Getting It Off My Chest
For years, I’d told myself that I’d have non-binary top surgery. I was waiting, worried about the long recovery, scared about going under general anesthesia, and if I’m being honest, a little concerned that I might lose work opportunities. Then came the pandemic and time for self-reflection. Being “me” has been integral to my path. I don’t want to go another year regretting not living that best version of me, in my own skin.
In many ways, I have porn to thank for this journey. This work has provided financial stability, healthcare, and a community of fellow queer and trans artists. Porn has also helped me to better understand and see myself. I saw images that made me feel desired and celebrated. I was allowed to explore my gender expression in poses that shaped my body into my ideal vision of beauty and athleticism.
Here is a pose that has evolved over the years, in which I flattened my chest and concealed my breasts. Although I had posed like this a few times, it wasn’t until I saw myself in a photo project by Allan Amato that it truly struck me that I wanted THIS to be my chest, without my hands binding my breasts. I realized that I had the courage to make it happen.
(Video from Seraph by Allan Amato. Captions not available at this time.)
The act of seeing ourselves is powerful. I have a deep fondness for queer porn films Hello Kitty by Skyler Braeden Fox, Mes Chéris by Jamal Phoenix/CuteNon Films, and Letting Go by Finn Peaks. These films by trans masculine performers lovingly give focus and farewell to their breasts. I highly recommend them.
I wondered how I might pay respect to my breasts in their final days? I thought about Annie Sprinkle’s Bosom Ballet, a performance piece later documented in photographs that tightly framed her torso as her arms, adorned in full-length black opera gloves, maneuvered her ample breasts into whimsical and wonderful positions. Definitely click over to her website to check it out!
Curious about what my own take on the concept might be, I slipped on some black nitrile gloves and gave it a try. Here’s a peak:
It was fun, and by the end I felt ready to move on! If you want a keepsake, I’ve added them to the polaroid collection on my shop. (Talk about a one-of-a-kind limited item! Once these are gone there’ll never be an image like them ever again. Good while the boobs last!)
My surgery is scheduled for Wednesday, April 27th. (Eeeeeeeee!) I am so excited, nervous, and most of all relieved to finally be able to let go. I plan to allow myself time off to recover, as hard as it may be to take a pause. I have future shoots waiting for me once I’m healed, and I’ll be so happy to reveal my new chest! While I’m not sure how much of the recovery process I’ll share publicly, I’m so happy to have shared this much so far and am so grateful for all the offers of support, advice, and care. I’m truly blessed.
Featured blog image (cropped) photo by Allan Amato.
I’m sitting here in Kipaipai school of art on the big Island looking at the portrait Adare (formerly Rose) painted of you contemplating changes I’ve made in my life and changes I might decide to make.
You are a crisp clear declaration of yourself and being true to yourself comes with costs and benefits.
It’s the costs most people focus on and that is not a way to live fully.
Thank you for all that you are and all that you will be. You have been, are and will be fabulous in all your iterations.
I just wanted to wish you good luck with your surgery. I hope you have a speedy recovery.
Tomorrow is the big day! I’ll be thinking of you tomorrow! Sending you lots of positive thoughts and cannot wait to see what comes next. Hope your recovery is restful and smooth. xoxo Rachael
Thanks for sharing your story. Really made an incredible difference in how I view myself and in my self expression. For the better!
Good luck tomorrow and a very speedy recovery!
Just wishing you good luck, good vibes, and all the best for tomorrow.
I just wanted to wish you well; just beginning to realise myself how much, and how long, a part of me felt alien and that I’ve felt that way all my life without ever putting all the pieces of the puzzle together before just a few weeks ago.
I will be turning sixty in a couple of months.
Goddess watch over you,
kerk hiraeth (Queer, Trans, Non-binary)
I am excited for you and wanted to wish you a smooth and easy surgery and recovery. I had top surgery in November, after years of being afraid and avoiding dealing with it. Honestly it was all a lot more chill than expected and life is so much better. I’m excited for you to be able to have that freedom as well. Your work was a big inspiration to me when I first came out and found community. Never doubt that what you do is a gift to the world.
WALT c johnson
Hope you have result desired from top surgery . Look forward to your healing recovery . Triathlon training has developed your lean muscled athletes physique . Booty is shaped much more firm muscle from hard work sweat running biking swimming eating healthy foods . Pecs will become muscular thick striated muscle from swimming . You have the muscle now and in time will see and feel striations in shadow light flexing . Males females all have breasts just different sizes . Erotic pec dancing flexing in future movies . Will buy your DVDs and add them to several bought already . Jiz gets sweaty aerobic physical sexual realistic fun to watch . Highly skilled performance artist in gender queer .
Well, the old saying, to yourself be true, is meant for both physical and mental well being.