I love this time of new beginnings! Our new beginning in 2014 comes a lot of nesting to be done. I've always heard about the "nesting" period that comes when you are expecting - just bursting at the seams to declutter, organize, paint and decorate ... and I think that without even knowing it, I've looked forward to it. For me, the reality has been a bit different from what I expected.
For one thing, I don't come bouncing home from working a full day excited to work on my current home project. Instead, the list of projects I know I need to get to some time in the next 3 months float around in my head and interrupt me while I'm at work reading the memo on the TPS reports and sorting through my email. Then at home I look through Pintrest with one hand and stir a pot of whatever's-in-the-pantry soup (on a good night) with the other, followed by Netflix. Weekends have become get-it-all-done fests and we are not quite sure what needs to happen when or how. It's easy to get overwhelmed, discouraged, and feel like there's no way you can possibly be prepared to take on full responsibility for a little human when you can't even seem to keep the dirty dishes out of the sink.
The truth is that when I am feeling overwhelmed, it's because there are so many blessings that I am struggling to contain them all.
My full-time job is demanding and takes up the majority of my time, but it's a good job and and incredible financial lift for us.
My due-date feels like a ticking time bomb, but this is a child that we prayed for and that God blessed us with when doctors couldn't explain why we weren't able to conceive.
I need to research pediatricians, daycare options, build our registry ... But how blessed are we to have these options and to have family and friends who are willing to host and attend baby showers with gifts in tow?
The struggle we faced in conceiving is a reminder that God gave us this baby. He knew our circumstances and everything else we have going on, and He chose this as the perfect time to bring our son into the world. God brought us this far, and He promises to continue to guide our steps. All I have to do is trust him, and use this time wisely.
1) Be realistic
Approach this season like you might a term paper. Don't wait until the last-minute and bank on a successful all-nighter (there's no telling how you'll be feeling as your pregnancy progresses) - but don't feel like you have to have everything ready by the 20th week either.
Look at the amount of time you have and what part of that is available for pre-natal prepping, and then break the to-do list into manageable chunks.
Think about what's going to be most beneficial after the baby arrives. Here are a few of our priorities.
- Sanctuary: For us, a decluttered and well-organized environment is much more relaxing, makes daily living more enjoyable, and maintenance a lot more manageable.
- Storage: bottles, baby cups and dishes, toys, clothes, etc. It all has to go somewhere and we will need to be able to find and use it with convenience ... And possibly with one hand.
- Safety: top-heavy furniture anchored or removed, wires wrangled, and everything baby-proofed!
3) Ask for help
Don't be afraid to ask your family and friends to help with things like painting, installing shelves, or researching day care centers.
4) Don't forget to recharge
Yes, there's a countdown in getting everything done, but that time is also precious in other capacities. We've learned that we also need to prioritize investing in our marriage, and having fun with my family and friends before our son is born.
I'd love to hear what you've learned in your experience and any advice you have as well!!