My dear, hilarious, and incredibly awesome friend Brandi will soon be having her first baby. And as is tradition when one is about to bring a little one into the world, she recently had a baby shower.
I was delighted to be invited. And I wanted to buy her something very special for her shower gift. Something adorable, soft, and precious. I didn't know exactly what it would be - but I wanted it to be something squee!-worthy. You know what I mean. Something so charming that all the women in attendance at the shower would let out a collective "Squee!" as soon as it emerged from it's tissue-packed gift bag.
Something like this.
Pretty soon I realized that things were not looking good. The shower was only days away, and I still had not bought a gift. So I did something that, in my opinion, is absolutely essential to learn how to do if you are (i) a wife; (ii) a mother; (iii) employed; or (iv) a combination of any of the foregoing. And that thing that I learned how to do is:
Note that I did not say I have to lower my expectations. I just need to be able to adjust them. Doesn't that sound much more positive? I'm all about semantics, people.
Anyways, I adjusted my expectations as to what sort of gift I was going to be able to bring to the shower. I knew there was no time left for me to shop. But I also knew that I'm lucky enough to be married to a stay-at-home-dad who spends half of his waking hours at Target. So I asked Scott to pick something up off of Brandi's registry. And the more I thought about it, the more I thought "This is appropriate. Of course Brandi will want something off her registry for the baby. That's why she registered. Duh."
So, on the day before Brandi's shower, Scott went to Target. But he couldn't find anything still left on the registry to purchase. Instead, he improvised and bought baby outfits. When I got home from work late that night, he filled me in on the change of plans. So I adjusted my expectations and briefly shuffled through the clothes he'd bought. They all looked cute, and I thought 'Job well done, Scotty.'
Until I started assembling the gift bag the next morning, just before I was supposed to leave for the shower. And realized Scott had bought preemie-sized clothes. And a Christmas outfit. For a baby that is not expected to be a preemie. And is not due until February.
On the drive over to Brandi's, I worked hard to adjust my expectations. "Oh, this is not so bad," I thought. "At least he got a gift receipt." But I was having trouble, I admit it. What would the guests at the shower think of my sad little present? There were certainly no squees in my foreseeable future.
So I decided to skip adjusting my expectations, and instead use the second most important thing I have learned how to do over the past few years.
Blame The Husband.
This one works every time. Especially when he's not there to defend himself.