Stephanie Mott writes about her experience at the Transgender Leadership Summit…

By Stephanie Mott

My trip to San Francisco is about over. I am getting ready to go home. The Transgender Law Center’s Transgender Leadership Summit has been an amazing and wonderful experience. I leave here with some fabulous new knowledge and insight, and I hope I have shared some of that with the remarkable people I have met here. But there is one prevailing understanding that will be, for a lifetime, meaningful to me. I am one of many.

I had only barely taken my seat on the Bay Area Rapid Transit train when I realized I was not in Kansas anymore. Of course, I knew I wasn’t in Kansas, but the space that I now occupied told me so – quickly and without reservation. As I looked around the BART, I recognized the presence of far more human diversity than your average scene in any Midwestern setting.

At home, I am one of a few openly gay and transgender people. All of the sudden, that feeling of being different than most of the people in my world was vanquished, and I felt a welcomed peace. I didn’t need to worry about anyone reading me, and I didn’t need to worry about what might happen because I am me.

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