When I was pregnant, I was completely convinced of two things: I was going to need to make a lot of personal adjustments in order to be as good of a parent as I wanted to be, and my best friend was going to be the most amazing aunt to ever grace a child's life. As it happens, my best friend is my sister, so she was going to be my baby's actual aunt, too. Since there wasn't really any kicking her from the squad, I felt doubly lucky that she's essentially the best person who ever lived.
Here's what I've figured out about aunts-to-be, whether they're biological or chosen: how they treat you while you're pregnant is a pretty good indication of what their overall vibe is going to be in their relationship with your kid. A good rule to follow is that how someone behaves in one relationship is usually indicitive of some variation of how they behave in all relationships. (Seriously, I dare you to prove me wrong on that theory.)
This is good news, guys. After all, this person is your best friend for a reason. Hopefully, you're more or less down with who they are. You love and trust them and generally consider their presence in your life to be one of the things that makes your existence a positive one. How could you ever doubt that they'll be an equally wonderful part of your kid's life?
In case you needed to run it down in list form (like you don't already know), here are just a few of the ways you'll get confirmation during your pregnancy that your BFF is going to be the greatest aunt who's ever aunt-ed, and your unborn kid basically doesn't know how lucky they already are:
She Sometimes Talks Like She's Expecting A Baby, Too
When she slips up and says something like, "Well, after we have this baby..." it's not because she's trying to steal your thunder or even unduly insert herself into your parenting team. She's just that personally invested. A big change in your life is a big change in her life. It's not the same, and she's sane enough to know that, but it's a big f*cking deal in her life, too.
She Is Focused On Your Needs During Pregnancy
The minute she found out you were "with child," she immediately started prioritizing your needs. She wants to jump into a movie after you two grab dinner, but you're kinda tired? No debate — everyone is going home now. Yeah, she's very likely gonna kill it for your kid too.
She Doesn't Start Treating You Different
Once you start gestating a new person inside your body, pretty much everyone you know is going to start treating you like a different person (at least to some degree). Your friends with kids will be all "YOU'RE ONE OF US NOW," while your friends who don't have kids will be like, "YOU'RE ONE OF THEM NOW." The truth is, you're a little bit Them™ now, but you're overwhelmingly still you.
Having a best friend who gets that is beyond important. If you can look at your person and still feel like you're you, it's easier to navigate even the biggest life changes. Having the power to make someone feel like that is a hell of a thing to bring into a kid's life.
She's Like Your Emotional Bodyguard
Best case scenario, the hardest part of your pregnancy will be dealing with other people. Best case scenario, your pregnancy will still suck most of your energy out of you, which is unfortunate since pregnancy is also a time when people want to be around you and talk to you and excitedly make plans. You want to do all of that, but you also really want (OK, need) to take a massive nap. Several massive naps. One more thing you might not have much energy for is establishing and defending the boundaries with the people in your life that would actually allow you to get the rest you need.
Enter: your best friend, here to fight these battles for you. When you're mother-in-law is on hour three of talking non-stop about what her first pregnancy was like, and you are fading fast and clearly want her to stop and go away and give you some alone time to hurl and sleep, your BFF will be the one to jump in and be like, "Look who's so tired! OK, you have to leave now! Come on, I'll walk you out!"
Rest assured that when your baby is around, she'll be the one to shamelessly extricate them from being passed around to dozens of relatives and usher them back to you and your boobs. What a hero.
She Handled Your Pregnancy Freakouts Effortlessly
Your significant other is in the next room breathing into a bag, but your BFF is standing with you total chill, being like, "Yeah, I mean, you had to smash the glass in your hand because the Chinese take-out place closed early. That sh*t is not OK. Come on, let's order you a pizza, babe."
Guess who's going to totally validate (and thus neutralize) your will-be toddler's wild emotions? Where would you even be without this person?
She's Supportive, But Not Controlling
There's a big difference between a friend saying, "I will do literally all of the heavy lifting involved with planning your baby shower and hauling in the millions of boxes of baby sh*t you order," and her actually wanting to make all the decisions about the baby shower and pick out all the baby stuff herself. Nailing that balance where you're supportive and involved, but not controlling or dictatorial, is also so crucial when you're actively a part of a kid's life.
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