I recently met with Rainbow Harmony Project’s (RHP) choir member, Alicia Dueck-Read and her wife, Jody in their home for an interview ahead of the RHP’s upcoming spring concert.
Visiting with the married couple, you get a sense they are like many young couples raising a family. They live in a respectable neighbourhood and want the best life experience for their only child, one year old Felix. However, unlike most other young couples of the day and as a same sex couple, their challenges began even before the baby was conceived.
This is really the first generation of same sex couples who are starting families. That seemed an insurmountable obstacle in my generation. So much so that I personally opted to stay in the closet and live like the rest of the mostly heterosexual society. But that is the topic of another story.
For one thing, it can be much costlier to get to the point of conception, especially if you choose to go the semen donor route. When factoring in shipping along with reproductive material itself, thousands of dollars can be dished out. Laws in Canada don’t facilitate the process either. “The rule in Canada is that you cannot pay anyone for reproductive material which in turn means there is a shortage,” says Alicia Dueck-Read.
When asked why they didn’t go the adoption route, like many couples, it seemed too painstaking a process. Alicia explained, “I just perceived that there were a lot of barriers to adoption and that it was a very expensive and difficult process to go through.”
Regarding concerns about taunting their child may encounter having same sex parents in school, Alicia says, “I think things are getting better and I hope they continue to get better in schools and Winnipeg.”
Today, Felix is a healthy one year old who is in the teething stage. If his parents allow him to attend his mother’s upcoming concert, the three lullabies sung by the choir may help soothe his teething pain.
The Prairie Lullaby Spring Concert will feature a varied repertoire – from lullabies to award winning movie scores to songs and music from around the world. The RHP’s musical director of the last five years will bid adieu as she conducts the choir in the final song, Thank you for the Music, a tune particularly close to her heart.
The Rainbow Harmony Project will be performing Sat. Apr. 29 at 8 p.m. at Knox United Church located at 400 Edmonton St. Tickets are available at McNally Robinson Booksellers, Happy Cooker, Rainbow Resource Centre, Rainbow Harmony Project members, online Tickets – Rainbow Harmony Project and at the door.