Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Motherhood sans Mormonhood

Natalie and her surrogate
When I was a Mormon I was always going to baby showers. After all, Mormon women are always having babies. Mormon showers were women-only events featuring sickeningly cutesy games and cake or cookies paired with some vile sort of punch.

In fairness, it's been a while since I've been to an LDS baby shower. Perhaps they've changed. Maybe the food's better these days, and the games more fun. Maybe now some are even coed, acknowledging (gasp!) that men might actually share in the burdens of childcare.

But something tells me that the Mormon version couldn't live up to the Exmormon shower that Sheli, Sarah and I recently threw for Natalie and Dave who are expecting a baby girl via surrogate.

Our hosts, Sheli and James, went all out, opening up their beautiful house.

The games were kick-ass hilarious.

Dave makes a play-dough baby
James pins a sperm on the uterus

Baby bottle beer guzzling contest

The food was amazing, especially James and Sheli's tri-tip. And the beverages really rocked.
Steve, our awesome bartender

James making one cup at a time.
He roasts his own beans.

There were presents, of course.

And even the spirit was there. I had the privilege of blessing the baby! My inspired words were, of course, first vetted by the authorities. (Sheli and Sarah.)

Only sisters were allowed in the circle.

Here's what I said:

We take this child in our arms to give her a blessing. We can’t give her a name. Only her parents can do that. But whatever the name, we bless it that it shall not be known upon the records of the church.

Baby M, we bless you that you will not be a sweet spirit; that you will be strong and honest and confident and disobedient and, above all, badly behaved in the manner of all women who are destined to make history.

We bless you that you will find and pursue your passions. That you will marry—or not, that you will have children—or not, according to where your heart leads. But if you do find a partner, we bless you that he or she will be a person that you love and respect as your equal. One who loves you ferociously, as much as your parents and all of us do, combined.

We bless you, Baby M, that your days will be filled with loud laughter, light mindedness, and evil speaking of the self appointed. We bless you that you will not settle. That you will magnify your happiness, and that you will live in the moment—every moment—of your one wild and precious life.**

Namaste/Mazel Tov!

**Hat tips to Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, Mary Oliver and Joseph Smith.


  1. OMG! Is that caffeinated coffee?

    Just checking.

  2. Donna, thank you so much for helping to host the most amazing baby shower I could possibly have wished for. We had a blast! Now that I know how cool your baby showers are, I'm going to continue populating my own planet ASAP! ;)

  3. Jono, that is high octane coffee.

    Awesome (not so) Anon. You make the babies, I'll provide the booze and felt board games. :)

  4. Coffee, beer guzzling, and Pin the Sperm on the Uterus? That sounds like a fantastic baby shower! The blessing you bestowed on the baby was noble and sweet.

  5. Thanks Ahab and knotty. It was very fun. I used to sort of dread those events way back when.

  6. Pin the sperm on the uterus? Does life begin at connection?

  7. I wasn't there so I cannot vouch for the authenticity of this story, but my mom swears that at one of my aunts' baby showers, the featured game was a smelly-diaper hunting contest. The hostesses saved various babies' diapers for days, then hid them (supposedly snugly wrapped, but still . . . eeeeewwwww!) all over the living area of the house where the party was held. The attendees were to use their senses to find the poopy diapers. I don't know what the prize was because my mom did not win.

    1. Ha! I'll bet that one's not on Pinterest.

    2. GROSS! Whatever happened to nice board games?

    3. My dad's sisters are seriously touched in the head.

  8. wow, best baby shower evva and the blessing was amazing. If you're ever in Oregon let me know we'll throw a coming of age party; you can bring the games. Cheers

  9. What a party! The blessing is amazing and should be the standard for all unborn females. Of course, the next step is a similar blessing for males.

    1. Indeed! I would have happily written a male version of she'd been expecting a boy. Thx for reading Robert!

  10. I love it!!!!! I honestly can't remember the last baby shower I went to- and I know it wasn't as fun as the one you described. =) Smother the baby with love!!! =)