I’m a 33-year old white queer woman. I live in a cozy brown bungalow in an East Coast U.S. city with my partner of 10 years (Roo), and our son (Tadpole, almost 3). I’m also an NPR listener, a baker, a rock climber, a devourer of novels, and a “helping professional.”
More than four years ago my partner and I decided we were ready to have a baby. We didn’t know many other two-mom families, so I sought out blogs by other queer parents in order to help me imagine the shape our future could take. I searched through profiles, trying to find out what methods other people had used, how many “tries” it took, how they had chosen donors. In the process, I got involved in their stories and have avidly read various queer/adoptive/infertility parenting blogs ever since. I bring up various bloggers and their adventures to my partner at the dinner table–“there’s this blog I’ve been reading where they’ve been trying for years to get pregnant and they finally did!” “I was reading about this family where the kid kept taking her clothes off, so the dad finally secured them with duct tape,” “I was reading this blog writer talking about why it is that some queer folks are so invested in proving they’re ‘just like everybody else'”. Roo is very patient, but I’m not sure she really understands my interest in the lives of people who live across the country and who I have never met. I don’t know that I can explain it myself, but I know that hearing other people’s stories about their journeys to parenthood and the crazy ride it is once they get there have helped me.
Until now, I haven’t been quite ready to start my own blog. In person I’m a little shy, but I can be quite chatty once I get to know you. So I guess it shouldn’t be a surprise that it has taken me a while to feel ready to put myself out there in a blog. I’m also a bit of a perfectionist, and it will be hard to keep from constantly revising, editing, and obsessing. I imagine it will be tough to put my thoughts and feelings out into the world instead of keeping them all safe and cozy in my “drafts” folder. But I’m ready to do this.
So why now?
Part of the reason for being ready for this is purely logistical. This summer I started a new job. It’s a little less insanely-busy than my old one. So I have a little more space in my head and in my life for a new project.
I’ve also been thinking a lot about the one-sided nature of being purely a blog reader. The self-doubting part of me thinks that no one would be interested in reading what I have to say. But I have also been a part of vibrant real-life communities: camps, churches, tight-knit groups of friends. And I know that these communities thrive when there’s a balance of give and take, and when everyone brings all of themselves to the interactions. So if I want to really participate in this community, I need to be ready to share myself with it.
I think one of the other reasons for wanting to talk about my own story (instead of just reading other people’s) is that we’re moving towards TTC #2. We won’t be telling a lot of people in real life about our attempts, but I’m sure I’ll be itching to tell someone every gory detail.
So that’s a bit about me. For all of you whose blogs I have been reading for years, thank you for honestly exploring your lives, for showing some of the forms queer families can take, and for your funny stories. I’ve been a wallflower for a while, but am finally ready to pull up a chair and join the conversation.