Posted by: mommytoo | January 31, 2008

what the…?

i know i’ve mentioned that i’m feeling a little panicky about everything we need to get done before baby boy b. joins us.  the lists are getting a little out of control, even for me!  index cards on the nursery wall; a list on my computer of the major things we need to do, plus a separate one that we look at on sundays, figuring out the smaller tasks that need to be done that week (not necessarily baby stuff).  then i have an ongoing list in my datebook, which i’ve always had.  recently i’ve taken to making daily lists (the days i’m not working), often that means taking items from other lists (it doesn’t include things like walk the dog, make dinner — i’m not that crazy).  obviously there are also short term things like grocery lists, cvs lists, target lists, yada yada.

does this sound nutty?  do most people keep long term lists, short term lists, daily lists?  for that matter, do most people have an ongoing list, sort of a never-ending one?

i’ve always kept lists, but let me tell you it’s gotten maybe 5-7 times worse in the last 6 weeks or so.  it occurred to me not too long ago that what i’m dealing with is nesting.  i’ve heard and read plenty about this, but apparently i had some misconceptions.  i thought it was brought on by the hormones of pregnancy; and i thought it seemed really lovely.  cozy.  turns out, neither of those things is true in our house.  d is the pregnant one, and she seems pretty normal (frequent bathroom trips notwithstanding).  and this feeling is CRAZY!  our coffee table is covered in paint chips; i want to get rid of half my clothes to make room; i refuse to wash any of our laundry in cold water (this somehow feels related; i fantasize about the germs being killed in hot).  sometimes the lists feel like the center of my life!  my mind races with home-making stuff whenever i’m not working.  i wish it manifested in more cleaning, because that closet in the guest room is not going to clean itself.  it will happen, though.

i haven’t found much information about non-bio moms and nesting, but there is definitely talk on blogs and forums about dads and adoptive moms getting in on this frenzy.

i called my mom in the middle of a near-breakdown over the colors in our pottery barn registry.  she had a funny story about cleaning on her hands and knees in her 9th month of her first pregnancy (i’m collecting these stories, they make me happy).  also, apparently this kid is not going to care about the color of his sheets.  which i know — i really do.  i just keep thinking i want everything to be perfect, though.  i know how that sounds, i get it.  but i feel manic, and it can be scary.  anyway, the most important thing my mother said (thanks, mama) has become my mantra — we have everything we need for the baby already.  if pipsqueak were born today (fetal viability aside), we could give him everything he truly needs.

also, a friend who recently gave birth told me that although this stuff is important – and the prep phase is important – it’s all going to change so much when the baby’s born.  she and her partner wanted every closet cleaned, every knick-knack in place, etc.  then their little girl was born a few months ago, and the house was chaos — they couldn’t be happier about it.



  1. I can attest that nesting in non-bio-moms is very very real. I put together so much furniture, packed and re-packed the birth supplies, and organized so much stuff, trying to make room in our 400 sq ft 1BR apt for a whole baby…mostly while my pregnant wife lay beached semi-miserably on the couch. You’re right, it doesn’t *have* to get done, but it sure felt great, and much of the work paid off, especially the organizing and legal prep. It was a great way to connect to the pregnancy and parenting, and lord knows most chores aren’t getting done once the kiddo arrives.

  2. I know you guys are going to be great moms even if clothes are washed in cold water, colors don’t match and the lists are different. I don’t expect the lists to end (i do know you) but i hope that you are able to relax the expectations on yourself – as you yourself said you have been wanting to be mother for your whole life. I say this all love, and from a place of list making and anxiety about that which I can’t control myself. xo L.

  3. It’s pretty crazy, isn’t it? I didn’t nest really until after Edie was born. (I did get on my hands and knees the day before she was born and scrub our bathroom and vaccuum the whole house…) If I know you at all, you’ll be nesting until after the baby’s born. He’ll have a perfect place to be – with you and Danna. I think non-bio mom (or dad) nesting is very real. Alex was concerned with more practical things like getting a car seat and getting the room set up, while I wanted the house clean. We tag teamed the nesting, I think. Enjoy it. Don’t stress yourself out too much. He’ll be a happy baby no matter what. xxxooo

  4. I came across your blog when I googled, “I’m voting for Mommy”. I only read your first page, but felt as though I had to comment on your list making. I am a highly organized person, and have become crazily more organized after I became a mother. And on some days my lists do now include the most basic things, like if I should eat before I throw in a load of laundry, or after. The nesting feeling never goes away, it stays with you. Sometimes dumping everything out of your head, and onto a list helps clear space to be able to enjoy every little minute with your child and to be present in the moment and not off wandering the aisles of your mind’s to’do list. I have several spiral notebooks in my purse, my baby bag, and in my car that I use everyday. They double as doodle pads for when my kiddo needs something to do. So, it helps, and will continue to help along the way.

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