I have been invited to several bridal and baby showers over the past five years and I have successfully managed to avoid them all.
It’s not like I just blew them off. I already had something important going on. But if I’m being perfectly honest, I didn’t mind that I couldn’t be in attendance.
I didn’t have a bridal shower. It would have been completely unnecessary as my husband and I had already been living together for almost a decade before we were married. I understand that many couples don’t have that luxury and actually need household items. But isn’t that the purpose of wedding gifts?
Baby showers are a slightly different story because there’s no reason to have any of the stuff needed for a baby unless one gets knocked up. Plus, plenty of people have babies that can’t afford to have babies, so gifts become super helpful.
But the concept of sitting in a room with a bunch of women while one extra special woman is forced to open gift after gift and generate generic reactions of excitement and gratitude for hours upon hours freaks me out.
When my time comes, of course I’ll be so thankful for the gifts. We need all the help we can get. But there’s got to be another way to gather that feels more like a celebration and less like collective torture for all in attendance. I’ve become more interested in couples hosting co-ed parties where guests can bring unwrapped new and used baby stuff, and it’s really just a regular party without emphasis on the gifts or the mother-to-be.
However, this Spring, traditional showers will officially become unavoidable for me. It’s a part of adulthood that I could do without, but I know I’ve got to occasionally suck it up and endure the wasted life hours. So how do I intend to make the most of it? Here’s how.
1. Do something for myself before the shower.
This is particularly true if I am traveling for the event. If I do some yoga, take a walk, or maybe get a pedicure in advance, maybe I won’t feel like I’m spending the whole day on the shower.
2. Dress comfortably and in layers.
I could be at this venue for 4+ hours (ridiculous), and I don’t want to be stuffed into anything that would make me any crankier. Same goes for temperature control— layers ensure that I won’t be freezing if the shower is held in a polar vortex.
3. Enjoy plenty of booze and food.
Might as well get a meal and a buzz out of my situation. *Must be mindful with the booze as not to word-vomit snarky comments.
4. Deflect questions by asking people about themselves.
It takes the pressure off of me and makes others feel important. People love to talk about themselves. This is just a good social tip in general.
5. Situate myself among women that are interested in more than mindless chit-chat.
I once found myself in conversation with a group of sorority sisters where each girl kept repeating variations of the sentence, “There are like so many girls named ‘Megan’!” It was rough. I need to avoid that.
6. Smile. Because smiling, even when forced, releases endorphins.
This is your typical “fake it til you make it” strategy. If I’m going out of my way to actually show up to one of these things, I must like the lady in the spotlight. Keep smiling, keep shining.
In the end, girls who hate showers show up for the people they love, even if it’s not the most ideal way to spend their time. I thank the Universe for this first world problem and will persevere!
Author: Megan Ridge Morris
Editor: Renée Picard
Image: Used with permission by RSGranne