The word ‘babymoon’ was traditionally used to describe the period of time AFTER a baby is born. Those first few weeks when the new mum and dad stock up on supplies and bunker down to stare at the new person they’ve created and to wonder if they’ll ever sleep again.
But these days, probably thanks to celebrity culture and clever marketing from travel companies, the definition has changed and the word ‘babymoon’ is more likely to mean that the parents-to-be are heading away for one last hurrah before baby arrives.
And it isn’t a bad idea.
You don’t have to jet off to Paris or the Caribbean – but setting aside a weekend to relax and enjoy each other’s company could just be what the midwife ordered …
Here are five reasons to have a babymoon
1. To connect as a couple
Parenthood can be an extremely challenging time for couples – especially the first few weeks ( … years …) so a babymoon is a good way to enjoy each other’s company and be yourselves before you turn into someone else’s parents. It is also a good time to show your partner how much you appreciate them as they often will feel a bit redundant when baby arrives. Try to appreciate the ‘adult’ conversation because before long the only things you’ll talk about will be sleep (or lack of), poop and sleep … and poop.
2. Because you can …
It will probably be a long time before you next get a chance to have a weekend away. In fact, in those early days you’ll struggle to find time to wash your hair, let alone escape for a romantic getaway. Enjoy your freedom and enjoy doing whatever the hell you like, whenever you like. Just because you can …
3. To sleep
The jury is out on whether you can ‘bank’ sleep in advance but who cares … once baby is born you’ll be dreaming of the days when sleep was something you took for granted (well, you would dream if you were sleeping for long enough!). Take this last opportunity to sleep, to sleep in and to generally laze around. The memory alone might just be enough to keep you going through the sleep-deprived first weeks ( … years …).
4. To de-stress
Preparing for the arrival of your first child can be a stressful time. All those tests, scans, appointments. All the planning, reading and decorating. All the unknowns. All the advice. It is hard to think about anything else. A babymoon is the perfect way to take time out from the worry. You might choose to ban all ‘baby talk’ or you might go the opposite direction and take the chance to share your fears and concerns with your partner. Either way the aim is to come back feeling refreshed and de-stressed.
5. To indulge yourselves
For the most part, being a parent means putting someone else’s needs first. A babymoon will be the last time you’ll be able to indulge in your own desires (guilt-free). Book in for some pampering, indulge in some good food, eat slowly, sleep and appreciate the silence.
Top 3 babymoon mistakes
1. Spending too much money
Unless you have cash to burn you probably shouldn’t fritter it away on a luxury holiday as the money will be more than needed once baby is born. A babymoon doesn’t have to be an expensive ultra-luxurious getaway – once the baby is born your idea of luxury will be eating a meal in silence, peeing in private and having a shower. You could even have a babymoon at home – just lock yourselves in, turn off the phones, order in nice meals and take a long bath together!
2. Timing it badly
The second trimester is the best time for a babymoon. Book it too early and your morning sickness and chronic tiredness could mean you have a less than perfect time. Book it too late and you’ll be taking long waddles on the beach and will spend the night tossing and turning due to indigestion or leg cramps.
3. Going too far from home
There’s no need to travel a long way from home (or the hospital!). Flights aren’t fun when you’ve got a growing belly and an urge to pee every 30 minutes and some airlines have restrictions on flying when you’re pregnant – so if you are flying make sure you check first. Find a nice, quiet resort that is a comfortable driving distance from home.