March 11, 2011

Field Report (3) : The Baby Shower

As you all know, the M.O.M. and I are anxiously awaiting the birth of our second child (Princess Teacup).

With this event comes the requisite baby shower, whereupon all of our family and friends gather to celebrate this joyous occasion.

When we had our first baby shower (for Lil Sippy Cup), the M.O.M. and I discovered that we had two entirely different ideas as to what constituted a "baby shower".

You see, the M.O.M. comes from a rather small nuclear family with a few extended family members (i.e. aunts, cousins, etc.) scattered around the globe.  Growing up, the majority of their family events were hosted in proper catering halls and, therefore, controlled by the anticipated rules of decorum that govern such places.

I, on the other hand, come from an enormous family.  My maternal grandmother had 10 children (my various aunts and uncles).  If you take that number and multiply it by the amount of children they each had (my numerous cousins) and then add the multitude of children they had in turn, you have a small infantry regiment.

More importantly, we are all clustered in the Northeastern part of the United States.  Growing up, all family events (from the most minimal birthday party to the more extravagant weddings) were colossal affairs.  Other than the weddings, these events were hosted in various apartments throughout the city and, therefore, any rules of decorum and accepted behavior were dictated by the governing body of adults.  The same adults who, by the end of the night, were dancing with lampshades on their heads.

The M.O.M. and I, literally, came from two different worlds.  These two worlds collided during that first baby shower. 

The M.O.M. expected that the baby shower would be a small, intimate affair; one where only the female members of our respective networks of family and friends would be invited. 

I, on the other hand, expected the baby shower to be a massive house party. 

After weeks of passive-aggressive insinuations, we agreed that neither option suited us and decided to amicably meet in the middle of the two extremes.  While (for the most part) it was a smooth co-mingling of the two groups, I am pretty sure some of our family and friends walked away from the event shocked and awed either by the sheer number of people at the party hall we had rented for the night or at the fact that we were not serving alcohol.

Now, with this second baby shower looming in the weeks to come, we are faced with the same set of decisions.  This time, however, we're prepared.

At the end of the day, a baby shower is meant to be a joyous occasion, one in which your family and friends gather to celebrate your accomplishment and to formally welcome the little-person-to-be into your shared world.  This does not mean that men cannot be invited.  Nor does it mean that serving alcohol is entirely appropriate either.  You, as the expecting parents, need to decide what works best for you

This is your day.  No one else's.  If a random aunt is upset at the fact that you have a DJ playing music, then so be it.  If a random uncle is upset that there isn't a keg to be found anywhere in the rental hall, then so be it.  It isn't their event.  It is yours

So, be happy.  Be merry.  Be proud.  Be yourself.

For our part, this is exactly what we intend to do.

1 comment:

Yayo said...