I am the wife of a new man. A trans man. A man who, when we first met and dated nearly 30 years ago, resided in a woman’s body. After reuniting in 2009, he made the difficult and carefully weighed decision to transition from female to male. At the same time he was admitted to graduate school at the age of 49. Not just graduate school, but divinity school. As an openly trans divinity student, he was recently approved for “member in discernment” status–set on a path to ordination as a minister in the mainstream United Church of Christ.

I am an artist. A writer. A rebel mom with a silver hoop through one nostril and a “tramp stamp” gracing my lower back. I lived for nearly 25 years as an out and proud lesbian and I am now married (not legally) to a soon-to-be trans preacher.

I’m finding my way in a world of uncertainty. There is a dearth of resources for “partners in progress”–those of us who are the supporters (willingly or grudgingly) on this transition journey. We struggle with our own identity in a world that doesn’t know how to categorize us–I am no longer truly a lesbian (not the kind who can go on cruises with Olivia Travel, anyway) and I certainly don’t fit in with the heterosexual community at large. We struggle with the early transition being so not about us. We live on the periphery, a sidekick of sorts to our superhuman counterparts. We struggle with the physical issues that come up as our partners change and grow and become different in so many ways that we may not have anticipated.

Although our own lives are rooted in our Faith tradition and I write often about our ministry, my husband’s path to becoming an ordained preacher as an openly trans man, and our church activities in general, I want this to be accessible to all partners of people in transition. My hope is that you will see yourself in the struggle, the daily minutia, the onslaught of hormonal changes. Whether you are Christian or not, I hope you will find something useful in knowing that you are not alone and that often our journeys collide, intersect, and share common threads that weave a tapestry of familiarity and comfort.

As a young girl I had hopes, dreams, and goals. I shared these with my friends, my family, and my God. They were the typical adolescent girl’s plans: a white wedding, a picket fence, 2 kids a dog and a husband who provided a big house while I played Betty Crocker in a gourmet kitchen. While many aspects of my life are oddly similar (we did the big white wedding, we have a dog, I came into the relationship with a 12-year-old boy, and we’ve got a white picket fence outside our rambling home), it isn’t…well…exactly as I had envisioned.

If you want to make God laugh, tell her your plans.