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A Different Kind of Christmas

Posted on 4 min read

C

hristmas 2017 was always going to be a different kind of Christmas for us.

At almost 9 months pregnant, and with my planned c-section booked for just four days after Christmas day, I was feeling… well, let’s just go with, “slightly less than festive” shall we?

Actually, I was feeling huge, uncomfortable, and – oh yeah – TERRIFIED. Nothing like the sheer terror of knowing that in a few days you’ll be walking into hospital in order to be sliced open, to take some of the shine off Christmas day, is there? This probably falls into the category of “Things I Shouldn’t Admit on the Internet”, but I literally spent the entire day on the verge of tears, thinking it would probably be my last ever Christmas (Context: crippling health anxiety/tokophobia) – so THAT was fun, obviously. I was also very aware of the possibility that I could go into labour at any second, and have to rush off to hospital to die, so… yeah: this year was always going to be different.

It was, for instance, the first year in my life that I haven’t woken up in my parents house on Christmas morning, and it was also the first time in the course of our relationship that Terry and I didn’t spend the whole day together. Instead, we visited both families together in the morning, before going our separate ways in the afternoon, with Terry having Christmas dinner with his mum and siblings, while I headed back to my parents’ place for the rest of the day. It probably sounds a bit odd, but it meant that we both got to see everyone, and I got to have a bit of a rest in the middle of the day, so hey – it worked for us!

Enough about me, though: I mean, let’s face it – you’re all just here for the photos of my mum’s Christmas table, aren’t you? Well, here they are, with apologies for the quality of the photos: Terry had custody of our “real” camera for the day, so these were taken on my iPhone, in the usual December gloom:

may all your dreams come true
Christmas table 2017
Christmas place setting with holly berries
Christmas place setting

My mum would like it to be known here that this table setting was a last minute affair: she normally picks up bits and pieces for Christmas throughout the year, but this year she’s been slightly distracted by the imminent arrival of her first grandchild, not to mention her ongoing mission to buy up all the muslin squares in all the land, so she, and I quote, “Just couldn’t be bothered, really.”

So, she went for a simple candy-cane and holly theme, and given that my mum’s idea of “just throwing something together at the last minute,” is still approximately 100x better than what I’d manage even if I DID have all year to spend on it, I think she did pretty well, don’t you? Round of applause for my mum, please…

(And also for my dad: unfortunately I did manage to keep one Christmas tradition alive this year, and it was the one where I totally forget to photograph any of the food other than the sorbet, thus making it look like we just spend Christmas sitting around a beautiful table, without actually eating anything. We don’t, needless to say – Christmas dinner  was a joint effort from my parents, and it was just too tasty for me to stop and take photos of it: WHOOPS.)

Oh, and I didn’t bother to photograph my Christmas outfit either, because I’m not really sure you can call the only dress that still fits me an “outfit”, really, can you? I spent all of Christmas Eve diligently dodging cameras, so here’s the one and only photo of me from Christmas 2017:

gigantic baby bump

Yeah, standards are really slipping around these parts, aren’t they?

(Also, I said it when I posted this on Insta stories, but I’ll just say it again, for fear of judgement: NOT MY WINE GLASS. The champagne bottle, on the other hand, WAS partly mine, but it was the alcohol-free variety: roll on New Year, huh?)

Aaand that was our Christmas! And now it’s Wednesday, and, oh, hey, did I mention I’m having a baby in two days time? Because, guys, I AM HAVING A BABY IN TWO DAYS TIME, and I could not possibly be more excited OR more terrified. I mean, I can barely even speak at this point, that’s how terrified/excited I am. I can also barely work out how to wind up this post: I’m kind of painfully aware that if I die in childbirth (And I’m 100% sure that’s what’s going to happen), then this will be the last thing I ever publish here… and it’ll be a half-assed blog post, filled with blurry iPhone photos, including one of me looking like I’ve stuffed a beach ball up my dress as a joke.

On second thoughts, that’s actually quite an appropriate memorial, isn’t it?

Wish me luck, folks…

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35 Comments
  • Moira Matthews
    December 27, 2017

    Amber, sending lots of love. Can’t wait to see what your mum does next year when there’s an extra place setting!

  • CiCi Marie
    December 27, 2017

    Good luck, but you won’t need it because all will be fine! 🙂 x

  • Emerald
    December 27, 2017

    Good luck girl!! Can’t wait for your next post!

  • Viridiana
    December 27, 2017

    Good Luck Amber!

  • Izzi
    December 27, 2017

    Good luck! St Nicholas is one of the patron saints of children so I’ve asked him to hang round for you (I know he listens to me) and am looking forward to gorgeous baby pics in a little while x x x

  • Samantha
    December 27, 2017

    Wishing you so much luck. You’re doing amazing. Scary as C-sections are for us, for the medical team it’s their day job. I hope it goes flawlessly.

  • Marie
    December 27, 2017

    Your mum’s table is gorgeous!
    You’re on the home straight now, and in two days’ time you’ll have bossed giving birth and you’ll have your little son in your arms. You’ve got this!
    X

  • Sally
    December 27, 2017

    Good luck Amber & Terry! I know the waiting for a C-Section is unbelievably hard, but when the day comes I just put my trust in the professionals and went with the flow.. you will be kissing baba’s sweet little cheeks soon.

    All the best xx

  • Sophikita
    December 27, 2017

    Good luck Amber! Waiting is so hard. You’re going to be fine. Look forward to your next post xx

  • Elaine
    December 27, 2017

    Good luck Amber. Warmest wishes to you and all your family. Hope all goes extremely well xx

  • Erin
    December 27, 2017

    Sending all the good baby vibes, juju, and all that. You’ll do great, I know it <3 Can't wait to see the squishy baby and find out if he has red hair, or any hair!

    • Amber
      December 27, 2017

      There’s virtually no chance of him having red hair as very few Greek people carry that gene – we’ll be happy whatever colour it is, though!

  • Lisa Valentine
    December 27, 2017

    Good luck Amber. I had two emergency c-sections and all was/is well. My girls are now 17 and 14 years old! I look forward to hearing all about your new arrival. Much love, Lisa x

  • Moni
    December 27, 2017

    Love and hugs and best wishes to you and Terry!
    I’ll keep thinking of you and keeping my fingers crossed!

  • Kelly Glen
    December 27, 2017

    Sending you and Terry lots of love and all the best for the next chapter in your life. I can’t wait to see what your little baby looks like. Tell you Mum she did an excellent job on the Christmas table decorations.

  • gai
    December 27, 2017

    You Will Do Beautifully! You are resilient, tough, smart, perseverant and practical–all traits that will get you through this set of circumstances. And, you’ll look fabulous doing it all. I’m looking forward to photos of you and your new wee son.
    Keep breathing and do what works for you, despite the “advice” against it.

  • Teresa
    December 27, 2017

    Hi Amber!
    Giving birth is a scary thing (I’m not even pregant and it scares me…), but I’m sure you’ll do fine! The medical staff at your hospital seem very understanding and professional, for them it’s just another day on the job. In two days you’ll have your baby boy in your arms and all of this anxiety will be over 🙂
    Lot’s of love!

  • Myra
    December 27, 2017

    I’m sure baby enjoyed your Christmas dinner as much as you did lol. Your mum is a creative tour de force and I agree, I can’t wait to see what she did next year for baby’s first Christmas.

    I am asking Arch Angel Michael to protect you and Arch Angel Raphael and all the healing angels to help. Can’t wait to see your baby, although I’m not sure how you feel about posting photos of him.

    All the best xx

  • Lena
    December 27, 2017

    I’m so excited for you and happy about this baby! I’m honestly more excited than I have been when my actual friends have had babies. After following along this journey with you for so long now, I feel like we’re friends, although that’s probably weird to say. Wishing you the best of luck for a smooth birth and can’t wait to see photos and hear that all went well xx

  • Lori L.
    December 27, 2017

    Amber,
    Your mom’s table?! She should totally be an event planner! It beyond fabulous- but I seem to recall pics of Christmases past and it always is.
    As for your dad helping with the cooking? Well, I’m sure he did a fabulous job as well. We always have Christmas breakfast at our house and I made the tea this year! Yay me!
    Regarding your next few days – I loved the comment from Samantha – it’s the medical team’s day job – you will be fine and the baby will be also.
    Sending prayers your way for peace and health.

  • Sarah B
    December 27, 2017

    Wishing you all the best Amber! Sending much love your way! ❤️

  • Barbara West
    December 27, 2017

    Good luck, good wishes, and happy New Year, Amber!

  • Claire
    December 27, 2017

    Sending oodles of love and good thoughts your way at this busy time!

  • JoAnn Moran
    December 27, 2017

    Lots of prayers and love. The journey is just beginning.

  • Monika
    December 27, 2017

    That was a very lovely Christmas Amber! Good luck for your C-Section! 🙂

  • D. Johnson
    December 27, 2017

    Oh Amber, you had me cracking up as usual! Wishing you all the good vibes and good luck I can summon. !!Cheers!! for your mom’s table. So simple yet elegant and festive- – and copy-able. Can’t wait for the new baby pics! I hope you can find some measure of peace and CALM in the next couple of days. Hoping Terry’s mom is doing OK also. Happy New Year, dear.

  • Hanka
    December 27, 2017

    Good luck, Amber! You´ll do great! Can´t wait to read your next post! xoxo

  • Trona
    December 27, 2017

    so exciting! wishing you and Terry all the very best xxx

  • Ester
    December 27, 2017

    Wishing you and your family the best of luck and sending many, many warm wishes. Will keep thinking of you.

    Btw your mum’s Christmas table looks absolutely spectacular!

  • Nellie
    December 28, 2017

    My thoughts and good wishes are with you. Thanks for sharing your journey with us. Can’t wait to see pictures of your new little guy.

  • Tina
    December 28, 2017

    Sending very best wishes look forward to your next chapter xxx

  • Maribel Carrasco
    December 28, 2017

    Mucha suerte Amber! Good luck Amber! Sending you my best wishes from southern Spain 💞💞💞

  • Hana
    December 28, 2017

    Sending out good vibes for the big day ahead! You will be fine, you’ll be in the best hands. Can’t wait for a first baby pic!

  • Sarah Rooftops
    December 28, 2017

    All the best for tomorrow. Looking forward to hearing all about your tiny human soon. x

  • Sacha
    December 29, 2017

    Thinking of you these days and especially today of course! 😘

Good news! We took Max to hospital this morning, and saw two different surgeons, who agreed there was no need to go ahead with the surgery as his lip is healing really well on its own 😅  He’ll definitely have a scar, unfortunately, but that would’ve been the case whether he’d had the surgery or not, and if it turns out to be worse than anticipated, we’ll have the option to have it corrected under local anaesthetic when he’s older. 
I’m still really upset that this happened in the first place, obviously, but so relieved that we don’t have to put him through a general anaesthetic, and just incredibly grateful that it wasn’t anything worse. I know some parents have to deal with much more serious stuff than this, and my heart goes out to you all: it’s been a rough couple of days, and I’m really grateful to everyone who took the time to comment on yesterday’s post - your stories were so comforting when I was panicking yesterday ❤️ (Old photo, obviously: every time Max sees the selfie camera, he thinks it’s going to be one of those filters where you open your mouth and something happens 😂) #pbloggers #mummybloggers #mummybloggersuk #ukmumblog #mumblogsuk #mumblogs #mamablog #ukparentbloggers #parentbloggersuk #ukparentingblog #parentingbloggers #motherhoodblogger #motherhoodblog #ukblogger #ukofficialblogger #happyblogger #mummyblog #bloggerclubuk #instamum

Good news! We took Max...

Totally unrelated photo, but we’ve just spent the morning in Accident & Emergency with Max, who fell on the path outside the house and split his lip open 😥 They tried to stitch it up at A&E, but it was totally impossible with him awake, so they’ve booked him in to have it done under general anaesthetic tomorrow ... Max is absolutely fine: the bleeding stopped quickly, he doesn’t seem to be in pain, and is just his normal, happy little self. I, on the other hand, am a complete wreck: the plastic surgeon he saw today reckons if we don’t have it fixed, his lip will be crooked when it heals, but I’m absolutely *terrified* of the thought of my baby having to have a GA. If you’re a long-time follower, you might know that I have a full-blown phobia of general anaesthetic (I literally had an elective c-section in order to eliminate the possibility of an emergency one, which might have had to be done under GA), so I just can’t get my head to accept that it’s safe and he’ll be fine 😥 Positive stories and advice very welcome: I’m just so terrified, I can’t even imagine how to get through the next 24 hours 😥😥😥

Totally unrelated photo, but we’ve...

#throwbackthursday to last week, when I needed a sunhat and SPF 50 to leave the house, rather than the current raincoat and wellies situation. Can you tell the post-holiday blues are still in full swing over here? 🌧 .
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#whatiwear #30plusblogs #everydaystyle #realoutfitgram  #scottishbloggers #fashionblogger  #fashionblog #fashionstyle #whatimwearing #stylegram  #outfitoftheday #personalstyle #todayiamwearing #styleinspiration 
#stylediaries #styleblogger #over30style

#throwbackthursday to last week, when...

I posted this on Stories over the weekend, but he looked so cute in it I figured it deserved a spot on the grid, too! This is Max all ready for his friend Eleah’s 1st birthday party on Saturday: despite the jetlag and his continuing obsession with doors of all kinds (He had an entire soft play at his disposal, but he mostly just wanted to open and close the gate into it...) he had an absolute ball, and spent the whole drive home shouting, “HAPPY! HAPPY!” Thanks to @thestirlingstyle for a great party 🥳 🎈 🎉 . (Oh, and that’s his hairbrush in his hand - boy likes to look his best 😉)
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#littlepiecesofchildhood #cameramama #chikdhoodeveryday #childofig #celebrate_childhood #babieswithstyle #ootdkids #fashionbaby #trendykids

I posted this on Stories...

We’re back home in not-so-sunny Scotland, but my feed is still stuck in Florida... New post is up on the blog (direct link in Stories..), talking about how we’ve been dealing with toddler jetlag, and why I always hate coming home after a trip...
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#myunicornlife #lifecolorfully #liveauthentic  #ABMlifeissweet #ABMhappylife #ABMlifeiscolorful #howyouglow #makeyousmilestyle #thegoodlist #thecolorwallproject #colorsplash #colorworld #colorsplurge #lovecolors #jj_colorlove #gf_colour #huntgramcolor #jj_colorful #tv_colors #pocketcolors #sunnypicchallenge #colorhunters #colorgram #colorfulllife #colorinspiration #brightcolors #colormyworld #colorinspiration #womeninframe #ihavethisthingforwalls

We’re back home in not-so-sunny...

James Bond as a toddler... .
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#babyboy #toddler #toddlerfashion #toddlerlife #toddlers #toddlerstyle #toddlersofinstagram #toddlerphotography #17monthsold #babieswithstyle #ootdkids #fashionbaby #trendykids

James Bond as a toddler......

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A Different Kind of Christmas