Mom Roulette

My BFF, Chica, is adopting a baby girl. I am SO FREAKING HAPPY for her that I can hardly stand it. I finally get to pay her back for all the cool parties she has thrown for me (wedding, bachelorette party, baby #1, baby #2 - you get the picture!). So I found the cutest non-cutesy baby shower invites available on the web and called her up to get the particulars, only to find that she hadn't registered yet.

Now when it was time for me to register for my first baby, my other BFF, G, an experienced mom, took me in and showed me the ropes. She told me what was essential and what was a gimmick. I was fairly prepared when, at five months pregnant, I dragged the husband in to register with me. You know, to get him involved in the pregnancy. I had planned to offer this service to Chica, but have been out of pocket so often since returning from Colorado, that I have been unable to make it to Ginormousville to go with her. I suck.

Anyhoo, last night Chica and her husband made the safari into the land of all things baby. Instead of feeling better now that she is registered, she is now even more confused about what is gold and what is dross. She was going to take my advice and register for everything and sort it out after Baby Chica is born, but it seems that Babies R Us has a new (crappy) return policy. They are no longer doing exchanges without receipt unless it is on your registry. So she is wary of registering for a bunch of darling pink girly things just in case Baby Chica turns out to be a Chico. Drag!

She sent me this e-mail upon her return: "OMG HELP ME! Just came back from Babies R Us and feel confident that my child will not survive me." Poor Chica! I couldn't help but laugh, but she has gotten such conflicting advice from all of her different mom friends that she doesn't know what to think. Some say pacifiers! and others say no pacifiers! Some are pro technology and others think the vibrating chairs are the devil.

In the morning after post mortem, we were discussing all of the stuff that I think is essential. But here's the thing: I am a stay at home breast feeding mom. She will be a working bottle feeding mom. There are just some things for which I have no perspective to share. Babywise? Bottles? Huh?

None of us know in advance what kind of mom we will be, what we will use to cope or what pre-baby thing will have to give. I never figured that my kids would be such TV hounds (though given their parentage, I don't really see how it could be avoided! Go PBS!). I certainly never thought that my standards of grooming could limbo under such a low bar (pony tail? Check. Shirt with stainage? Check. Putting deodorant on to cover the funk? Check. Make up? What's that?).

What did remain? I am still connected with my friends back in Ginormousville. I always have some electronic and/or home decorating project going on. Other moms don't have time for phone calls/e-mails/hobbies because they are fans of good hygiene. Or make homemade baby food. Or have to work at that pesky other job so they can have food and shelter. Some can do it all. My friend J just put her baby in the sling and did her thing.

Hang in there, Chica! It doesn't matter what flavor of mom you are. You will be great!

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