And today, I’m caught up in memories of the amazing day, a year ago, that we finally became a family of four.
We arrived at the hospital moments after Posy was born, and got to hold her right away. She was tiny – just shy of 5 pounds – with a thick head of black hair (that hasn’t changed). I couldn’t believe how perfect she was.
We’re so grateful that we were able to adopt Posy (and P’ito). 25 years ago, this wouldn’t have been possible. Even though there are so many things that still need to change to make life equitable for our families, and so many places where our families lack basic protections, today I am grateful for the strides that we have made and for Posy’s birthfamily, who understood that love, not gender, makes a family.
And a first blissful taste of buttercream frosting makes a first birthday – shared through the wonders of Skype with her birth-grandma.
I have gotten sucked into doing this stupid My First Chain Letter thing with P’ito, wherein you send a pack of stickers to one person and a letter to six and then eventually you are supposed to wind up with 36 packs of stickers.
If you have already done this and your kid didn’t get any stickers and got their poor itty bitty heart broken, please shut up remain discreetly silent. If your kid you are willing to give it a shot, would you please send me an email with your address: artsweets AT gmail DOT com. I need four more victims participants.
On a totally different note, Sarah asked:
Here’s a question for you: what is good etiquette for going to a gay pride parade if you’re straight? I’ve got a hand-tie-dyed rainbow shirt and a need to do something positive for gay rights – any suggestions? I’ve only recently (last couple of years) moved to [midsized Midwestern city] and haven’t made many friends yet gay or straight.
First of all, thanks Sarah, for being a friend and ally to the gays 😉
It sucks trying to make new friends in a new place.
I think that just going and clapping and cheering and pumping your fist in the air when the gay vets go by adds to the supportive ambiance. You don’t need to haul out the rainbow tie-dye, although if you wear your I heart Sarah Palin shirt, you may get some strange glances.
The one thing that straight people at gay pride do that gets on my nerves is to make out all over the place. It’s pride – shouldn’t I get a break from your conspicuous display of heterosexuality for one day? That, and holding up protest signs, but somehow I don’t think you’re going down that route.
If you want to you, you can make yourself a sign that says something like “one more straight person for gay rights” – it’s nice to know that we have allies amongst the general public (it also makes you less likely to get hit on, if you’re concerned about that, although honestly, I’ve never been hit on at Pride, even when I um, wanted to be.)
Anyone else have any advice for Sarah?
Ironically, I am writing this post for the (4th annual!) Blogging for LGBT families day as my own family is 3,000 miles away from me on the other side of the country visiting Pili’s family. P’ito is being Very Two, and poor Pili is ready to come home and turn him over to me for a month few days.
Last year, this cross-country excursion coincided with our local pride fest, and I was seriously bummed out. All of these years cheering on the families and their cute kids, even walking with our friends and their cute kids… I had this image in my mind of the two of us and our rainbow be-decked offspring marching proudly along. And now, finally, we had a kid – and he wasn’t there.
This year, we will be there. Rain or shine, I will pull out P’ito’s rainbow tie-dye t-shirt that last year was big on him and now is getting snug, and we will pack up the stroller and several hundred different snack options, and we will be there. Naptime be damned.
So often, in my interactions with the world, it’s just me and P’ito and I inadvertantly pass. There’s nothing about me, trying to keep P’ito from grabbing candy off the rack at the supermarket or chasing him down the sidewalk, that screams LESBIAN at you. There’s nothing about the ring on my finger that says, “I’m married to a woman.”
And so, this year, I can’t wait to walk there, to show the world that it’s possible for love to make a family as beautiful as ours. To perhaps inspire some young woman like me to think: I can do that. I can be who I am – and be a mom.
And I hope that this will be the year that New York State realizes what Vermont, Mass, Connecticut, Vermont, Maine and IOWA have already realized – that the world doesn’t fall apart when our families have the same right to make a commitment to each other as straight people do.
A friend of mine is doing her masters thesis in social work. She is looking for participants to take part in an online survey that will take about 30 minutes. Here’s what she has to say:
I would like to ask for your help in finding participants for my Master of Social Work thesis research on anonymous donor preferences of non-genetic mothers. I am excited to have this opportunity to give voice to the experiences of women starting families in this way.
Participants in my research must meet the following criteria:
(a) self identify as a woman partnered with another woman,
(b) neither woman in the partnership has previous children (i.e., through birth, foster-care, adoption, or step-parenting),
(c) participants have selected an anonymous [id release okay] sperm donor in the past 36 months, and
(d) participants are not be the genetic (i.e. egg/ovum) parent.
The research consists of answering an anonymous online survey which takes about 30 minutes. The survey can be found at http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=WeKJ3vzrhjjQzXxpNd9Szg_3d_3d
I encourage you to forward this information to any friends, family members, and other professional or personal contacts who might be eligible to participate.
Please feel free to contact me with any questions about this research.
Thank you in advance for your time.
[Note – if you click through to the survey, you will see her name and contact info – I didn’t want to make the life of a spammer tooooo easy!]
…for those of us who are estranged from our families of origin because of our sexual orientation. May this year open their hearts and let them see that loving well and being loved well matters most of all.
…for those of us who struggle to find love. May this year bring you the family of your choice.
…for those of us who long for the presence of grubby fingers and dirty diapers in our lives. May the doors of homophobia, infertility and beauracratic indifference* finally swing open and let us in – and SOON.
…for those of us who kiss boo-boos and wipe noses but are legally ignored as parents. May wisdom and common sense prevail over intolerance and hatred.
…for those of us who grow older living in fear of the financial consequences of an unjust system that won’t allow us to enjoy the extensive federal benefits of marriage. Again, may wisdom and common sense finally prevail over intolerance and hatred.
Today I am blogging for him.
* We learned today that GB’s case was given a previo by the assessor (not sure when) and readmitted to PGN today. What a thoughtful 7-month birthday present from my friends in PGN.
I have a new post up at LesbianFamily.Org.
Her second child was born less than two months ago.
And you idiots think that the only families worth protecting look like hers?
If you haven’t already done so, vote today. And please, vote to protect my family.
If you have a respectful disagreement, I’m willing to hear it. Cowardly anonymous comments will be deleted posthaste.
This hurts so bad.
Not that it happened. I’m thrilled that the good justices of New Jersey, or at least four of them, do not have their heads up their arses.
But how could it happen in New Jersey before it happened in New York? This is a matter of great and grevious shame to me.
All I can say, is that Eliot better keep his promises.
What do you call someone who is teetering on that fine line between acquaintance and friend?
There is this woman, a friend? I will call her Hippie Sunshine, although that is not, believe it or not, her real name. I am sure she would say we are her friends, because she is of that sort of person who takes ownership of everything around her and makes it a reflection of her. I say that and it sounds like I dislike her. Sometimes I do.
But Hippie Sunshine is so well-meaning, it’s hard to dislike her. She’s horrifically insensitive at times, but it’s the kind of insensitivity that reminds me of our fat white cat, who can’t swish his tail without inadvertantly knocking over glasses of water.
And what does she do for a living, this acquaintance friend friendquaintance Hippie Sunshine? Why she teaches multi-cultural education, of course, this labrys wimmin wuving wimmin she.
She is so eager for us to have a child. She thinks we will make great parents. She asks us every time she’s sees us how it’s going. She tells other people without even asking us that we are trying because they are trying too and we should know each other. And she tells us (without asking them) that by the way the friendly mullety lesbians on the other blanket at her picnic are going to start trying to have a baby too.
What do you call someone like that? A faquaintance? I ask Pili.
Oh GOD NO! That sounds too much like fuck buddy, and eww, ewww no no none of that. Says Pili.
So we send her an invitation to our pride bbq and ask if she will kindly pass the invitation along to those other nice mullety lesbians who were at her picnic. She responds: “The other friends you mentioned are X and Y. They are fine * My partner went to the baby shower on Saturday (I was out of town) *- the baby is due in three weeks.”
The BABY IS DUE IN THREE WEEKS. THE BABY, of the no-spring-chicken-mullety-lesbians, who were just starting to try last labor day weekend. The if-you-thought-for-a-minute-
maybe-you-would-realize-this-is-a-bit-of-a-sore-spot-for-us BABY is due in three weeks. Crappity crap crap crap on a hot crap roof. And she sticks this in a email without even the slightest caution, as if we of course knew that her random mullety lesbian friends were pregnant. So I say to Pili that I think Hippie Sunshine really needs to go to a sensitivity class. Which is hilarious, because of course, Hippie Sunshine? Teaches sensitivity classes.
In Other News:
Pili has to order her birth certificate from the town of her birth, because it is locked up in a safe deposit box and her mother has lost the key, and god only knows how long it will take the gentle hippies in the town of her birth to wave sage over the birth records until the stars are aligned correctly. And do I get any credit folks, for having both my birth certificate and my passport safely stored in my Important Documents file? I’m not kidding, it’s filed under I, for Important Documents.
We are having a bbq on Saturday. Pili gets to show off her mad grilling skillz with her new gas grill. Going to pride in the City That Always Sleeps gives me new perspective on the six frickin hour long pride parade in Very Flat Cosmopolitan City, where we bitched about the beer sponsorships and the endless cars full of politicians slowing down the good stuff, i.e. Dykes on Bikes.
In retrospect, those cars full of politicians seem kind of nice. It feels good to know that you’re enough of a voting bloc that politicians feel like they have to show up and sit in the hot sun for six hours in your parade even if they are running for assistant commisioner of public lavatories and couldn’t care less about the gay vote. On second thought, the assistant commisioner of public lavatories… never mind.
So yeah, anyway, not many politicians in the pride parade here. And last year we showed up half an hour late and almost missed the whole thing.
We met with the Social Worker, Mrs. Vaseline Teeth, today. She urged us to be circumspect, because if we went down to Guatemala and were publically affectionate Guatemala could go the way of China. Thanks, Mrs. Vaseline Teeth, for pointing out the obvious. Now if Pili and I were smooching passionately in her office, or even holding hands, I could understand this, but we are sitting with a good three feet of space between us and in fact I am worried that we are too far apart and look like we don’t really love each other. Mrs. Vaseline Teeth annoys the living daylights out of me, but she is reported to Get Things Done, and I don’t know anyone else around here who has an alternative to recommend.
Wait a minute. We met with the social worker. We filled out forms. We’re gonna have a baby! Hooray!
“Marriage is the most fundamental institution of civilization, and it should not be redefined by activist judges.”
It takes a lot to do this to me, but I am simply beyond snark.