(A follow up to “The Pressures of Tradition”. I recommend reading that before reading this.)
My mom looked like I had just slapped her. She recoiled back and dropped her spatula, the clanging sound ringing in my ears. She was fuming, her whole face as red as a beet. I quickly stepped back and looked down as to avoid eye contact with her.
Finally, after what felt like years, my mother spoke. Her voice was low but harsh. “Leave.” It took me a minute to realize what she was saying. “Leave!” This time she yelled, her voice booming. I couldn’t stop the tears from falling across my face. I quickly ran upstairs and hastily packed whatever I could, not bothering to look at what it was. I knew I was never coming back. I make sure to grab my box labeled “hygiene products” and stuff it in my luggage as well. I take one last look around my bedroom. The walls, although mostly bare and white, I would miss. The only things I had decorating the walls were some fairy lights and various photos of Ellie and I. I made sure to take those photos and I stuffed them in my bag. I zipped up my luggage that was hastily packed.
Finally, I made my leave. I sighed and saw my mother was sitting at the dining room table, her head in her hands, sobbing. She was repeatedly asking herself where she went wrong and what she did wrong. I took one final glance and her and headed out the door. Tears wouldn’t stop falling down my face as I headed to Ellie’s. I don’t know what I was expecting. I didn’t expect a reaction as bad as that. A small tiny part of me thought that maybe, just maybe, she would’ve been understanding. Another huge part of me slapped some sense into myself and knew that wasn’t going to happen. I just.. didn’t think anything as drastic as this would happen. As mukty as my mom was, I’d miss my bedroom. Her amazing cooking. Although she was borderline abusive, we did have some good memories together.
I sighed and shook my head trying to clear it. My thoughts were running all over the place and continuing to think about it wouldn’t help. I made sure to drive to Ellie’s in my car so I would have it for next time. I pulled into her driveway and turned off the ignition, locked the car and headed to Ellie’s front door. I knocked on her door and smiled just the tiniest bit at hearing her dog barking up a storm. I heard Ellie hastily get up and head to the door. It opened and I saw her beautiful face standing there in front of me. Ellie must’ve knew something was wrong, because she quickly hurried me in and hugged me hard.
“No offense Ryder but you look… horrible,” she said as she frowned. “I’m..no. I know it didn’t go well, judging by the luggage you have.” She let me go and sighed. I nodded and set my luggage down in the living room for now. We headed to her nice and sizable kitchen and sat down at the dinner table. I began to explain everything to her and what happened after I told my mom. After I told her, she looked.. angry.
“Sorry, Ryder, I know she’s your mom.. if she even deserves that title anymore, but..” she gritted her teeth and then sighed, softening. “She’s horrible. No one deserves to be kicked out by their own mother just for being who they are.”
I felt lip quiver and before I knew it, hot tears were running down my face. Ellie frowned, got up and hugged me tightly. She quickly let go and looked at me, grabbing my hand. We started to head up to her bedroom but I shook my head. I needed to get my luggage first. I quickly grabbed my luggage and headed up to her bedroom.
I quickly changed into my pajamas which was a.. mismatch array of things seeing as I didn’t bother to look at what I was packing. I was wearing a black “Pierce the Veil” band T-shirt and some checkered pajama pants. Ellie giggled. “Cute outfit, dude.” I blushed and shrugged sheepishly. I noticed that Ellie was wearing the pajamas I saw her wear when I first saw her yesterday. I smiled.
“So, no rush, we can talk it out after we watch a movie or something, but.. do you have any like.. course of action?” Ellie asked me, and I thought for a moment. Did I? I was a horrible planner and didn’t stop to think about what to do if this sort of situation happened other than moving in with Ellie. I certainly didn’t want to be a burden on her. I had to get a job. Thankfully I had recently graduated high school and was gifted a fairly new car by one of my rich aunts, so going to and from my job wasn’t going to be an issue. The issue was getting hired in the first place since I had.. little to no experience, not even volunteer experience. I sighed and saw Ellie was waiting for an answer. I blushed.
“S..sorry, uh.. yeah. Uhm, my next plan of action is to get a job of some sort,” I said sheepishly, “maybe working at like.. the local coffee shop nearby? I know they have good benefits for transgender people and they pay well.” Ellie’s eyes sparkled. She grinned.
“Free coffee? Hell yeah!” She exclaimed. Ellie worked from home as a freelance writer so she had a fairly flexible schedule. However, whenever she did get paid, she got paid handsomely since she always chose to write for prestigious rich people. Which was probably how she was even able to afford this house. She graduated high school a few years ago and has been doing freelance writing since then. I smiled softly and laid on her cream colored bed sheets.
“Well… maybe not free coffee but you can at least get a discount,” I replied and Ellie fist pumped, clearly excited. “Now.. how about those Disney movies? I’ll start applying to places tomorrow. For now, I just want to.. enjoy the time I have with you tonight.”
Ellie blushed and turned on the TV. It was a decently sized flat screen TV. From what I remember she was gifted it by one of her close cousins for her birthday one year and has had it since then. She turned on the dvd player and got up starting to look through her dvd collection. She pulled out 3 Disney movies. I chose Big Hero 6, since it was one of my favorites. After that movie was finished we continued to watch Disney movie after Disney movie, until we passed out in each other’s arms on her bed.
I woke up to the smell of eggs and bacon. I licked my lips and rubbed my eyes sleepily. I got up and started to head to the kitchen. Ellie saw me out of the corner of her eye and smiled. I saw an array of breakfast foods on the kitchen table. My stomach started to rumble. I underestimated just how hungry I was especially since I ended up not eating dinner last night. I heard the stove being turned off and saw some pancakes slide on my plate from the bright blue pan she owned. She washed all the dishes she had cooked with and then sat at the kitchen table with me.
I blushed, “t..thank you for.. all this,” I mumbled shyly, “I’ll make it up to you. Make you breakfast one morning.” Ellie blushed and shook her head.
“You don’t have to do that, silly,” She chuckled. “But if you want to, you’re more than welcome to.” She quickly shoveled some food on her plate and started stuffing her face with food, and I did the same. After breakfast, we both cleaned up the various dishes and put up any food we had left over in containers.
I turned to Ellie, “do you mind if I can use your laptop? I.. forgot to bring mine and I need to apply to some jobs.” She nodded and smiled and we went upstairs. Ellie kept herself busy by watching whatever was on TV while I applied to jobs on her laptop. I ended up applying to only 3 jobs total since I was mostly looking for part time as I had never worked before. But I mentally crossed my fingers and hoped that I heard something back soon.
A few days had passed and I had applied to a few more jobs. Me and Ellie got in a good routine of going back and forth of making food for each other and cleaning up whatever dishes we had left together. We worked well together. I heard my phone ping and I looked at it to see I had received an email from the local coffee shop I had applied to, “Mocha and Sugar”. I hastily opened it and read it. Basically, they wanted to interview me. Tomorrow! I felt my nerves kick in.
“Ellie…” I said shakily and she looked over at me, puzzled. “T..they want to interview me!” A huge smile broke on her face and she hugged me tightly.
“We have to find you the perfect interview outfit then. I have some old ones that might fit you from when I worked retail while I was in high school.” Ellie told me and I nodded. It took us a few hours, but we finally found the perfect interview outfit.
It was a nice plain black dress shirt and plain black dress pants with sneakers. I wanted at least something to feel like me when I had my interview tomorrow. I sighed and smiled, looking at myself in the mirror. I nodded. I could make this work. I took the outfit off gingerly, careful not to rip anything. I kept myself busy while Ellie worked on her work for the rest of the day.
The next day, I woke up and checked my phone. It was unusually early for me. 8:00 AM. Luckily my interview was in an hour. Ellie was still asleep. I let her sleep as I got dressed in my interview clothes and passed the time as I scrolled through my phone. I made sure to leave a note for Ellie before I left, letting her know where I was in case she woke up before I got back. As 8:30 rolled around, I headed to Mocha and Sugar. My nerves were at an all time high. I took deep breaths and turned on some music to calm my busy brain. Soon I arrived at the shop at 8:45. I headed into the shop and let them know I had an interview. The barista smiled at me and told someone. They were a tall, bald man wearing a fancy suit. I’m guessing he was higher up in position. He looked at me and nodded and then quickly turned back to the barista and said something I couldn’t understand.
The man started to head towards me and I could feel my heart pounding in my chest. The man smiled at me and I shook his hand. The interview went fairly quickly and well. I barely stuttered at all and I made sure to keep good eye contact. He reacted well when I told him I was transgender. He told me of the good benefits the shop had for both part time and full time workers. After that, well.. he hired me on the spot amazingly enough. I told him I could start as soon as tomorrow. He told me the uniform was basically casual, just to make sure the outfit didn’t have anything vulgar on it. I smiled and nodded and thanked him for his time.
I headed out of the shop, a huge smile on my face. I headed back to.. me and Ellie’s place to tell her the good news.
(A year later)
I’m still working at Mocha and Sugar. I work full time now as a barista. I’ve started testosterone and I haven’t spoken to my mom since she kicked me out. She hasn’t spoken to me either. Ellie and I officially started dating shortly after I started working as a barista. We recently passed one year! She is still a freelance writer and still makes good money.
We’ve really made the house our own. I moved into the bedroom she had across from hers. It used to be a guest bedroom. I’ve added a bunch of new accessories and really made the bedroom my own.
Overall, life is great. In a way, I’m kind of glad my mom kicked me out. It’s given me this great relationship with Ellie, and it’s given me freedom and room to breathe.
I can finally be my own person. I can finally be… me.