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Times Two: Two Women in Love and the Happy Family They Madeby Kristen Henderson, Sarah Ellis
Sarah Kate Ellis, a high-powered magazine executive, and/i>
TO EVERY GOOD LOVE STORY, THERE IS A TWIST. Times Two is about two women meeting, falling madly in love, and realizing that they are so crazy about each other that they want to have a family together. The fact that they both get pregnant at the exact same time is where things start to get interesting.
Sarah Kate Ellis, a high-powered magazine executive, and Kristen Henderson, a laid-back rock star, decide it’s time to start their family. After determining that Sarah should get pregnant first while Kristen works on her band’s new CD, they head to a fertility doctor to start the process. But after months of drug treatments, miscarriages, and heartbreak, Kristen decides to start trying, too. That’s when the utterly improbable happens: Sarah and Kristen find out that they are both pregnant—and are due three days apart.
Overjoyed by the news that they are both expecting, Sarah and Kristen are also overwhelmed by all that lies ahead. Both have successful, demanding careers. Both have large, close-knit families nearby, including two strongly opinionated mothers who immediately want to be involved with everything. And both are completely clueless about the challenges they’re about to face. They soon realize that none of their previous accomplishments has prepared them for the highs and lows of impending motherhood: not Kristen’s stint touring with The Rolling Stones, nor Sarah’s march up the corporate ladder in the world of women’s magazines.
They go through everything first-time parents-to-be experience—but twice over. They’re producing double the hormones, double the morning sickness, double the cravings, and have double the ups and downs. From the start, Sarah and Kristen think of their babies as twins, each woman carrying half of a set. But for two women who’ve always finished each other’s sentences, they suddenly find themselves on opposite ends of the mothers-to-be spectrum, with different opinions on almost everything. One wants a drug-free birth, while the other wants an epidural at the first sign of a contraction. One is dying to know the baby’s gender, but the other refuses to find out until she hears the baby’s first cry in the delivery room. The difficulties of having two pregnant women under the same roof are multiplied by the legal and social obstacles of being a gay couple. Told from Kristen and Sarah’s insightful and hilarious she said/she said perspective, this touching, modern family adventure will entertain, enlighten, and resonate with readers of all stripes.
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
--Nanette Gartrell, MD, author of My Answer is NO…if that's okay with you: How Women Can Say No With Confidence
Principal Investigator, US National Longitudinal Lesbian Family Study
“Kristen Henderson and Sarah Kate Ellis have written a book so disarmingly funny, touching and readable, that you almost forget it is about all the important issues of our time—women's rights, civil rights, and family rights. The journey of Kristen and her partner, Sarah, in their quest to have a child, seems like Nora Ephron's idea of a script—hilarious at times, frustrating, maddening and, finally, a Hollywood style happy ending. This book captures the political zeitgeist of all the modern families in the country, and shows that, whatever your beliefs and affiliations, the most important component in the make-up of a family is love.” --Cherie Currie, Lead singer of The Runaways and author of Neon Angel
"What was it Tolstoy said? Happy families are all alike? This book proves the great Russian writer was absolutely wrong. Happy families come in all varieties. This funny and touching book is Exhibit A." -- A.J. Jacobs, bestselling author of My Life as an Experiment and The Year of Living Biblically
“Kristen and Sarah somehow make a "slice of life" story of love, career and family into an entertaining page turner… This book helps to carry a movement, a shift in paradigm, that has been a long time coming. I hope Times Two reaches a wide and varied audience of readers so that this truth becomes our new norm: society needs healthy, loving, functioning families regardless of how they are made or how they look.” --Kathy Valentine, bass player and member of The Go-Go's
"A spirited portrait of an unconventional family." --Kirkus Reviews
"Henderson and Ellis present, without breaking a sweat, a compelling case that the kids are alright, and so are the moms. " --Library Journal
An unexpected double pregnancy surprises and challenges a publishing executive and her rock-guitarist girlfriend.
The importance of starting a family became paramount for Ellis, vice president of marketing for Real Simple, and her girlfriend Henderson shortly after the New York couple met at a Manhattan lesbian bar in the mid '90s and began a relationship after reuniting there years later. Ellis recalls growing up business-minded at a young age, eager and determined to leave her Staten Island roots. Once her career took off, however, she struggled with the constant cloaking of her sexuality. Henderson was drawn to music early and enjoyed forming girl bands in high school. She experienced a Lilith Fair performance in college and, together with all-girl rock band Antigone Rising, was signed by a major label in 2003. Both writers braved a series of unsound lesbian relationships before embarking on their own together. Soon committed to each other and carefully contemplating their future—Ellis in New York nurturing her publishing career, Henderson on the road with her band—talk of children surfaced as both yearned for a child. The authors describe their misadventures in ovulation cycles, sperm donors and the clinical insemination process, which was decidedly unromantic and highly stressful as false positives and a heartbreaking miscarriage crushed their hopes. With determination and the aid of medical science, both conceived simultaneously. After the births, they faced complex legalities regarding adoption and religion. Ellis warns: "When you're a gay woman contemplating motherhood, youwillbe affected by politics—whether you like it or not." Undaunted, Ellis and Henderson remain bright, engaging narrators, each evoking separate histories and private sentiments in alternating chapters that differentiate and complement each other. The book is dedicated to their children Thomas and Kate, "our perfect storm."
A spirited portrait of an unconventional family.
- Free Press
- Publication date:
- Product dimensions:
- 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.90(d)
Read an Excerpt
From the beginning of our relationship, we knew we wanted children. Each of us had moved up the ladder with relative ease in our chosen career fields, so we naïvely thought the most difficult thing about getting pregnant would be making the decision to do it. We were wrong. First one of us tried, then the other, with no success. And then, all at once, we were both pregnant: on the same day, with the same donor, and with due dates that fell three days apart. Immediately, every single person we knew had one question: “How are the two of you going to do this?” Easy, we thought—there are two of us. One of us would run errands. The other would offer foot rubs. We’d rotate the late-night dog walks and order every meal in. Since we’d conquered the music business and the publishing industry, a little morning sickness would be a piece of cake, right? We pictured a sort of pregnancy fire brigade, each of us pitching in to help the other until we got too big, at which point we would … well, we hadn’t thought that far. “Let’s just celebrate!” we told our friends and family.
And thank God for our friends and family! It’s like they knew when asking us the fateful question of how we were going to do this, the real answer was “You’ll be helping us, sillies!” By the time we were in our ninth month, our home had a revolving door on it—with mothers delivering meals, siblings lugging baby shower loot, fathers assembling things they never knew existed, and friends dog-sitting and driving us to appointments.
Our grand delusions about the joys of pregnancy were squelched by the second trimester. Between the two of us, we experienced every pregnancy-related ailment listed on www.Babycenter.com., from numb hands to swollen ankles to inappropriately timed laughter. “I knew this was going to be fun,” one of us would mumble sarcastically in bed, and the other would mutter, “I just had no idea how much fun,” finishing the sentiment. Then we would roll over and snuggle with our individual body pillows.
But with our unlikely twins growing inside of us, every moment of those nine months taught us more about life—and our relationship—than any baby book, therapy session, or birth doula could. We learned, for example, that our mothers are always right. We learned that God has not come up with a better way to get a baby out than to have the body turn itself inside out like a tight-fitting pair of your favorite Jordache jeans from 1984. And that homeopathic remedies like moxibustion and traditional therapies like Pitocin and epidurals all work—depending on your definition of the word “work.”
This book is our family’s personal story. But in many ways, it’s a story for anyone who has ever taken a pregnancy test and felt the heart-wrenching disappointment of a negative result. It’s for families who would go to any lengths to conceive a child. It’s for anyone who has ever been told their way of life is not acceptable. But mostly, it’s for any woman who has fervently wished that her partner could just understand what it was like to be pregnant. Let this book be your empathetic partner, because our story redefines what it means to walk in another person’s shoes. Trust us, we’ve been there … Times Two.
© 2011 Kristen Henderson and Sarah Kate Ellis
Meet the Author
Kristen Henderson is the founding member and guitarist of the all female rock band Antigone Rising. In 2005 the band was catapulted into the national spotlight when Starbucks and Atlantic Records partnered to release their debut CD, From the Ground Up, in 5000 stores across the country. She is the mother of two and divides her time between Manhattan and Sea Cliff, New York. She is not getting much sleep these days.
Sarah Ellis is the head of marketing for Real Simple magazine, and has been a publishing executive for more than a decade, most recently as Creative Services director at Vogue. She is also the mother of two and divides her time between Manhattan and Sea Cliff. She is finding it impossible to keep her house looking Real Simple tidy with two newborns.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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I couldn't put it down and read it in one day! I had to keep turning the pages to see what happened next. A great book about two women in love and their story of making a family. Heartfelt,Honest and Funny....sperm in the closet and pickles on the beach made me laugh out loud!
An inspiring and candid account of two people in love and the beautiful family that they made. Even though I knew how the book would end I still found myself deeply engrossed with it's contents. An accurate portrayal of the hardships and struggles that go into making an "unconventional" family. The book is humorous in parts, but is also a social commentary on the adversity that gay couples must overcome to start a family. Great read.
This is a story of true love! Reading Kristen and Sarah's story of how they came together as a couple and then facing the various setbacks in trying to become a family will make you laugh and cry. I couldn't put this book down!! It was a joy to read!!
A fantastic love story about two women, two babies and their love "times two". (you have to read it to know why it is truly a blessing). Once I started reading I could not stop...their story and quest to start a family was so heart warming! Kristen and Sarah make you laugh until you cry, in all the right ways! These ladies are a great example of: love is love no matter who we fall in love with!
And i loved it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! But seriously. They got inseminated the same day..why did it come as such a surprise to them?????????
I have a sister in law who is gay and she has a partner. Her partner got pregnant with their first child. We r hoping my sister in law is next. This was a great story!