Special needs baby showers could have their own unique twist if guest blogger Maggie Gale has anything to say about the matter. As an observer from across the pond, she has some advice about how to modify the  American custom of baby showers so parents of babies with special needs can enjoy them.

How to Pick a Special Needs Baby Shower Gift

The United States climbed from fifth place to rank the most generous country in the world, according to a recent global study, so says the Huffington Post (25th May 2014). I’m not surprised. As Brits living in East Africa, our American friends were some of the most generous people we’d ever met.

Baby Shower Generosity

However, I must admit that I was taken aback to receive some gifts for my baby before her birth. At the time, I wasn’t au fait with the American culture of “baby shower” before the baby’s birth.

Little did any of us know that our precious unborn baby was T.E.F. /O.A., and her birth was to throw our lives into turmoil such as we’d never experienced.

One of the presents I received that day was a Baby’s Firsts book. It was beautifully laid out, ready to receive baby’s first lock of hair after her first haircut, date of sighting of baby’s first tooth and records of baby’s first words.

Special Needs Baby’s Firsts

I never filled out one page in that book. Baby’s first year in our house was a dark tunnel for me. I thought cynically – why don’t I write a Baby’s Firsts book recording baby’s first stay in intensive care, baby’s first time we didn’t think she would make it through the night, and baby’s first 10 antibiotics before she became immune to them and needed something stronger?

How to Pick a Special Needs Baby Shower Gift

I love the American generous spirit. However, at the risk of being controversial, wouldn’t it be an idea to wait and see who and what God brings along before giving gifts? And remember, it might be that what’s actually required most is not cute clothes or toys. It might be a listening ear, a babysitter or a shoulder to cry on after a sleepless night. Keep up the generosity, everyone, and let’s look out for how and where it’s really needed.

Your Favorite Special Needs Baby Shower Gifts?

What do you think of Maggie’s observations about the American custom of baby showers? What meaningful special needs baby gifts were you given? Why did they mean so much? Leave a comment.

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