HG - Christmas survival guide
Obviously if you can just hole up with your partner, whatever food and drink you can manage at the moment and some gentle Rom Com's then great – do it! However, if doing so risks inducing the wrath of the relatives from far and wide who are utterly convinced that you'll be cured by having your mind taken off it by trivial pursuits with tipsy aunties, then you may need a bit more of a survival guide...
- Have a think about the comments you are likely to come across and have a few appropriate retorts up your sleeve. That way, on Christmas day when you are faced with your second cousin twice removed informing you how lucky you are to have time off work to lounge around in bed you'll have a quick reply... Oh yes, lounging around a hospital bed with a drip in my arm so I don't die has been such a relaxing break. I'm so lucky to be having to take medication in pregnancy and I'm especially lucky to have been on sick leave from the job I love for so long that we are struggling to pay the mortgage. Hell, who needs a mortgage anyway when you're living on a hospital ward?
- Don't sign up to cater. Seriously, rooky mistake peeps... Even if they promise to do it all and assure you that you won't have to lift a finger... it's a trick. If it's in your house you will still end up doing all the cooking and cleaning, you'll have beds to make, loo roll to buy and masses of recycling to sort out after. I learned this one the hard way.
- Shop online. Yes we all want to support local shops and mooch round Christmas markets and unique boutiques dishing out free mince pies and Christmas cheer - but there is plenty of years in the future – And by future I mean in about 25 years because you're about to be financially crippled by children so work on your relationship with Amazon, Asda and Argos now, make them your friends!
- If you can get it gift wrapped then do. Wrapping presents was a major spew inducer for me, I think it was the amount of arm movement involved. Unfortunately Mr Spewing Mummy is not talented in the art of wrapping and when I say “not talented” I mean he's utterly incapable. He's good at emptying spew buckets though so I really can't complain. If a friend comes to visit or asks if they can help – get out the paper and sticky tape, bingo!
- Don't over indulge. If you do have the odd moment of wellness or if you're luckily over the worst at this point just try not to change your routines and systems that are working at the moment. I had relapses after all three hyperemetic Christmas's because I did too much, ate the wrong stuff and didn't rest enough... It's just not worth it.
The long and short of it though is that Christmas with hyperemesis gravidarum is never going to be easy, unless you happen to have the worlds most perfect family – in which case do you want to swap? I am truly sad for everyone suffering this year, the isolation is most pronounced when you're surrounded by loved ones who don't see how much you are suffering. But remember... you are not alone and this won't last forever... Christmas happens every year and next year you'll get to be Santa, honestly, that's Mega!
Oh and don't forget to put our book on your Christmas list!