Gina Rodriguez says she didn't realize how hard it was to work while pregnant: 'I didn't know the half of it'

·3 min read
Actress Gina Rodriguez, who is pregnant with her first child, is preparing to navigate the world as a working mom. (Photo: Getty; designed by Quinn Lemmers)
Actress Gina Rodriguez, who is pregnant with her first child, is preparing to navigate the world as a working mom. (Photo: Getty; designed by Quinn Lemmers)

Welcome to So Mini Ways, Yahoo Life's parenting series on the joys and challenges of child-rearing.

Gina Rodriguez won't be planning any gender reveal parties soon.

The Jane the Virgin alum, who is six months pregnant with her first child, says she and husband Joe LoCicero are letting their child's sex be a surprise, for now.

"We haven’t decided if we want to find out yet," Rodriguez tells Yahoo Life's So Mini Ways. "We still have some time — we’ll find out eventually, right?"

Meanwhile, Rodriguez is learning firsthand just how hard it is to work through her pregnancy. Currently busy filming her upcoming ABC sitcom Not Dead Yet, the actress is finally feeling better after a "brutal" first trimester.

"Working while pregnant is really quite the feat," she shares. "Any birthing person that wanted to go through that journey, I really commend you, it’s quite the undertaking. But now being pregnant myself, I’m like 'I didn’t know the half of it.' I see anyone with a child, and I'm like 'you’re a superhero!'"

Rodriguez's pregnancy is one that mirrors her critically acclaimed role in Jane the Virgin, in which she played a young women who becomes pregnant after being artificially inseminated by mistake. The star says she didn't really watch the show while it ran from 2014 to 2019, in an attempt to stay focused and avoid criticizing herself. But now, she's playing catch-up.

"When I did Jane I wasn't pregnant, nor did I even have a partner to get pregnant with," says Rodriguez, who says the role "taught her so much." Now, she's preparing to face many of the same issues her character dealt with. "A lot of the struggles she went through — lactation, sleep training — Jane did all these things. I’ve been revisiting it. To go back and watch it is so wild. It's a really beautiful feeling. That show changed my life."

Rodriguez first announced her pregnancy on Instagram on July 30, her 38th birthday.

"This birthday hits different," she captioned the photo and video collection of herself and LoCicero, including one where she's holding up a positive home pregnancy test.

As an expectant mom, Rodriguez is hoping to uplift others in the same way she has been throughout her career. That's why she's teaming up with Amazon Launchpad to celebrate their second annual Innovation Month. The brands, entrepreneurs and startups showcased in Amazon Launchpad’s Innovation Grants program are small business owners, including many women- and Black-owned businesses. It's a mission that hits home for Rodriguez, who started out in the entertainment industry without any connections.

"I think it's really empowering when a company as massive as Amazon uses their resources and outreach to uplift small businesses," said Rodriguez. "I started from scratch — I knew nobody in the industry, I came from an economically challenged background and I am only here today because of the people that helped me get where I’m at. It fills my heart to be able to do the same for others."

One of her favorite products in the Amazon Launchpad program includes FLY BY JING sauces, which really tap into her love of food with serious flavor.

"This baby loves spicy food," the star admits.

Despite her excitement for becoming a parent, Rodriguez says thus far, she's not the type of pregnant person that has every piece of the nursery organized or baby outfit hung up.

"I'm a little bit of a mess," Rodriguez shares. "I started to a do a little bit of that this weekend, and I was like ... eh I'm tired, I'm hungry. And then I took a nap instead."

Wellness, parenting, body image and more: Get to know the who behind the hoo with Yahoo Life's newsletter. Sign up here.