Push Presents - Do You or Don't You?

photo (1) The first time I heard the term "push present," I scoffed at the idea. I think it was the name that made it seem funny to me.

Push present: a gift a father gives to the mother to mark the occasion of her giving birth to their child

Then I got pregnant and thought ... Hey, I would love a gift for carrying this child! I must have dropped the hint enough times because Eric actually got me one!

He came home one day (before Rooney was born, actually) with a $150 Visa gift card to spend however I wanted. It was a significant gift (more than we typically spend on each other) and something I really appreciated. (I ended up getting some new post-baby clothes, including a denim jacket I wear at least once a week.) My sister also got me a gift - the same thing I got her when her third daughter was born: a necklace charm with the baby's name. Her gift was actually given to me in the delivery room soon after she was born, making it incredibly special.

Because we were planning to have a natural birth and Eric was my primary coach, I also surprised him with a new long-sleeved running shirt before Rooney was born and told him that I really needed his support while pushing this baby out. It was just an excuse to get him a fun gift, but he totally deserved it for going to all my appointments and classes with me (he even went to a father's class on his own!) and for the four-hour back rub he gave me while I was in labor. I knew he was a little jealous of the bond I got to make with our baby so I wanted him to feel like he wasn't forgotten. He would have taken my place if nature would allow it.

So I think push presents are great. A mother's body goes through a lot, and a gift (material or not) is a way to show thanks and love in return. A mother's body stretches (which causes itching, sometimes irreversible marks, and weakened or torn muscles), gains weight, gets misaligned, feels pain and contractions, receives kicks in many places, feels nausea and exhaustion, suffers from a lack of sleep, etc. There are lots of appointments and emotions and hormones and life changes. Don't even get me started on the pelvic floor. It hurts just thinking about it!

Pregnancy is a nine-month sacrifice. Yes, the reward at the end (a baby) is TOTALLY worth it, but a gift from the husband sweetens the deal even more.

What do you think about push gifts?

P.S. Mothers who have C-sections totally qualify for push gifts even if there is no pushing involved!