I recently found some old imported Google Notebooks. When I was pregnant with Griffin, I used one of these notebooks to organize the baby products I wanted for my baby registry.
Wait, that's a lie.
Let's be honest, I used one of these notebooks to organize my desired baby products before I was pregnant with Griffin. That's right. I had everything picked out for my registry before I was even pregnant. Yes, it is very, very sad. Yes, my obsession with baby products knows no end. Yes, I'm the person you go to if you are setting up your own registry.
However, did I actually use any of these products? Heck, no!
I've written before about disappointing products, but as I read through the list I didn't just see products that I never used. I saw a woman with some serious fantasies about babydom and what it takes to survive it.
First of all, this document is 58 pages long. FIFTY-EIGHT PAGES LONG. Now, in my defense, there is a lot of space and a lot of photos but still. Do I have an equally long document filled with advice on how to raise this child? Nope. I guess I was just going to wing it.
I have seven different books and Web sites on recommended baby products. When, I ask, was I going to read said books? I sure I didn't have any time after writing (and revising and revising) my baby products manifesto. That's for sure. The best part? THIS is actually on the list! Oh, the irony!
Next up, I have four baby journals and several other keepsake ornaments/portraits/etc. Turns out, I just use Facebook. I'm assuming Zuckerberg sends you an edited full-color photo book when your kid turns 18. Right?
However, the section with the biggest disparity between what I expected and what actually happened is absolutely diaper bags. I have NINE different diaper bags picked out, which means I probably looked at nintey. They are all cute and highly functional and I even ended up with one of them...that I never, ever carry.
Because the best part of me being obsessed with baby products? I rarely, if ever, have a baby product on me. I would say 9 times out of 10 I take my kids somewhere I walk in with my kids, myself, and my purse. No diaper bag, much less diapers or some fancy shopping cart cover. Let me show you what replaced my diaper bag.
Noticed how I showed you a nice manufacturer picture and not my actual car. That's because my car is one giant (very dirty) diaper bag filled with toys and books and sippy cups. (Maybe a diaper, too, if we didn't steal the car diapers when we ran out inside...you know you've done it!) I guess I just figure if we really need something that bad we'll just go out to the car and get it. Not to mention, a majority of the time I'm hanging out with my MUCH better prepared mommy friends who will always lend me a wet wipe.
Mainly, when I scroll through the pages and pages of baby products, I just see a scared version of myself. I thought that having a mastery of baby products meant I had a mastery of motherhood and nothing could be further from the truth. Seeing long lists of products promising to make life with a baby easier made me feel more at ease. Sure, it was a fantasy but nothing really would have prepared me for the reality...and my diaper bag IS really cute.
P.S. Here's the link if you want to peruse my manifesto for your own personal enjoyment. There actually is some great stuff on there. ;)
~ Sarah Stewart Holland