This month, Sharon buries herself in mountainous information on buying the right stuff for her baby.
Being Asian, the husband and I have been inundated with well-meaning advice and old wives’ tales from family and friends regarding everything concerning baby, including “Don’t shop for baby until he arrives! It’s bad luck!”
Truthfully, I adhered to almost all the old wives’ tales I’ve heard of, more out of fear than belief but not shopping for baby until the little one arrives? Sorry, I can’t do that. It simply does not make sense to run around like a headless chicken, buying things last minute, only after baby comes. While my mum has repeatedly reminded me that I’m only five months pregnant – a little too early to be shopping for baby according to her – I for one, have secretly mapped out all aspects; the sale season, my husband’s hectic work and travel schedule and everything else under the sun!
To be overwhelmed would be putting it mildly. The first few nights, I went to bed dreaming of three and four-wheeled strollers careening towards me at top speed. I dreamt of cribs that would fall apart once I put my baby inside and not forgetting the weird dream I had of breastpumps with teeth chomping on my boobies. I realised that these dreams simply meant that I was afraid of making the wrong choices for baby. I wanted the best we could afford while at the same time, offering us value for money.
Armed with the information I had gathered, off we went to the baby shops to survey the shortlisted items. The first on our list is a stroller, simply because I figured it would be the most expensive item on our to-buy list. We pushed and pulled the strollers, we folded and unfolded them, we measured the dimensions, and short of seating ourselves in the strollers, we took into account everything we could think of. I must admit that apart from fancy stroller features, I was also nearly swayed by all the gorgeous colours. And that’s why you bring your husband along when shopping for baby – they tend to discount aesthetics while looking at the “practical” side of things.
For the baby cot, we unanimously decided that we would not splurge on a fancy cot. Our criteria would be: value for money (read: cheap!), tested for safety and converts into a toddler bed.
While I have actually researched these items extensively, we have not bought any of them, pending the sale season. A sufferer of cognitive dissonance, it takes a lot of effort to not bang my head against the wall if I find an item that I’ve bought is cheaper elsewhere. That said, I have bought one significant item; a breast pump. It was at half price off, and of course the bargain hunter in me grabbed it immediately.
I am extremely relieved that we have decided on the big ticket items, and that leaves us with the “smaller” items to consider such as baby bedding, nursery accessories, toiletries and every woman’s favourite, baby clothes! It has taken almost all my willpower to not grab every adorable baby clothing in sight. The husband should reward me for this.
Shopping for a baby can be mind-boggling and overwhelming, especially if you are constantly looking for the best bang for your buck. However, if you’re anything like me, you may discover that making a well-informed decision before buying can give you with a strange sense of satisfaction.