The word family is often used as a political tool, mostly wielded to deny people the right to call themselves one. So even though this is a very unpolitical scene—a noisy, happy baby shower in a warm living room in Ballard—when the mother of the babymama gets up to give a toast to her pregnant daughter, her daughter’s partner, and “this family,” I feel the urge to send a postcard of the moment to Focus on the Family.
Here’s what a family looks like: two women covered in wrapping paper laughing on a couch, embarking on the scariest and awesomest thing they’ll ever do, completely surrounded by people who are passing on an implicit promise that Your Community Is Here for You, along with tiny outfits and handmade quilts and something called a Wee Block (“A machine washable wee wee absorbing sponge,” the package reads).
There are no guess-the-melted-candy-bar-in-the-diaper-style baby-shower games, just low-key crafting for those who want to leave a memento. A toddler writes the couple a card full of squiggles that her mom translates as “Happy birthday and I love you,” the dog makes laser eyes at all the toothpicked salami, and every sip of champagne with pomegranate seeds just adds to the warmth of the scene. By the time the hostess insists I leave with just-laid eggs from the chickens in the yard (perfect party favor for a baby shower), this Party Crasher kind of regrets not being part of this family. Have a good life, baby. Your whole family is pretty great.
Want The Stranger to show up and drink at your most important life milestones? E-mail the date, place, and party details to email@example.com.