Peta Murgatroyd Admits She Was Too Nervous to Give Her Newborn a Bath

peta murgatroyd and baby
There's no question that new motherhood is scary -- even for celebrities like Peta Murgatroyd of Dancing with the Stars. The first-time mom recently opened up to Fit Pregnancy and Baby about her life with adorable 4-month-old son Shai Aleksander, and every mom will relate to the (sometimes hilarious) challenges she's faced so far!


One of her biggest fears, she admitted, had to do with giving her wiggly little newborn his very first bath.

"At first, I had no idea what I was doing. I'd never even held a newborn before. I was nervous, and I didn't want to make any mistakes," she said. "I tried to give Shai a bath and he was so slippery, I felt like I was going to drop him, so I had my nanny do it for weeks."

"She's a godsend," Murgatroyd said of her apparently very steady-handed nanny.

"She said, 'You'll do it when you're ready.' And eventually I did. Now his bathtime is one of my favorite times of the day."

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Been there! Well, not exactly: I was beyond terrified of bathing my first baby, but I didn't have a nanny ... so my daughter was perhaps on the dirty side for the first few weeks of her life. But while I'm sure there are plenty of mommy-shamers who are shaking their heads at Murgatroyd for delegating this motherly task to a nanny, I think it's great that she had someone to help her out until she was feeling more confident. (More moms could use a second pair of hands, frankly!)

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Of course, bathtime isn't the only roadblock Murgatroyd has encountered. Right after Shai was born, she was visited by a (rather insensitive!) friend in the hospital who made a comment that reduced the hormonally compromised dancer to tears:

"I still looked five months pregnant right after I gave birth," she said. "A friend who came to the hospital said, 'Oh, you sure there's not another one in there?' I laughed, then went into the bathroom and cried. I'd just had this beautiful kid. I was high on life. That was a joke that I didn't need to hear."

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Sheesh! Some people! That was no doubt the last thing Murgatroyd needed to hear. And there were still more troubles related to her changing body ahead, as the 30-year-old would discover when she started nursing.

"What they don't tell you is when breast milk comes in, your boobs go rock-hard. That was super painful!" she said. "I had [fiancé Maks Chmerkovskiy] in the shower with me, massaging my boobs. My nipples were bleeding too."

"But now, breastfeeding is totally fine. I even look forward to pumping," she said. "I write notes on my phone, watch videos, plan my choreography. The only funny part is my left boob no longer produces anything. All the milk comes from my right boob. Everybody at work knows I've got one big boob. It's hysterical."

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Been there, too!! As have so many moms. Thankfully, most of us don't have to stuff our uneven boobs into skintight dance costumes. Still, as with the bathtime fear, it's so nice to hear a celebrity talk about this very common issue that nobody ever wants to talk about. Normalizing these experiences (which just so happen to be some of the most normal experiences human beings can ever have) is so important in helping moms to know that they're not alone, and what they're going through is difficult for everybody. It's great to talk about the happy stuff, too -- like how little Shai is going to be carried down the aisle by his grandma when his mom and dad get married in July -- but we shouldn't brush all the less-than-happy stuff under the rug in the process. 

Even though Murgatroyd hasn't been a mom for long, it seems like she's already figured out that there's no reason to deny that being a mom is sometimes hard and oftentimes scary ... because most of the time, it's pretty great, too.

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