I don't have any kids yet, but I have quite a few god-children and let me tell you--I LOVE being a madrina!

I totally get all the love and adoration from my god children that I could ever possibly want. I'm always the one to take them out to do all the fun stuff they love, I get to spoil them rotten and I never, ever have to be the "bad guy," cause I'm not mommy, I'm madrina!

I'm madrina to my 17-year-old niece on my husband's side of the family, the 4-year-old daughter of my best friend and now, my sister's 1-year-old baby girl.

You know what my absolute FAVORITE thing is about being a new madrina? Buying the baptism dress and prepping for the ceremony!!!! The ruffles, the white patent leather shoes, the lacy headbands--I seriously can not get enough of it!

Probably the highlight of my madrina-hood so far came when I got to go shopping with my BFF for her baby girl Isabella's baptismal outfit. This was Leana's first baby and her husband is very religious and it was a super important event. I was taking my "Mima" duties (as the insanely adorable Bella calls me) very seriously.

I scoped out a bunch of baby stores in NYC, but none of them really seemed to have all the stuff we needed to create a culturally relevant event! I mean, where were the azabaches? Where were the ruffly pantyhose and bonnets? I couldn't find all of the stuff I knew I needed after attending the 1,476 baptisms I'd sat through growing up in my big family.

I finally found what we were looking for in a super traditional, mostly Puerto Rican neighborhood in the Bronx. We went a little nutso, I have to admit, but it was SO FUN. Plus, on the day of the baptism, Bella (even though she was just around 8 months old) really seemed to dig her frilly duds.

It felt great to stand up in front of the church, the community and our families and promise to provide both baby Bella and her mom and dad with all of the support and love they deserve. I feel like being a madrina is a great responsibility and not one to be taken lightly. At the end of the day, even though I know I get to be the "fun" one, I will always be there for each and every one of my god children.

As I prepare for my the baptism of my niece, I know it's going to different--she has chosen to go for a non-denominational blessing instead of a full-on church endorsed baptism--but the sentiment will always be the same: Her daughter, just like all of my other god children, will have someone besides mommy and daddy who loves her and will protect her and watch over her no matter what. And that's such a comforting thing to be a part of.

Did you plan a big celebration for your baby's baptism? Are your children baptized?

About the author

Mariela is the Managing Editor of MamásLatinas for Cafemom. She's also a politics and pop culture junkie and lover of all NY sports teams (except the Mets--'cause really, come on).

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