Josh “JDA” Davila made an impressive run for the title during American Idol Season 12, belting out foot-stomping tunes on the way to the semi-finals in Las Vegas. But though the voice that won over fans during the show may still be wowing audiences, Josh has transitioned and has since become Jaidah Christina.
Now you can find her at a resident singing gig at one of Chicago’s largest trans-friendly nightclubs — a job she calls a “dream.”
She talked with The TV Page about her experience after the show, and about what it’s been like to transition.
Here are some highlights:
You finally came out to your mom as being a Trans woman a few months ago. How did she not know what was going on?
She knew that I was cross dressing and wearing makeup and heels and being this very feminine person. She didn’t know that I was injecting myself two times a week. She didn’t know that I was altering my DNA, my biological make up. She just thought that I was cross dressing and being happy. So I had to hide a little bit from her. I told everyone but her and that suddenly hit me that that wasn’t fair for her to be left out.
Was everyone in your family on board with the transition?
I have a gay uncle, who I am not going to name. When he started seeing on my Facebook that I was wanting to be called “her” and “she” instead of “him,” he stopped hitting me up and that really hurt my feelings.
Has the transition helped you meet any guys?
I have someone very special in my life. The person I am with currently, who I hold very close to my heart, respects me and loves me. When he found out about my whole AMERICAN IDOL adventure, I was devastated. I met him as a woman, but he didn’t know anything about my past. It was hot and heavy when he and I met and continued for a while like that. So when he found out about that I was very devastated. But it’s a year later and we are still seeing each other.
What was life like for you after AMERICAN IDOL?
After IDOL I had to come back to selling cosmetics and living my androgynous life and accepting the fact that I had just been on national television. There was all this love but then it quickly started fading away. I started focusing on my transition and I lost focus on my music. So things didn’t work out for me the way I probably dreamed that I wanted it to. Which is why — even though I know I am still very special and I have that small exposure on television under my belt — I still feel a little mediocre now with that passing and me not being relevant and not doing anything about it.
Do you think your appearance or sexuality hurt you on IDOL?
I don’t think so. I think they knew that I was a force to be reckoned with, but were so fixated and stuck on the fact that they wanted a female Idol. They knew that from the beginning and we all gossiped about that.
Congrats, Jaidah — keep on kicking ass.
For the full interview, head to The TV Page.