Durga Shakti Nagpal is a well known IAS officer, mom and now also an author with the book Grow Your Baby Not Your Weight.
Published by Rupa Publications, the book deals with the preparation and methods to tackle various dilemmas and obstacles in pregnancy and motherhoood.
Durga Shakti Nagpal shares with Mums and Stories, her journey of becoming an IAS officer, her strengths and why she wanted to write the book, on arrival of her second baby.
” I am born in a family of service, my father being a bureaucrat, my mother a homemaker and I being their only child. I’ve seen my parents work and live life with complete passion. “To love what you do” is the biggest learning I have drawn from my parents. I have grown up seeing my father tremendously contribute to improving lives of the underprivileged and the society at large. And I have always wanted to make the same difference. My parents have naturally been the inspiration behind my dream to get into the civil services.You have been a distinguished officer with many credits and faced far too many challenges. What would you like to tell the younger generation who want to take up IAS or want to make a change in the society.
I have taken all these challenges in my stride, discovering new experiences and learning’s out of them. And I have realized that whatever we do in life, it’s so important to make a positive impact. Our actions should be of value to others and to ourselves. This value is what will make our efforts truly worth it. At the same time, it is important to build your physical and mental stamina to be able to make an impact. Life is a beautiful and endless opportunity, and our mindset and focus are our biggest aids.”
On her decision to write the book, Ms. Durga Shakti Nagpal shares, ” Women are inherently born with the innate perfection and ability to procreate. I’ve always felt that the act of birthing should also be executed with similar perfection. Pregnancy and motherhood have been life changing experiences for me. They have enabled me to explore greater limits of physical and emotional strength. This journey has been even more adventurous as I was determined to carry on my professional life unhampered. Being a mother and going through pregnancy while on active duty, not once but twice, has brought out the strongest, most efficient elements of my character. I am happily able to juggle it all without breaking a sweat. Believe me, it’s a hilarious roller coaster ride when you’re bringing up a new born and a feisty 6 year old while continuously working! I have driven and truly enjoyed every bit of my pregnancy and motherhood and so thought of sharing the beautiful experience of this journey with my fellow sisters by way of this book.
Pregnancy and child birth are indeed a major milestone in the life of woman and also her family. Motherhood, I feel is a definitive beginning of a better and more fulfilling stage of life, including professional life. A well-navigated pregnancy hones a woman’s skills of multi-tasking, planning and fire-fighting all unexpected obstacles. These are traits that also aid and enhance professional growth and going forward. These are also the traits to successfully cultivate hobbies and interests as busy adults. I have emphasized in my book that a perfect pregnancy is a gateway to a larger, more wholesome life, and greater freedom than ever before. And to top it all, as a mother, one has unmatched incentive to be one’s best self. After all, your little ones are looking up to you for inspiration!”
Durga further shares, ” Right parenting is crucial for a child’s overall development, be it a son or a daughter. I have been fortunate to be born to parents who have brought me up to be a very strong person. My mother is a staunch believer in tough love. Her no-nonsense approach ensured that I never had the option to give up and accept weakness. My father drilled into me the importance of being fearless and self-sufficient. These are the values I have grown up with and also try to inculcate in my daughters now. To the parents of daughters in our country, my message is simple: you have been blessed with girls having innate potential to grow into super humans. Nurture them and cherish them. Teach them to explore greater heights and they will make you immensely proud by their endless achievements in life.
Lastly in India, in rural India, pregnancy and childbirth are still rightly treated as natural phenomenon. In urban society though, the pregnancy narrative is increasingly shifting towards it being treated as a medical condition. The internet information overload is also leading to unnecessary fear and anxiety in what is in fact the most natural element of human society. In my book, I have tried to encourage first-time moms to handle their pregnancy with perfection and complete ease removing every element of doubt. This book will minutely take you through all the phases of pregnancy. From emotional well-being to physical fitness, it has everything covered. Balancing career and motherhood is an art and has been equally discussed. The book thus prepares you to naturally undertake your pregnancy, career, fitness and motherhood with full finesse!”.
Mums and Stories also had an opportunity to speak to Durga Shakti Nagpal as a part of our live interactions and author interactions. Here is the link.