You're due when?
Your due date is smack-dab in the middle of the holiday season. Plus or minus a week or two, you could actually go into labor on Christmas, Hannukah or Kwanzaa ... so how do you plan for the holiday and your birth at the same time?
Pack your hospital bag early
Don’t leave this task until the last minute. With all the boxes, gifts, wrapping paper strewn all over the place, make sure you collect everything you need at least two weeks in advance of your due date and keep the bag in a place where anyone can find it.
Don’t travel too far from home
Holiday travel is part of a family celebration, but you should not be traveling more than a few miles from home close to your due date. Not only are long travel times painful and potentially dangerous (increased risk of blood clots in the legs); they take you away from your doctor and the hospital where you’ll be delivering.
Skip family parties during the final days
Crowded parties are the last place you want to be days before your due date. Many times, holiday parties involve mingling leaving few places to rest. You need to prop up your feet and rest at least 15 minutes every hour.
Rest as much as possible
Then rest some more. Rest is essential to your health, strength and immune system. The holidays naturally drain energy from our bodies, let alone when your pregnancy due date is looming near.
Don’t feel obligated
Say no to parties if you are feeling under the weather or tired. The more stressed you are the less prepared you’ll be to fight off infections and illness. You need a strong body to recover after birth.
Freeze holiday leftovers for meals after baby is born
With everyone cooking massive amounts of food, ask family members to freeze small portions of turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and vegetables before the meal begins. If food is left out too long it can become a food-health hazard and should not be frozen and reheated.
Find out your doctor's holiday schedule
Doctors have families too. Ask your attending physician about his or her holiday plans. If your doctor will be traveling during the holidays, you’ll need to find out who is covering the practice and patients. If your obstetrician is off for the holidays contact the covering physician. Contact the covering physician before you go into labor, is possible. Pass along your due date and any relevant health information that could prove useful if you should go into labor and your doctor is not available.
Wrap holiday gifts early
Don’t wait until the last minute to wrap holiday gifts. You could go into labor with a room full of unwrapped gifts and that would be a holiday travesty.
Arrange care for other children
Ask a family member to keep an overnight bag for other children in case you go into labor. If the family member is unavailable at any time during the final weeks of your pregnancy, find a replacement and move the bag accordingly.
Look on the bright side
Having a due date during the holiday season may feel stressful, but just remember that you’ll be celebrating a birthday every year when sales are rampant and emotions are filled with joy and love.
Your Holiday Pregnancy & Fertility Survival Guide
How to Trim the Holiday Tree While Pregnant
How to Enjoy Your Pregnancy During the Holidays
Getting Your Holiday Shopping Done While Pregnant
Ease Holiday Stress During Pregnancy
Holiday Excess Can Lead to Male Infertility
Dads Can Create Meaningful Holiday Traditions
Holiday Blues: Tips for Coping with Infertility
How to Dress for the Holidays with a Bump
Family Activities for the Holiday Break