Disclaimer: In case there is any confusion, this piece includes elements of satire, humor and irony. Specifically, we do not believe science says babies born in December are “extra special” versus babies born in other months! Corrections and updates to the original article are in bold below.
When I found out in March of 2010 that I was expecting and would be having a December baby, I worried for her. Christmas babies always got the shaft, didn’t they? I feared that friends and family would lump her special day in with the other winter holidays, or forget it all together since everyone is so busy this time of year. And that when she was older no one would be able attend a Christmas-time birthday party in the midst of the holiday season.
But, it wasn’t really up to me, and in December of that year, my little girl arrived. And she was pure and perfect.
As the years passed, however, I realized that my daughter was so incredibly unique and special that she’d never be forgotten. She’d always feel loved and appreciated—even when her birthday rolled around so close to Christmas. Because, honestly, she’s the best kid in the world. (I know, I know. Everyone thinks their child is the cutest, smartest, kindest, most talented … but this little girl really is the cream of the crop.) And apparently, according to an article in Motherly that is non-scientific but fun nonetheless, I can attribute much of her amazing qualities to exactly what worried me the most before she was born—being a December baby. (Remember: This is not scientific journalism, but a sentimental tribute from a mom to her daughter that employs satire/humor. Readers should go directly to the original studies referenced below for more complete information and further clarification.)
First of all, did you know that September is the most popular birthday month? (All that Christmas and New Year’s spirit must get the mojo going and — poof! — 9 months later, there’s a new human.) And guess what’s the most rare month for births? You guessed it—December. Dreary March—that month when you’re soooo ready for winter to be done, but spring isn’t quite here yet and you still need a damn coat every day—it’s just not the month for romance, apparently.
So December babies are already unique just by being born between November and January. But various studies show that December babies also tend to have many other unique traits too, many of which my amazing kid has already proven to be true.
One such quality for December-born kids is left-handedness, although the study that revealed this finding said it was only more common among males. Well, my December baby is the only left-handed person in our family and she’s a girl, so I’m going to chalk it up to her birth month too. We learned she was a lefty the first time she and her daddy played catch and she threw her glove back at him rather than the ball. (That year Santa brought her a lefty glove!)
Another super cool fact about December babies is that they statistically tend to live longer. A study discussed in the Journal of Aging Research revealed that “the December-born have a significantly higher risk of surviving up to age 105+” (also known as “semi-supercentenarians”) as compared to some other months. Specifically, the authors state: “It was found that more semi-supercentenarians than expected were born in December while the proportion of semi-supercentenarians born in June was low. This study suggests that the December-born have a higher likelihood of surviving up to age 105+ compared to the June-born; although, it cannot be said unequivocally if month-of-birth pattern among semi-supercentenarians is due to seasonality of infant mortality or later-life month-of-birth effects.”
So your Christmas baby is more likely to have lots of years to travel the world, experience decade after decade of history-making world events, and watch their great-grandkids grow into adulthood. I love to picture my daughter at 105, telling stories of her youth, and how her mom was always there, happily handing out hugs and never yelling at her to get her damn shoes on. (That’s what she’ll remember, right?)
And since she’ll likely live for a hundred years or more, I also find myself wondering what occupation she’ll choose. Right now, her love for animals is what tells me she’ll be a vet, but an article in The Guardian actually reports that December babies are most likely to be dentists. So maybe if I’m lucky enough to live a long life as well, she’ll help her old mom out with some sweet ass dentures.
This next one is a pro and a con. One study showed that babies born in the fall and winter are tend to be early risers (ugggghhh NO, Mommy does NOT want to put together a puzzle at 5:30 a.m.), but they also tend to go to bed earlier. So thanks, kids, for going to sleep so Mom can get in some wine and Netflix time.
And if you’re into zodiac signs, kids born in December hit the jackpot. They are either a Sagittarius and are said to be “extroverts who like travel” or a Capricorn, which are known to be “determined and helpful,” Motherly says. Of course, this is astrology, not science, but it’s still interesting. My kid is definitely an extroverted social butterfly who flits from school event to school event and birthday party to birthday party. She loves to experience new places, ride the biggest rollercoasters, and try any food she sees in front of her. And although she’s apparently most likely to go into the teeth-saving industry, she currently dreams of saving endangered elephants and gorillas, so yeah, I definitely foresee a life of travel for her.
And determined and helpful? 100%. She’s my most hard-working and responsible kid—the one the teacher calls on to help the sub, and the one I call on to help the babysitter when her brothers are running amok. I’m pretty sure with her determination to help endangered wildlife, she’ll make the most of those 105+ years she’s going to get here on earth.
Now that I’ve been a mom to a December baby for 8 years, I call it a blessing. Yeah, her special day is squeezed in between Christmas tree decorating and holiday shopping, and sometimes we decorate a gingerbread house rather than have a traditional cake, but she loves it. Her birthday is the last in our family for the year, and just like the past 8 years, we’ll close out the season by celebrating the life of the most special little girl I know.
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