Before I commence, I must fully disclose that I am an immigrant, sufficiently integrated into the American culture to pass for an American as long as I keep my mouth shut. The problem with opening my mouth is that my accent would betray my origins, but you’re not necessarily wrong to question the congruency of what I’d say with the American norms either.
So, what I mean to say, take what you read below with a grain of salt. Who am I to debate American traditions, anyway?
That being said…
I think you should have a baby sprinkle.
I had a memorable baby shower. My five sisters-in-law organized an amazing afternoon get-together, perfect in all ways – from the theme they chose, to the decor pieces which they mostly hand-made, to the games they designed and facilitated, to the food and music we all enjoyed. It was not those things that made the afternoon unforgettable though, it was their intention and the effort they lovingly put into it that made my heart swell. Hubbyloo’s family were all present (unfortunately, my parents were only able to join us on Skype), and our closest friends, too. It was an afternoon filled with laughter and joy, we were excited to catch up with people dear to our hearts, and were really grateful to see people happy for us and just as anxious to see us a complete family.
It was a day dedicated to the three of us, a day set aside to celebrate the miracle I was tenderly growing inside of me.
We live in the world we live in, and celebrations of any kind tend to be costly affairs for participants. A baby shower seems to be designed as the main tool to gather the necessary items before the baby’s arrival. While I am so grateful for all the gifts we received, which did make the preparations for welcoming Copiloo into the world less painful, what I carry with me to this day, almost two years later, are the feelings I had throughout: the nervousness of entering a house full of people who traveled miles to join in our celebration; the joy seeing Hubbyloo so proud to be an expectant father; the limitless love for a ball of life growing inside of me while we were talking about his existence so far as an extension of my being, and imagining what he’ll be like – will he be lucky to get mommy’s looks and daddy’s smarts?; the love for my sisters-in-law who showed me that our baby and us were worth the effort of matching every little detail in the house to the party theme; being speechless when my mother-in-law gifted us an old blanket made by her mother in 1964; reading notes of well-wishes from people who would have loved to be present but were not able to.
It was a day we were showered with love, we were hugged and kissed and patted on our backs for the wonderful path we were on, we received tidbits of encouragement and advice, and some unnecessary (at the time), yet true warnings, we were honored for being on our way to joining the wonderful(ly exhausted) community of parents. Our unborn son was loved and welcomed by his extended family and friends; there is no doubt he could feel the positive energy, warmth and love surrounding him that afternoon.
Do you remember your baby shower? The good feelings, love and friendship you and your unborn child were surrounded with? There is no reason why your second, third or fourth pregnancy should not be honored the same way. Just because you were pregnant and gave birth once, or twice, or thrice, does not make your current pregnancy less of a miracle. It certainly does not make this pregnancy less of an effort, less strenuous or less exhausting. You are still creating life and that is reason enough to be celebrated. Plus, your second (third, fourth?) kid is not even born yet and you’re already putting him on the path to suffering from the Second Child Syndrome. Allow him to get his share of prenatal love from his family and friends, and allow those close to you to share their excitement and well-wishes with you and your partner.
If your concern is that a baby sprinkle may be in bad taste due to the material aspect of the celebration, make it a point that gifts are not required. I can assure you though that people will bring gifts. Even without a baby sprinkle, people will be sending you gifts. If you do not want to deal with unnecessary items, be diligent about creating and sharing your baby registry with things you do need.
Have you had a baby sprinkle? Would you have a baby sprinkle? How would you feel if you were invited to a baby sprinkle? Thanks for reading. It’s been delicious, right?