Prom season has sprung once more in high schools nationwide, offering a new group of trans teens a special chance to live out their royal dreams.
This year was especially meaningful for Renton, Wash., senior Brooklyn Buenaventura, a young trans woman who was crowned Renton High School's prom queen Saturday. She told Seattle news station KING that this year was all about celerating her "true self" by getting dressed up in a glamorous gown and makeup.
Buenaventura can be seen beaming with joy while getting primped and primed to go to prom with her friends in KING's video. It's a markedly different scene than just a few years earlier, when Buenaventura told the news station she was elected to homecoming court, but had felt the need to stifle her authentic self by wearing a tuxedo.
The difference a few years makes. "I'm not hiding anything anymore," Buenaventura reflected. "I'm still scared but it's about being brave. I want to tell other transgenders [sic] that it's okay to be out; we're not different."
Winning the crown proved to be the icing on a liberatory evening for Buenaventura, who was surrounded by her supportive mother and closest friends. She now joins fellow prom and homecoming princesses and queens Isaac Salazar of Modesto, Calif., Maka Brown of Salt Lake City, Utah, and Angie Esteban of Salinas, Calif., in kicking off another year of stunning trans high school royalty.
Meet Buenaventura in the KING video below.