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Pushing for a push present?

I think we can all agree that the term push present is pretty odious. If, by some miracle, you haven’t come across the phrase, it refers to a gift given to a woman by her husband, partner, lover etc. after she’s given birth or ‘pushed’. What about caesarean section or ‘out the sunroof’ (oh dear God stop!) you may ask?

Yes – you are still eligible for a push present.

Like its forerunners Halloween and Valentine’s Day, the sentiment held by today’s push present originated from our friends across the Atlantic. Although the trend has been around on the fringes for nigh on twenty years it’s recently seen a surge in popularity, fuelled by social media posts showing postnatal designer handbags and celebrities, like Kylie Jenner, allegedly being given a $1.4 million limited edition Ferrari to celebrate the birth of her first child. If you are in any doubt no, we are not in support of gauche displays of excess or superficial gift giving – sorry Kylie.

A little like Halloween, a pagan tradition, and Valentine’s Day, a Roman festival, before consumerism got out its ugly claws, there was something deeply symbolic attached to gift giving around the birth of a child. The British traditionally marked this with an eternity ring (eternity rings are still a popular choice but we’re also seeing bespoke rings, earrings and necklaces commissioned to celebrate new additions to the family). In this way a father was able to give something that would not only celebrate the birth of a child and symbolise his love and appreciation but would one day be, in turn, passed down the generations. In such a way family collections would grow and stories about the people they represented would become part of family lore.

The moment jewellery is given, what it represents is bound into that piece. While time may pass and we grow old, jewellery is a timeless reminder of the celebration of a new life. It is in such a spirit that a gift to celebrate the birth of a child should be given.

Sophie

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