And Now They Are Five
By: Tosha Woronov
Once upon a time about five years ago two friends met for dinner. They sat over plates of vegan tacos and lentil pate, the air between thick with the worries consuming one of them. Her name is Brandy, and she had been trying for over a year to get pregnant with her wife, Susan.
The other friend, Tosha, was at a loss for words. She knew not to mention adoption; others had, apparently, and although they meant well, it stung too much. Brandy wanted to carry a baby inside of her, and was in anguish that it hadn’t happened, wasn’t happening, might not happen. Tosha had a two-year-old son of her own, and understood Brandy’s need for this.
Brandy cried, and then so did Tosha, over the latest in her and her wife’s quest to be parents: Susan’s tentative suggestion that perhaps she try to get pregnant. Now the word was failure. “She thinks I’ve failed,” Brandy cried. “My body has failed and now she wants to use hers.” (Tosha wanted to say that maybe she could see some beauty in this, that for all their hurdles –two lesbians unable (unfairly) to make a baby without medical assistance of some sort- perhaps the silver lining was that there were two women who could try. Heterosexual couples didn’t have that option. But the friend didn’t want to hear about silver linings. She wanted to cry.)
That was five years ago.
Susan and Brandy gave it one more shot. I think that’s what they said. “We’ll try one more time. If it doesn’t work, then Susan will try.” But Brandy’s body didn’t fail them; in fact it succeeded beautifully. (No new mother, Tosha was convinced, had ever come out of pregnancy, labor, breast feeding, sleeplessness, and new-parent-chaos as seamlessly as Brandy did: with grace and passion and love love love. And back into her skinny jeans within moments.)
Yes it was beautful. She was beautiful. Sophia. She of the feathery hair and helium-balloon voice. Their love incarnate.
But wait there’s more.
Brandy and Susan went for it again. Even with fears –of college educations and more square footage and a mini-van –thick around them, they went for it again. They didn’t hold back. They knew success in this area was no guarantee.
What the heck, they said.
And as Tosha writes this, baby Penn AND baby Bella are in the hospital with their mommies and big sister. They are healthy and beautiful. Brandy is exhausted, and beautiful.
Once they were two, and then they were three, and now they are five. Five! Five hearts joined as a family, embraced by dozens of people to love and support them.
A modern family.
But see, there’s nothing modern about their love. Not at all. It’s as old as time.