My Mother Wanted A Girl, Not A Tomboy

girl wearing blue long sleeved shirt and yellow skirt walking on pathway

Photo by Leah Kelley on

“I won’t!” I declared, stamping a foot.

“You will!” my mother replied, foisting her latest frilly monstrosity on me.

“It’s yellow!”

“It’s cute!”

“I hate dresses!”

“Stop being so pig-headed.”

“I am not!” I balled my hands into fists and stamped my feet more. “I don’t want to wear dresses!”

“You’re a girl. And you will wear one.”

This was just another Sunday morning where my mother decided the whole family would go to church. That meant I wore ribbon-covered dresses, shiny black shoes, and white stockings with pink bows. The ladies at church would fawn over me, calling me “adorable” and pinch my cheeks.

I seethed.

I glared at my brothers who complained about their ties. Ties! As if that could compare to my humiliation. In the car I sat with my arms crossed while my mother continued to tell me to smile and stop looking so sour.

I hated dresses, but most of all I hated being a girl.

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