Pre-push parties, fireworks and topiary elephants: Pregnancy rituals are out of control.

Thirteen years ago just before I birthed my first son, I went for lunch with four friends. We had some nice food, and they got me a few baby gifts but the emphasis was on a leisurely catch up before I became a mother.

Since that almost pre-historic era, I have noticed the rise in elaborate and expensive pre-baby rituals that go way beyond a simple lunch. Today I learned of a new one: The 'pre-push' party, a term coined by legendary tennis icon Serena Williams.

According to Romperthe new name is required because this shindig is much more than your average baby shower. The 'pre-push party' included cute matching orange outfits, a full spa day, swimming, gift-giving and champagne (for those who were drinking).


Serena, who is already mum to five-year-old Olympia, is due any day now with her second daughter to husband Alexis Ohanian. 

In a special YouTube video made to capture the day, Serena says that the 'pre-push party' made her “feel so loved”. She says, “Everyone’s here. Family’s here. We’re all just relaxed. I feel loved and relaxed.”

Serena was happy and glowing, and it all looked pretty sweet to me. I mean, who wouldn't love a luxury spa day with 17 of your best mates? 

Celebrities do things on a different level to us normal folk and Serena's elevated 'pre-push' party is unlikely to catch on for the average expectant mum, but cultural attitudes to how we celebrate pregnancy have sure changed. 

Just like the way hens parties have become hens weekends or engagement parties are now as Instagrammable as the wedding itself, the humble baby shower or gender reveal has gone from a few cakes and games with mates to the best and most colour-coordinated event your money can buy. 

I was not immune to celebrity influence with my subsequent pre-baby party. The same year I had my second son in 2017, Beyoncé had her twins. 

Beyoncé and Jay-Z hosted the iconic star-studded African-themed 'Carter push party' while I had a brunch for myself and 10 mates complete with a woodland-themed cake, some cute table decorations and a flower crown. 

I recognised things had changed in the almost seven years between my two boys: I went from a simple lunch with my besties to woodland-theming and demanding a Beyoncé-inspired flower crown. 



And now, six years later, pre-baby rituals are even more EXTRA than ever.

Remember when Khloe had baby True in 2018 and her baby shower involved 45,000 flowers, 3,000 balloons and giant elephant topiaries? Or the time Kylie Jenner received a 1.4 million US dollar Ferrari as a 'push present' from her partner Travis Scott in 2018? Or when Mark Cuevas and Aubrey Rainey from Love is Blind set off blue fireworks and streamers to announce they were having a baby boy at their gender reveal event in 2020? 

And now in 2023, thanks to Serena Williams, you could opt to have a 'pre-push party' as well as a Beyoncé 'push party' on top of some gender reveal fireworks.


These over-the-top extravagances might be reserved for celebrities, but according to a recent article by Crisscut Magazine in the UK, the trend has influenced people with normal household incomes too.

"The term ‘push present’ received 288,000 searches in the last 12 months. The phrase ‘push gift’ has increased by 43 percent in the last 12 months, suggesting that partners and family are looking to give new mothers a splash of sparkle."

When it comes down to it, you can spend your hard-earned money however you like, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with enjoying some pre-baby fun and embracing the latest trends. 

If you have the budget for topiary elephants or a spa day for 17, and that is what you want to choose to celebrate impending motherhood - then you do you. 

But for everyone else, just remember to go easy on the demands you make on your loved ones and save some headspace for considering what you need when your baby arrives. 

Parties are fun, but you might really need your mates to still have the energy to be there for you when your baby arrives. 

I was lucky my nearest and dearest forgave me for the flower crown as who knows what I might have asked of them in 2023?

Laura Jackel is Mamamia's Senior Lifestyle Family Writer. For links to her articles and to see photos of her outfits and kids, follow her on Instagram and TikTok.

Feature Image: YouTube /Serena Williams.

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