Pregnancy: What is ‘nesting’ and why do we do it?

Sometime in your pregnancy, you might end up with this intense and sudden urge to Marie Kundo your house – or least the baby’s room. If that happens to you – call me! I’d love some help over here.

In all seriousness, this little impulse of organizing, cleaning, decorating or otherwise rearranging your house, closets, baby clothing, or nursery is called nesting. I’m pretty sure we have all heard of it, but not everyone experiences it the same way or to the same degree. Frankly, my ‘nesting’ instincts were limited to forcing my husband to put together our cribs way too early and folding some baby clothing. I’ve had friends go all out on their nesting wishes, even remodeling a portion of their house – ala ‘Father of the Bride Part 11’.

The desire to get your home ready for your new baby is something special – so if you are feeling the impulses to nest – allow yourself to indulge! The instinct is the strongest, they say, in the later stages of pregnancy as you near your due date. It is even an old wives’ tale that once that impulse to nest for baby begins – labor is just around the corner.

They also say nesting is ‘strongest’ for those entering their second half of pregnancy in the spring and summertime — lending to the idea of “spring cleaning.” Who knows if that’s true but could definitely be intensified if you are already the “spring cleaning” type! (Also, who are they? I’m not sure.)

Generally speaking – nesting is just another way some of us prepare for birth and welcome a new human to our home and lives! It is not a necessary step but can be a fun way to explore your journey of motherhood before baby arrives – picturing your little one in those wee little clothes as you hang them on wee little hangers, or imagining your child in the bassinet or crib, or how you will share in a giggle as you tickle their toes on the changing table. Maybe nesting is just a part of boredom of still being pregnant and feeling like you can contribute to the forward movement by doing something, or recognition that baby is about to suck up a lot of time and energy and having as much ready beforehand will do us well, or perhaps it is just a cumulation of excitement and anticipation!

Whatever your reason for nesting – make sure you do it safely. Stay away from strong cleaning chemicals, paint vapors, and off high places(like ladders!). Avoid lifting heavy objects or doing too much at once. Rest as much as possible and enjoy your journey to motherhood (or more babies!) mama!

Are you ready to nest?

Check out my post on cribs, bassinets, and everything you need you don’t get at your shower!

Also, plan ahead for snooze time! 10 Things You Need for Baby’s Best Sleep