) will hopefully help ease these turbulent thoughts with some physical changes. But I know that accepting and loving my body for what it is, is truly the best way to overcome. I’m working on it, as we all are, I’m sure. Something to add to the lifetime resolutions list!

x D

Top: Versace (similar here) | Jacket: Alexander Wang (similar here) | Skirt: Genuine People (similar here) | Shoes: Public Desire | Earrings: Eddie Borgo (similar here)

Photography by Clay Howard-Smith

PS. As Chun-Li, I always claimed Ryu as my boyfriend. He’s my childhood crush! I mean, look at those arms. 

PSS. Happy New Year! Wishing you all the best 2018!