STARRED REVIEW
March 29, 2011

Behind the Book: An unusual path to motherhood

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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.     
 
Beth
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."
 
Pam
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. 

 

Three Wishes
By Beth Jones and Pamela Ferdinand, Carey Goldberg
Little, Brown

ISBN 9780316079068

Get the Book

Three Wishes

Three Wishes

By Beth Jones and Pamela Ferdinand & Carey Goldberg
Little, Brown
ISBN 9780316079068

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