We’ve all heard of women who suddenly have urges to scrub floors on their hands and knees right before they go into labor. This is a natural tendency that many expectant mothers go through, referred to as nesting.
When does nesting occur?
It can occur at any time during the pregnancy but most often becomes more of an urgent feeling in the last few weeks of pregnancy. However, not all women feel this urge to nest, it isn’t imperative.
What are some common nesting urges?
Nesting can include everything from setting up the baby’s crib to washing walls or sweeping the garage. Trust your instincts because accomplishing the things on your personal list will make you feel much more satisfied than ticking off some checklist you get from the internet. Just in case you’re at a loss, here are some common and helpful tasks that you may want to tackle while nesting:
• Sorting, washing and putting away baby clothes
• Safely installing the car seat
• Organizing and stocking up the pantry
• Organizing and stocking up the fridge
• Cooking big batches of food to freeze for those endless days when baby takes up all of your time
• Deep cleaning of the house, including washing windows, carpet cleaning, and scrubbing the bathtub
• Preparing your hospital bag
Is nesting safe?
Unless you’ve been put on bed rest or modified rest by your care provider, following your basic nesting instincts should not harm you or your baby. This being said, it is important to take some precautions:
• Stay off of ladders or stools as your center of gravity has shifted and puts you off balance during pregnancy.
• Avoid heavy lifting.
• Avoid chemical cleaners. Bleach, oven cleaners and many other household cleaners should not be inhaled by pregnant women.
• Don’t overdo it. Make sure you stay hydrated and take frequent breaks to rest. Delegate the tasks that you shouldn’t be doing to someone else and save some of your energy for baby’s arrival.
• Speaking of delegating, there are certain urges that might come up that should be left to the professionals. I’ve known many women who have insisted on renovating the bathroom or kitchen in preparation for baby. Obviously you shouldn’t be schlepping drywall or refinishing the bathtub yourself at this point in time. Make sure you call in the pros if you have major home improvements that need to be done and ensure that their timelines coordinate with yours.
Good luck with your nesting and congratulations on the new joy that will soon be joining you on the outside!