Interview with Elyse Taylor
By Sasha Benz
Were you planning on falling pregnant?
No, [my husband] Seth and I had of course talked about it and were planning on a future together but she was definitely a little surprise.
How did you find out you were pregnant?
I was with you in the pool at our friend’s place in Southampton and I felt strange and you recommended we take a test together as it would be “fun,” LOL. In the end you were the only one laughing!
What was your decision-making process behind having the baby, especially regarding work and your body?
I mean the decision to have a baby is life changing. Financially, [Seth and I] are both very lucky and fortunate so that was not a factor but we did have to decide if we were ready, as a couple, to give up a lot of our freedom, as babies are a 24/7 responsibility.
How long were you able to keep it from your agency before the bump began to show?
I told my agency around four months, and I was so nervous about it! I thought they would be annoyed and wouldn’t work me anymore. Which turned out to be silly thinking because they were so happy and we set a plan in motion just to hide it from the clients until they started complaining that I was fat, LOL. My last Victoria’s Secret shoot was at four and a half months.
At what stage of the pregnancy did you decide to stop work and what was it like working while pregnant?
I was able to shoot maternity H&M and Gap right up until I was seven and a half months pregnant. I wouldn’t really call it working though. It was four shots and I got a nap/snack time in the afternoon.
It wasn’t too bad, the first trimester is the hardest emotionally, so by the end of each day I was just heavy and got a little sleepy. The hardest part was flying, my legs would swell and I would get sick. The second time traveling, I went to Sweden and after that I decided to stop working, as I got very sick.
Was giving up work a scary or exciting thought?
It was fun at first but because I have worked my whole life, it was weird and I did get bored after the first month. Then I just lived like a housewife and watched A LOT of TV.
What was the hardest thing about being pregnant?
LOL, I hated being pregnant….
Don’t get me wrong I love my daughter but my pregnancy was rough. I was hormonal and psychotic. I had heart burn, I got sick, and sciatica in my left leg. It was awful, you could have stabbed me with a knife and I wouldn’t have felt it.
Hardest body change?
Getting used to what it feels like to have your stomach rubbing on your thighs.
Did you change your diet and if so, in what way?
My diet definitely changed… I ate anything and everything that came into my path!
What were your most indulgent cravings? Did you often give in?
My two big cravings were smooth peanut butter (on everything), and Nesquik chocolate milk! It HAD to be Nesquik!
The big question…. How much weight did you put on?
On D-Day I was 173 pounds. I usually weigh 123 pounds (78kg and 55kg).
What was it like not working for so long?
It was very hard for me after the birth, at about two months, because mentally, I was ready to go back to work but my body was still 40 pounds overweight.
My agency was really great about it, they were honest with me. If I called and said “I’m ready”, they’d have me come in and then take one look at me and in the nicest way possible tell me to go home! LOL
Did you ever worry about your career and how you would return to work after such a long break?
Yes and no, sometimes I felt like I would be replaced and life would go on without me.
But clients I’m finding are happy to have me back and take the time to see me and put me back in circulation again.
What tips do you have for a smooth and healthy pregnancy? Can you recommend any vitamins, creams or exercises?
I used a lot of coconut butter on my stomach and I took prenatal vitamins…
I did Pilates and water aerobics for as long as I could.
However, a lot of it is genetics. But stay active, because labor is a marathon and it’s better to be prepared than fat and lazy!