Friday, October 25, 2013

How Many Baby Showers?

My sister is going to throw me a baby shower. And so she is quietly brainstorming, organizing, collecting, and planning. My sister had seen a crib that I'd posted to and my family was looking into getting that one for me.

My mother-in-law picked up my husband, and took him crib shopping. He asked me which one I'd prefer and she purchased it. That is when I found out about my sister's plan regarding the pinterest crib. So, I suggested that my family go in on a special wool crib mattress that I'd seen that is organic and has all kinds of health claims (my family loves this kind of stuff). My mother-in-law freaked out when she found out. She already bought a mattress too and feels like my family is stealing her thunder. Well, they feel the same way over the crib itself. The crib is kinda the Cadillac of baby gifts, but honestly I'm way more excited about a wool mattress.

Following this little hiccup, my mother-in-law told me that she wants to plan her own baby shower for her side of the family. My husband had already told her that my sister was going to do it, so I was a little upset that she was trying to get around him by approaching me. I said firmly, “No, my sister is doing the shower and she is going to need your help.” She pouted, and whined that my sister doesn't know her side of the family and key people are going to be left out. Then she said that she didn't think my sister had any business doing the shower. She could stand taking a back seat to my mother, but not my sister! I reminded her that it is not a competition. And she asked me to make sure my sister got in touch with her.

Knowing that my mother-in-law will next be trying to get her way with my sister, I decided to prepare my sister for the conversation. I suggested that she make a quick phone call on her way to work, thanking my mother-in-law for volunteering to help with the shower and have her start putting together a guest list complete with mailing addresses, and then end the call promptly. Then I coached her not to ask for suggestions unless she really wanted input, because my mother-in-law will try to take over everything if she thinks there is an opportunity to do so. I also suggested that she always have another specific task ready to assign for each phone call she receives after that.

Well, my sister isn't ready for executing plans; she's still brainstorming. So, she is too freaked out to call my mother-in-law. And the longer it takes her to make that call, the more anxiety mother-in-law is having thinking that she's not going to be included in the event. This is also allowing time for my sister-in-law to involve herself and then things will really get complicated.

My husband is convinced that his mother will completely ignore our wishes and just take her own shower underground and make it into a surprise party. And we will come for family dinner and be ambushed! But, if my sister keeps her occupied with the official shower, maybe she won't feel the need or at least won't have the resources to plan a separate party.  

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