Laila Ali on Pregnancy & Motherhood
Thursday, August 28 2008 | Comments (2)
Although she'll hit 40 weeks the first week of September, former boxer Laila Ali has said she isn't concerned about exactly when her son makes his debut. She won't put a due date on her baby being born; that whenever he's ready to be born, he'll come out.
When Curtis Muhammad is ready to be born, Laila is hoping she's made the journey easy for him. Although the athlete and Dancing with the Stars alum has continued to work out four days a week, it’s been with her delivery in mind. She does an hour of cardio, and then light weight-lifting for her upper body only.
The American Gladiators host admits that she's been pleasantly surprised at her body's physical response to the pregnancy. She always thought she would gain a lot of weight because she's a big girl naturally. She's around 175 lbs, is 5'11 and has always said she loves to eat. She thought she was going to be like 250 lbs and huge and knows a lot of women who have that fear. But because she's already a big girl, she could just imagine herself being a giant.
In discussing her decision to plan a home birth with her little boy, Laila credits The Business of Being Born with opening her mind. She feels all women kind of like to be in control, but for herself, she wanted to experience the birth.
She thought at first she would go to the hospital, because that is naturally what society tells you to do, but once she found out that there was another option, it suited her more. She wanted to be fully present; no medications. This type of birth is certainly not for everybody. A woman really has to do her research and at least be informed, even if you don't decide to do a home birth or work with a midwife, you can at least be aware of the fact that you have a voice at the hospital.
Laila plans to nurse Curtis Jr., and feels God gave us this gift, and that our bodies are made a certain way to nurture our children. As far as what she's been eating, she's always had a sweet tooth and that hasn't changed. She stresses that it's important not to have too much sugar, because that's how you end up with a big baby.
Her husband Curtis Conway is already a father of three -- to 13-year-old twin sons Cameron and Kelton and 9-year-old daughter Leilani -- but Laila will be a first-time parent with the birth of her son. So what kind of mom will she be? She doesn't want to be too strict, because that's something she could see herself doing; being too protective and strict. She hopes to be patient and fair and just a good example to her kids, consistent. She feels it's important to teach kids values and morals, how to love themselves, and how to be a leader, not a follower.
As far as the baby carrying on the boxing tradition, Laila won't allow that. She's revealed she doesn't want her child fighting, and that's all. She hopes the boxing ends with her in her family. If he's going to play sports, she definitely wants him to play something else.
On final note, in thinking back to her childhood, Laila has stated her famous father taught her more than a few things she'd like to pass on. The great boxer "always taught us never to step on people to get ahead." She feels he treated people with love and respect no matter what their position in life was.