Infertility- Baby Shower Shopping

When you’re infertile, one of the hardest things to do is to shop for baby gifts. It’s so hard to walk around and look at all the cute clothing and items on the registry. The worst is going into Babies R Us. It one thing to go into Walmart or another large department store. They’ve got lots of other things to shop for that can divert your attention before and/or after you find what you need for baby. But there’s no escape when you go into Babies R Us. It’s wall to wall baby.

This is something I found really difficult for years. I’d get lost wandering around the store, looking at all the baby clothes and toys. I’d dream about what I’d buy if I had babies of my own. Then I’d just about choke looking at the prices of everything and get overwhelmed by how much it costs to have a child.

Anyways, I’ve found a few tips and tricks that have helped me to navigate baby shopping for showers and I thought they might help you as well.

  • Budget – Talk to your spouse and find out how much you’re willing to spend for this baby shower. When you have a price point in mind, you won’t be tempted to buy the family an entire wardrobe of all the clothes you’d want to buy for your baby. Stick to the budget.
  • Print the registry list ahead of time – By printing the list before going to the store, it’ll give you the opportunity to look it over and have a mission in mind. Instead of wandering around trying to think which item the parents would like best, you’ll walk in, ask for assistance to find the item, and then get out of the store quickly. By having a plan, it’ll keep you focused and not let your emotions get intertwined.
  • Shop Online – You could also order the items online if you have time for them to be delivered before the shower. Be careful with this one though. You can also find yourself aimlessly scrolling through all the baby items online, especially if you decide to order it late at night.

The nice option with this feature is that you can search for one specific item on the registry at a time, rather than looking through the entire store’s site. It’s kind of like asking for assistance in the physical store to find the item instead of wandering around. Fill your cart with your budgeted items, and that’s it. Avoid the ‘you might also like’ section.

  • Buy Something Different – Michael and I have started to do this option more often recently. Let’s face it, majority of the baby showers you go to either give a lot of baby clothes or blankets. It’s the go-to items to buy because they’re so cute. Plus, you can buy a higher quantity of them for the same price as one of the more expensive items, so you feel like you’re giving more. Though it’s nice for the parents to have a full wardrobe or a plethora of blankets, sometimes it’s nice to think outside the norm and do something different.

I attended a baby shower a couple months ago. Michael and I have been at peace with being infertile so our minds haven’t been on baby stuff. We’ve learned after watching so many friends, that one of the biggest needs they have after the baby is born is rest and connection. Both parents go into exhaustion and survival mode. They don’t/can’t do much of anything outside of work and/or taking care of themselves and baby. So, instead of getting baby something (because he/she won’t know anyways), we decided to give the parents a gift. We bought them a gift card to one of their favourite restaurants. It gave them an excuse to drop the baby off at the grandparents’ house, and take a break for the two of them.

Even though baby is now in the parents’ lives, and they love and adore him/her, their marriage still needs to come first. It’s hard to do when this helpless life demands so much of their time and attention. But a gift like a restaurant or hotel gift card gives them an excuse to get out and reconnect as a couple. It helps set a pattern for the child and the parents that husband and wife still come before the children. A hotel gift card also gives them the opportunity to leave all responsibilities at home and get some much-needed rest, even if it’s just one night away to catch up on some sleep.

If you’re a parent and you’re reading this, I’d love for you to weigh in on this idea. Is this something that you would have found beneficial as a gift, rather than baby items? I realize this wouldn’t be helpful if everyone did it, but perhaps if a few people gave this to you in amongst the other gifts, it might be nice.

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