So it finally happened. After few years of marriage and even more year in a relationship, Sing met my extended family. Five generations met to celebrate the baptism of my inside cousin’s baby. Crap, I start describing my family members in Sing’s way.
Last week we went to Poland for a short trip to Gdansk, city in northern Poland next to Baltic sea. I will surely share a vlog we shot over those couple of days once we move into new home and stop living in XIX century.
As for the family time we decided not to shoot videos, but just live the moment. We can always come back to some city, but I won’t get back the moment Sing hugged my great grandma or the moment a little baby fell asleep in my arms. I guess that’s the line we draw between what we want to show you and what is kept for us.
But it doesn’t mean later on we won’t share our thoughts with you! Because those few days were amazing, I loved every moment of it. I’ve seen some of the family members I haven’t seen in years. I could hug my great grandma for one more time – she had problems with recognizing people, she didn’t really understand what was going on, but her smile when she saw me was priceless. My uncle and aunt hid from her that we are all coming.
I still remember when GG woke up and walked into the room. First she thought she sees my uncle, since they are like twins (literally – same hairstyle, same phone, same camera, even same little bald area on their heads) but then she realized it’s my dad. We all hugged her and then she met HIM. That weird man that took the little great grand daughter away’. I don’t know who was more stressed – me, him or GG. She gently put her hand on his back. I expected weird questions like ‘Why couldn’t you marry someone normal’ – when you reach over 90 years you can get away with many things. But she just smiled to all of us. I felt so warm.
Then he met the Little Princess – my cousin’s baby girl. I swear to you, she’s officially the cutest BB EVER. Never cried, very calm and cheerful. Being around her gave both of us lots of joy.
I will show off a bit – he passed the diaper test with #2. He knew how to wipe, when to use the cream, how to put a diaper on. I swear to you, for a moment I thought he has a second family on a side and he’s wiping other babies.
You should see the love in his eyes when he was with this little girl. He even volunteer to watch her when she slept during the banquet. I guess his paternal instinct finally kicked in.
I have to say Sing was under a lot of pressure. I scared him a bit: he had to show ‘the best face’ since my dad is an egg – white outside yellow inside. He cares about his face a lot so Sing was one of his ‘business cards’. I bet my dad in his previous life he was an old Chinese lady.
Not to mention any church event terrifies my husband. He will go down on his knees, he will sit next to me, but he has no idea what’s going on. Luckily, comparing to my church in my hometown people weren’t staring at Sing constantly.
In the end, he blended to our family so well! Partially due to his lovely and outgoing personality and partially because my family is cool, chitty-chatty. My cousin’s husband keeps calling him his brother in law and all of the guys are planning to meet up on some weekend and drink some Irish whiskey. I really appreciated they all tried to include Sing into discussion and insist on speaking English. They laughed, they drunk a bit, they took him for a fortress tour around the city.
When we were flying back Sing told me it all went better than expected and that it was first family gathering he enjoyed. I guess family gathering with Momzilla and her side of the family are… momzillish.
Now since Sing considers himself ‘how-to-blend-into-Polish-family-expert’ here are some tips on how to make your Polish significant other’s family love you:
- Before you meet the family double-check what is OK and what is not OK. What is considered rude and how to show respect to the family members.
- Don’t be too shy – not speaking the language can be intimidating, but you can try to communicate through your girlfriend/partner. If you have a common language try to be more pro-active.
- You can bring a small gift like chocolates or flowers for the ladies and alcohol for the gents. It shouldn’t be too expensive in order to not make others uncomfortable.
- Dress up nicely. You can make first impression only once. You don’t need to wear a tuxedo, but make sure your shirt is clean and ironed and your socks don’t have holes. Not every Polish family will give you slippers so you might not be able to hide it.
- Be prepared for literally everything. Like trying to set up a travel crib for a baby or wiping #2 out of someone’s butt. But don’t worry – Sing is already married to me, so more likely wiping #2 won’t happen. Still, remember everything CAN happen.
- Don’t show too much affection. Taking care of your partner is fine, patting her/his back or holding hands, but forget about getting touchy.
- It’s a good sign if they joke with/about you. Please don’t ask me about the joke they made to Sing and, even worse, my dad’s response to it.
- Watch out for duck blood soup. In the past it was used to ‘nicely’ reject the potential husband. Actually I still remember my great grandma used to prepare it. Sing is a stereotypical Cantonese man who would eat anything that’s not raw so probably to him that would be the best rejection ever.
I hope these few advice will help you when meeting your future Polish families.
How did you feel meeting your SO’s family? Do you like family gatherings? Share your stories and experience, we love to read your comments!