Push Presents: Did you get them?

Push Presents: Did you get them? | Twin Cities Moms BlogWhen I was younger, my mom would tell me the story of my birth as most parents do. Part of the story was how my father bought her a Beach Boys cassette tape to celebrate my birth. She wasn’t happy as I’m sure you can imagine. Because of that story, the present that my father gave to my mother to celebrate my birth, I assumed that everyone received a gift from their baby daddy after baby was born. It’s the same way I assumed that everyone used cloth napkins because my parents did in our own home. It wasn’t until I met my husband that I realized that the vast majority of the population used paper napkins and cloth napkins were used during fancy occasions. Apparently, my dad despises paper napkins for their inability to perform their task efficiently. (He is a retired Air Force officer after all; efficiency is everything.) I grew up with the notion that giving birth meant receiving a gift, and more than one in the form of a sweet baby in my arms. Isn’t this what everyone thinks?

Apparently not. I’m a straight shooter. I don’t beat around the bush at all so when it comes to wanting something, I just tell my husband. While we were dating, his friends would tease him that he had gotten the luck of the draw with me because I didn’t play games or make him chase me. I told him how I felt and that was that. When it came time for us to start trying to conceive, I mentioned to him that I would be getting a present from him. Oh, I didn’t do it in a bratty way if that’s what you’re thinking. I wasn’t like Veruca Salt inย Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, “I want a party with roomfuls of laughter, / Ten thousand tons of ice cream, / And if I don’t get the things I am after, / I’m going to screeeeeeeeeEEEEEEEEAM.” I really did think it was just done that way. And so, when my son was born in 2008, I received my first present: a pair of diamond earrings.

It wasn’t until my second pregnancy that I began to realize that present-giving to celebrate the birth of a child was more of an anomaly among my mommy friends. In fact, during a moms night out with a girlfriend, I first heard the term “push present.”

“Oh, you mean a push present!” she replied as I talked about what I hoped I would receive on the birth day of my unborn daughter.

“A push, what?” I asked.

“A push present: you pushed and so you get a present,” she explained.

Push present: it had a nice ring to it, a perfect alliteration. Plus, then I wouldn’t have to retell the Beach Boys tape story multiple times going forward. And so it began…a name for that present that I would receive after I pushed a baby out of my hooha.

Push Presents: Did you get them? | Twin Cities Moms Blog

Baby #1 got me a pair of diamond earrings (that I wear every day). Baby #2 got me a Kitchenaid Stand Mixer. And finally, Baby #3 got me a few sessions with the personal trainer that I had during a weight loss challenge back in 2012.

If you aren’t accustomed to this, I’m certain it seems superficial, materialistic at best, and maybe even a little degrading. Give the little wife a present because she did her womanly duties; but that’s not what it is at all. My husband is an accountant so believe me, he crosses every “t” two or three times (really he does, you can see it in his handwriting). These gifts are ones that I cherish because I know he puts thought into them. I know that he’s saved for them. And for a guy who is not great with words, his actions have always showed me how much he cares and appreciates me.

Everyday when I look in the mirror and see my earrings, I remember that cold November day in 2008, holding my first born son with a pair of sparkling diamonds to celebrate the long 38 weeks that got us to that point. When I bake muffins or make pizza dough with my stand mixer, I think about the home environment I really wanted to create when my first daughter came in 2011. One filled with yummy smells and traditions that started in the kitchen. Now, as I work my butt off with my trainer to lose the baby weight I gained with my youngest, I think about my desire to live a healthy life for these three littles of mine. I remember the long pregnant road I endured with all three and I feel loved and appreciated by my husband because I did it for us. He knows that and this is how he shows me that he appreciates the sacrifice that I’ve physically given to our children.

Have you received a push present? If not, do you want to receive one?

Elizabeth "Bert" Anderson is a stay-at-home mom of three living outside of the Twin Cities in Rogers. She writes a blog where she honestly chronicles the peaks and valleys of parenting. Even though she has more than one child, Bert maintains that whether you have one child or five, there's a first time for everything. She's a lover of cloth diapers, pop culture, healthy living and fitness.

24 COMMENTS

  1. I received a beautiful ring when my son was born (my husband’s and my birthstone with my son’s in the middle). I was shocked and touched. I had never asked or even alluded to anything. I was in the camp of “the baby is the present” but I must say that the thought was quite amazing. I am not a big jewelry person and this was the first real jewelry I had been given since my wedding ring (10 yrs prior to my son’s birth). It was so meaningful and represented our new family, and it was understated (my style) and I wear it every day.

    When my daughter was born I told him specifically that I didn’t want anything. Money was tight and my rainbow baby really was the only gift I wanted. I told him that the kids birthstones are both red (son-ruby, daughter-garnet) so the ring works for both ๐Ÿ™‚ He did go and get me a huge order of sushi as my first meal post birth, which was a fantastic gift in my books!

    • A gift is a gift, right? Even if it’s in the form of sushi. I think it’s the thought behind the gifts that count more than the thing that the gift is.

  2. I love that the presents weren’t all jewelry related, too! I mean, not that I begrudge anyone something sparkly ๐Ÿ˜‰ But the stories about push presents I’ve heard have all been about expensive jewelry, and since push presents weren’t a concept I heard about until not too long ago, those stories made me slightly uneasy. The fact that you also got practical items to use with your children or to set a great example for them makes it a concept I can get on board with ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Thanks! My hubby’s anything BUT impractical so it only makes sense that he’d get practical gifts that can be used. Plus then when I look at each item it’s fondly, you know?

  3. Nope. No push presents here. We were so young, so broke, so innocent. I think we were just thrilled WE were having a baby. That was the best present imaginable. Then again, my hubby isn’t the best at buying presents and gifts are not my love language, so they don’t mean as much to me as him DOING something for me. Which he did. My house was sparkling every time I came home with a new baby. Now, to me, THAT is a present… so I guess, maybe, yes?

  4. I got a beautiful necklace when my first was born. It was an alexandrite stone as we named our little one Alex and that is my birthstone. I love it!!! With my second all I wanted was a bottle of wine lol

  5. We have never been flush with money so presents are not really something that we “do” – however, my husband always meets my love language through Acts of Service. For all of my births, he has waited on me hand and foot without complaint and I would trade any material items for that.

  6. I find the term “push presents” really off-putting. That said, I wouldn’t have sad no to a gift upon the birth of our son! I hinted around about it to my husband, but gift-giving isn’t his forte.

  7. We just bought our house a year ago. I get a new kitchen and a new bathroom for baby. Although, with tax season creeping up, some of that work will have to wait for spring even though baby is due in February. We kinda have a deal right now. I work on growing baby and figuring out what he needs. My husband works on making the house safe and ready for our little one. All that hard work is the best present a girl could ask for.

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