Baby Showers

My daughter-in-law holding the quilt made by my grandmother. Used with permission. Photo by Marcia Day.

Baby showers became a “thing” following World War II, when the Baby Boomer generation did just that.

It is a means of friends and family coming together to celebrate this new life and “shower” the expectant parents with gifts that they may need with this new little one.

The gifts have evolved since the ’40’s. Strollers have wheels designed for off-road running. Car seats are imperative. Monitors that were not available 30 years ago sell like hot cakes.

Diaper bags, sleepers, toys remain classic.

What to give to my first grand-child? More importantly, to his expectant parents.


I know what I needed in the midst of new motherhood – sleep, stronger arms, helping hands just to juggle a newborn, cooking and laundry. My spouse traveled extensively.

As my son grew, I wish I had more patience, time to read to him and just play.

I think it is universal. How can we go back and do it over? Better? So much of the Newborn Period passes like a fog with me shluffing along, hoping to remember what is now a blur.

I cannot give them what every new parent wishes they had – time. And as that child grows they will want even more.

As he teethes, they will wonder isn’t this too soon? I thought I had more time before this happened?

As he takes his first steps, they will think, wow this is happening so fast! We just brought him home from the hospital.

Before they know it, he will be graduating and they will be mourning and celebrating.

It is just the way it works.


I found the quilt my grandmother made for my son and packed it up for the shower.

I cannot give what I don’t have – extra time.

I can give them the legacy of strong mothers who have gone before. This quilt to my grandson was made by his great-great-grandmother.

It tells us all that time keeps marching forward. Today’s mother could someday be a grandmother.


I remember crying as my mother got ready to leave after helping with my third baby. She would generally stay for a week helping me with cooking, laundry, the children.

“Mom, I don’t know what I was thinking. How will I handle three kids?” I sobbed.

“Like every mother before you, the best you can,” she reassured me.

And I did.

The best I could.

By Catstrav

Reindeer handler. NDT tech. Mother of four. Aspiring astronaut.


  1. I cried both times my mother left. I think it is so hard now that mothers are rearing children without any family nearby. I was always envious of those whose family was close enough to come and help out, or be there if they needed to go to the dentist. I also had a traveling spouse. It was mostly all me. I was exhausted, and one of my two just didn’t sleep (interestingly, sleep is still a struggle for her). I think this is a lovely gift, and I know you will support the new parents in every way you can, as my mother did. That’s all we can do!

  2. Seana,
    Don’t I know it?! It was a challenge and I am thankful we had each other, but I think the previous era did it better – aunts, sisters, grammies all living within close proximity could drop by to help. It seems like a healthier model. Sigh.

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