Friday, January 9, 2015

Hosting a Baby Shower

Thanks to a heads-up from KC, it has just come to my attention that my sister-in-law (ie CSIL, ie The One Who Got Pregnant With Twins On Her Second Try and Is Already Ginormous) is planning to at some point ask me whether I would be comfortable hosting her baby shower.

My first response?

I WOULD RATHER GOUGE MY EYES OUT WITH A RUSTY SPOON AND THEN EAT THE RUST-COVERED, SLIMY BALLS WITH A SIDE DISH OF BARBED WIRE DIPPED IN RAT POISON.

Because, actually, I was trying to think of a way to ask her if I could just not come altogether.  Ship her a thoughtful gift and just skip out on the festivities.  Being in a crowd of people excited about babies and talking about how wonderful it will be and how cute they'll be in all the widdle outfits sounds like hell.  HELL.  So, at first, I was medium furious that she would even think of asking me.  In fact, I started angry/depressed/confused/possibly-Clomid-induced crying immediately.

But... then I thought about it...

And this is something that I would have loved doing Before.  And there's only one opportunity for me to throw her a baby shower EVER because if she has any more kids after this they will probably be adopted and even if they're not it's unlikely she'd throw a baby shower for a second (or I guess technically third?) child because who does that?  And if I weren't all barren and depressed, planning this for her would be a really meaningful and special process, so it just sucks that PCOS would take another significant thing from me.  I don't want to let it.

But then back on the other hand, planning a baby shower for someone else while I continue to play host to a barren wasteland of shattered dreams sounds ill-advised.  If I go, I know that I will cry.  Probably in the middle of things.  DEFINITELY in the middle of things if I'm on Clomid.  And if I'm hosting it's going to be a lot harder to sneak off to do that.  Should I invite that pain?  Can I withstand it?  Would it be worth it?

I'm looking for advice here.  If you've attended or hosted a baby shower while struggling with infertility please share your experience and advice.  She hasn't asked me yet, so I have time to formulate a response.

In the meantime, my backup plan is to throw an over-the-top Venetian Masquerade Ball themed baby shower where masks are required and everything is so grand and distracting that no one notices the girl behind my mask is a stunt double and I'm in the bathroom crying.

9 comments:

  1. It is the double edged sword of all double edged swords. One of my first posts as a blogger was "I survived a baby shower". The truth is I have thrown MANY in my five years of infertility. For me the sweet outweighs the bitter. I do love babies, kids, young people etc. Ultimately, I don't want to forget the reason I am trying to get pregnant. It's not the white picket fence with 2.5 kids, it's because I love kids and so does my payday. So, While it's difficult for me...it is joyful for me too. Over the years it's gotten less difficult and more joyful. There are some baby showers I will NOT even attend let alone throw...I know my triggers...but for most of the women in my life I can do it...dare I say well? Yes, I can throw them showers well. I would also rather be the host at any shower I feel obligated to attend...again...I know my triggers :). Ultimately...it's up to you.

    I feel no shame when I tell someone I won't host/attend, no matter how close we are as family/friends because I've learned the hard way that I should NOT host or attend when it will do harm to me, the mother to be, our relationship, and/or my own sanity. Not even close to worth it. I could tell you a couple of epic fails that have cemented this policy but I won't damage my good reputation that way...suffice it to say, I could say no to ANYONE about hosting as a result of those failures. Again, I just say do what feels right to you.

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    1. All good points. I'm really happy to hear that for you it can be joyful and the sweet outweighs the bitter. I WANT that to be the answer for me, too. It's just pretty hard to make the call in advance. I wish life was like a video game where you can restart the level and opt out of the Baby Shower sidequest if you find yourself incapable of succeeding at it.

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  2. I agree it is ultimately up to you and what you think you can handle. However, since you are asking for advice, I will add my two cents.

    DO NOT DO IT. I hosted my SIL shower a couple of months ago and it was honestly one of the worst experiences of my life. I know that sounds dramatic, but it is true. There was so much baby stuff in my house and then I had to go set things up and none of the other hostesses were reliable. That situation is what made me start my blog. It honestly started with a really angry post about how awful the baby shower was, but I deleted it once I sent my blog to family and friends to avoid drama. This is just my take, but it was too far beyond my limits. The ohhhs and ahhhs over the baby stuff was too much, and when she pulled out a hand sewn quilt from maw maw my heart just about broke in two.... especially when MawMaw told me later she has had a baby quilt ready for us for a while now (breakdown!) Also, this may have been in my head, but I felt like everybody was watching me to see how I was and that made me uncomfortable. It was like nobody wanted to actually ask me how I was, but everybody was talking about it. If I cold do things over, I would say no, but that is just me. Good luck with whatever you decide! Just remember to do what is best for YOU. Set healthy boundaries for yourself. Infertility is HARD... be nice to yourself.

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    1. These are also all very good points. I do not want to have a meltdown in the middle of CSIL's special moment. I'm sorry that for you hosting a baby shower was so awful. The blanket thing sounds like an ordeal.

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  3. Hard to say. It would probably be very difficult to do so without losing it. Especially, as everything is still so fresh. You can totally tell her that ou aren't comfortable doing it but then youd have to tell her you are struggling. I cant think of a good reason to not do it without having to also be honest with her about it. Good luck.

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    1. Oh she knows. She just doesn't always reeeeeally understand it. :/

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  4. I think that is awkward that someone would ask you to host a shower. Don't people typically approach the mother to be with an offer to host a shower? I would never ask anyone to throw a party for me. Good luck with whatever you decide!

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    1. I have exactly no idea what typical baby shower protocol is. You could be right. But that doesn't change the fact that her plan is to ask me, unfortunately. :/

      Thanks for your good wishes!

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