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March 20, 2017

Three things you should do to support your bestie when she is pregnant

Women's Health Pregnancy
032117_katiesbaby_kg Kerry English/for PhillyVoice

Aunt Christie meets Killian on the day he was brought home from the hospital last October. Katie is grateful that she is able to share life's most precious moments with her best friend and is so excited to meet Christie's baby boy in September.

My best friend is having a baby! She and her husband recently announced that they are expecting a baby boy, and I could not be more overjoyed and excited for them and their families! To bear witness to your closest friend’s journey as she becomes a mother is truly a gift, and it got me thinking about how I can support her during this very special time in her life.

This post was inspired by my best friend, not only because she is pregnant with her first child, but also because she was so amazingly supportive of me when I was expecting. Christie was one of the very first people who knew I was pregnant. She was constantly checking in and wanted to know everything that was happening in my belly. She helped me move into a new house in New Jersey when I was two weeks away from my due date. She was there the day we brought our son home from the hospital. Everyone should be so lucky to have a best friend like her.

Based on her loving example and our devoted friendship, here are three things I recommend doing to support your girlfriend when she is expecting.

Thoughtful generosity

Christie is the queen of considerate gifts. The first one she sent to me when I told her I was pregnant was a prenatal yoga DVD. Early on in my pregnancy, I had a hard time finding a prenatal yoga program to attend. My best friend knew that yoga was an important part of my life, and it was so thoughtful of her to give me the gift of continuing my practice into my pregnancy. When Christie told me she was pregnant, I gave her "What to Expect When You’re Expecting," by Heidi Murkoff and Sharon Mazel.

"What to Expect When You’re Expecting" is a fantastic source of information and a rite-of-passage read for every expecting mama. I also gave her a journal. I really enjoyed journaling during my pregnancy and encouraged Christie to do the same as a way to memorialize her experience and process her thoughts and emotions during this special time.

Your presence is a present

You do not have to spend money to be a supportive friend. One of the best things you can do for an expecting woman is to just be there for her. Send a text message checking in. Ask her how she is doing and listen to her answer. Stay tuned in to what is going on in her life and in her belly. Celebrate the milestones in her pregnancy. For the first half of my pregnancy, I was living in the Midwest, so my best friend and I did not get to see each other that often, but it felt like Christie was still a constant presence in my pregnant life. Every pregnant mama needs a supportive girlfriend to lean on. Christie was exemplary in this department, and I hope I am reciprocating in the way that she deserves.

Have some fun together

Once the baby arrives, she is going to be really, really busy, so book some bestie dates while you can. Take her out to lunch or treat her to a mani/pedi. Make a reservation at her favorite restaurant or take her shopping for some new bump-friendly clothes. Get your girlfriends together to toast the mama-to-be. Think of the things she loves doing and make some special bestie dates. Be prepared that your pregnant best friend’s idea of fun may be binge-watching her favorite show with ice cream, especially if she is in her first or last trimester. If that is the case, bring her favorite flavor and enjoy the quiet time together.

If you do just one of these things, your best friend will be so happy. If you do all of them, then you’ll be a rock star bestie like mine is.

Now that I have a baby, I have a better understanding of how truly incredible pregnancy is. There are ups and downs, hormones and fears, jubilation and unfettered excitement. Being a part of Christie’s experience as an expectant mother is so special to me because I am watching one of the most incredible women I know fulfill her destiny of becoming an amazing mother. How lucky we are to be able to share in life’s most precious moments together. I have loved her baby since the moment she told me she was pregnant, and I am counting down the weeks until I get to kiss him.

Please join me in congratulating Christie and her husband, Brandon, as they anticipate the arrival of their son in September!

What was the most special thing your best friend did when you were pregnant? Share with me in the comments section below or tweet me @ThePhillyVoice and @KathleenEGagnon.

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