My older sister always lamented being born the day after Christmas. While it was always guaranteed she'd be off from school, and that the food would be aces, she felt as though her birthday was swept aside in favor of Christmas celebrations and New Year's prep. My mother, however, would wax poetic about going into labor on Christmas Day, and how my father asked her if she was kidding. Because obviously, no one would dare mess with the dessert course. Alas, similar stories are told the world over, but these five fascinating facts about December babies might begin to sway your original thoughts about being born during the most wonderful time of the year.
Whether these facts are based on where you or your child's birth places them astrologically, or what science says about being born during the month of December, it's clear that these winter babies have a lot going for them. Being born in December can have an effect on more than just your ability to have an outdoor birthday party; statistically, it's been shown that birth month can have a quantifiable impact on how you perform, how healthy you'll likely be for the duration of your life, and even how you're educated. As it turns out, the benefits of having December as a birthday month could be worth sharing the spotlight with a major holiday.
1. They're Less Likely To Accrue Student Debt
Millennials and succeeding generations really got the short end of the stick when it comes to student debt. Many of us feel the pain of that debt each month. It's a choking, gross feeling to get that bill in your inbox, or to see just how much is taken from your check each pay. However, according to research in the Journal of Human Resources, being born in December means that you'll likely receive more financial aid than those born in January. As someone who received virtually no financial aid, I'd have been thrilled with even a few bucks thrown my way.
2. They Could Be Sports Phenoms
December babies are more likely to be great at sports, according to a study published in the International Journal of Sports Medicine. December has a fantastic roster of professional sports phenoms: LeBron James, Tiger Woods, Larry Bird, and Gabby Douglas were all born in December, according to Born Glorious.
To be fair, growing up, my sister was always way better at sports than I was. I was more of a "run the concession stand and make out under the bleachers" type of girl. She was softballs to the wall when it came to the actual playing of sports.
3. They're Morning People
Good news, parents of December babies. Your child may love going to bed early according to the journal Sleep. Bad news, parents of December babies. There's an unfortunate corollary on this one, and that can best be described with the old aphorism "early to bed, early to rise, makes a parent borderline homicidal until coffee." Because the earlier they hit the hay, the earlier they get up, according to the Journal of Neuroscience.
Remind me never to get pregnant in February. I am not a morning person, even if I do wake before the dawn. I am a coffee and read in bed, person.
4. They're Less Fussy
My mom was not shy about letting me know just how much of a pain I was as a baby. She thought it a particularly cruel joke to have such a fussy, gassy, colicky baby who always needed to be held and rocked after having such an easy experience with my sister, who generally preferred to be left alone to chill and sleep. What can I say? I am a dramatic middle child. My sister and I are still very much aligned with our younger selves. I am a bit high-strung, a bit neurotic, and I fuss a lot. My sister? She is super relaxed and chill, optimistic, and happy-go-lucky.
As it turns out, there is a scientific study — quoted in The Atlantic — that found that babies born in December aren't as fussy or irritable. So maybe have your December friends assist you in your holiday shopping if you're prone to flipping off old ladies trying to wrestle a sweater from your hands. (She had it coming.)
5. They're Likely To Outlive Everyone
A study published in the Journal of Aging Research found that babies born in December are more likely to live to be 105 or even older (!) than people born in other months. Large groups of centenarians were analyzed for this broad study on seasonality of birth and its impact, and it was found that those who were born in December often outlived their families. Sad in some ways, amazing in others. Imagine all you could experience in 105 years!
This first-time mom wants to have a home birth, but is she ready? Watch how a doula supports a military mom who's determined to have a home birth in Episode One of Romper's Doula Diaries, Season Two, below. Visit Bustle Digital Group's YouTube page for the next three episodes, launching every Monday starting November 26.