I went to a baby shower yesterday. I know. I was not looking forward to this shower at all. First of all, it was being held in South Oak Bay, and even though we lived in Oak Bay for over 3 years, we weren’t exactly the OB type. I suspected that this shower would be the real OB deal, so I dreaded living up to the high class expectations. Secondly, it was being held on a Friday in the middle of the afternoon, which could only mean one thing: nobody in attendance would have a regular office job. I did some simple math in my head and made the assumption that I would be the only non-mother, non-‘my husband is a doctor/business executive/lawyer/high ranking military official’ at the party. Yes, I stereotyped, and yes, my generalizations made me dread this shower even more.
I knit a really cute baby hat as a gift. Then I panicked and worried that a simple, handknit item was not enough to bring to an Oak Bay baby shower, so I stopped off at the Bay and added some onesies and such. Ugh.
On my way to the shower, I tried to convince myself that I was just being overdramatic and that the shower wouldn’t be nearly as horrible as I was making it out to be in my head. But then… I knew I was in trouble when I rode my bike up to this giant mansion and had to look for a space to lock up my bicycle amidst several BMWs and Mercedes Benzes. It got even worse when I stepped inside, clad in my jeans and cutesy top, and noticed that I must not have received the ‘wear a light coloured sundress with strappy summer sandals’ memo. I was the only person who even took off my shoes to be in the house. Every other lady there just remained sipping lemonade on the white accent rug in their delicate ballet slippers or metallic flats.
I sat through painful episodes of rich mom talk.
Rich Mom #1: Since we moved from London to Singapore, we have had to switch maids. The one we have now makes really good waffles– the kids are starting to demand them in the mornings.
Rich Mom #2: We went to Shawnigan Lake yesterday for Canada Day, and it was so cold! I don’t know why we even own that cottage on the lake. We should just buy a cabin in the Okanagan instead and call it a day.
Rich Mom-In-Law: We had the children over at our house yesterday. It was pretty hectic with them running around our tiny, three-bedroom home.
Me: [silence. painful silence.]
If I could have magically beamed myself out of the house, I would have. If I could have excused myself ASAP without being rude, I would have. If I could have borrowed a few thousand dollars of bling and adorned myself with it nonchalantly so I could at least fit in for two hours– ‘oh, this old diamond-encrusted thing? Puh-leaze! My husband promised he would get me a new one next month’– I just might have, as well. I know. It felt so horrible being the one who was so awkwardly, obviously, painfully different from everyone else.
The worst part of the whole afternoon was when we had to play “Mommy Pictionary”. All of the words were mother-related, and not just easy ones like stroller or diaper. Guess which word I had to draw when it was my turn? ‘Let down‘. For real!! Being the only non-mom there, I didn’t even know that ‘let down’ is the term used to describe when the milk flows into the ducts in preparation for breastfeeding. Instead, I was wondering how the hell (and why god, why?!) I was going to have to draw somebody letting somebody else down.
After I started drawing some horrid stick figures that had my team guessing ‘drop the baby!’ and ‘baby toss!’, the host of the party had to take me into another room and tell me what ‘let down’ meant. My first thought? ‘Excellent. Now I will have to draw milky breasts for these women. My day just keeps getting better and better!’
(For the record: they only guessed the word after I drew an ear for ‘sounds like’ and then drew a clown. So. Very. Painful!!)
After the new mom opened my gift (which had been buried amidst oversized Baby Calvin Klein and elaborate Baby Ralph Lauren bags), I dashed out of there as quickly as I could. I’ll admit that I cried a few teenage-angst tears as I rode my bike back to the harbour. It’s not like I want a lifestyle like that, I just didn’t want to feel so left out and different.