The Festive Season is upon us, but I must admit that I have found this time of year difficult in the past…
I have been pregnant over the past two festive periods and each one was equally difficult. On both occasions I was still early on in my first trimester, pregnant after having experienced miscarriage. To say that I was anxious/worried/scared is an understatement…
Whilst everyone around me was getting more and more festive, excited for all that Christmas* would bring, planning where to celebrate and who with, how many parties they would be going to and what was on-trend to wear; I was trying to mask any whiff of early pregnancy. Add the work Chistmas party to the mix – Great..!
*enter festive holiday of choice here
Two years ago, I obviously thought I could do it all and went to the staff Christmas party. I had dinner, watched everyone around me enjoy their drinks and stayed out for as long as I could before fatigue (physical and emotional) hit like a sledgehammer. Last year, I had a complete change in attitude and decided that it was far more important to save myself the stress and decided that the Christmas party was an absolute no-no.
I’ve learnt a lot from both of those experiences and wanted to share my tips on how to survive the seasonal festivities during early pregnancy…
1 JUST SAY NO!
Sometimes we are suckers for punishment, the ultimate sadomasochists, just so that we can see the people we see everyday getting drunk… I have learned that it is perfectly fine to just say no to the Christmas party. If ‘no’ won’t cut the mustard for some at work, then just have other plans, be busy (I find it is much easier if you make genuine plans as this it’s much easier to talk about). Be out for your best friends birthday or have your monthly girls’ night out for example… If you are already booked up then that is that.
2 CONSIDER TELLING SOMEONE
If you want to go to the staff party then consider telling someone that you are pregnant. Cautiously sharing the news of your early pregnancy can be a huge help (both at work and at the Christmas party). But, beware who it is that you trust with this information. I once told a colleague who then decided to have a conversation about my pregnancy at the dinner table in my absence! I only found out the following week at work when another colleague congratulated me on my pregnancy! (And I was only about 9 weeks pregnant!)
3 SAY YES TO THE WINE
Now hear me out… I don’t mean drink the wine, no. We all know that alcohol is not recommended during pregnancy. I repeat, I DO NOT RECOMMEND THAT PREGNANT WOMEN SHOULD DRINK ANY AMOUNT OF ALCOHOL DURING PREGNANCY. However, when you are at a party you will often be greeted by a lovely person with a tray full of sparkling alcoholic beverages or, once you have been seated for dinner the waiter may insist on pouring you the red or white wine. In these situations, grab a glass of bubbly and treat it like a fashion accessory (i.e. do not consume it). Or conveniently ‘lose’ your glass as you pop to the loo. Let the waiter fill your glass with red or white wine at the table, and leave it there… Consume the table water instead. Go to the bar by yourself and order a tonic water with a slice of lemon. These actions will go far more unnoticed than you refusing alcohol and raising suspicion of pregnancy to the nosy gossips at work who will undoubtedly ask you why you aren’t drinking…
4 ARRIVE LATE
Again, try to have a genuine reason/excuse (or a good lie). By arriving late you can hopefully rely on the fact that most people have had a couple of drinks already and are too tipsy to keep note of what you are drinking.
5 LEAVE EARLY
Conversely, leave early due to very important plans you have made for the next morning. Staying late won’t earn you money, a medal or a promotion. In months to come no one will congratulate you on staying til the bitter end (and we all know it can get messy!). Slip off, go home and enjoy a hot chocolate in your pyjamas and enjoy a well deserved early night.
BONUS TIP – JUST SAY NO
Early pregnancy is a worrying time for many so it is essential that you put you and your baby first. Don’t go to any parties unless you really, really want to… Be selfish. Your friends will understand. You can be the spontaneous party girl in years to come (…or maybe not!).