New Year’s Eve is almost here, and we’re plenty ready to ring in 2020. But while NYE often involves booze, loud music and crowds, a night on the town is quite unlikely if you’re ringing in the new year as a new parent. (And there’s nothing wrong with skipping all that jazz, by the way). Depending on just how new your newborn is, you might be dealing with anything from postpartum bleeding to breastfeeding drama to colic to crawling and who knows what else. How festive! But hey, at least you can finally have Champagne again.
One thing’s for certain: When you have a kid, everything changes. Your world suddenly revolves around this small being — especially within those first few months after giving birth. And even if you do find time to put the kiddo to bed and get a NYE babysitter, you probably won’t have the energy to stay up until 4 a.m. ringing in 2019 at a dance club. (Although, hey, more power to you if you do.)
But never fear, new moms of the internet. You’re not alone. We spoke to 10 women to hear how they remember their first NYE as a mom, whether it included humor, tears, emergencies or all of the above.
Oh, the stories
“My first NYE as a mom included both Champagne and vulva stitches. My son was born Dec. 26, so I had just come home from the hospital. My son was rapidly losing weight, and we found out on Dec. 30 that he had a tongue tie and needed ‘surgery’ (they do it in one snip) immediately. We were living in Brooklyn, and of course the only pediatric ear, nose and throat specialist that was open on NYE was in upper Manhattan, so me and my vagina stitches and my 4-day-old baby took the 6 train all the way up there to get his tongue snipped. Needless to say, he was grateful to finally drink breast milk, and I was super-grateful when my friends brought over Champagne that evening!” — Amelia
“I had my daughter at the end of September. This was two months after I had turned 20. Having a baby very much changed my life. I was incredibly happy with her all the time. However, that did put a strain on the relationship between her dad and I. So we decided that we were going to have Christmas with her and New Year’s Eve to ourselves since it was also our anniversary. We ended up taking her to my mom’s house, and we had fun at first just enjoying each other’s company, but I missed her so much. We ended up picking her up from my mom’s house and rang in the New Year with the newest member of our family. That moment of holding my daughter while hearing the countdown in the background, just her little face happily asleep despite all the celebrating, is one of my favorite memories as a mom.” — Mariana
“My first daughter was born at the end of October, so she was still very young for our first New Year’s. It was the first night that my partner and I were excitedly going to stay up late (although we unintentionally stayed up late most other nights). I did my hair and makeup and put on real clothes for the first time since our baby was born. I actually felt kind of human. We poured a small glass of wine and planned to celebrate quietly while watching fireworks from the roof. My partner ended up falling off of the roof and breaking an arm so we spent the [first day of the] new year in the hospital with a very unhappy baby. Luckily, my partner was OK, and we’ve since had better luck when crawling on the roof.” — Audrey, parenting blogger
“My first NYE as a mom was in Florida. I took my 11-month-old baby down to visit my parents — her grandparents. We took a photo on their balcony and continued that tradition every year for quite a few years. It is fun to see the photos now and watch how my daughter grew from year to year.” — Debbie
“We got food from the Vinegar Factory and had some Champagne at home. It was nice to unwind and focus on more intimate time with my husband once the baby was asleep. Late dinner and Champagne was perfect for us and very mellow but enjoyable.” — Elle
“I spent my first NYE in the hospital. My daughter was born on Dec. 30. It was the happiest and safest I have ever felt. I was also very proud of myself and of my new baby. I remember smiling a lot. My family brought sparkling cider and party hats. Heading into our fourth NYE — I’m ready for a night on the town, but that’s highly unlikely.” — Brandice
“We dressed our baby girl up in glittery pajamas with a tiara and took a family photo. We went to the children’s museum to watch the ball drop, and then at night, after she was asleep, we ordered food and popped some Champagne, just us two adults, for some intimate time together in our pj’s. It was wild and wonderful in its own low-key way.” — Carson
“We actually had a horrible NYE! My baby got sick and we had to go to the ER and take care of her. I wasn’t upset because we couldn’t have the bubbles and celebration we wanted — I was upset because I loved her (still do!) and was scared to death about her well-being. Thankfully, it worked out and she got better in a few days.” — Molly
“We took a million cute photos and watched a movie marathon with our little boy until we put him to bed. Then we had some Champagne and cocktails and chocolate-covered strawberries and Champagne truffles, basically had dessert for our own real dinner that night and got a little tipsy together as parents. It was so nice because life is so serious in that time and we felt like young kids again.” — Jessica
“We had it all planned out perfectly to actually have our mom come and take her for the night so we’d spend the day and late evening together but then ring in the new year as a couple because we never got alone time anymore. But then mom wasn’t feeling well, and we didn’t want to get her sick so we changed our plans. It was disappointing at first, but we actually were so glad we had her the entire night with us because we couldn’t imagine starting the new year not as a family together. We still had the Champagne though!” — Natalie