Three Wishes is the story of three best friends who transformed their lives by taking motherhood into their own hands. Carey, Beth, and Pam had succeeded at work but failed at romance, and each resolved to have a baby before time ran out. Just one problem: no men.
Carey took the first bold step towards single motherhood, searching anonymous donor banks until she found the perfect match. What she found was not a father in a vial, but a sort of magic potion. She met a man, fell in love, and got pregnant the old-fashioned way. She passed the vials to Beth, and it happened again. Beth met man, Beth got pregnant. Beth passed the vials to Pam, and the magic struck again. They had setbacks and disappointments, but three women became three families, reveling in the shared joy of love, friendship and never losing hope.
Below, each of them shares their experience of deciding to write the book.
Carey When I turned 39 and made the decision to become a single mother, I started keeping a "Baby Journal" to help me work through all the complex emotions the whole process evoked. In the back of my mind, I thought it might turn into a book one day, but really, I was thinking of it more as a legacy to the child I hoped to have. At one point I even wrote: "If you are a future child of mine reading this, I just want you to know that I really, really tried, in the months and years before making you fatherless, to find you a dad." Later, after Beth and Pam and I shared such amazing luck, I thought: "This is an incredible story. We have to tell it." They say you write the book you need to read; I was doing that, writing just what I would have liked to read as a single woman facing a harsh biological deadline, looking for role models and inspiration. † ††
When I turned 39 and made the decision to become a single mother, I started keeping a "Baby Journal" to help me work through all the complex emotions the whole process evoked. In the back of my mind, I thought it might turn into a book one day, but really, I was thinking of it more as a legacy to the child I hoped to have. At one point I even wrote: "If you are a future child of mine reading this, I just want you to know that I really, really tried, in the months and years before making you fatherless, to find you a dad." Later, after Beth and Pam and I shared such amazing luck, I thought: "This is an incredible story. We have to tell it." They say you write the book you need to read; I was doing that, writing just what I would have liked to read as a single woman facing a harsh biological deadline, looking for role models and inspiration. † ††
When I was 35, my husband left me for a much younger woman, and we were divorced. Suddenly, I found myself losing the future I thought I'd have. †Then I rallied, and made my life better than it had been. But, like Carey, I saw myself turning 40 without a child, and I didn't want that to happen. It didn't, but my child didn't†arrived in the way I'd anticipated. My life has had some bumps, but I (generally) remained optimistic, believing that if I was true to myself, pursued my dreams, and had fun, that even the harsh stuff would have a way of tempering itself. Turned out I was right. I wanted to write this book not only because it's a great story, but because it's hopeful. I want our story to be read, and shared, and for people to pass it on, saying, "Read this, I found a part of myself in it, and it reminded me that while things aren't always easy, the hard parts shouldn't stop me from following my dreams."
Countless times, I told a woman our story and she opened up and shared hers, or said that a girlfriend was in the same situation as we had been: older, alone, desiring love and family. I wished I could talk to that friend, to encourage her to go after what she wanted, on her own, even if there were no guarantees. I personally believed that taking control of my life and preparing for single motherhood was not a zero-sum game where I was forever giving up my chance to fall in love and have a mate, even marry. I had heard all the gloom and doom news and the scary myth that my odds of getting hitched at 40 were slimmer than being in a terrorist attack. Not only was that false, but I had been in one in the Middle East and survived. That had to count for something. As more and more women rooted for us to write a book, I began to appreciate how telling our stories could shine a meaningful light on how friendship and being true to your desires in the face of convention can bring unexpected joy.†
Copyright 2010 BookPage Reviews.
BookPage Reviews 2010 May
Saluting Mom on her special day
Celebrating Mother's Day is always a treat, but this trio of books will make the day more meaningful, thanks to their insight, inspiration and humor.
Kelly Corrigan--writer, wife, mother, cancer survivor--became a household name after the publication of her best-selling memoir, The Middle Place, and popular YouTube video, which has 4.7 million views to date. Her inspirational message takes yet another form in Lift, a letter to her two young daughters, Claire and Georgia. She shares memories and milestones, and muses on how parenthood has changed her: "Before I was your mom, I didn't have one of those plastic dividers in my silverware drawer. I'd just take the basket out of the dishwasher and dump all the knives, forks, and spoons right into the drawer." She writes with honesty and elegance about her terror at Claire's illness, her joy at a friend's impending motherhood and her sorrow about the death of another friend's child. And through it all, Corrigan evokes parallels between hang gliding and life: One must go through turbulence to achieve altitude, the titular "lift." At 96 pages, Lift reads like a letter to a friend--a short read that will leave a lasting impression.
Working moms don't have a lot of time, but even the most harried mother should steal a few moments to enjoy Just Let Me Lie Down: Necessary Terms for the Half-Insane Working Mom. This handy survival-primer will offer a laugh, some respite or both. Kristin van Ogtrop, editor of Real Simple magazine, shares her own half-insane moments, from the cringe-inducing introduction (alas, vomiting is involved) to the funny work- and home-life tidbits throughout. Dispatches from the worlds of career and motherhood intersect in entries ranging from "Nanny envy" to "Sisterhood of the black, lightweight wool pants"--and there are important questions, too, like "Why do working moms and stay-at-home moms make such assumptions about each other?" Really, there's something for every mom here, not least an entry to which any mother can relate: "Time management: What?"
LUCKY IN LOVE
A few years ago, three friends--successful journalists, all--learned they had another important thing in common: They were nearing 40, childless, with no potential fathers in sight. Three Wishes is a memoir-times-three about what happens when co-author Carey Goldberg decides to go to a sperm bank. The eight vials she purchases turn out to have an unexpected effect: As each woman consider using the vials, she falls in love and becomes pregnant without an assist from science. Goldberg, Beth Jones and Pamela Ferdinand take turns sharing their stories, which are not without heartbreak, but happiness and hope ultimately prevail in this surprising tribute to friendship and motherhood, despite the odds.
A review of Kelly Corrigan's The¬†Middle Place
A behind-the-book story from the authors of Three Wishes
Kelly Corrigan's YouTube video:¬†Copyright 2010 BookPage Reviews.