Florida lovebirds Mark Cummings and Jessica O’Donnell have something in common: they both were born into the wrong bodies. 49-year-old Mark grew up as a girl named Maritza, and 39-year-old Jessica was a boy named Shawn.
Two years ago Mark and Jessica met and fell instantly in love. Soon after they met, Mark convinced Jessica to finish her sex reassignment surgeries. “For years I thought I was a gay man,” Jessica explains. “But now I know who I am and Mark completes me. Our relationship is the kind that people dream of – our first kiss was magic.”
“Going through all the pain we’ve been through it’s almost like we were rewarded by being placed in each other’s lives,” Mark told The Daily Mail. ‘With Jessica I have found true love for the first time in my life – It’s like something you see in the movies.” Mark, who was a virgin before he met Jessica, was a bodybuilder before he transitioned in 2003, and still keeps up that hobby.
They’ve both experienced a lot of bullying and discrimination growing up because of their different gender expressions. Instead of letting those painful experiences make them bitter, they help others in similar positions through a radio show, Transition Radio, they host together. Aside from the radio show, and Mark’s bodybuilder endeavors, he also works as an occupational therapist.
Most people think they are a normal heterosexual couple, but they feel that being transgendered has brought them together in a special way. “Having been a female I can understand what Jessica is feeling and vice versa,” Mark says.
“I love fulfilling the role as Jessica’s provider and protector,” he explains. “I love taking care of her – I call her my princess.”