Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Zion for President – Have Faith

The New Jersey Supreme Court met today to decide the fate of our friends’ marital status. Now the true wait begins, after years and years of courts and lawyers – this is their moment. How do you wait for something like that? Wait to see if you are legally whole? Counted, validated, seen by this country’s laws. Our friends are solid people – nothing will break them, but surely this process has to cost you some sanity? Just the bare essence of the question – will we be treated the same? It’s insane just to utter the words, really.

Feels like the adoption process to me. I remember that knot-in-the-stomach rollercoaster ride. Like somehow this blessing that so easily comes to others is put entirely in the hands of strangers. Strangers who can decide or not decide to make you a family, and judge you on their terms.

We got an email yesterday asking for advice – from someone like us many years ago. Terrified of the adoption process. How will we be judged? How can we wait? Which road to choose? She asked us about our path with trans-racial adoption and openness.

After two years of fertility drugs
Needles in my ass
Singing Suzanne Vega to focus as the oil based drugs slowly stung their way in
My brilliant soulmate and (then not legal) wife said
We always knew we wanted a birth baby and an adopted baby – one option went first
And failed.
Stuck in the crazy Clomid cycle, I could not get out and she rescued me.
Why risk your body and our sanity when so many little ones right here need a home?
That was it. We just let it all go and moved forward.
We found a queer-friendly agency, signed up and were told to wait.
Nine months they said – kinda funny.
Like the New Jersey plaintiffs wait – on eggshells - not knowing - questioning wardrobe and language and history
Four months later the phone rang – “a woman is in labor who picked you – get on a plane right now”
Eleven hours later – we had a son.
A miracle
Smushy crying and amazing.
But what of the fear?
I feared the birth family
I feared the state laws
I feared judgments of multi-racial critics
I feared homophobia
I feared losing him
I feared everything
And then we walked into that hospital room
Two little short white girls in the south of this country
In the bayou
And I met my hero
and she took all of my fear away
My son’s birth-mom – was thanking me – was loving us – was teaching us mothering tips and traditions
When she was giving the most important thing in her life to me, to make me a family
She was thanking us
And my fear was gone
We all needed each other
We all became kindred sisters on that day
She asked if I would ever bring him to see her
would he know her?
And the truth was so easy – whatever he wants is what we will do
And peace settled in for all three of us women
Sometimes you have to have faith in the stranger
The ones with the power
The ones who we fear most
The ones who are different
Most often will do the right things

My son’s birth family is African-American Southern Baptist
Knowing we were lesbians they chose us
How is this possible, you ask?
So did we
Her answer floored me
Our religion told us not to judge
We prayed and found you were good people

That was all they needed
Sometimes you just have to have faith

Zion was in the backseat of the car today reading a kids’ book about the Constitution – He told me that at his old school all of the kids wrote and signed a school constitution.
Did everyone abide by it?
“Not really – almost never,” he said.
Sometimes it’s the same with grown-ups buddy, I told him. I hope you change the world. I look at him with his chipped pink nail polish, snowy boots and mussed hair grinning ear to ear.
“I am going to be the first black president. And I will never sit in the back of the bus, I will vote for Kerry and I will not be narrow-minded! And mama, I will change the world!

While we all wait for the court to decide, let’s have faith too. Posted by Picasa


At February 15, 2006 10:15 PM , Anonymous cari said...

lol- think polished nails are just inherent to lesbian moms' sons? our's likes to paint rainbow colors on his, toes too! - lesbian mom to one fabulous 5 year old

At February 15, 2006 11:21 PM , Blogger Shelley said...

No fair making me cry! Love it. Go Zion! And tag, you're it... see for deets.

At February 16, 2006 1:40 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

That was unbelievably beautiful. Families like yours give me hope that things will change. That by the time your Zion is old enough to be hurt by schoolyard bullies, there won't be any more people picking on bi-racial families, or boys with two mommies.

I used to work in a school. At the end of each school year we would start preparing for the next school year. We sent emergency contact forms home with every kid, and to the new kids who were coming the following year. Years ago the contact form had a space for a mother a space for a father. But then they added two extra spaces on the bottom for possible step parents. This happened years ago, in the late 80's I believe.

Well, while I was there, they realized they had to take off "mother" and "father" designations and just write "parent" on all the spaces. That year, we had ten kids coming in from same sex parents. Ten kids out of 115. That's almost ten percent. It gives me hope.

At February 16, 2006 11:34 PM , Blogger Lo said...

I'll vote for you, Zion.
These posts keep making me cry, too. The capacity for love and generosity that some people possess (I'm thinking of your son's birthmother) really overwhelms me and gives me, well, hope.
So here's to hope!!

At February 18, 2006 3:24 AM , Blogger Green Dads said...

I'll vote for Zion too! :-)

I think we met you all at Family Week this past summer.

When I saw all the wonderful children there and their families, I thought to myself, "these kids are going to change the world someday"


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