Deccan Chronicle

Moms, be kind to yourselves

Deccan Chronicle.| Lipika Varma

Published on: September 12, 2023 | Updated on: September 12, 2023

Sonam Kapoor Ahuja shares some practical and psychological advice about pregnancy and motherhood

Sonam Kapoor

Sonam Kapoor

Actress Sonam Kapoor Ahuja unveiled a pregnancy detection tool at an event attended by prominent influencers, including TV celebrity moms such as Kishwer Merchant, Anita Hassanandani Reddy, Mahhi Vij and Pooja Banerjee, which underlined the importance of early pregnancy detection for ensuring the good health of both mother and child.

"I just moved back to Mumbai after living in London for a couple of years. We wanted our child to be around his grandparents from both sides. I’m back at work," the actress told the media, before sharing her own experiences in motherhood. Here are excerpts:

Decision to start a family

We wanted to wait a couple of years after marriage to have a child. We decided the time was right in January of 2020. But then, the pandemic happened. Things were pretty scary and we decided to wait a little. During this time I read up about fertility and the lifestyle I needed to lead. I understood that I had to lead a stress-free life, take supplements, eat right and have good sleep habits.

Ovulation tracking

Yes, it’s very important because contrary to what we were told, you can’t get pregnant every day. Everyone’s ovulation date is different, and there are days when we’re more fertile. An ovulation tracker can prove your best friend. I did use an ovulation tracker to get pregnant. It is said to take away the romance, but that comes back when you love your partner.

Discovering you’re pregnant

I found out I’d conceived on Christmas day. My husband was having Covid at that time, and though we were in the same apartment, we were in separate rooms. I told him over Facetime. He felt great!

Keeping fit while pregnant

I exercised during my pregnancy and did my Pilates. You should take your doctor’s advice for sure. I did a lot of walking. Be careful of yoga unless you practice with an experienced yoga teacher. Just be active.

Diet plan

I consulted a Tamilian doctor who lives in the UK. She told me to eat the Indian way as it was anti-inflammatory. The Indian diet is mainly of roti, bhaji, dal and dahi, along with chicken or fish if so desired. I followed this diet, along with a few supplements. Just be simple, don’t go on any crazy diet.

Manage the weight gain

I gained 36 kgs. I was in kaftans all the time. But I wasn’t looking at losing weight after I delivered. My main focus after my son was born was to take care of him. I didn’t shy away from my weight gain. It didn’t matter to me whether I was photographed with the extra weight. I lost weight slowly but steadily. It took me an entire year. I didn’t go on a crash diet. You have to love yourself.

Greatest worry

I got pregnant relatively late in life – I was 36 years old. A few of my friends had gotten pregnant at the same age, so they told me the aspects that needed to be monitored. I was always anxious when I went for check-ups as I wanted the baby to be growing well in the womb. I think as first-time moms you are always nervous. I would Google to find out things like how much weight I was supposed to put on at a particular point.

One feeling you hated during pregnancy

I was feeling nauseous. I never threw up, but the feeling was horrendous.

Food cravings

I wanted ghee spread on rotis. Basically, it was ‘ghar ka khana’ and Indian vegetables. It wasn’t anything fancy.

Followed the old tradition

I stayed with my parents for the first six months of my pregnancy, and for the last two as well. The comfort you feel at home with your mother is the best.

Parenting advice

It’s the same advice that we hear on planes before take-off — first put on your own oxygen mask and then only put one on your child. Be kind to yourself and look after yourself. We as moms have been conditioned to sacrifice a lot for the family. But you need to take care of yourself so you can take the best care of your child.

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