Monthly Archives: June 2008

waffles

J and I have spent the last twenty-four hours recovering from our weekend of reverie with our girlfriends. It was mostly fun. We took them wine tasting, ate altogether too much really good food, played some poker, and drank more wine. One member of this group is a person J and I would rather not have in our home (she hates children, tries to play “Queen Bee,” and generally makes everyone self-conscious about her appearance). Yesterday, after they left, we had to spend a bit of time detoxing ourselves from her personality, but we had a wonderful time seeing two of our dear, dear friends.

This week, we will meet my niece and spend some time at my parents’ place “on call” for my sister in case she needs someone to hold the baby while she eats/showers/sits in silence/runs errands. I’m actually looking forward to that, and this weekend, I found myself resenting the above-mentioned woman for keeping me from meeting the baby. I think this is a good step. J isn’t quite there yet, but I think she will be better once she meets her.

For a few days I have been fielding emails from potential donors. I hate it. There’s a guy from Italy who thinks he could ship (no), another who is willing to travel to us each cycle from across the country (don’t want to deal with the hassle or the cost of flights), others who are local and can’t spell or write a complete sentence (obviously no), and then there are some who seem perfectly normal who are in-state but too far for fresh donations and would have to ship. As I go through these emails, I don’t have any of the same excitement I did when we were looking for Mr. G. Instead, I’m almost indifferent. There are the obvious ones whom we won’t even consider (a lack of ability to spell or string a sentence together is a huge NO for a couple of English instructors), but I think J and I are at the point that we just don’t care. Is that horrible? I mean, it would be nice if the guy wasn’t hideous-looking, and we want someone who is healthy, but otherwise, I’m wondering how many of these factors really matter to us anymore. I’m also wondering if we really want to deal with a real person on this matter.

J will have enough classes to qualify for health insurance in the fall–and because we’re married, I’ll get it too. Maybe we’ll get really lucky and have some kind of fertility coverage (doubtful), and we’ll be able to jump in with both feet, buy the frozen goods, have a couple of IUIs per cycle and get this thing done. That would be nice.

Honestly, we’re waffling a lot these days; neither of us is sure which direction to take next, so we’ll just keep thinking about it and looking forward.

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Filed under Ramblings, sperm

better

Thank you all. Your outpouring of support has really helped me today. Why can’t you all move into my neighborhood? I would make delicious coffee and tea every morning, and we could sit out in one of our gardens and talk, and it would be lovely.

I spoke with my sister just a few moments ago. She’s exhausted and scared and emotional, and she needed me. I’m sort of known as the Vice Mom in our family as the oldest child/daughter, and so I’ve often filled this role for my siblings. When I called, my sister needed that, and she needed her older sister. I told her I was proud of her, that I loved her, that we would all be there for her. It felt good to be in that role and not in the childless mother, cry my heart out, jealous bitch role. That’s my ugly side, and it’s a side I’d rather not bring out into the light of day again. The sister is a better side. I’m generally a good sister, a good daughter, a good friend, even a good partner, but I have my ugly side. She can stay away for awhile.

One of the many things that made yesterday so difficult was that J brought up adoption before we even got out of bed. She suggested that we start trying to adopt while still trying to get pregnant. My warped little ears heard, “Let’s give up on getting you pregnant–since you’ve clearly failed–and try this other thing.” Of course, this is far from what she said, but it’s what I heard. This (rather, I ) started an argument and a very bad day. Ultimately, she’s just feeling the urgency of needing a child. The pain of not being pregnant and having this break and the birth of the niece overcame her. In case you were wondering, my reaction and warping of her words didn’t help matters. Ugh.

So it only made sense that my niece would be born yesterday because I was already a wreck, J and I weren’t getting along, and there was no way I could have handled it gracefully. Stillness was our solution for all of it, and it worked. We each had a beer, watched So You Think You Can Dance, and ate spring rolls and rice for dinner. Then we snuggled on the couch with cats draped over us. Good medicine.

Today I am better. We both are. Today, J and I are close and understanding each other. We’re preparing for our ladies’ poker group to come visit (and play cards!) for the weekend and getting excited. Today we are continuing to figure out our next steps toward getting me pregnant. But more importantly, today I am looking forward to meeting this (apparently) gorgeous, big, long baby (8 lb 4 oz, 21 inches long) with the beautiful head of dark brown hair whom I get to call my niece. I won’t get to do that until next week, but it’s going to be good.

See? I’m better.

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Filed under coping, crappy days, family, ladies' poker, niece

a page turns

My sister had her baby girl today. Mother and child are both fine according to my mom. I heard the baby cry over the phone.

I am an aunt for the first time. My mom is a grandmother for the first time. J and I are nowhere closer to being moms.

More later. For now, I need to be very still and figure out how to feel.

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and the party goes on

 

Don’t you love a cheesy soft-focus photo of a wedding cake? No? Nor do I, but it’s a requisite photo we needed in our scrapbook, so you get to share in the glory both here and in my new header.

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We went to my parents’ house this weekend. The people who were once J’s outlaws are now here official inlaws, and they wanted to celebrate.

So Saturday, we celebrated. We started the day with breakfast and mimosas. The parents surprised us with money to get J’s car back. This was something we have been refusing for over a month now, but as J said, they make it fairly difficult to turn it down when it’s wrapped in a bow in the guise of a wedding gift. And so we will soon become a two-car household once again, which is good because our other car just hit 200,000 miles and she’s tired.

Our celebration continued at a local lake where we swam and had a beer and generally enjoyed one another’s company. Later, my sister joined in on the festivities as well. She still has not had her baby, and she’s amazingly spry still. I was impressed. I felt her baby a few times. Anytime I put my hand on her belly, the baby moved for me. This made me like her.

At some point during this lovely relaxing day, we were called out to my stepdad’s garden for a surprise. Let me preface this with some explanation, though. My stepdad is an aging hippy, a master carpenter who built their house (twice–it burnt down in a forest fire the first time), and he is also a yard artist. Their home is in the country on top of a knoll with oak trees and pine trees. On their four acres, they have all different kinds of metal sculptures, recycle art, and cement garden boarders made into shapes like ankhs, pentagrams, the wheel of the year, and so forth. He’s always got some cool new sculpture going. He’s always pouring concrete and drawing things in it. And so, when we were called out to the garden, we were presented with a blank palate of freshly-poured concrete, handed some screwdrivers for the carving, and we commemorated our new wedding date. We were incredibly touched, and we made a lovely carving.

Later, after we had gone back out to touch it up, we came back in to discover wedding decorations and a cake complete with two brides (Cindarellas, to be precise), bubbles, champagne, and my sweet family wanting to continue celebrating with us. Have I mentioned they’re great? They are.

That day was lovely, and the next was too. The parents took us golfing on Sunday morning, which was great fun.

When we returned, we found in our email inbox an email from our former mentor where we used to live. She has lived with a “comanion” for many years, and she informed us that she and her partner had been married after a 30-year commitment. This was the first she has ever come out to us–to anyone we know at all–and we were so thrilled and touched.

And so J and I are still getting choked up on a nearly daily basis because this groundbreaking moment in California is so very touching and real and beautiful. I still can’t quite believe that we are a part of it.

For those of you tired of the wedding topics, there are many more things I’ll blog about soon: our new healthy lifestyle, the fires, my soon-to-be-born niece, seeing the Indigo Girls tonight, and more. Stay tuned! 

 

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Filed under celebrations, family, marriage, wedding, weekend

skipping town

 

J and I are off to see the family this weekend. It will be nice to get out of town and celebrate a bit. We’ll be back in a few days!

Toodeloo!

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Filed under weekend

this and that: disjointed ramblings of a newlywed with PMS

First things first: There is a new baby in the world, born to the lovely ohchicken. Welcome to the world, Sparky, and congratulations, Moms!

Thank you so much for all of your congratulatory comments. J and I have been overwhelmed with pride as we have watched and read news story after news story about couples being married and communities celebrating with them. This has been a great moment to be a part of, and we feel really lucky.

For the past couple of days, we have been putting together a scrapbook, cutting out articles from the paper, and sending out announcements. This weekend we’re going to my parents’ house to celebrate with them. It’s quite possible the celebration will be interrupted by the birth of my niece. I certainly won’t complain if that’s the case.

Otherwise, there isn’t much going on with us. I’m looking for a new donor, but I’m increasingly convinced that we just need to save up for frozen sperm. I’m just so tired of trying to sort out weird men.

For now, I’m going to tackle tasks that I can actually do something about:

1. I’m trying to find a new hairstyle that will ease me through this really awkward transition from short to longer-short hair. It was just my luck that I had tons of photos taken and appeared on the front page of a moderately significant newspaper with the hair from hell. Ack.

2. I’m working to find my motivation to lose weight again. Yes, I know, I’ve got all the motivation in the world if I think of having a baby. Blah, blah, blah. I used that in the months leading up to our first insemination, and it worked out well. For some reason, that doesn’t work anymore though, and maybe this is because it’s becoming harder and harder to imagine a baby in our future. I was having a hell of a time even remembering to take prenatal vitamins for the past few months. Anyway, this is something I’ll be working at again, and I’ll write more about this life-long struggle when it’s not triggering some crazy, cranky PMS hormones.

3. I’m going to plan my class for the fall. This can be a fun task, especially with the break I’ve had from teaching and with the prospects of new students, new colleagues, and new experiences. I may actually be prepared when the fall semester begins. That would be impressive.

I’m sure there’s more, but I think I’m done jumping from topic to topic for now. I’m confusing myself–one minute I’m joyous, another I’m bitter. Oh how I hate my hormones, especially when there’s not a chance in hell that these “symptoms” have anything to do with pregnancy. Ugh.

But I don’t want to end on a negative note, damnit. I started off talking about new babies and weddings and wonderful readers, so I’ll end with one of my favorite photographs from this week. It appeared in the SF Chronicle:

And if you’re interested in seeing more photos–and there are lots of tear jerkers–take a look here. Don’t miss the wedding album on the right of that page. I guarantee wet eyes all around.

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Filed under celebrations, craftiness, dear readers, diversions, family, Hair, health, marriage, Ramblings, The Great Sperm Search, The Long Break

Married! (with photos)

We did it. We got married.

Yesterday was an oddly stressful day. We hadn’t exactly planned anything regarding this wedding; we just knew we wanted to be around other people getting married when we did it. I had to work all morning, which only compounded the stress, but when I was finished, we got some clothes together, bought a couple of bouquets of red roses, and headed to the county clerk’s office (about half an hour from our house). The traffic on the way was horrendous, and we were certain we would be late. We were, but only by five minutes, and we were soon to find that this didn’t matter at all.

When we pulled into the parking lot, it was surprisingly empty. We did see one car driving away with two older lesbians with the hugest smiles on their faces. We knew we must be in the right place. We started to make our way through the maze of buildings, and still we saw so few people. We rounded a corner inside of one of the buildings, and then we saw them, all of these couples waiting to either get married or apply for marriage licenses.

As we made our way up to the door of the small clerk’s office, a woman came up to us asking if we were getting married. We told her yes, and she gave us a warm smile, handed us some flowers and a little wedding favor, and congratulated us. It turned out she was from our UU church, and she was there with a bunch of others waiting to celebrate with everyone who got married. It was a lovely welcome.

We got in line, and everything started to feel a bit like the DMV, but with lots of smiling happy gay people, some even in wedding dresses.

 Many people asked us, “Are you getting married today?” And each time we answered yes, they showered us in congratulations. There were people at the counters shouting out, “Can someone be a witness?” and people would get out of line and run over to them.  

 We had asked a woman from our UU congregation if she would be our witness since we knew she had planned to be there, but when we couldn’t find her, we asked a woman in line if she would do it. She was honored, but we soon had to take that back when our witness (and possibly new friend) came to find us. (She’s our age, gay, went to the same grad school as us, will be teaching with J in the fall–and she has an adorable 10-year-old son. Cool woman, and she was so excited to be there with us.). As we waited, we talked with some wonderful couples in front of and behind us. There were reporters everywhere, news cameras left and right. I would turn around to find cameras filming J and I with our bouquets. There were newscasts going on; it was amazing. We soon learned that ours was one of only a few counties to decide to stay open on the first day. That was truly exciting.

Eventually, we found the front of the line, and we were called up to write our check, apply for our license, and say our oath that we promised we weren’t lying about previous marriages and such.

We were then ushered outside where we had a couple of arbors to choose from (we could have chosen the indoor chapel as well–which the county clerk had decorated herself, but it was a lovely day outside). We followed our justice of the peace, who was also being followed by two reporters. We had no idea that they were to be photographing us through the whole ceremony!

The ceremony itself was quick. We got to say, “I Do.”

We got to exchange rings (they were the same wedding bands we’ve had for several years, but now they were official!).

We also shed tears. It was overwhelming! 

But the greatest moment of all was when our officiant said,

Now, by the power vested in me, and in accordance with the laws of the State of California, it is my pleasure and honor to pronounce you married.

You may seal your vows with a kiss.

And we did, and this photo was in the paper.

Our witness and another UU friend took photos throughout the whole ceremony. We had four people photographing us, shutters going off every other second. It was weird! After the ceremony, another reporter from a news station nearby came and asked if they could film our hands and rings. Then, a man who had brought his flock of homing pigeons (doves) to share with the newlyweds came and offered me a dove to release, so the news crew filmed that too (I have no idea if it ended up on any news program though).

We then started to walk away, and as we did, small crowds of people cheered us and congratulated us. It was so heartwarming, so beautiful. We were part of history, and that was monumental.

But most importantly, we’re married. We’re really, really married.

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Filed under marriage, milestones, wedding