Pregnancy – the golden period of every woman’s life. The grand experience for which the entire family waits with baited breath. It’s the only period when the woman walks on the rose petals everyday – basking in the care, adoration, admiration of the entire family. She is given the freedom to eat as per her wish and never are her food choices questioned. Of course, there are advices flowing in right from the next door neighbor to the door ki aunty living in USA. Overwhelmed with the sudden praise and love, the woman starts enjoying the phase, never realizing the pounds she is piling on and that the praise is not as much for her as it is for the incoming baby.
Couple of months after the delivery, when the baby and the new mother are settled in their breastfeeding routine and rest of the activities, it’s a huge shock for the mother to realize that the entire attention is now on the baby rather than her. Of course, she loves her baby and the fact that others also do the same. But what she is left with is the postnatal depression and an entirely unrecognizable shape of the body. Add to it the sleep deprivation, the weakness – she has the formula for misery.
Kareena Kapoor has achieved an amazing feat post her pregnancy in losing weight and getting back to her original sexy and svelte shape. Of course what with the unbelievably supportive husband and the intelligent nutritionist Rujuta Diwekar at her service, she can achieve anything. But “SURPISE !! SURPRISE !!!”. 90% of the women do not have that luxury and sadly are left to their own limited resources to deal with the post pregnancy “weight loss and confidence gain” process.
I was staying at my mother’s place till my baby turned two months. In spite of the disturbed schedule, I was pretty much well taken care of. So imagine my despair, when I returned to my home, with a 2 month old baby, my in-laws and my broken self-esteem. It was awful. Even if my in laws were extremely supportive they could help only to the point of taking care of the baby. Losing weight and gaining that confidence was my own battle.
I was not easy. It took me almost one year to shed those extra pounds step by step, slowly and steadily. I accumulated huge amounts of patience and developed tremendous respect for mothers who have achieved it. Of course, sharing with several mothers online through mycity4kids and reading as much as possible were the keystones to achieve my target. Yet, through my entire journey, I learnt some extremely important lessons which would help me throughout my life.
Sharing them below:
- Wait. Take your time:The postpartum depression can hit you as soon as the second day of delivery. It can make you think horrible things and make your life look extremely miserable. Wait. Have patience. Let the phase pass. Don’t think too much. Just concentrate on taking care of the baby. Take ample rest. Have faith that this is going to pass. Talk to your mom, sister, friend, anyone you feel comfortable with. But don’t let negative thoughts to cloud your vision.
- Don’t expect too much too fast.Irrespective of what your mind might be thinking, your body is yet not ready to perform upto that limit. So even if you think that you will start exercise from the fourth week of delivery, your body might not actually be ready yet. Do not rush into the weight loss mode. Let your body heal. After all, it has gone through one of the most exhausting experience of life. It deserves all that rest and respect. Think of Aishwarya Rai and how she confidently walked the Cannes red carpet in spite of being plump and chubby post pregnancy.
- Weight loss is not the target. The target is good health.I have seen some of my friends resorting to crash diets in an attempt to lose weight fast. Never do it. In doing so, you are not only depriving your body with the essential nutrition, but also making it prone to severe health problems later. There is no point in losing weight if you feel tired and depressed all the time. Plus, unhealthy eating habits can also lead to some side effects like hair fall, anxiety, depression, cravings, etc. Better eat everything and as much appetite as you have. Correct eating also aids in breast milk production. Plus, you feel energetic, happy and alert.
- Local food rather than global.I have always believed in going local rather than global. A local lauki can do as much good as the foreign broccoli. Nutritionist Rujuta Diwekar also, in her many books has explained how the local vegetables and fruits contain elements which are easily digestible and supportive to the body’s composition. Also, prefer seasonal fruits rather than those which are available throughout. I delivered in December, so I gorged on the local home grown guavas and pomegranates the most. Plus the season’s fresh harvest of green leafy vegetables like fenugreek, spinach were extremely helpful in not only weight loss but also breast milk production. Also, our very own Ayurvedic options are the best when it comes to good health. So a glass full of Nestlé a+ slim milk with a spoonful of turmeric at night was one of most awaited treats of the entire day.
- Right exercise at right interval.Many of the so called health specialists are always at the forefront devising new and interesting ways of luring overweight women into their new weight loss tactics. How a type A exercise is good for a Type A body and also the huge number of exercise gears and accessories available. In my experience, many of the so called experts are linked to one or the other brands of fitness industry. They thrive on people’s despair and make them attitude based on weight loss. Do not fall prey to their gimmicks and no one can suggest what exercise is best for you from a distance. It is best to select a good gym which is near to your home and which you feel have sensible coaches. Only when you give them your background, your eating habits, your schedule they can prepare a correct exercise chart for you. Also, once you start exercise, you also start understanding yourself what you enjoy and what gives you better results.