Love Story- Guest Blog

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It all started in March of 2010. I was 19 Living in Las Vegas, NV trying to make it big. What better way than to hustle, perfume hustling that is. (Yep you read that right) jumping out of our cars and selling perfume out of our trunks.
I had just gotten back from a week-long trip out of state with the company and they ask if I want to go on another one? Well yeah, I’m 19, of course, I want to go! Now funny thing back then I was quite the introvert. But I was okay with talking to strangers trying to sell them perfume.
On our last day before driving home we all went to the beach. This new girl walks up to me and asks to borrow my phone. I said sure. She took my phone so I could get thrown into the waves by some friends. We laugh it off, then we get ready to head home. Last minute I get asked if I can take someone else in my car. See this extra person was the girl who took my phone. Cute new girl. Ashley’s her name.
On the way home I was talking about a party that I was going to and out of nowhere in the back seat I hear, party? I wanna party! With the sweet soft voice. She’s my age and she’s cute so sure. We exchange numbers and I dropped her off first. One of the main things I remember about that day is we met her mom and she was so sweet reminded me of my mom trying to get ready for Easter…
After we leave I ask one of my friends to text her and ask if she’s gay, bi or what? Her response for the first time in her 20 years of living she says undecided. I get so excited about seeing this girl again I even tell my mom about her when I get home!
Fast forward to the party and I drink too much and literally pass out on the porcelain throne. What a great impression.
Ashley ends up crushing on my friend who threw the party. This friend is a major player that everyone has been hypnotized by.
Fast forward a couple weeks, Ashley wants to hang out after getting broken about the player. I also was crushing on girls but not settling down. I tell my best friend John. There’s this girl really cute and really sweet I think you’d really like her. Let’s all hang out.
We ended up getting together and they ended up exchanging numbers and dating. Cool, I just got another best friend. One night we are all driving home and we got pulled over. John was driving and ends up he had some warrants and went to jail that night.
Ashley and I start hanging out daily, we really became inseparable. At this point, everyone is telling me you love her. I’m like no we’re just friends.
There was an LGBT pride festival coming up so I am so excited I hype her up and we go together. That’s where sparks flew. We had a blast, I took her dancing and it was a great time. In the meantime, John gets out but we’re all still friends.
One night we all go out to shoot pool as a group. We both went into the bathroom together and she jumps on me and starts telling me she loves me, not weird or different at all we are best friends we always say we love each other. This time it just felt different. Then one of our other friends walks in and is like oh sorry hope I’m not interrupting anything (jokingly)
Ashley ends up telling John it’s just not working out… they had already gotten an apartment together so they had to break the lease…one night she asks me over and we go in the hot tub and he decided he was going to walk around watching us. That was the first time we had really kissed.
Of course, our friend’s group split up and everyone was mad as rumors flew. We never let that get us down! We always said getting together was worth it!
We dated, we had our ups and downs. I cheated. We were young. We went to couples therapy. From then we never left each other’s side. We moved to Flagstaff, AZ. We got married before same-sex marriage was legal. We had the most beautiful ceremony and got legally married a year later. I came out as transgender in 2015. All though she was scared and didn’t know if she could “love a man” we got through it. She came to me and said we will take this one day at a time, I don’t care if you’re a man or a woman I love you for you, not your gender. She needed time to mourn her wife to truly love her husband.
We just bought our first house in Northern NJ and we are expecting our first baby in April!
This is a true love story! Everyone sees us as couples goals but I always remind them about the bad that made us stronger together to make it to the good. Love is hard, you have to continuously work on it. Never take it for granted!

Author Bio:

I’m Kristin aka Kris the trans dad behind the screen. I’m a dad of five dogs! Our first born is due April 10th! Writing a blog about the strengths and struggles of being a trans parent. Trying to build a community of parents helping parents.
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YES YES YES!!!! This is one super story here! I enjoyed every bit of it and I am so excited to see/hear about becoming parents together! You are correct marriage is not always easy, but with the right person it is always worth it!
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The worst day of my life!

Let me take you through one of the worse events in my life. I was single at that time and was taking my son for a routine visit to his primary care physician and he heard a heart murmur. He told me that some children just have them, but wanted us to follow up with a cardiologist. So, right after leaving I called the cardiologist to get in and the wait was almost over 8-9 months! I called his primary care back and told him. The next thing I knew we had an appointment a couple days later. My mother decided to go with me, just in case. I am forever grateful for her being there for both of us!

The cardiologist office was at our local children’s hospital in the city. When we arrived we checked in and waited at least about 45 mintues before being asking back by one of nurses. Once we were in the room the doctor came in and listed. He did hear the murmur and decided to do an EKG, Echo and xray on the spot. Once all of those were finished we were asked if they could do more on the echo. Yes, of course you can. I remember while walking down the hallway thinking there is something wrong with my baby. I know there is they would not ask for more photos of his heart if there was not anything wrong. They want to make sure what they see is what they see. I remember walking into the room and asking questions to the ultrasound tech and her saying that she cannot tell me and that I will have to wait for the doctor. Once the tech was finished and my mom, Ethan and I were back in the room I turned to my mom started to tear up and say, I know something is wrong with Ethan. My mom held me and told me that no matter what we will get through this and that we are a strong family. The doctor then took forever to come back in. I know for sure that it was at least about an hour before he came back into the room. When he did arrive he did tell us that Ethan has cor triatriatum. Which by deffination is: (or triatrial heart) is a congenital heart defect where the left atrium (cor triatriatum sinistrum) or right atrium (cor triatriatum dextrum) is subdivided by a thin membrane, resulting in three atrial chambers (hence the name).

Obviously I was young at the time and had no idea what he just said! I made him write it down for us and explain it in terms that we could understand. While he explained it he drew a photo and he also showed us on a diagram. When he was explaining he said there are two sides of the heart and in the middle there is tissue in between along with a hole. The blood flow is supposed to go straight down each side, but instead it is going inside the hole and around the tissue. He then said that Ethan would have to have open heart surgery to get the tissue out and close the hole. Ethan was a premature baby and was still weighing less than he should at that time, he wanted us to come back and get check out again in a month, but wanted to hear from us if there were any signs of distress or discomfort and to keep track of feedings, input and out put and/or vomiting. Ethan needed to be feed every 2/3 hours because he was spitting up some of the formula. The doctor was hoping that we could wait until about 1 year old before he does surgery on Ethan so he gave us medication and sent us on our way.

The next appointment that we went to Ethan had to have another echo and I remember walking down the hallway feeling alone and uncomfortable. Once we were in the room for the echo I sat next to Ethan looking at the screen praying that nothing has change for the worst and hoping that it either stayed the same or somehow it got better. Imaging having a baby laying on a medical bed and you holding his hand, face and torso. All while looking at the screen in front of you and the technician taking photos. Your not 100% sure on what your looking at, but you know it is off and not right because you can feel it in your gut.

So, back to the exam room we go and wait for the doctor. The doctor arrives and says that we need to do surgery sooner than we thought because one of the sides of the heart is becoming enlarged. So, we set up the surgery date for when they suggested and we are supposed to be there at 5am!

A few days before surgery I called my doctor because I was having so much anxiety and couldn’t sleep. Thankfully she gave me medication so I would be able to sleep.

The morning of the surgery we walked into the hospital and it was pretty much empty you see nurses and some doctors, that’s really it because it was so early in the morning. I remember they came in and drew blood and rubbed cleansers on his chest. I was able to walk back with Ethan and there really were double doors like they tell/show you in the movies. I kissed Ethan and told him I love him. Once they walked through the doors to the other side I could feel my whole body shut down and I backed up to the wall and squatted down and cried. I just handed my son off to the doctors to perform open heart surgery. Ethan was only 5 months old at the time! I had no idea what could/might happen. I prayed and cried! I went back out to the waiting room where my immediate family was.

The head nurse came out to check on me every few hours and give me updates. My Papa from Oklahoma came in town to be with us that day too. I was so blessed to have many of my family members and friends stop by through out the day. Many brought food for everyone and gifts for Ethan. It felt like days until I was able to see Ethan again, but it was about an 8-10 hour surgery. The hours did not go quickly! I tried to take a nap. I went outside and smoked. (I no longer smoke now!) I talked with everyone to keep my mind at ease.

Once the surgery was finished the doctor came out to talk with us and tell us that everything went as planned and that we can go in and see Ethan. I was going to go by myself, but it was suggested that I go with at least one other person. I didn’t really think it all the way through as to how he was going to look afterwards. I wanted to go with my dad. We walked into a room washed our hands and head to the area that he was in. We walked in and Ethan was laying in this big crib with wires everywhere and was still sleeping. My heart started to beat my crazy, I started to sweat and then tear up. I could not hold him to make anything and everything better. There were machines, tubes and wires everywhere. The scar was fresh you could tell. Luckily my dad was next to me and held me close and told me that Ethan will be okay and we will all be here for you and him.

Those that wanted to go back in the room were allowed and then we went home for the night. We spent a few more days in the hospital and then we were released home. I spent every minute I could there.

We went for check ups after surgery and each time has been good. The last time we were in we were released to come back in 5 years. I do know I can call at anytime if I feel like we have a problem, but hopefully we won’t!

I am still very thankful for the doctors, nurses and other staff members that helped us take care of Ethan.

Thank you for reading.

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