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(http://www NULL.achildafter40 NULL.com/america-waits-kelly-preston-give-birth-48/kelly-preston-2-2/)You can bet your turkey-raffle ticket that if Kelly Preston gives birth at 48 on the eve of Thanksgiving, an eagerly waiting nation will call it “a sign”.
Not since the 1980’s, when Princess Diana was about to give birth to Princes William and Harry, have I witnessed such widespread, nakedly avid public interest in a pending birth.
From the get-go last May, when Preston announced her pregnancy at 47, this story had the air of being distinctly different from those of other celebrity over-40 moms, including Celine Dion (see link below) who recently gave birth at 42.
Initially, I assumed the upsurge of public sympathy originated from the loss of Preston and Travolta’s young son last year to a seizure.
The pregnancy was heralded as a blessing, considering Preston’s “advanced maternal age (http://www NULL.medpie NULL.com/people/in-the-news/0519101-kelly-prestons-pregnancy-the-role-of-advanced-maternal-age NULL.html),” and a healing from personal tragedy.
But as the movement snowballed, I began to realize that we were really onto something this time.
Anyone following the story knows we’re all standing in America’s virtual waiting room. It’s so tightly packed with paparazzi you can hardly see your toes, let alone swing an unfortunate cat.
With Preston due to give birth in days, there’s an entertaining irony watching the celebrity media poised like an armed camp, breathless, and ready to fire their flash bulbs at the first sign of labor.
And like Diana once did, Preston has born the international crush of attention with dignity and generosity.
As we draw to the finish line, the quasar effect of her pregnancy and impending birth at 48 upon the nation’s maternal consciousness begins to dawn.
In October, People magazine (http://www NULL.people NULL.com/people/archive/article/0,,20429078,00 NULL.html) was cooing about Preston and Travolta’s “tears of joy” and the couple’s “nesting” plans.
Last week, the starting gun was jumped by a few eager paparazzi who announced premature labor pains, only to be gainsaid by Preston and Travolta’s reps.
“Kelly Preston isn’t in labor, so everybody calm down”, reported Hollywoodnews.com (http://www NULL.hollywoodnews NULL.com/2010/11/14/kelly-preston-labor-pains-didnt-spoil-john-travoltas-trip/), amongst other celebrity-watching veteran rags who appeared to informally police their own media throng.
You can literally lick your finger, hold it up to the fickle wind of public and media opinion and sense the change coming.
Accusations of selfishness and the suspicion of a predilection for “accessory” babies in mothers over 40 is strangely absent from the public bleachers, packed with an audience normally clamoring for a good mud-slinging match.
The piquant essence of the “grab your torch and pitchforks” quality of media coverage that surrounded older mothers like Susan Tollefsen, Rajo Devi Lohan and Carmen Bousada de Lara is strangely absent in Ms. Preston’s case.
Perhaps the so-called ‘womb’ is turning since Elephant Moms (deemed grotesque due to their “advanced age”) such as Carmen Bousada and Susan Tollefsen were vilified in the public limelight for defying accepted age norms for pregnancy.
Is it possible that Kelly Preston—now 48 as she prepares for birth—is the harbinger of a refreshing wave of public acceptance for becoming pregnant just a few years shy of 50?
But why here? Why now? And why this particular mom over 40?
And then, it hit me, with a “By Benjamin, she’s got it!”
However unintentionally, Preston is fast becoming America’s sweetheart and good will ambassador for later life motherhood.
In the face of the tragic loss of one child, and the arrival of one so devoutly yearned for, ageist critics must be shamed from America’s waiting room.
If I were a betting mom, I’d put my shekels on a Thanksgiving eve birth and the simple gratitude of a deserving family.
That’s the easy part.
That Kelly Preston giving birth at 48 is met by an adoring public and press wreathed in congratulatory praise the real “sign”—it augurs better times for mothers over 40.
Notes for this blog:
Angel La Liberte is the founder of the website Flower Power Mom—The Truth About Motherhood After 40 (http://www NULL.achildafter40 NULL.com/) (www.flowerpowermom.com (http://www NULL.achildafter40 NULL.com/)), a regular blog featuring news, commentary, real mom stories and expert advice about motherhood after 40.
You can email her at editor[at]flowerpowermom.com. Find her on Twitter: http://twitter.com/FlowerPowerMoms (http://twitter NULL.com/FlowerPowerMoms) and Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Flower-Power-Mom/173079456036144 (http://www NULL.facebook NULL.com/pages/Flower-Power-Mom/173079456036144).
Celine Dion gives birth at 42: http://www.achildafter40.com/why-theyre-dissing-dion/
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Angel on CNN(http://www NULL.youtube NULL.com/watch?v=WySnP2nnwXU)
CNN Mother's Day: "Mature Moms" (http://www NULL.youtube NULL.com/watch?v=WySnP2nnwXU)(http://youtu NULL.be/atScMih4_d0) (http://www NULL.youtube NULL.com/watch?v=sGRro4rHGeA)
AARP's "Inside E-Sreet" on PBS TV (http://www NULL.youtube NULL.com/watch?v=sGRro4rHGeA)
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