TransLash Guide to Trans Bodies, Trans Choices: ‘I Didn’t Think I’d Make It’

In I Didn’t Think I’d Make It, the second short film in TransLash Media’s Trans Bodies, Trans Voices series, Stann (hey/hem/hez) tells the story of seeking an abortion in southern New Mexico after an accident with a partner. Stann used that experience of struggling to access services to argue the case for a hysterectomy, as part of hez quest for trans-affirming care.

Stann was born in Connecticut on Leap Day. Hey is a disabled multi-instrumentalist musician, poet, performer, athlete and healer. Hey is the proud owner of Prism Wellness Works LLC, a holistic health initiative based in the desert Southwest. Stann is a Reiki Master and Theta Healing ® practitioner working to return autonomy to the LGBTQIA2S+ community. Find hem on Facebook and Instagram at @prismwellnessworks.

Explore this guide to access the I Didn’t Think I’d Make It resource links, transcript, and more information about the Trans Bodies, Trans Voices series. Thank you for reading! Be sure to include the #TransBodiesTransVoices hashtag in any signal boost posts on social media. We appreciate you, TransLash family!

‘I Didn’t Think I’d Make It’: Resources

Getting an Abortion

  • Under 18 and need an abortion + free legal representation for judicial bypass? Call or text Jane’s Due Process: 1-866-999-5263
  • The National Network of Abortion Funds connects abortion seekers with grassroots organizations that can support financial and logistical needs here
  • Tips on how to choose a good abortion provider and questions to ask a clinic
  • The Brigid Alliance arranges and funds travel, along with related needs, to support individuals across the country who are forced to travel for later abortion care. 

For Clinicians and Providers 

Calls to Action

  • Sign on and Demand #AbortionWithinReach: Abortion funds have come together to deliver an unprecedented bold statement, explicitly identifying what it means for abortion to be truly accessible for our callers. As we shine a light on these demands, we also want to spotlight independent clinics, who are our partners on the front lines giving support and care to abortion seekers. Independent clinics perform the majority of abortions in the U.S., and show up big as plaintiffs in the monumental cases of the past few years. 
  • Expand the Supreme Court & Save Abortion Rights. Sign the petition here.
  • Talk about abortion! Change culture and shift stigma through powerful, values-based conversations. We believe dialogue, storytelling, and intentional conversations are powerful tools to organize and strengthen our movement. This guide for heart-to-heart abortion conversations from NNAF   and this toolkit from Chicago Abortion Fund will support you to hold a small group gathering, house party, or action space where you can invite your friends, family, and acquaintances into meaningful conversations about abortion, issues that relate to abortion, and why you support abortion funds.
  • Support the Black reproductive justice policy agenda, which outlines proactive policy solutions to address issues at the intersections of race, gender, class, sexual orientation, and gender identity within the situational impacts of economics, politics and culture that make up the lived experiences of Black women, femmes, girls and gender-expansive individuals in the United States.
  • Invest in long-term sustainable models of care that supplement existing structures of support and center the expertise of those who have been laying this groundwork for years so that communities have reliable support systems that contribute to one’s current and future ability to thrive. 
  • We urge all individuals knowledgeable about a person’s reproductive choices to make a commitment to not – under any circumstances – punish, criminalize or report any person for any pregnancy decision or seeking medical assistance for a decision. This includes abortion funders, public health authorities, clinicians, law enforcement, prosecutors, and community members.

‘Trans Bodies, Trans Choices’ Press

‘I Didn’t Think I’d Make It’ Transcript

I felt like there was something taking over my being without my consent. Feeling like I don’t have autonomy over my own flesh and blood, and if I did nothing just from sheer overwhelming, like not being able to do anything else, whether that was because of a resource, because of an insurance thing, because of a support system thing, I don’t think I would have made it.

Hi, I’m Stephanie and Midwood, the question is my preferred names I use, they them pronouns. I grew up in a tiny town called Columbia, Connecticut. My mother’s house is in Columbia and my father’s house is in Willimantic. I moved down to crucis in February of 2015 for the job, for the job, at the library as the young adult department librarian.

I definitely would tell people, Don’t call me miss, don’t call me ma’am. When I started asking for my preferred name in my preferred pronouns. I had somebody pass me a note that said there are only two genders. That person got sensitivity training. I got canned.

Three, seven, 10, the person that I was with at the time. I mean, we had been together long enough to know that like we probably weren’t going to stay together. An accident happened and I knew right away something was wrong. And I am. I mean, what do you do? I was in between paychecks and all that. All of the pregnancy tests that I was getting at CVS kept coming up like inconclusive because it was so early. I knew without knowing. I just knew it was not something my body was supposed to do, and I knew it was something that mentally I was not going to do.

I didn’t sleep. I was not eating well, and it was more just like a slowly building panic attack if I wasn’t actively doing something to advance solving my problem. I was just sitting there like shaking. I’m not a stranger to like suicidal ideation. I’m not a stranger to like this. The really dark thoughts that come, you know, in the middle of the night when there isn’t anyone on the phone. The problem was finding an actual abortion provider in this region is there is nobody in southern or southwestern New Mexico. Albuquerque is 250 miles every step of the way. Everyone was like so invasive.

So I think as a trans person too, it starts to feel really just work because pregnancy, that’s, you know, it’s obviously seen as a very female problem. There was a gate like closer to the building, and they check you for everything. Make sure you are who you say. You are not knowing that this whole process is going to be so policed. Milton Militante went over all of the medications take one in hospital in care, like in front of everybody, and then the second one you take when you’re home ready to, like, be by yourself. Once I had that experience, that was when I realized I had more agency. I could start asking for what I did want from a physician. I’d been seeking a hysterectomy since I was about 15 or 16, so we actually ended up being able to use that slick experience with some of these doctors to say, like, no, really like this is not going to happen for me, and this is what I’m willing to do if this ever happens again.

We’re already challenged on what we believe about our bodies. We’re already. Asked to prove our transness or or be trans enough, but not too much, we should be trusted to know what we do and don’t want in our bodies, or be like to be trusted to know when we’ve made a mistake.

Hostess strikes me like I have my entire I have. I can now dream and so my home is in my breath.

My home is in my heart. Remembering this something else is holding you besides your own life. Sheer force of will.

About ‘Trans Bodies, Trans Choices’

As abortion rights hang in the balance, TransLash will spotlight the reproductive justice needs of transgender, non-binary and gender non-conforming people through a video series which gives voice to those often left out and left behind in the current conversation.  Reproductive justice has been critical, even life saving for our community.  That’s why we will focus on these trans stories throughout this Trans Month of Visibility to center trans people and bring our community out of the shadows on this important topic.

Three powerful stories will be told through the anchor, short-film series, Trans Bodies, Trans Choices. Watch on all @translashmedia social channels, YouTube, and at translash.org/watch. Subscribe for alerts sent straight to your inbox: translash.org/connect

“My Abortion Saved My Life” (March 14)

Cazembe Murphy Jackson (he/him), a Black trans activist living in Atlanta, Georgia, shares why his access to abortion was vital to his life. After developing severe depression following a sexual assault, and quickly learning he was pregnant, Cazembe’s abortion saved him from suicide. In the first short of Trans Bodies, Trans Choices, Cazembe’s story demonstrates the life-saving urgency of abortion access. 

“I Didn’t Think I’d Make It” (March 21)

After an accident with a partner, Stann (hey/hem/hez) tells the story of seeking an abortion in southern New Mexico. After receiving an abortion, Stann used that experience to argue the case for a hysterectomy as part of hez quest for trans-affirming care.

St(ephanie)Ann, hey/hem/hez, was born in Connecticut on Leap Day. Hey is a disabled multi-instrumentalist musician, poet, performer, athlete and healer. Hey is the proud owner of Prism Wellness Works LLC, a holistic health initiative based in the desert Southwest. Stann is a Reiki Master and Theta Healing ® practitioner working to return autonomy to the LGBTQIA2S+ community. Find hem on Facebook and Instagram at @prismwellnessworks.

“Trans Bodies, Trans Choices” (March 31)

After an unplanned pregnancy and unsuccessful Plan B contraceptive, Jack Qu’emi (they/them) sought abortion access in southern Florida. Already an experience that brought on strong feelings of gender dysphoria, Jack’s abortion was made worse by dealing with transphobic health professionals. Now, they advocate for trans inclusion and diversity training for abortion providers. Their story highlights the need for care providers to include transgender and gender non-conforming patients in their understanding of reproductive access. 

The release of each film will be followed by weekly activations online, including TransLash Podcast, Instagram Live, and Twitter Spaces conversations. The series will culminate in a virtual Trans Bodies, Trans Choices town hall co-hosted by the National LGBTQ Task Force on March 23rd.  The Trans Bodies, Trans Choices campaign will conclude on March 31st, Trans Day of Visibility. Be sure to follow our partners: @birthequity @thetaskforce @womensmarch @abortionfunds.

CREDITS:

Imara Jones, Creator and Executive Producer

Ruby Rose Collins, Director & Producer

Tiler Wilson, Director & Producer

Jahmia Phillips, Director of Photography 

Nathan DuConge, Assistant Camera / Camera Operator (Ep2)

Harper Harris, Sound Operator (Ep2)

Rajee Samarasinghe, Editor

Jakob Sweet, Sound Mixer

Kalyn Jacobs, Assistant Camera / Camera Operator (Ep3)

Flora Kamimoto, Sound Operator (Ep3)

Daniela Capistrano, Digital Strategy & Social Media Lead


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