Late Summer 2013 - Taking Our Own Advice
My oldest daughter is pregnant with my first grandbaby, and we are all so delighted. I am truly out of control buying baby clothes, which hopefully will be the correct size, and I have been planning a baby shower for months now.
Normally, I am a very laid back person, but I am an obsessive planner. I have lists of guests, party games and their components, prizes, menu items, beverages, extra tables and chairs, and even a map of the living room so we can move the furniture around to accommodate up to 30 guests. I have lists of how many tablecloths, glasses, plates, forks, etc., we'll need. You might say that I don't like surprises. I'm just a bit controlling, but since I am responsible for the outcome of this party, I want to make sure everything is perfect.
But I am only a co-hostess. The Co-Grandma is pitching in and being so helpful. Since I spent the majority of my budget on place settings, games, prizes, balloons, little baby animal figurines (a Noah's Ark theme) -- basically all of the decorations -- Co-Grandma is in charge of the food. I am having such a hard time relinquishing control of this. The food is the major part of the party, and it is driving me crazy that I am not in charge.
Driving home with my pregnant daughter last night, I was trying to explain my stresses to her and we completely missed our freeway exit. My daughter reacted as if we were driving off the edge of a cliff, when all we really had to do was get off at the next exit and turn around. Home was less than a mile back. Her reaction just added to my stress, but what I said to her was, "Why are you so freaked out about a little blip of time that you really don't have control over? You'll get home in one piece and you'll be happier if you just calm down and let me drive."
Hmmm, I thought, that is a great piece of motherly advice. Why am I not listening to it myself? I could easily let the Co-Grandma "drive" at the baby shower and I will be so much happier knowing that I have absolutely no control. With all that stress lifted, the party will be better than ever.
Would that we mothers all learned to listen to ourselves more often. The wise words we use to soothe others are just as valuable for our own situations. We are, after all, mothers -- and eventually grandmothers -- and no one's advice is better.