This morning Staceyann and I chatted about her two big projects. She is trying to get pregnant, and she is making a film about non-traditional motherhood.
This morning Staceyann and I chatted about her two big projects. She is trying to get pregnant, and she is making a film about non-traditional motherhood. Staceyann is hoping that her film will include anyone and everyone in the community that has a story to tell. So if you are interested in participating contact Chin at the end of her blog.
— Grace Moon
Moon: So Chin what are you working on?
Staceyann: I’m working on making a baby. And I’m working on making a film about the process of motherhood.
Moon: Shouldn’t you do one thing at a time?
Staceyann: I suppose, I could. But that is just not my style, Moon. I really don’t know if my body can do the do. It’s been twelve years since I’ve been close friends with sperm. So, I’ll just say I’m trying to become a mother. And discovering that’s there almost nothing out there that deals with non-traditional motherhood for lesbians, or women without a partner who want to co-parent.
Moon: Okay so who is helping you out here? I mean with advice, guidance?
Staceyann: I’ve got an amazing team of friends, colleagues, professional baby-makers, talking to other women, and using loads of good sense, and passion, and hope, and risk.
Moon: Okay so the movie, what is it about? And you said you were looking for other women?
Staceyann: Tiona McClodden, who made the documentary Conversations with Black Womyn, she is in on this madness with me, BABY MAKES ME: A Film About Motherhood Outside The “Normal” Parameters. We are particularly interested interested in single women, in lesbians, in women of color, in poor women, in women who choose this path of motherhood… the marginalized groups.
Moon: Yes, I know Tiona, I told her I wanted to be interviewed for your movie, but that’s when I thought you needed help with insemination… I was volunteering.
Staceyann: for what, Moon?
Moon: The insemination!
Staceyann: Lord, you sure you know where to put it? The sperm, that is.
Moon: Don’t even! I’m sure I could be good at it! I like a good challenge.
Staceyann: Just like a lesbian! Get dirty. Then call foul. LOL. On a serious note, this insemination stuff is no joke.
Moon: Okay, okay… So you want to interview anyone who has a story about motherhood, or child bearing or rearing that is anything but hetero-normative.
Staceyann: I’m talking to folks who feel their stories are largely unrepresented in the media. All Lesbians welcome. All WOC welcome. All Single Mommies. Women who have used known or unknown sperm donors.
If you are not Mrs. Cleaver, we want you to reach out to us. We want to present another idea of motherhood, a wider definition, outside of the nuclear, heterosexual, mainstream one.
Motherhood and parenting are becoming huge issues, and aspirations in the contemporary lesbian community. We are looking at how we make families.
Moon: Now are you trying to make a baby at the same time that you are doing the movie?
Staceyann: Yes, I tried once already, and wept when my period came rushing at me two weeks later…
Moon: How did you do it?
Staceyann: I did it at home. I’m gonna do a couple of attempts before I call in the professionals. This is emotional stuff.
Moon: Are you taking hormones?
Staceyann: No. I’m in good health and in good physical condition, I’m good to go, they say. But lots of women are good to go and do not conceive right away or at all.
You just have to try and have good friends to tell you you are not a failure when you feel you’ve failed by not getting knocked up. I guess you just do it till you can’t. Then you consider other options.
Moon: So its really a mystery.
Staceyann: Yes, the freaking mystery of creation I wish it were more fucking transparent.
Moon: Funny that its so complicated, yet humanity continues to populate the earth.
Staceyann: I could do with a sure-fire road map here! My teen cousins are busy making babies every year, while I’m here cooking slime and eating grass to try to make it happen.
Staceyann: In times like these I believe in God. I believe she’s trying to get me. Then I sober up and remind myself I don’t know shit.
Moon: Yeah… I can’t speak for Her or you so, I’m not saying anything.
Staceyann: LOL I know you are chicken, Moon. Move aside if you are scared of being lightning-ed.
Moon: Look, baby making is not my path. I don’t know what that “baby pang” thing is.
Staceyann: Really? Never had a pang? In the nether regions?
Moon: Its a physical pang right? Never had it.
Staceyann: It aches, and you get all sweet and weepy when you see babies and you dream of what your face would look like on a little girl, or some adorable boy who saunters over from the next table. You just want to be in the park with a stroller.
Moon: All the women I know who have had baby pangs have had babies. So you’re going to have a baby its just a matter of time… and perhaps expense.
Staceyann: Expense, but that is making less and less of an argument for or against. Loads of women have done it with far less than I would have to make do with. I couldn’t do private school or weekends in Paris, but I could feed and clothe a kid
Have you seen the hi-tech-ness of sperm donoring? You pay for the sperm, and you can do so on your debit or credit card, thank you very much!
Moon: How much is sperm?
Staceyann: It varies from about $200 to whatever they want to charge you, they charge you for his baby pic and and pics of his family. The more elite the sperm, the more expensive.
Moon: I see. Are you particular about race?
Staceyann: It’s funny. I always thought I’d choose some sperm that might make a kid that looked a lot like my partner and I but since this is a solo journey, I no longer have that guideline. No axe murderers. So, smart, good looking, but that is also subjective. Healthy. I can’t run for shit, so it would be nice to give the baby some running genes… I just want a good person.
Moon: Okay when it finally happens… I can baby-sit, I’m good for a few hours at a time, just not 18 years in one stretch.
Staceyann: LOL Yes. WE know. You need time to see about the MANY ladies in your life. No time for BABIES.
me: NOT TRUE
Staceyann: SO TRUE
Moon: I just have a bad reputation!!!
Staceyann: Yes. You just found that reputation?
Moon: No! for some reason it found me!
Staceyann: Jesus is gonna get you for that LIE, Moon. So You gonna help with the other non-insemination stuff?
Moon: Yes, of course, let me know. I have a car I’ll help you drive to the hospital when he/she arrives.
Staceyann: Drives would be nice. So, for the film…
Moon: Okay is there anything else we should let people know?
Staceyann: We need resources; money, paper, pens, hands… This is a labor of love. ASTREA gave us a grant and we bought a fancy camera. We’ve been filming, and we need subjects we want the community to be well represented with respect to diversity.
We need lesbians whose families think they shouldn’t have kids, women who are going it alone, or “weird” configurations of family, even donors who are a part of the family.
Moon: So how does anyone get in touch with you and Tiona to be a part of the film?
Staceyann: e-mail us babymakesme[at]gmail.com, and you can read more about the project on facebook, and please repost.