People Get Judgy About 'Push Presents'

by Colleen Dilthey Thomas
Originally Published: 
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If you have had a baby, you know that it’s no walk in the park. Not the pregnancy part, what with the swelling, and the nausea, and the round ligament pains. And those Braxton Hicks! Or, the actual delivery part. Even if you had the easiest delivery, vaginal or C-section, you have to recover and take care of a newborn, and that is tough. It just is! So maybe your partner wants to reward you with a “push present.” Is there any harm in that? Um, no, absolutely not! You have done the work, you deserve the spoils.

What is a push present, you may ask? It can be just about anything, really. Perhaps your partner gives you a sweet necklace with your baby’s initials on it. Shoot, they may present you with a necklace with a big fat diamond on it. Good for you! Here’s the thing, is that anyone’s business but you and your partner’s? Nope. That is between the two of you.

Some would argue that a push present is unnecessary. Isn’t the baby reward enough? Yes, of course the baby is an amazing blessing after nine months. That is our entire end goal, right? But it can feel really good to be seen after this entire process. If your partner recognizes what you and your body have been through in nearly a year and they deem it necessary to gift you with something, that’s amazing. I think that there are a lot of us out there who wish that our partners were a bit more aware of the entire pregnancy and birthing process, because it. Is. Work.

Now, I know that some of you are going to come at me with the whole, “This is what are bodies are made to do and why would anyone expect to be rewarded for what they literally were designed for?” BS. Keep it to yourself. Yep, some bodies do have the proper equipment to create, carry, and then finally nourish a baby once it is born. That is an incredibly beautiful thing. If you have ever watched a loved one go through this whole process, it is nothing short of a miracle. You know, even though “Your body is designed for it.” It’s still some amazing stuff.

A push present doesn’t have to be an extravagance, although I think that a lot of people associate the term with something big. Not everyone has diamonds and baubles in their budget. And not everyone wants those, either. There can be so much significance in a small token from your partner. This is something that the two of you will never forget. It is pretty cool to have something tangible — yes, I mean other than the child — to look back on and remember.

A push present could be a lovely letter expressing gratitude and awe for all that you have done. Or there are a lot of women out there who really love plants. How sweet would it be to have something green that you can watch grow right along with your baby?

I have friends who have received push presents recently and I think it’s very cool. I don’t remember this really being a thing when I had my kids. Maybe it was. Or, maybe we just minded our own business and let people have their own joy the way that they wanted to and no one made a big deal about it? Huh. Isn’t that a strange concept?

Like every aspect of pregnancy, this is literally nobody’s beeswax. You know that the second you get pregnant, everyone wants to tell you something. They start chiming in that maybe you’ll “Get your girl” or they “Hope it’s a boy.” Then they will start in with the advice about how to keep the stretch marks away, or what to take for morning sickness. They’ll want to know your baby name ideas and how you are going to design the nursery. They want in on all of the deets. And God forbid you are team green and go for a sex reveal at birth, it will make them just crazy. Trust me, I did it four times. Why people think any of this is their business, I am not entirely sure. But they do!

And I hate to tell you, it doesn’t stop once the baby is born. They are still up in your business wanting to know your birth story and how things went. Some of them will go so far as to ask if you received a push present. Do you have to tell them? Nope. Can you show if off because you are grateful and proud? You bet you can! Because once again, this is all about you and your partner and your baby and what makes sense for your family. We all know about opinions. Everyone’s got one, but yours is the only one that counts.

Carrying a child and giving them life is one of the most incredible things that we can do. It changes you in more ways that you can ever imagine. And if you have done it more than once, it is different every time — and so are your heart and soul each time you experience it. But that incredible experience isn’t weighted upon whether or not you get a push present in the end. That can be the icing on the cake, if that is how you and your partner decide to frost yours. But, the reward is just and sweet and delicious without it. Don’t let anyone steal your joy, push present or not.

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