As most parents know, raising a child is never easy. But along with all of the trial and tribulations that come with it, there are plenty more moments to treasure.
Sabastion Sparks, 24, is one father who's already faced challenges of raising his son, Jaxen, before he's even turned two.
Sparks is a transgender man, who is also one of the few fathers who've given birth to their own children. Although he began his transition five years ago, he said he's most at ease with himself now, as a father-of-one.
"I’m going to be a better father being comfortable in myself and him seeing that confidence in me," Sparks said.
Sparks, who was assigned female at birth, met his future wife Angel, 33, five years ago at a convention for transgender people, and knew she was the one he wanted to start a family with.
After the transgender couple were wed in 2016, they decided Sparks would carry their child, which was not a decision they took lightly.
The Sparks decided to conceive their son naturally, which meant they temporarily had to stop their hormone therapy to boost their respective estrogen and testosterone levels.
Although it didn't take long for Sparks to get pregnant, he wasn't able to carry his first child to term.
"Getting pregnant was fine," Angel shared. "Trying to stay pregnant was difficult."
"Before Jaxen, Sabastion was my baby," she added. "I was worried about the baby, but I was also worried that I could lose Sabastion too."
While giving birth is typically seen as one of the most difficult parts of having a newborn, for Sparks it was breastfeeding in public.
"People would snicker or call us 'f******,'" Angel explained. "He'd try so hard to cover it up and hide what he was doing."
Before he had surgery to remove his breasts, Sparks wore a chest binder, which is used to flatten the bosom.
"It's uncomfortable and sweaty and itchy," he said. "Imagine wearing that for 10, 12 hours at a time. I (was) always having to hide myself."
Sparks added that he didn't only get the operation for himself, but for his son too.
"My son won't see breasts on his dad. He won't be as different from me," he shared.
"I can't wait to be there for my kid," the doting dad added. "The more my body resembles his, the better he'll understand."
Although Jaxen is only two years old, the pair are already debating how to raise their young son.
"We're thinking about homeschooling him because we don't what will happen when the kids find out his parents are trans. By being who we are, we're already subject to the ridicule of others," Sparks said. "All we can do is teach him our values and hope for the best."
"People think trans people can't be good parents, and that's not true," he continued. "Trans parents are just like any other parents."
Although the pair are prepared for an onslaught of negative comments as Jaxen grows older, they couldn't love their family more.
"I always say the most beautiful thing in the world gave me the most beautiful thing in the world," Angel said.
For more inspiring stories about transgender individuals, check out these heartwarming tales:
- Transgender Man Sings A Duet With Himself Before And After Treatment [VIDEO]
- Daughter Comes Out As Transgender, 3 Years Later Mother Decides To Come Out As Well
- Transgender Man Gives Birth To A Healthy Baby Boy, Reminds Us All That With Love, Everything Is Possible