Beauty of the Week

Beauty of the Week: Introducing Ms. Zoey Fitzgerald

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Social media is a crazy thing. One minute you’re being fabulous minding your own business and the next, your #throwbackthursday pic has gone viral! After over 3,000 likes, 500 comments, and 2,000 shares that is what happened to 23-year-old Zoey Fitzgerald. Zoey is a beautiful young woman but she also has a unique story. At 18-years-old, right after high school, Zoey made the life altering decision to transition from male to female.

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I’ve known Zoey for quite some time. We went to school together so I’ve witnessed her live both of her lives. We come from a small town burdened by violence. But with all of the hatred that we’re surrounded by, we love Zoey. That’s why we didn’t hesitate to jump to her defense when people started to spam her Facebook page with hatred and homophobic slurs. After I argued for about two hours with complete strangers I had a revelation; they don’t know her. That’s when I decided to interview her, so the world would know her story. Here’s what she had to say about her journey to womanhood:

1.) What made you make the decision to transition?

I decided to transition for me…for my sanity. As a boy, I was so unhappy because I felt like I was conforming to what society thought I should be. I felt different on the inside I always felt like a girl, even as a kid. The things I would get in trouble for weren’t things that “normal” little boys got in trouble for. Things like playing with dolls, make-up, dressing up in my Mom’s clothes when I was home alone. I just didn’t know that I would be considered trans cause growing up I was never exposed to that.

2.) How did your family initially react when you told them about your plans to transition?

My family’s initial reaction was mixed (keep in mind I come from a very strict religious household, and I’m an only child.) You have family members that support you and love you unconditionally and you have family that doesn’t and disowns you and writes you off as a long lost family member. Which was just fine by me! It prepared me for more obstacles that my journey to womanhood would soon hold. The fight for your rights as a transwoman or even just coming out as gay period starts at home with your family. God knows I fought hard to let my voice be heard in my family.

3.) How did you feel the first time you looked in the mirror and physically saw yourself as a woman?

The first time I looked in the mirror and saw myself as a woman I felt like a bad bi**h! (LOL) But no, I felt liberated honestly. I felt like wow this is really becoming real. When I first started, I still looked very much like a boy so I knew it would take some time. After years of hormone replacement therapy I felt more and more like a woman. Sometimes it still freaks me out.

4.) What is the biggest obstacle that you face as a transwoman?

The biggest obstacle I face as a transwoman is people constantly doubting me because I’m trans. Pushing my dreams aside because they don’t feel it’s realistic for a trans person to accomplish them. But guess what..I can and I will! That’s why I go so hard on myself cause I just feel that I have SOOOO many people to prove wrong and I am.

5.) What do you want do you want the world to understand about the trans community?

What I want the world to understand about the trans community is that WE ARE HUMAN! Put some respect on our name cause it’s very hard being trans, gay, or even black in this day and age. Show love, not hate. And p.s. everybody gay ain’t tryna talk to you. (LOL)

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I’m so glad that Zoey didn’t allow the hatred of others to overshadow her love for herself. People have to learn how to be tolerant of one another because we all deserve respect. Whether you know someone personally or not, whether you agree with someone’s life choices or not, everyone means something to someone; even if that someone isn’t you.

Darshay K. Lampley is a Broadcast Journalism major and Creative Writing minor at Jacksonville State University. Upon graduating, she anticipates a lucrative career in the entertainment industry. Darshay is an entertainment journalist, on-air radio personality, and is currently writing her first book. Darshay believes that her ambition along with her strong faith in God will lead her down the pathway to success. "God is within her, she will not fail." Psalm 46:5

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