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To read or not to read

In today’s digital age, with hundreds of apps that can track your pregnancy and thousands of books to prepare for the life-changing decision, the more pertinent question is whether to read everything available to us or not.

Pregnancy brings with itself a lot of changes in the body and the mind. And if you have the internet, be prepared to also deal with information overload that can wreak havoc in your hormone-filled exciting life.

A pregnant woman today has all the information at her fingertip and yet, many times, she ends up feeling overwhelmed. Does this sound familiar at all?

If yes, good news is that we can take control. Once we understand ‘what’ knowledge needs to be acquired ‘when,’ we can totally be at the top of our P game.

I remember being so overwhelmed with the information people and the internet had to offer at the start of my pregnancy three years back.

It was nerve-wrecking to decide which app to download to keep a track of the day-to-day development of my peanut-sized child. I also remember calling my mother frantically after coming across a birth video that I thought needed to be watched as soon as possible.

I am so grateful for the knowledge she shared at that point, and it came not from the books but her own life experience. She was so specific. She asked me NOT to watch the birth video until the time was right. On asking when would that be, her dramatic reply was, “You will know beta (my child).”

Well I did know. I watched the video right towards the end of my third trimester when I knew I could handle it. I had to remind myself that “I must know everything in advance” will not work in this situation. I will have to take one day (or one trimester) at a time.

When I began reading my pregnancy book, I realized my usual method of reading was also not going to work. It is so crucial to understand that one has to learn on the way during pregnancy. Do not stress or overwhelm yourself by reading about something that might not even happen to you.

Gaining knowledge about our body and this beautiful process it is going through, should calm us. It should help us understand our own selves better.

But if it creates stress and leads to anxiety, isn’t it better to not read? Don’t forget that you can acquire knowledge through others sources too. From your doctor to your mother/any experienced person around, there are many ‘traditional’ ways of getting informed.

Here are a few things you can keep in mind while collecting information about pregnancy.

Stick to the time table

This means do not read about the seventh month when you are just two months into your pregnancy. We all want to be know-it-all but as much as that sounds tempting, the truth is we cannot. We need to trust our bodies and instincts. We need to remind ourselves that sometimes all we can do is sit back and let our body do the magic.

Fall in love with just one

Please stick to that one book and one book only that you have decided to follow during your pregnancy. There are some good ones available in the market but my personal guide was What to Expect When You’re Expecting. It reads chronologically so you can just skip to the sections that are relevant to you.

Remember the target reader

In my case, I was reading a book written for the American reader and there were sections that I had to skip or find other sources to get the information related to my cultural roots. Basically, whatever you read, tweak it according to your context.

Combination works best

Create a concoction of the experience of elders (mothers, friends, relatives, neighborhood aunties) and your modern book knowledge to win over these confusing times. Mothers have the wisdom that cannot be gained through books. Make the most of it before rejecting it for being “too old/conservative.”

Download the simplest app

It’s exciting to know the size of your baby as you advance in your pregnancy and all those other fun facts, but stay away from apps that provide way too much information.

We all learn from each other’s mistakes and I hope my mistakes help you gain a better insight into your pregnancy. Happy Reading! Or not?

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this post are the personal views of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the views of Any omissions or errors are the author’s and A Week In Life does not assume any responsibility for them.

#motherhood #pregnantpregnancy

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