Ever since Emma started kindergarten I’ve been getting at least one school identification form home on the first day of school; the second at the very latest. I immediately read through, checking phone numbers and email addresses, ticking off permission for them to take neighbourhood walks, and pondering whether we actually live close enough to a nuclear power plant to tick the potassium iodine tablet section. I check it off just in case… better to be safe than sorry. Even if we’re all glowing, at least they’ll have less chance of cancer.
Jeremy came home on the first day of school this year and I promptly checked zir backpack. No form. Same with the second, third, and fourth day. I was just about to write a note to zir teacher asking if it had gone missing when zie got suspended. I got the form a few days after zie returned. By then I wasn’t worried about sitting right down to proofread it, figuring if they wanted it back promptly they’d have given it to me the first week.
I filled it at the end of September so you can imagine my surprise when Jeremy informed me zir teacher wanted me to look around the apartment for zir form.
“Wait, I gave that to you over a month ago,” I blurted. Zie sighed and shook zir head.
“I told my teacher ages ago that I lost it on the way to school but she won’t believe me. She keeps saying it’s an official school document and she can’t just go print out a new copy.”
“Well, it’s not around here,” I replied. “If it was we’d have found it. I’ll write a note saying I can’t find it and that you lost it in transit.”
Emma, Mark, and I were talking in the living room this evening when I looked down at a sheet of paper. It was Jeremy’s school identification form. I have no idea where it came from, at this point you could blame aliens and I’d almost believe you. My apartment isn’t the cleanest place on the planet but we’re far from candidates for an episode on Hoarders and it was sitting right there in the middle of the floor.
Also it’s a good thing I never wrote that letter to the teacher.
I gave the form a quick scan then looked once again at the gender marker. X was already typed into the male section, the only other option was female. I glanced over at Jeremy and wrote in another X…
Emma peered over my shoulder. “Shouldn’t you write something down?” she asked. “What if they think you just marked it by accident?”
I thought about writing down bigender then circled male/female instead. She nodded her approval.
There’s a good chance the school board will have me fill in a new copy or simply change the marker back to M but it was worth it just to see the expression on Jeremy’s face when zie saw what I’d done.