Sabian Mignone is a female-to-male transgendered individual. He is the founder of Wando High School’s Gay-Straight Alliance and is a member of We Are Family. Since he’s on staff at the Tribal Tribune, Wando’s student newspaper, we invited Sabian to pen his own essay.

I’m the transgender guy.

That’s how people see me at first. A real live transgender person. That guy who was born a girl. What an interesting person.

I don’t mind when people think those things. Curiosity is only natural. But I do mind when they stop there and identify me as the transgender guy and nothing but the transgender guy, because I am more than that.

People don’t see that at first. They only see the label of transgender. But as I spend more time with people, as they get to know me better, the more that label fades into the background and becomes just one more part of all the things that define me. Because I’m not just the transgender guy.

I’m the quiet guy.

I’m the guy who doesn’t get the joke for five minutes.

I’m the guy who knows random facts.

I’m the guy who thinks too hard.

I’m the guy who wants to stop injustice.

I’m the guy with strange music tastes.

I’m the guy with a sweet tooth.

I’m the guy who likes to write and act.

I’m the guy who likes campy TV shows.

I’m the guy who plays too many video games.

And yes, I’m the transgender guy.

But in the end, I’m not any one of those things. I’m a crazy patchwork quilt of all of them, and more.

I’m Sabe.