misgender (verb): the act of addressing someone using a word (or pronoun) that does not appropriately or correctly reflect their gender identity.
despite my noticeable #freedomlines and lingering feminine hips, I was never gendered as female when shirtless on the beach in #kauai. With a shirt on, I was referred to as sir about 70% of the time and ma'am the other 30%. Although these salutations don't entirely feel like they fit my #nonbinary gender, I try be aware of positive, negative, and neutral feelings elicited by each greeting- which changes based on my company, surroundings, and situation.
I have always found validation and comfort in learning about other cultures who have historically embraced #trans and non-binary gender. Coming to Hawaii with the knowledge that māhū people were a valued part of society allowed me to feel more grounded and comfortable in this new culture and landscape. Simply knowing non-binary folx inhabited this land and were respected and admired for their majestic and rare embodiment of both male and female spirits helped to foster a sense of belonging. I will return