A Baby Shower Story

Updated: Mar 23, 2020

This past year, I attended a colleague's baby shower. I had never been to a baby shower before, and I did not realize that there would be games!! I thought a baby shower was an event where people get together to wish the parents luck and shower the baby ('the parents') with gifts then eat and leave. 

Some of the games were fun because they made me feel nostalgic about my childhood, you know, the days of trying to remember nursery rhymes. What impacted me the most during my colleague's baby shower was the Wishes for Baby Message Cards. Just before the fun and games ended, we were asked to fill out these tiny cards that asked you to complete the following:

Dear Baby,

I hope you learn___________

I hope you love____________

I hope you experience______

I hope you're not afraid_____

I hope you become________

I hope you never forget_____

I hope you respect_________

I hope you laugh___________

Would parents say things like, I hope you become a doctor or I hope you never forget where you came from?

I had a visceral reaction to these fill-in the blank statements. My heart began to race and my stomach fluttered. I found myself wondering, how would have my birth parents responded to these statements while waiting for me to enter the world? Would I have realized their hopes? 

A few days later whilst sitting in my office at the end of my day I began to wonder what would the students with whom I work wish for themselves? If they could go back in time to fill out this card before their birth, what would they write? 

How would this shift how they see themselves, their promise, or worth? Would this make a good therapeutic tool to cultivate self-compassion? What would happen if we wished for our children to have experiences that enrich their spirit or qualities that make them just and caring citizens of the world?

For those of you who are reading this, I invite you write the wishes you would've wanted from your parents and or caregivers. 

Here are the wishes I would've wanted to leave for myself...

Dear Aven,

I hope you learn that if and or when you're imperfect you're still lovable...

I hope you love without reservation...

I hope you experience contentment...

I hope you're not afraid of failure...

I hope you become free-spirited...

I hope you never forget that you're not alone during your most trying times...

I hope you respect diversity and the inherent worth of others...

I hope you laugh to remember joy is possible if when it's hard...

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