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The baby down pour

June 1st, 2008 · No Comments

I was preparing for a light hearted post about my travel and film making adventures but something else came up and I am compelled to write about it.

I consider myself a pretty social and good natured person, however I a feel trapped when invited to traditional rituals including weddings, christenings, baby showers – you name it, I usually despise it.

There are a number of reasons for this, firstly my precious weekend has been imposed on, secondly I feel an obligation to conform and attend these rituals, finally I struggle when it comes to conversing with group of people I have nothing in common with. You know the conversion is doomed when someone starts talking about the weather.

I attended the baby shower of a cousin’s friend. I guess it was doomed to fail because I am not a mum or planning on being a mum so I have nothing in common with women that are at this stage of their lives.

I started to feel strange when people arrived and I failed to engage in any conversation. People I once knew felt like complete strangers to me. I stood in a circle with three women, two obviously pregnant, the other had no sign of a bump (lets call her ‘No Sign’).  I could sense that a classic Seinfeld moment was looming.  The two women were comparing stomachs when No Sign patted the two distended stomachs then began to pat her own stomach.  Naturally I assumed she was pregnant and said, ‘Ah do we have three expectant mums here?’.  The three women instantly shot me a look of distaste, No Sign looked mortified as the expected Seinfeld moment unfolded before me.  I wanted to desperately explain to No Sign that she didn’t look pregnant but that I assumed she was because she was patting her stomach.  But sometimes in life for some reason it’s just better to walk away with the Seinfeld moment intact.

Gradually I melted into my chair staring at my shoes and praying for a natural disaster to strike. I barely spoke two words for the entire four hours and when I did it was only in forced and faked responses (usually about the weather).

Slowly I started to become invisible to others, no one spoke to me because I am sure they sensed that I was having a social melt down.

I over heard the grandmother to be ask if the presents should be opened now or should they serve cake and tea first. For god’s sakes, open the presents NOW open them NOW so I can leave soon after. Thank god my mind control skills worked because the presents were opened first.

Whilst everyone went goo goo and gaa gaa over baby teethers and baby jump suits I kept sneaking glances at the clock wondering how this compared to Chinese water torture.

Finally the last of the wrapping paper was whisked away, my opportunity presented itself so I made my move to the door swiftly and executed it beautifully like a skillful ninja.

On the drive home I felt shattered. Usually I can blend in when I attend a ritual but not today.

Perhaps this is time when the mum to be and I will no longer keep in touch because are at different roads. Maybe I should decline future invites to such rituals. Ah but I know myself to well and my personality is just not that way inclined! One thing is clear, when you are not completing the same passage of rites as your friends, then its time to find a new tribe.

Tags: musings

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