Vernon/LOLA / Canada
“I identified as so many things during the exploration of my gender identity after moving to Toronto – agender, genderfluid, demisexual, transfemme, non-binary. However, it isn’t something I care to commit to anymore. Gender isn’t set in stone like the time you were born or the natural colour of your hair (and even then, as I grow older my white hairs tell me otherwise). It’s the way you choose to take up time and space. So what if it’s a choice? Let me take up whatever form I want that’s truest in that moment. It’s my body, I’ll live in it how I choose. Sometimes I’m brave enough to defy norms, sometimes it’s enough for me to be femme in private. Sometimes I don’t identify as femme at all and that doesn’t invalidate the moments that I do.
I used to be obsessed with finding the core of who I was in terms of my queerness but it’s really not all that complex. I’m just open. Open to whatever mood comes my way. Open to honouring what feels true in that moment. And open to other people choosing for themselves. I’m now passively exploring my gender identity and embracing each nuance.
My birth name is Vernon, my performer name is LOLA, my birth city is Calgary, my home is Toronto, my heritage is Filipinx, my pronouns are they/them, for now I’m non-binary, and as for tomorrow, who knows and honestly, who cares?”