Social media sensation, 19-year-old Jazz Jennings is showing off her scars as a tribute to her gender transformation struggle.
The “I Am Jazz” star took to Instagram on Tuesday with an empowering message to go along with the first public photos of her surgery scars.
— TMZ (@TMZ) January 2, 2020
“These are my scars on full display in #2019,” she captioned the bathing suit pic. “I’m proud of my scars and love my body just the way it is. I call them my battle wounds because they signify the strength and perseverance it took to finally complete my transition.”
In a separate Instagram post, Jazz wrote that she endured a “major” post-surgery complication 2018.
At the time, Jazz was forced to undergo a second procedure to correct the issue.
Jazz first opened up about the complication during an interview with Nightline in October 2018, four months after her surgery.
‘There was just an unfortunate event and setback where things did come apart, and there was a complication,’ she said.
‘I had to come back in for another procedure, but it was just all part of the journey. The good thing though is that it was only cosmetic and external so it wasn’t too dramatic.’
The unforeseen issue was caused by the hormone blockers that Jazz believes are responsible for saving her life.
‘Being on the blockers is something that I don’t regret at all. But the only, you know, downside to it was that I didn’t have enough growth down below. So there wasn’t enough tissue to work with when it came to the surgery’ she told the Daily Mail.
‘And it was very challenging to find a doctor, a surgeon who was willing to perform the operation on me just because I’m such a difficult case.’
As a result, the family had to seek out an innovative new treatment in the field of genital reconstruction.
‘They’re using the tissue I have, the peritoneum, and also, they may take a skin graft as well. I say it’s going to be like a patchwork vagina, Franken-vagina,’ she explained at the time.
Jennings, who was accepted into Harvard, has postponed her education and deferred her Harvard admission to deal with her health. She was also valedictorian of the Broward Virtual School.
As she described, “It was a tough journey, but experiences like that one only make us stronger in the end. Though it can be hard at times, a positive mindset and the support of those around you can help you conquer any challenge. Thank you to all my fans who have supported me throughout the years!”