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Lakewood, WA

With six siblings and a large Pacific Islander family, the biggest lesson Briana has taken to heart has been that it doesn’t matter what you have, it matters that you love your family and stick together no matter what. “That is why my community, and the life I am building here, are so important to me,” she said. “After I had turned 14, I went to a Pride event and learned about transgender people for the first time. Something in my head clicked and I knew I couldn’t hide who I was anymore — especially from my mother. Telling her about myself was the most nerve wracking experience of my life. But it shouldn’t have been, because she repeated the same lesson I’ve been taught a hundred times before: Blood is blood. We love you for who you are and all that matters is that you have a good life.”

Soon after telling her mother that she is transgender, Briana says she “bought my own pair of five-inch heels and never looked back.”

She continued: “At 16, I reflected back and knew I was fabulous. To say life has always been perfect or easy would be a lie. Being transgender is a day to day battle, however, my family’s guidance and values have helped me shoulder that burden. There may be rough moments, but that is what makes us shine.”

Read More Stories By:  TRANSform Washington

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