Publisher: Da Capo Lifelong Books
When global pop star Kelly Rowland became a mom for the first time, giving birth to her son Titan, she felt the most incredible love she had ever experienced. But after spending nine months so focused on the baby growing inside her, she was caught completely off guard by how much she had changed. Like many first-time moms, she was not ready for what had happened to her body and for so many overwhelming new thoughts and emotions. She wondered: Will I Ever Walk Again? Will I Ever Sleep Again? Are My Boobs Always Going to Be Like This? Rowland had questions about everything from postpartum bleeding, skin and hair changes, and dealing with aches and pains to getting back in shape and sex after baby. She also weighed the larger notions about what she wanted out of motherhood and the rest of her life.
In Whoa, Baby! Rowland and Dr. Bickman team up to share this reassuring information with new moms everywhere. Often hilarious and always down-to-earth, Rowland and Dr. Bickman cover every surprising challenge that new moms face.
The subtitle of this book pretty much tells it all. “A guide for new moms who feel overwhelmed and freaked out (and wonder what the #*$& just happened. Whoa Baby is the book I wish I had by my side before giving birth to my first child. Yeah, I read other pregnancy books, but they only provided answers to the standard questions you find in most books. I love Kelly’s “tell it like it is”, hilarious and blunt advice she provides as she reminisces about her first pregnancy.
First off, some of the descriptions used for each chapter are great and straight to the point: What are these bumps on my butt? (hemorrhoids), So now we’re both wearing diapers? (urinary incontinence), Why didn’t anyone tell me to bring Depends? (postpartum bleeding), Will I ever get my groove back? (Sex after baby). I had these exact same thoughts after becoming a mom the first time around. I was thinking, why didn’t anyone tell me these things?
Next, my attention was captured with the opening sentence in the introduction. It’s great to know someone else also enjoyed everything about being pregnant! I thoroughly enjoyed both of my pregnancies, but anytime I tell others they look at me like I’m crazy. I was fortunate enough to never experience any sickness or heath scares with either pregnancy just like Kelly.
This read like a chatty narrative and focused mainly on Kelly’s experience, while adding in several useful tidbits of information like recommended natural herbs to increase lactation while breastfeeding. Kelly’s OB GYN Dr. Tristan Bickman also adds her input and advice throughout the book.
I found this book to be a really fun and honest depiction of what to expect with a new baby. No sensors, just truth. At times, it may feel like Kelly is sitting across from you telling you the good things and the bad things you can expect. Some parts may make you laugh out loud. Whoa, Baby opens you up to the normalization of what to expect as a first time parent that other people may not warn you about like how loose and floppy your vagina is after childbirth (if you give birth naturally) and how much you’ll bleed.
There were several chapters in this book I wish I would have read prior to having my first child. For example, I think chapter 14 (Why Can’t I Sit Down without Wincing?) and chapter 18 (What Do I Want Out of Motherhood?) were particularly useful. I think even if expecting or first-time moms don’t really learn anything new from this book, they will get the encouragement that they aren’t alone and can laugh about their own experience.
The chapters and the overall book are fairly short, allowing you a quick snippet each evening before bed or whenever you take a 10 minute break during your day. I think the real talk is a perfect balance to the other academic pregnancy books out there that freak you out about all the preparation required for childbirth and parenthood.
Overall I think Whoa, Baby provides much needed guidance for the new mom. It may even help to put your mind at ease and also let you know that your experiences are normal.
Your turn: Are you or someone you know going to be a new mom? Do you think this book may help them? Feel free to share in the comments.