It is a common and loose term we hear frequently: She is nesting. And what exactly does that mean?
It seems that during pregnancy women tend to go through a few different phases of emotional and physical preparation for the baby. The first phase is almost a fantasy since the pregnancy is not that visible yet and in the midst of morning sickness, blood tests, finding a provider, etc., women start slowly to connect with their baby’s and think of their lives as mothers.
During the second trimester the focus shifts to birth planning and also house planning. And during the third trimester most people are in a rush to finish everything in a mad preparation for the baby.
Some Nesting Insights:
You don’t have to do all at once.
Babies actually need very little by the time they are born: diapers, t-shirts, blanket, and breasts (milk or formula). All the decoration madness, color coordinated walls with furniture and linen are fun for parents but babies really don’t care and prefer to be on mother’s arms than anywhere else – even if it has a designer stamp on it!
Avoid big remodel jobs.
Remodeling is usually more complicated, chaos creating, and dusty/dirty than you would ever anticipate. It comes with a budget that usually goes over, a deadline that usually goes over, and requires the management of crew, materials, etc. As fun as the idea of transforming the office into a nursery may be, try to start with mild changes around the house. Remodeling projects often brings more stress than joy and ends up distracting parents from fully experiencing the pregnancy.
Focus on practicality.
In everything – this has a multitude of applications. Mothering is the most efficient way to teach us how to compartmentalize and simplify. Look for items with double usage: a high chair that becomes a toddler chair, a crib that becomes a toddler bed, a changing table that is also a dresser. Parents need things that are useful, easy to clean, and environmentally safe.
Blame it on the hormones.
Pregnancy, childbirth and postpartum bring a set of hormones that are perfectly designed to prepare us and hold us together through the transformation from self centered individuals to selfless care takers. There may be times in your process that you feel more soft and kind and then other times that you feel more protective. At about 38 weeks of gestation babies tend to descend a little bit on the pelvis which causes the mother to 1) Use the bathroom a lot more frequently (yes that is possible) as the baby presses on the bladder and 2) a surge of energy since the pressure on the lungs/diaphragm are relived. This may cause a boost in energy. Women start cleaning, organizing, washing baby’s clothes, preparing food and everyone says: She is nesting. But truthfully she can just breath better since all the pressure is gone and now she can get to the projects she was procrastinating on.
Lastly, do not miss on important moments to prepare for something that is already happening.
Pregnancy and Birth are uniquely one of the most incredible, challenging and rewarding experience for a human being to go through. Avoid staying so focused on “things” or to-do lists that you disconnect from your partner, loved ones and your baby. As I mentioned earlier baby’s needs are small at first, you will have plenty to buy by the time they are teenagers. Instead of shopping, making lists that won’t end, use this time for spiritual growth, journal, pray, walk, eat well, laugh.
Nesting can also be for you. Nest with your dreams, your goals as a person. Nest with the ones you love. Nest with your baby, discovering their preferences and ways of communicating. Nesting is a lot more about connection than possession.