Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Showered with Unrealistic Expectations

what to expect from motherhood
THIS is what Motherhood looks like.  It's definitely not Pinterest-worthy.  
One of my dearest friends is pregnant and I am throwing her a baby shower.  I originally planned to host the party at my home, and I had visions of a Martha Stewart-worthy shindig complete with handcrafted favors, but after falling over six piles of legos and nearly breaking a toe on the highchair, I’ve changed my tune and decided to do it at a local restaurant.  While I may dream of throwing a baby shower that’s pretty and perfect enough to get Pinned thousands of times, I have to be realistic about what I can handle, and the thought of having to get my house de-cluttered and guest ready makes me tired.  Not to mention all the crafting and cooking and decorating and, ultimately, cleaning that would go into such a fete.  

I. Just. Can’t. 

This got me thinking about the whole perfect baby shower phenomenon, though.  These days people really go out of their way to throw showers that are pretty and perfect and Pinterest-inspired.  Oodles of time and money are spent in order to give Mommies-to-be an idyllic idea of what Motherhood is like.  We shower these women with sweet baby clothes, soft blankets, and shiny new baby gear, but wouldn’t we all be better served by showing our friends the reality of what being a Mommy looks like?

I admit that I’m as much to blame as anyone.  Heck, I’ve decided to host my friend’s shower somewhere else so that I don’t have to worry about getting the chair that's covered in marker reupholstered, but maybe I’m doing her a disservice by not letting her see what it’s really like when you’re caring for a child.  Because once you have a baby, “perfect” pretty much goes out the window.  I’m sure if you are someone who can afford a night nurse and a nanny and a fulltime housekeeper you can still maintain a semblance of perfection in your post-baby life, but for those of us who don’t grace the pages of People or Town & Country, perfection after birth is pretty much a thing of the past. 

If I were to host a baby shower that’s reflective of the time I have available, it would look like this:

·      Invitations would be sent via email three days before, because I forgot to mail the paper ones I ordered a month earlier.

·      All food would be courtesy of Trader Joes and would include everything premade – cheese and crackers, crudités, hummus and pita chips, frozen quiches – pretty much Martha Stewart’s nightmare.

·      I would attempt to make cupcakes the night before the party, which would flop and would result in two sinks full of dirty dishes and me having to send the Hubster out the day of the shower to buy cupcakes from Vons.

·      All the beautiful floral arrangements I made would die the night before the party because I forgot to put water in the vases.  

·      All baby toys would be thrown into the coat closet in a towering pile, which would then fall on every guest who opened the closet to hang up her coat.

·      I would be so crazy trying to get ready for the party that I wouldn’t have a chance to shower or put on makeup and I would end up wearing yoga pants and a stained t-shirt with my dirty hair in a messy ponytail.

·      My house would smell like dirty diapers because I forgot to change the bag in the diaper genie. 

·      My pregnant friend, the guest of honor, would end up falling over a rogue baby toy and have to be rushed to the hospital because it made her go into pre-term labor.
So I think you can see why I’ve decided to host the party elsewhere.  I probably still won’t have time to shower before the shower (haha – I couldn’t help it), but at least if my friend trips it won’t be because I didn’t pick up all the toys.  And I’m pretty sure this place won’t be serving food from Trader Joes; at least they better not be considering what they’re charging me. 

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