How Clean Is Your House…?

I never thought a word could annoy me as much as this one. Some people get annoyed at the word ‘moist’, some people really dislike hearing ‘c*nt’. Those have never bothered me. I have never understood how someone can get annoyed at words, until now…

     Nesting.

     What a horrible, patronising and pain in the arse word. I have reached 40 weeks of pregnancy. Up until now it has been fairly easy. I’ve not really suffered. Even my ‘morning sickness’ was something to be envied by most women. I finished work at 36 weeks due to backache (and the slight hormonal outburst…) but once I was rid of the desk and office chairs, that really improved and I felt like I could dance around my house. (Not that I did that before, but you get what I mean). I still had the odd pains but nothing I could not cope with. I had nothing to complain about.

     When you and your partner work full time housework is something at the back of your mind, like refilling your car’s windscreen wash or putting away a pile of clean clothes. You just don’t care enough to get up and do it when the thought pops in your mind. Plus, it can wait until the weekend. Weekends are there to catch up on those boring things and when you’re a couple you generally share chores. I’m sure there are people out there who can leave home at 7am to go to work, get home at 6pm, make their tea, clean up after tea and find time to play the house wife, but that is just not me. Don’t get me wrong, my house is not disgusting, but for it to have a proper clean I needed to have been off work. That’s just how I am.

     Once I went on maternity leave, that all changed. My house, particularly the kitchen, has never been cleaner. I have been leisurely getting up on a morning (when the baby decided that comfort was no longer an option), and cleaning the kitchen before I even had a cuppa. After everything I ate it was cleaned up straight away, the floor was swept etc and I no longer needed to fear for random visitors who might see breadcrumbs on the side or a food-stained hob. It is so clean! At the moment I am playing the ‘housewife’. My fiancé is out at work doing his twelve-hour shifts, it would be so bloody rude for me to say to him, ‘Look, I know you were up at 5am and you’ve only just got home now just after 6pm, but I’ve cooked and cleaned for the last 2 days so if you wouldn’t mind, crack on.’

     Now, to me, this all seems fair. My fiancé is out working so why shouldn’t I do the housework? I might be ‘heavily pregnant’ but I am not straining myself. I don’t love cleaning but there is no excuse to hang on until the weekend anymore. Plus, as much as I love sitting and watching Jeremy Kyle, it all needs doing. You can’t avoid keeping your home tidy and hygienic. Also, it is something to do. Maternity leave can be very boring so cleaning up helps to keep you sane but it also gives you a sense of achievement. You have accomplished something with your day, wahoo! I now understand why my Grandma cleans her house every day. It’s not because she’s lost the plot, it’s the opposite.

“This urge to clean and organize is known as nesting. Nesting during pregnancy is the overwhelming desire to get your home ready for your new baby. The nesting instinct is strongest in the later weeks coming up on delivery.”

     No. Just, no, ok? This is utter and complete rubbish. I have had no ‘overwhelming desire’ to clean my home. My body is not sending me secret messages to clean the kitchen. Do people think that my baby is going to judge me because I have not emptied the dishwasher? If pregnant women are cleaning their houses more than usual at this stage I can guarantee that it is because they’re on maternity leave and have nothing else to do. Stop calling it ‘nesting’. I am not ‘nesting’.

     The baby’s room is all organised. Her clothes are washed and either hung up in her cupboard or folded up and put away in her drawers. The changing table is ready with nappies, creams etc all laid out properly so they’re easy to find when needed. That is also NOT nesting. That is stuff that I HAVE to get ready before she is here. None of this was done whilst I was still working because I just did not have time. Even my hospital bag was not prepared until I was done with work. Work takes up a lot of time and it can be exhausting, especially when it’s full time.

     When I hear someone accuse me of ‘nesting’ I shudder in frustration. Please stop. It’s up there with ‘Oo, not long to go now’ and ‘Get all the sleep you can…’. They’re all pregnancy clichés that need to be banned.  I know people mean well, and it can be hard to think of the right thing to say, so how about talking about something else? Don’t say ‘Not long to go now’ because I know there is not long to go (I have been counting since week 5), and hearing this several times a day is so tiring. Think of something original. Ask me about how much I am enjoying being off work. Tell me I look good. Tell me you haven’t noticed that my swollen feet are about to split open my shoes. Anything!

     Right, that’s enough ranting for today. I’m now at 40 weeks and 1 day. No signs of labour yet but don’t fret… not long to go now…

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