Friends threw me a baby shower last weekend, and it was amazing. Friends from different spectrums of my life came to shower me with love and advice. Since we live about a thousand miles from both sides of our family, I didn't have any kin there, but that didn't mean they weren't thinking about us.
Friends from work, friends from church, even a friend I'd made on Twitter celebrated my baby with me.
On the invitation to the party guests were asked to bring a book instead of a card with a cute poem:
"One small request that won't be too hard
Please bring a book instead of a card
Whether Cat in the Hat or Winnie the Pooh, you can sign the inside cover with a note from you.
Baby will become very smart, if my advice you do heed,
if we begin early, she'll soon love to read."
I guess my friends thought it was as cute as I did because Baby Girl now has SO many books as a start to her collection. Originally I had planned to put all of the books downstairs on our bookshelf but now I don't have the heart to take them from her room. I'm going to get some new wall bookshelves this week.
We played the classic baby shower games: Deciphering melted chocolate from baby diapers, and guessing the size of my belly.
One thing I really enjoyed was the advice cards women filled out for me. I smiled as I opened them all later and silently stored the tips one by one in my mind.
But as I got home and started unpacking my gifts and organizing Baby Girl's room, the strangest, scariest thought came into my mind: What if she never gets to use these?
A sick feeling swelled in my stomach. I didn't want to think about it.
I've heard of women experiencing postpartum depression and having extreme fear of something bad happening to their child. I all of a sudden am questioning myself for taking gifts out of the box, or pulling the tags off of her clothing items, terrified something bad will happen to her before she ever gets to use it.
Perhaps this is just the beginning of my motherly worries that will take over my world. I use to feel like some women were over-protective and maybe a little overboard when it came to measures they'd take to keep their kids from slight harm, but I think I get it now.
Now, more than ever I've started to worry about conditions my child may have, signs I'll want to look out for after she's born, and things I'll want to do to ensure her health.
I almost started crying at I debated whether or not I should take the tags off the rattle shoes she'll wear when she's discovering her feet. Is it presumptuous of me to open them? I know I'll love them but what if she never gets the chance to wear them? It's morbid thinking but I can't help it. I'm beginning to wonder if something's wrong with me, or if maybe it is just another side effect of my crazy pregnancy hormones.
Visit Jennifer's personal blog BabyMakinMachine.com.