A mum and dad pose proudly with their babies in a history-making family snapshot.
Adrianne and Michael Elson-Steven have become the first transgender couple in the UK to have twins.
They put their reassignment operations on hold to finally achieve their dream of a family thanks to an IVF legacy from a tragic friend.
And last month dad Michael, 42 – formerly called Lindsay – had girls Christin and Mavis by caesarean section while proud mum Adrianne waited nervously for their birth.
After years of abuse for being a trans couple followed by agony over failed pregnancies, it was an overwhelming moment for the brave pair.
“I feel so blessed, complete,” says train shunter Adrianne, 49. “I never believed they’d be here – so when I look at these girls now, my tears fall. I’m filled with such love for them and Michael.”
And Michael – who faced a major challenge being pregnant as a trans man – says: “It was a lot to deal with in my head. Being a male and carrying a pregnancy for nine months really tested me.
“But in my heart becoming a parent was my priority, and using my body as a vessel to create these little miracles was just a means to an end.”
Now exhausted but elated, they’re changing 20 nappies a day after Christin arrived on November 4 followed two minutes later by sister Mavis.
“Our lives have been turned upside down, our flat is filled with baby equipment, our routine is inside out and we don’t sleep,” says Adrienne.
“But we’re loving every moment of it. It’s real, messy, noisy and busy but it’s the best thing in the world.”
The couple met in 2010 at The Butterfly Club, a trans support group in Belfast.
Michael was stunned as Liverpudlian Adrianne turned up after a ballet class still in her outfit.
“She looked really cute. I never thought she’d even notice me,” he says.
But he needn’t have worried.
“When I met Michael, my stomach flipped. He was so engaging and very funny,” says Adrianne. “I started putting out signals but he didn’t notice so I assumed he wasn’t interested.”
The pair’s shyness melted on a forest walk when Adrienne plucked up the courage to tell Michael how she felt.
“He just grinned and said he felt the same. We’ve been inseparable since,” she says.
“I moved to Northern Ireland in 2005 when I got the chance to drive trains – but I think God, the universe or fate drew me to Belfast and my Michael.”
They got engaged in 2012, had a church blessing in 2014 and began to plan to fully transition through medication and operations – but only after trying for a baby.
“We’d had one round of IVF on the NHS but it turned out to be unsuccessful,” says Adrianne. “We were so sad our friend Christopher Luke said he’d leave us money in his will to go private.”
They took it as a touching gesture to ease their unhappiness.