Breastfeed wherever you want. The more people who do it, the more acceptable it'll become.> Ana Gasteyer
In honor of our special 10th anniversary issue,
a few of our celebrity friends who have graced the pages of Fit Pregnancy were happy to talk with us about labor, motherhood and all things baby.
British actress Alex Kingston, who plays Dr. Elizabeth Corday on ER, is mom to daughter Salome, 2. While she loves her work, her perspective has shifted since she became a mother.
Birth: “I was in labor for 36 hours. When Salome was born, she had the cord around her neck twice and a true knot in the cord. It was actually a miracle she was alive! She’s a very, very strong baby.”
Food for thought: “When she was very small, she cried a lot and seemed colicky. I had changed my diet after she was born, shifting to vegetarian. Then I discovered that the worst thing to do is change the diet your body is used to during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. So I cut down on that and started eating steak again. Then she seemed much better.”
Magic moment: “They happen every day, but the one that stands out was when she first laughed: She was about 4 months old. Newborns make those breathy, fluttering noises that are so amazing; they’re like nothing else. Literally, they are like butterfly wings fluttering. We were in the garden playing with the dogs and, all of a sudden, she let out this
raucous laugh. It was like she suddenly found her voice.”
Saturday Night Live alum Ana Gasteyer (above), who is currently in a theatrical production of Funny Girl (when not writing those damn thank-you notes), expounds on the joys of being 1-year-old Frances Mary’s mom.
Birth: “I had such strong opinions about how I wanted this birth to be: no epidural, no Pitocin, no C-section. But then I had the epidural and it was fantastic. And it did what I needed it to do to get my baby born. It’s such a great lesson.”
Tricks of the trade: “Frances cried constantly for the first six weeks, so we’d take her for walks in the BabyBjörn. My husband said it was like the movie Speed—if we dropped below 30 mph, the bomb would explode—so we covered every inch of our neighborhood. We had to keep her moving.”
Fear of flying: “At eight weeks [postpartum], we flew to L.A. together and I remember being terrified, thinking, What if she starts to cry? This woman sat down next to me and said snidely, ‘Oh, great—a newborn.’ Frances looked at me, then started to breastfeed. She was so good and snuggly. I had this moment of, I’m this person’s mother and I’m going to take care of her and she’s going to be OK as long as she’s with me.”
Motherly advice: “Breastfeed wherever you want. You are going to get some weird, sideways looks, but the more people who do it, the more acceptable it’ll become.”
Truth: “Having a baby makes you forgive your own mom fast.”
In addition to hosting SoapNet’s new talk show SoapTalk and being mom to Delilah Belle, 5, and Amelia Gray, 2, Lisa Rinna recently opened an upscale clothing store, Belle Gray, in the Los Angeles area.
Labor: “I had a doula who was trying to help me do it naturally, but after
14 hours of labor, the yoga breathing techniques went out the window and
I finally got the epidural. It was extremely intense. The second birth was a breeze. I got an epidural right away, and my daughter slid right out of me—such a gentle, easy birth.”
Postpartum blues: “I had severe postpartum depression after both births. With my first child, I didn’t know what hit me. I felt horrible and didn’t understand why. That first bout lasted about 15 months. With my second child, I was able to get help right away. So I’d say that if you notice any signs, call your doctor immediately. You’ve got to take care of yourself.”
Working mom: “I still work because it’s a part of who I am, but my family comes first and I schedule my work around that.”
Funny gal Jenny McCarthy kept her sense of humor through a hellish labor and an emergency C-section. She has written a book inspired by her fear of “poo-ing on the table” and her pregnancy with Evan, now 1.
Worst fear realized: “The funny thing is that I had my mom, mother-in-law and three sisters in the delivery room because I wanted everyone to share the beautiful experience. They all knew about my fear of poo-ing on the table. After I saw the baby, I asked my mom if it happened. She said, ‘You did a little bit but they cleaned it up.’ I’m like, ‘Nooo!’”
Postpartum: “It was just me sobbing and sobbing for two months, clutching my baby saying, ‘I just love you so much.’ My husband would ask, ‘What’s wrong?’ And I’d say, ‘I love him and nothing can happen to him.’”
Final thought: “You have to laugh when your baby pees in your face. I tell new moms: ‘You’re about to experience the best of what life has to offer.’”
A sleepy Kelli Williams phoned en route to the park with her kids, Kiran, 5, and Sarame, 2 1/2. There’s not much time for napping during her third pregnancy, between defending clients on The Practice and entertaining the kids.
Baby No. 3: “Thank goodness you forget the pain of delivery in order to have more. I always tell people, ‘Your life will be chaotic, but you’ll be the happiest and sleepiest person ever.’ You wonder if you can love a second or third child as much as the first, and you do, but differently.”
Motherly advice: “My favorite time is the ‘fourth trimester,’ after you bring the baby home. Don’t return phone calls, don’t stress about anything—just focus on your baby. Give yourself that great cocoon. Just remember, you will go a little insane with no sleep. I ended up putting a piece of chicken in the cupboard. Later, when I got a plate out, there it was.”