Michelle Duggar Chats About Morning Sickness And Her In-House Organizer
Some say that Michelle Duggar is crazy. After all, being pregnant with her 19th baby, who's due in March 2010, isn't typical. But the 42-year-old, who herself is the youngest of seven siblings, seems to have everything under control. On her reality-TV show, 18 Kids And Counting on TLC, she exemplifies a remarkably stress-free mom, never letting anything get under her skin.
She talked to ParentDish by phone from her Arkansas home -- secreted away in her upstairs office -- about what life is like as a pregnant mom in a house of 20 and counting.
ParentDish: Congratulations! There must be a lot of excitement in the house right now.
Michelle Duggar: The children are doing their lessons now. Math, English, spelling, music.
PD: Who's running things while we're on the phone?
MD: My 16-year-old Jessa is the school coordinator. I think she's harder on them than I am. With her they have to get at least a B-plus or else they do it again. I'm more lenient; a low B or a C would not be horrible. Some come crying, "I have to repeat another lesson."
PD: How are you feeling?
MD: We are thrilled. I feel sick and tired a lot right now.
PD: How do you handle the morning sickness?
MD: I keep almonds around and protein and pretzels. It keeps it bearable. I don't throw up all the time. I just feel sick on and off all day long. I have a friend who's a doula and she told me to keep protein snacks handy, like beef jerky, cooked chicken in the fridge. It helps. Salty pretzels kind of help, so I keep pretzel sticks around. We all love pretzels, so I keep tons around. It's a favorite snack.
PD: How does it feel to know that your child will be younger than your grandchild?
MD: I am just amazed. Being 42, I was wondering if could still have another. That season of change is happening a bit, so I figured I would just enjoy hugging and loving on my grandbabies.
PD: Now that you're both pregnant at the same time, is the relationship with your daughter-in-law any different?
MD: Anna asked me some pregnancy questions early on and that was just a joy. Now she's asking me, "How are you feeling?" She was really sick every other day, so she can sympathize with me.
PD: How will this play out in the Duggar family?
MD: My mother and my sister got to experience the same phenomena. My mother was pregnant with me when my sister was pregnant with my nephew. I have a nephew and niece who are older than me, so I was an aunt before I was born! When I was younger I would point my finger and say to them, "Remember, I'm your aunt."
PD: Are you doing anything different for Baby No. 19?
MD: At this point I'm just trying not to feel sick. (Laughs.)
MD: Not yet. Jessa gave me a list of name possibilities. She's my organizer. She said, "We gotta start thinking about this."
PD: So? What are your thoughts?
MD: Jim Bob (her husband) says we're open to suggestions on J-names. People can go on our Web site, duggarfamily.com and e-mail us at JimBob@afo.net with name suggestions.
PD: Any more kids after this one?
MD: We would love more. We're just so thrilled that God blessed us with another one. So, if he gives us more, we will gladly receive the gift.
PD: As an uber-fertile woman, do you have any advice for women trying to conceive?
MD: God is the one who's the giver of life and opens and closes the womb. I would cry out to him initially and ask him if he would be willing. We only think we have control but in reality he is the giver of life.
Love the Duggars? Got an idea on a J-name for the new baby? Type it into our Comments area and we'll pass along your suggestions to the family.
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.