When a new baby is expected it’s customary to celebrate its arrival in some form or another. In America the big trend is obviously hosting a baby shower before the baby is born.
It’s a trend that is becoming more popular on these shores as well. It’s taken the British a while to succumb to the concept but succumb we have it appears.
But because it’s still a fairly modern event here, for some it still feels sort of awkward.
I find the concept of hosting a baby shower difficult, but that doesn’t mean I don’t love attending them.
In fact going for afternoon tea with a close friend to celebrate her impending arrival amongst a party of other ladies is actually quite a delightful experience.
So why when it comes to myself do I just feel anguished by the idea?
I can only assume it’s because as a person I’m not one that likes to be the centre of attention, and as I’d be the centre of everyone’s attention because the baby hasn’t made its appearance, it would put me in a position where I know I’d feel uncomfortable.
It’s the same reason I’d hate to have a huge wedding and probably the reason why I’ve always panicked at the thought of doing a speech in front of a room of people.
I’d feel the pressure that others would be looking to me to make everything fun and enjoyable.
Some people have that confidence and others don’t. I’m the kind of person who’s happy to take a back seat.
But with a new baby, it’s selfish to think that others won’t want to celebrate. After all a new baby joining the family is something that should be considered a major event that involves other people.
Baby sister won’t just be our baby. She’ll have grandparents, she’ll have aunts, uncles, cousins, godparents, my closest friends will want to celebrate her, Mr London Mum’s closest friends will want to as well.
But instead of a baby shower, I prefer the idea of having a ‘welcome to the world‘ party. A concept I didn’t consider until a friend of mine had her baby about a year ago and that’s how she celebrated his arrival.
For me it made sense. And as a concept it felt less awkward.
The star of the show is the baby- which it should be. As long as she makes an appearance whether that’s asleep or not people will be happy because that’s ultimately who they’ve come to see.
They can bring presents for her if they wish but not feel obligated to, knowing that we will already have everything for her.
And I love the fact that it’s gender inclusive. Baby showers are very female driven parties, but it takes two to tango and create a child so why should the Father not be part of a big event celebrating his child’s birth?
The other reason I love it is because quite simply I’d be allowed to have a drink… or ten. Baby showers are great fun, but for the pregnant lady there lies a problem. Alcohol is forbidden, and if she has gestational diabetes like I do you can take away all manner of fun tasty treats too.
Post birth nothing is off-limits anymore. Give me that wine I couldn’t drink over Christmas. And hand me that sugar filled cake!
Having a welcome to the world party also ensures control over how many visitors come in those early post birth days.
By having a party to celebrate her arrival, people know they have a date to look forward to to meet the new bundle and it takes that pressure off the parents and allows them that time to breathe and establish routines that work for them without the stream of constant people knocking on the door.
And it also allows good recovery time for the mum. Because it’s often forgotten that childbirth is quite traumatic and having that time to recover is essential for mental, emotional and physical reasons.
Hosting still isn’t something I’m keen on. I’m not a natural host but the idea of a party of this kind really resonates with me. So an events management company would be great to take the pressure off.
I could leave all the hard work to them and seeing as her birth will coincide with what will be a nice summer (fingers crossed), the idea of an outdoor summer party in London sounds ideal.
All we’d need is the barbecue to be fired up by chefs willing to do the hard work and the champagne to be chilled on ice and my glass to always be full 😉
To me it sounds much more idyllic.
How do you feel about baby showers? And have you come up with any other ways to celebrate a child’s arrival?