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5 Tips You Won’t Find in a Pregnancy Book

December 3, 2020

Image Source Everyone knows pregnant women are voracious readers. The combination of shock and fear about what’s happening to her body, nail-biting stress about how to care for the tiny life inside, and a desperate need to find some distraction from all the nauseous awesomeness make the pregnant woman one hell of a reader.

If you’re pregnant, you’ve probably already read a few books and a few thousand online blogs/articles. So I won’t get into “what to do in each trimester” and “what not to eat” etc. What I will share are a few things I learned during my pregnancy - things I wish a real mom had shared with me from her experience. So here goes.

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  • Ginger and lemon

Ok so nothing you eat or do will completely remove that lovely nauseous feeling you have throughout the day during the first few months. But these two guys definitely helped me enough to keep a straight face while the war waged within. Keep thinly sliced fresh ginger soaked in lemon juice and salt at home and always keep a piece in your mouth. You will puke when you do - nothing is stopping that - but the ginger will keep the feeling at edge for the rest of the day. I used to dry this mixture in the sun and carry it with me to work as well. Although not as effective as the fresh version, it beat gagging every 10 minutes.

  • Bra strap extender

This is going to become your best friend very quickly. Invest in a few - they will help you keep up with your rapidly changing body, without having to run to the store every month. And since there is no set pattern to how your body changes during pregnancy, they help provide some flexibility without the hassle!

  • Calf stretches

So are you waking up in the middle of the night with excruciating calf pain yet? If not, don’t worry, it’s just a matter of time. Before you stop reading in panic, it happens to everyone. I didn’t know about it when I got my first “episode”. I woke up screaming and thrashing my arms, and landing a few thrashes on my husband too (not on purpose, I swear). So anyway, as expected, the next day I read up all there is to read about it and also met my physiotherapist. She suggested a simple calf stretch - stretch out your leg and bend your toe towards your face.

This stretches the calf muscles. You can also do it while standing, by keeping your feet slightly away from the wall with one leg outstretched and pushing the wall. The exercise is simple, but the key lies in consistency. I used to do these stretches several times a day, every day. And I only ever had the pain arise once more during my pregnancy! Not sure if that can be attributed solely to the stretches, but I’m pretty sure they helped.

  • Warm water soaking

This might be an obvious one, but it was so relaxing that it is worth a mention in this list. Soaking your legs (ankles and as much of the calves as possible) in warm water at the end of a long day would relax anyone, but if you’re pregnant and have legs that look like they belong on an elephant and not a human, it does wonders. And if you can sweet talk and guilt-trip your hubby into massaging your legs after the soak….ah well.

  • Dresses and palazzo pants

You can thank me in kind for this one, ladies. I think maternity wear is the most under-discussed subject on this planet. Not only is good maternity wear hard to find (I’m not talking about XXXL clothing that’s sold as maternity wear), what type of clothing to look for is also an enigma. After experimenting with everything from elasticated pants to large kurtas, I settled on these two - dresses and palazzo pants. Remember that it’s not just your waist or your tummy that will be growing beyond your imagination as you progress in your pregnancy.

Your legs, hips, and basically every body part will start looking like it belongs to someone else. That’s where these two clothing styles worked really well. Choose dresses that are of a slightly stretchy material, and a little high waisted, and flare below the waist. You can buy them slightly larger in the initial months, and use a belt to get the fit you need. For palazzo pants, try to find ones with a tie instead of elastic or buckles on the waist. Not only do these look smart with short tops, they are loose enough to accommodate a growing waist, tummy, hips and thighs!

So there’s your list of tips from the horse’s mouth, so to speak. None of these are from an “expert”, but they really helped me and I hope they do the same for you!

- Esha Tiwary

(Esha is the mother of a baby boy and can’t get over the fact that her tummy’s erstwhile resident is now a 4 month old. Read more from her at

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