Jennifer Lopez talks baby in What to Expect When You’re Expecting
LOS ANGELES—The group of actors attending an L.A. news conference for the film What to Expect When You’re Expecting, which is based on the hit self-help book of the same name by Heidi Murkoff, include three who play women who choose to have babies and one who is forced to adopt. Cameron Diaz, Elizabeth Banks, and Anna Kendrick are the women who get pregnant, while Jennifer Lopez plays a woman who has exhausted all fertility avenues and decides, along with her husband (Rodrigo Santoro), to adopt an Ethiopian child.
Although Banks has a child in real life, the baby was born to a surrogate, and neither Diaz nor Kendrick have children. Only Lopez went through the process that is at the centre of the film: nine months of pregnancy with all of its highs and lows. She had twins with now ex-husband Marc Anthony in 2008. She says that although she didn’t play a pregnant mom in the movie, she did read the book during her pregnancy and immediately after her twins were born.
“I found the book to be so accurate when I was pregnant, and I understood why everyone has this book and why it is the first thing you get when you are pregnant. I remember reading the book in my bed after giving birth to the twins. I was in a lot of pain and I said, ‘No pain killers.’ But I was going crazy from the pain. I wanted to hold the babies, but I couldn’t because it hurt so much. I had this nurse helping out, and I said to Marc: ‘The babies don’t love me and they are not going to know me. They are going to love the nurse,’ and I started crying. And he said, ‘The babies love you; they don’t even know anything yet.’ And I said, ‘No, I am their mother; I should be holding them.’
“I opened the book and it said that on this specific day you get this hormone drop and it is called the ‘baby blues’, and I thought, ‘This is what is happening to me right now.’ It made it so much better, because you do feel out of sorts and you don’t know what is going on. So in that sense, the book was a great tool for that moment.”
Lopez had been briefly married twice and had a well-publicized relationship with Ben Affleck before marrying Anthony in 2004. She was 35 at the time and gave birth to her twins four years later. She admits that although she never considered adoption and always wanted her own babies, she saw the merits of adoption firsthand when her character meets her adopted child for the first time.
“Before the movie, I never thought about adoption at all. I was just focused on having a baby of my own, and it took me awhile. But I held those Ethiopian twins [who play the baby], and you fall in love instantly. It occurred to me how easy it is to embrace a child who has nothing. It is really a beautiful, selfless act of love and something where you think, ‘I understand these feelings; I understand how this happens.’ ”
Although she has more help than most single mothers, Lopez says that she identifies with other single moms because, inevitably, there comes a time when you have to leave the babies to go to work.
“All you really care about is not messing up the baby part. Everything else falls into line after that, and that is my philosophy. As long as that is working in the right way, then I can dedicate my time to my career. I have a lot of help, but it is just like any single working mom’s plight. There is the guilt that comes along with it. You leave and they say, ‘Don’t go to work again, Mommy,’ and it’s a juggling act. You have to say ‘No’ when you have to say ‘No.’ ”
Watch the trailer for What to Expect When You’re Expecting.