Meet Juana Sosa, an aspiring model. I’ve learned so much from this experience and I hope others have the same courage to be themselves. Everything nowadays is on social media. You can’t help but see something wonderful every now and then. I had that pleasure. I saw the following vlog about a transitioning man’s Prom experience as she. Check it out here.
“I wanted to share with all of you my first appearance and experience as a woman. I hope to inspire other people to show who they are without fear because that’s who you are.”
How old were you when you found out that you were different than the other boys?
– I think that at 15, yes, that age. I know it sounds weird, but that’s the age when I found out I was different than other boys. Before that, I always thought I was a girl, I never saw a difference, I mean, I never considered myself as a boy. At the age of 13 to 14, I saw that the bodies of my girlfriends start to change, and my body never did that. When I found that my beard was growing, I just cried all that day and felt very angry with myself. A year after I understood, I wasn’t a girl.
What was it that you felt?
– I felt lost and very sad. 15 is the age when you go out to “15 parties”, you and your friends meet up in a house and try on clothes and makeup. At the party, the handsome boy invites you to dance and you spend all night with him. I never knew what that was like, I had to go in a suit and after my girlfriends finished the rituals, that was the moment when I was at the house and together we went to the party. It wasn’t because they didn’t invite me, it was because it made me feel like I was nothing there, I mean, I couldn’t try dresses, makeup, anything, just see.
How did you identify yourself, then?
– I have always identified myself as a person, I mean, not as a boy or a girl. I never did that separation between genders, when I started to look for why I felt the way I used to feel, I understood that I really was a girl, inside.
How old were you when you changed your self-identity?
– I think that I haven’t changed it, yet. I feel that I need to give my family a break, my mom and dad are still processing this transition, they support and understand me, but it is difficult, you know. They just want me to be happy, and in this transition is not all pink. My friends and other people treat me like a girl, they have always done that.
How do you identify yourself now?
– It’s strange, you know? There are some people that refer to me as a “she” and others as a “he”, but I am okay with that. I know who I want to be and what I am, but it would be really selfish to put everybody in a compromise to call you in the way you want, we have time for them to get used to it.
What are your personal goals?
– My personal goals are to keep having the relationship that I have with my family and friends, they have helped me a lot in the transition. Of course to be physically who I feel I am. Moreover, I really like my body, I don’t have anything against it, I would like to be a little bit taller.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
– I see myself at the top of my modeling career, breaking the catwalks. I also see myself as a photographer, taking photos of everything in my life, people, and places.
What are your professional goals?
– I really want to be a model. To travel around the world modeling, meeting people, knowing new cultures. Also, I really love photography, so working for a fashion magazine or taking photos of animals is another professional goal.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
– In 10 years… I can see my own business, maybe not with modeling and photography, but helping people. Not only the people in my community, people in general. Also helping animals.
How was your family’s reaction?
– It was really unexpected and in a good way. I was so scared of everything I saw on the Internet and on the TV, I only thought of the bad reactions. But it was really good… Of course, there were tears from my mom when I told her, but she said, “I knew about it, moms know everything, my love for you is unconditional”. A week before I felt it was the time to tell my dad. I went to his home and I sat down with him and his wife (Francisca). I said to them. My stepmother was so happy for me, but my father didn’t say anything… After some minutes he told me “I will be with you every day in every moment”
How were your friends and relatives’ reactions?
– My friends were amazed and happy, they were screaming all the time (typical of women) and the other members of my family still don’t know about my transition. They do know that I am going to the psychologist, but they don’t know why. Anyway, they are very kind and support me.
Did you go through any hassles with your peers in school, church, the general public?
– Not really, just before I really started my transition, everybody in the streets saw me as the “gay guy”. At school, they were nothing for me, I never care what people thought about me. At school, they have always seen my strong personality, not because they want to hurt me or laugh at me. My classmates are the best, they never asked me about anything, always treated me like one of the girls, just my respect for them.
What was your primary reason to make the video?
– I have seen a lot of comments about people that always regret themselves for not doing something and the days, weeks, months go by. So, that made me think that I didn’t have a “15 party”(because it is for girls) and I won’t have an “18 party” (because I will be out of the home, traveling). So I said, “Prom Night is the last event I am ever going to have in my teenage years, let’s do it right.” With my mom’s help, we started with the clothes. I talked to my hairdresser for the extensions and finally with the boy that does makeup (my mom and dad didn’t know about the makeup). I thought “I have never seen a ‘Get Ready With Me Video (prom night)’ of a trans person, let’s do it,” and that is how my video was born.
What was your ultimate goal with the video?
– My ultimate goal with the video was to get known by the media. As you know, we are in the era of sharing, so the media is the only way that I can share great information and people see what I post. So with the media in my favor, I can help people, in the way they watch my video and see how happy I was at the party, and enjoying it with no fear of comments.
What did you expect from showcasing the video and what was the actual outcome?
– Honestly, I expected the worst. Horrible comments, people insulting me on social media. But, that didn’t happen. They have been very kind to me. While I was making the video I only thought of making someone happy, just by the simple fact of watching a video on YouTube of someone documenting their prom night. That’s what I wanted, someone who would watch my video and they have a smile on their face and feel what I felt, happiness. It resulted.
Bravery comes in many forms. Juan Sosa made a difference in this world. His video will for sure make waves in today’s social media. I hope that those who see this video have the same courage to do what she did and be happy. Ultimately, that’s what we all want. To be ourselves and to be happy. Here are links to her Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube channel.