If you are pregnant for the first time this Christmas you are likely to be making a few sacrifices right now. It might be a glass of prosecco or dancing in heels, extra visits to in-laws or missing a ski trip.
Whatever the sacrifice, being pregnant at Christmas is the first time many women really feel like mothers. This is natural enough, given that birth and family are at the heart of the festive season, but it’s also down to the fact that at Christmas, more than at any other time, new mums put the needs and wants of a little person before their own.
The good news is that for most women, this turns out to be no sacrifice at all. In fact, expecting a baby at Christmas time can restore the wonder of the season. To help you make your pregnant Christmas your best yet, we have collated our favourite tips and tricks from around the web.
This is your year, so enjoy it.
Top tips for a perfect pregnant Christmas
- Enjoy the extra attention
Being pregnant is as close as most of us get to being a celebrity. Bellybelly suggest that you take full advantage of the extra attention you will receive. “If you’re still in the early stages of pregnancy, you might not have told many people the news. But those who know will probably be happy to wait on you hand and foot. If you’re further along, you’ll have friends and family members fighting amongst themselves so they can offer you their seat, get you a drink, and let you choose what channel to have on TV. Make the most of it while it lasts. Remember that next year, to be the centre of attention, you’ll be competing with (and losing to) a baby. This is your year, so enjoy it.”
- Be birth-ready
babyMed have a great article for women who are expecting during the holiday season, though much of their advice applies to anyone who is pregnant at Christmas time. The most important thing is to be prepared. Have your hospital bag ready, your child-care organised and your midwife’s number stored in your phone. If you are banking your baby’s cord blood, make sure that you have packed the collection kit and have applied for CellPlan cover. Those earlier than-expected Christmas day births don’t only happen in films!
You’re growing a baby in there, don’t y’know?”
Mother & Baby magazine have some great tips for the festive season, and this if our favourite. As Alex Davies rightly points out, “now’s the time to look after yourself – and if that means asking relatives to bring a dish each to Christmas dinner or your partner to untangle the tree lights because you’re shattered, so be it. You’re growing a baby in there, don’t y’know?”
- Shop from the sofa
Netmums take a similar approach to Christmas pregnancy, reassuring their readers that it is ok to take it easy this year. Our favourite tip is to avoid the shops. “Christmas shopping can be very stressful, even more so if you’re negotiating the high street with loads of bags AND your bump. Why not do all your shopping online this year. And don’t forget your Christmas groceries delivery. You do NOT want to be in the supermarket on Christmas Eve!”
You might not be able to squeeze into your favourite LBD for the office Christmas party, but that doesn’t mean you have to wear a tent to cover your bump!
- Buy a new outfit
You might only wear it a few times, but having something special to wear for parties and gatherings that actually fits you properly and shows off your gorgeous curves will make you feel confident this Christmas. As Tesco point out, “you might not be able to squeeze into your favourite LBD for the office Christmas party, but that doesn’t mean you have to wear a tent to cover your bump.”
- Eat before the party
Over at Baby London, Louisa van den Bergh offers some sensible advice for staving off hunger pangs and keeping blood sugar levels constant: “You may find when you arrive there is not much food or it is not served until much later and, disappointing though it is, you may find that some party food staples are not great for pregnant mums.” As Louisa points out, party food is often high in salt and fat and often features foods that pregnant women are often advised to avoid, such as unpasteurised cheeses, shell-fish and rare meat. Don’t be hungry and sad, have a delicious snack before you leave home, just in case.
- Make sure that you get the gift you really want
Whether this means dropping some serious hints, or treating yourself, it’s time for a little pampering. Emma’s Diary has a great list of gifts that will delight pregnant women, ranging from a Spa Day to a Photoshoot, to the super-indulgent Babymoon. Our favourite suggestion might be the cheapest, but it is also the most thoughtful and guaranteed to raise a smile: We think that the Cravings Hamper is a brilliant idea.
- Drink lots and lots of… water
For many women, the most obvious Christmas sacrifice is alcohol. Baby Centre point out that, “there is no way to know exactly how much alcohol is safe during pregnancy, so doctors advise you don’t drink at all during pregnancy.” The combination of salty food, central heating and a hectic pre-Christmas pace may also leave you dehydrated. Their top tip is simple but the most important on this list: “Drink water”. Experimenting with mocktails, exotic juices, smoothies and indulgent milkshakes will stop things from getting boring and luckily, pregnancy comes with its own buzz and glow built in!
With best wishes for a very Happy Christmas and New Year.