With the changing generation, traditional practices ranging from birth, marriage, circumcision, dowry negotiations and other cultural practices are gradually taking a different turn with the digital generation taking the center stage.
Things are nowadays being done differently, some in the exact opposite way compared to how they were done traditionally will some omitting or adding some details.
For example, traditionally the preparations of welcoming a newborn into the family were totally different from what is being done today.
According to Mzee Wafula Sipengi a Bukusu elder, traditionally when a woman got pregnant she was tied to the traditional customary of the clan and tribe.
The mother would be treated with care and a traditional midwife (mkunga) would always take care of her unlike nowadays when things have changed and mothers resolve to clinics that have improved their healthy living some to the extent of never visiting a midwife throughout the pregnancy.
Traditionally a mother would not know the sex of the child through scans like its done today. There was a traditional expert in the sector who would tell a mother the sex of her child by looking at the bust and at times, it would turn out to be true or not.
The mothers could not shop for baby’s clothes in preparation for the coming baby, unlike today when the mother starts shopping immediately after conceiving. Several clothes are bought especially after going for scans that determine the sex of the baby.
Another interesting thing done today in preparation for the coming baby is the baby shower.
Did you know what a baby shower is when mentioned to you for the first time? Many might not be aware of the term especially for those from reserved areas who still stick to tradition.
A baby shower is simply a way to celebrate the pending or recent birth of a child by presenting gifts to the mother at a party and the mother to be is given a surprise that leaves them emotionally moved by the gesture.
In some other cultures, a host for a baby shower is done to celebrate the transformation of a woman into motherhood.
The baby shower is done some two or a week to the expected delivery date so that the mother to do not overstay with the gifts and the surprises.
While preparing for the baby showers they have to be surprising, elegant and most of the fun should take the centre stage of everything.
In such scenarios, a close family member should not be given an opportunity to hold a baby shower or a close friend because you might be caught.
In such incidences, close friends and relatives try as much as they can to keep off the guest lest your tongue slips and leak out the surprise
And close friends and relatives to the guest who can leak the information are contacted, plans put on table agree on what to buy as a group before individual gifts.
Here a lot of sacrifices are needed as the planning needs financial support, moral and teamwork to make it a success.
Most pregnant women vow to their close friends that they can never be caught unaware with the baby shower surprises only to be shocked later and are lost of words.
According to Naomi Purity whose baby shower happened during the weekend, she had always vowed never to be caught unaware but shock on her, it happened.
She says she has been keen all through her pregnancy, keen with her closest friends but it turned out the other way round.
According to her, she was asked by her best friend Winfred Simiyu to escort her meet her aunties about dowry negotiations and ladies were asked to wear purple to grace the occasion.
She was to be picked by her aunt Citrine Tunduli whom they felt would offer the company as she was mature and would guide them.
Naomi says she was in class and after an hour’s wait she couldn’t see her aunt Citrine and was forced to jump into a town service and meet Winfred in her house where the baby shower was taking place,
This sent cold shivers amongst her friends as they had all not converged. She was to be delayed by sending her to the supermarket to get some things.
Fortunately, the aunt spotted her and she comfortably took the front seat.
The aunt arrived at the gate where her friends were hiding on the gate sides, the gate was opened and when she alighted to pick her friend to escort her as agreed she almost fell down and fainted when she was surprised by singing from the crowd of her friends who were all in white and purple.
“I was emotionally moved, tears of happiness rolled down my cheeks, I could not believe I was caught,” said the jovial Naomi a first-time mum to be.
The baby shower also involves a lot of munching and drinking after individuals presenting their gifts.
Music is put to entertain the guests as they dance to their favourite tunes.
Cake cutting is also involved and the cake is prepared according to the dressing code or according to the sex of the unborn child.
After enjoying and mission accomplished guests are asked to leave at their own pleasure.
In this 21st century, things keep on changing from cultural to digital and the coming generation might have no chance to revisit what our grandparents used to do ranging from the eating habits, dressing, living habits, marriages that insisted on marrying from the same community amongst others.