Toronto
3 min

Now if the baby could bring me a drink

Toasting queer parents (as long as they're not me)

Well, her name is Emma and she’s from Guatemala, and she has changed our lives. I never knew happiness like this. It’s like our entire home has lit up. Two weeks ago, when the woman called from the agency to tell us about her, we were like, “It’s like she was meant just for us!” We were thrilled.

You think your life is going to change, but you don’t realize how much. I mean, people can tell you but it’s one of those things you really have to find out for yourself. When I thought about it in the past, I always had some kind of excuse for not following through — either we were away too much or we weren’t financially settled enough. But then you wonder how you ever lived without her.

Was there really a time when I Swiffered the house by myself? Did I really Endust the piano? Not very well, I assure you.

Oh, I’m sorry…. Did you think I was talking about a child? Heavens, no. Emma’s our new cleaning lady! She’s wonderful.

Now I know the whole gay world has gone kiddie crazy, but I am the last person on the planet you can count on to have one, adopt one, rent one or build a robot one.

The other night my mother fondly asked about my lezzie friend’s little boy — who is fabulous — and there was actually a hint of wistfulness. Wouldn’t it be nice if I had one? Yikes. Baby pressure. Eek. Fright. Run. Don’t look back. Panic. Bolt. Get a Balance Bar. And an apple. Then run some more.

That’s the first time I’ve heard any wistful grandchild mentions like that since coming out at 19. Back then I was the last chance in my family for my mother to have grandchildren, or as my friend Paul called me, “The golden ovaries.”

See, there was a far away land, my friends, called The 1980s where men danced with fans at clubs while wearing Chinese slippers and parachute pants, where Madonna was good and where the dancefloors were so filled with vapours from hairspray and poppers it’s a wonder the whole thing didn’t go up from everyone dancing while holding onto their lit ciggies. You think smoking should be banned, now — wow, the proximity of cigarettes, amyl, Dippity Do and Adorn hairspray should have meant you signed a waiver. But I digress…. The point being, back then, when you came out it was along with the assumed subheading: “You won’t be getting any grandchildren.” The “I’m Gay” was part one of a one-two punch.

But not anymore. That’s a pretty brilliant place to be at, societally speaking. Just as long as it’s not me doing the having. I have a deep-seated, irrational fear that someone will leave a baby in a basket on my doorstep or bequeath a child to me in their will. I would be like Diane Keaton in Baby Boom having to check the baby at the coat check in a restaurant.

Oh, sure, I would have a darling adorable child who liked the smell of beer and used the F-word on occasion, but that would have to transpire in another space-time dimension where I don’t scramble for the remote when children sing or toddlers pull up didees in commercials on TV. If I could get through |a single viewing of that new Kinder Egg commercial with those freaky kids with their giant brown eyes, seemingly made from chocolate itself, l might have a chance.

Commercials alone have solidified my position perhaps. I know those are child actors, acting as children but still — I think I’m not the only one who was struck forever barren by those Welch’s grape juice commercials with those overdoing-it child actors. That little kid saying, “It’s the taste you can feel in your cheeks” probably prompted more vasectomies than a million pregnancy scares.

Although it’s not for me, I say, “Right on, sistah!” to any lezzie lady or gay fella who wants to venture into the baby world. Truly, well done! That is no mean feat, my friends.

Who doesn’t mist up when the lesbian and gay families come marching along in the Pride Parade? It seems pretty fabulous that those who want to share their lives and their hearts with kiddies now can.

I swear, I could have you all over for a drink to toast your achievements! Your caring and devotion, your selflessness and your dedication and compassion, kindness and noble altruism! Raise a glass to how far we’ve come and drink a toast to the betterment of society through the spreading of love and family.

Oh, wait, sorry the glasses are all dirty — Emma doesn’t come till next week.