Some Parents Are Turning Their Baby's Umbilical Chords Into DIY Keepsakes
Having a baby is a special time, regardless of whether it's your first or third, and because our little angels are only tots for a short period of time, we parents love making keepsakes of their milestones. These are great to look back on as they grow and will make their hearts swell with joy as grownups; as mine did when my mom revealed she'd kept her positive pregnancy test!
That's why baby boxes are so popular. They give parents the opportunity to show their kids how excited they were at the start of their lives - by keeping back important items like their first tooth, their first pair of shoes, and even their umbilical cord.
What, what?! Yeah, you read that right, some parents have decided it's a fantastic idea to turn their baby's mummified umbilical cord into DIY keepsakes.
Now, as every parent knows, the removal of the all-important umbilical cord is a process that doesn't simply end when it's cut. You have to then wait for the umbilical stump to die and, well, fall off - something which many find repulsive.
Thankfully, this period of slight ickiness doesn't last for long, and according to HealthLinkBC, babies' umbilical stumps fall off within a week or two, however, they note that while parents wait for this to happen, it's of the utmost importance that they keep the stump clean and dry. After this, you're free to do what you want with the stump and the options are limitless.
Whether you want to bury it (hey, it's a thing), get your nurse or midwife to dispose of it as a piece of medical waste, or keep it and treasure it in the same way that you do your child's first tooth, each to their own.
And while there's no doubt that keeping it isn't for everyone, now that we're living in a world where elaborate keepsakes are easier than ever before to make, it's becoming a popular option.
So, if you're into it, here are some of the DIY options available for parents who want to treasure this part of their kid's afterbirth forever.
First up, there's this rather gruesome looking heart necklace. Perfect for gothic parents!
And if making a DIY keepsake isn't up your street, or even make any sense to you, parents who do it have opened up about why on a BabyCenter thread, and to be honest, once you've discovered their reasons, it doesn't seem quite so bizarre.
"My mother told me that it was traditional in her culture to keep the cord as a symbol of good luck," wrote one parent.
"That little black stump represents the connection that me and my daughter had for 9 months," remarked a second. "It's a miracle and there is nothing wrong with wanting to preserve that memory."
"I personally decided to keep my daughter's stump for the simple fact that my mother kept mine and my sister's... that little stump is what gave your child life!" added a third.
Another keepsake option is an umbilical cord ring, which, as this picture demonstrates, is a much more inconspicuous option:
Or perhaps this umbilical stump bead is more to your liking? I think this would sit nicely on a Swarovski charm bracelet!
Not all umbilical keepsakes are wearable, however, and one mom decided to make hers a part of one of the most important family events of the year: Christmas.
Taking to Pinterest to share her creation, she explained how she made it:
"I saw the DIY clear plastic Christmas Tree Ornament balls [at Walmart] on clearance so I got me 3. I had saved the caps, wrist/anklet birth ID tags & umbilical stumps for all my children and had them put away in a box in the closet and the idea was to display the important stuff in life on your tree... So I stuffed it all in there, tied a colored ribbon and put sticker names on them so we can display them every year at Christmas instead of hiding them away."
Then there's this, um, ornament? Like I said, each to their own. Just don't let the family dog get near this one.
Or, if you're looking to channel you're inner Ed Gein, there are these umbilical cord dream catchers. Although, admittedly, I don't imagine that there would be many kids out there who'd like this in their bedroom. Each to their own. Okay, maybe not.
Another option, which for obvious reasons is a lot more popular than umbilical dreamcatchers, is framing your baby's umbilical cord and stump. As this picture demonstrates, you can even put your kids' in the same name alongside their year of birth.
Then there's this sex symbol keepsake box, which, personally, I wouldn't say no to. It's an unusual addition to any kid's baby box!
What do you think of these umbilical keepsakes? Have any of them caught your eye or do you think a child's afterbirth should be consigned to the medical waste bin where it's historically been thrown? Let us know in the comments section.