A Florida teen makes history as her high school's first trans homecoming queen
|Evan Bialosuknia - 17|
By Scottie Andrew, CNN
Tue October 5, 2021
(CNN) In a metallic gold gown, her dual-toned hair curled into effortless waves, Evan Bialosuknia looked every bit the undisputed queen of her high school homecoming.
She'd been nominated to her Orlando school's homecoming court, with enough votes to get her name on the ballot for homecoming queen. She thought she might have a shot at winning, though she tried to avoid getting her hopes up, she said.
"I was pretty excited to walk on homecoming court and to be a part of it, but I was also nervous even if I were to win, what if people were doing it to make fun of me," the 17-year-old high school senior told CNN. "People are cruel these days. You never know what could happen."
Those fears faded as soon as she heard the uproarious applause when her name was called during her high school's homecoming game in late September. Bialosuknia's peers voted for her to be their homecoming queen, the first transgender student at Olympia High School to wear the crown.
Bialosuknia said her crowning has made her feel more at home at school -- and her classmates' support has shown her that most of them see her for who she is.
"It was just, like, a relief of so much anxiety, as well," she said. "Just, like, knowing that I have everyone by my side and [they] are actually here for me ... makes this process of transitioning feel a lot better."
Bialosuknia is more comfortable in her own skin than most 17-year-olds. But her confidence is hard-won, said her mother, Marnie. Bialosuknia's transition is a "long and difficult process," her mother said, one that her family is supporting her through.
Bialosuknia can be seen beaming in footage from her crowning. When her name was called, she went down the line of her fellow nominees and hugged each one as they excitedly cheered for her. The marching band, standing in socially distanced formation on the school's football field, applauded. She crouched so a school administrator could place the tiara on her head. Her smile never faltered.
If you present yourself as a strong, outgoing, beautiful person, then that's how you're going to look," she said.
It's advice she's adopted herself -- and by projecting that confidence, she's starting to feel it, too.