I’m a hater. I drink the hater-ade. I eat the hater-tots.
Shower-hating goes way back for me, and maybe it does for you, as well.
I can’t remember the first shower I ever attended. I’m sure no woman can. I’d be willing to bet that a man can boast that his first “shower” was also his last, and it was probably a couple’s shower (they probably didn’t even call it a “shower”) I’m sure it was awesome–there were probably beers, and friends, and some sporting event on in the background, and some no-fuss meal. IF he ever attended another shower than the one celebrating him, it was probably just like this one. Honestly? If every shower I ever attended looked like this one, I wouldn’t mind them. But they don’t…
Instead, ladies-only showers involve quite a lot of fuss and–if I’m being honest here–not a lot of fun. Let me walk you through a quick Women’s History of Showers. I’m certain I was introduced to showers as an infant. And I’m certain I had to wear my most frilly frock with the dreaded tights and dressy shoes. I probably went straight from church to the shower venue–no need to change clothes or get comfortable. I learned early that showers aren’t about comfort.
Later, I was forced to attend yet another Estrogen Escapade, this time using the opportunity to ask my mom about the entire point of it all. She explained that it’s to give gifts to the Woman of Honor. When I pressed her for more answers, such as why this “Woman Who is to be Honored” didn’t just buy them herself, my poor mom eventually ended with something along the lines of “So that when it’s your turn, you get gifts from your guests.” Only later when I learned about Communism in my middle school history class did this idea take shape. But as history would show, Communism was miserable, so it was in fact a fitting comparison.
Fast forward about a dozen of these episodes later, and I was finally the Woman of Honor at my own wedding shower. It was still the same awkward maneuvers, only this time with me at the center. Everything was uncomfortable: the small-talk! the dress! the speech! thanking the hostesses! saying “hostesses!” Later, when I was at the center of my own baby shower, it was the same except with an added 40 pounds (yes, 40. My doctor had warned that I should “watch the carbs,” but I was all “I’mma watch these carbs go in my mouth!”).
I hate showers. I hate getting the invitation and start dreading the event immediately–it sends upon my refrigerator an ominous reminder of my upcoming fate. I hate making small-talk. I hate whatever I’m wearing because undoubtedly it’s not jeans and flip-flops. I hate the facade of the event to get you a gift–if I’m close enough to you to celebrate whatever is happening in your life, I’ll get you a gift on my own. I hate hosting because that would mean I’d have to clean my house and pretend like three kids don’t live there. I hate the usual Sunday afternoon time slot for having and attending showers because I could be watching football or napping on the couch. You know, like our husbands have the luxury of doing. There’s only one thing I don’t hate about showers:
The food–and I cannot stress this enough–is literally the only reason I go to showers. I will scour your entire Bed, Bath, & Beyond registry, no matter how frustrating, and spend the standard $25 (before the 20% off coupon, duh) solely in the hopes of getting miniature meatballs and party sandwiches. (While I’m on the subject, how is it humanly possible that I can only stomach ONE complete sandwich WITH crust, but I will inhale about 27 of them if they’re triangular and de-crusted?? HOW???)
I will discern baby bottles and even buy you nipple pads if it means I’m guaranteed petit fours. And let’s face it: a baby shower means your guests are GUARANTEED. PETIT. FOURS. This means you have to hold up your end of the bargain here, hostesses (ugh, hate that word). We give gifts. You give desserts. And little smokies. And a cheese tray.
Seriously, why do showers get a monopoly on all the awesome food? Oh, right. Because no one would go to the showers if they could get this food elsewhere. Because people hate showers … or maybe it’s just me.