NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

PortWatch

May 8, 2014

Scenes from 'Motherhood'

Firehouse celebrates Mother's Day with local parents

Four years ago, Jennifer Wilson was backstage before the Firehouse Center for the Arts’ production of “The Vagina Monologues” when she decided to share a secret with her fellow actresses.

Wilson, a single woman in her 40s, was trying to have a child through in vitro fertilization. Just that morning, she had undergone her 11th embryo implantation.

“For 11 months, I tried to get pregnant with no success,” she said. “Before I went onstage, I talked with the women and said I would love some positive vibes sent my way.”

“We all gave her like this great, big hug,” said Deirdre Girard, a Newbury playwright.

Two weeks later, Wilson found out she was having a baby.

“It was really magical to be part of that show and have it be such a special day for me, too,” she said.

Now the mother of 3-year-old Sawyer Grace, Wilson is reuniting with some of her “Vagina Monologues” co-stars this weekend for “Motherhood Out Loud.”

“The performance is very similar to ‘Vagina Monologues,’” she said. “It’s just a collection of short, little vignettes about parenting, with a main focus on motherhood. My particular piece is a monologue about a new mom.”

In “My Baby,” Wilson’s character tells her 1-month-old baby the story of her birth and how much she loves her.

“There’s so many things that the woman is saying to her daughter that I can relate to,” Wilson said. “I can’t get through my piece without bawling my eyes out. I feel so blessed to be part of that group called mothers. That’s why it’s so personal to me.”

Wilson is part of a cast of 20 local parents, ranging from those who are making their stage debuts to seasoned performers. Director Kimm Wilkinson matched the actors to the pieces to which she thought they would most connect.

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