“That irrational need to clean when you’re pregnant: it’s not irrational, it’s just your nesting instinct kicking in.”
I like a neat and tidy home. Don’t you? Although, at times, I feel like I may have gone a bit overboard with cleaning and organising. There’s a place for everything in my home and it’s really important for me that everything has to be in its place; I get really annoyed otherwise. Think of something, anything, and ask me where it is, and I can tell you immediately where to find it. Let me give you an idea of the extent of my compulsive cleaning and organising behaviour:
- I have a ‘filing’ box which houses all my important documents;
- I have a ‘memory lane’ box where I keep my travel stubs – properly labelled according to the trip, of course;
- I have an ‘electrical’ box with many different compartments inside labelled ‘adaptors’, ‘phone chargers’, ‘SD cards’, ‘batteries’, etc;
- I have a ‘keepsake’ box which houses all my greeting cards;
- The drawers in my bedroom are neatly divided into compartments where socks, belts, gloves, etc, go;
- I have a few of those pretty baskets in my bathroom where I put my everyday beauty products, home spa products, perfumes, etc;
- I have to clean the surrounding area as I cook; and
- I have to wipe the kitchen sink dry every time I use it…
Some would say that it’s an OCD. But is it really? Well, I don’t think so. At least, I don’t think I have the full blown disorder anyway. I just hate clutter and not being able to find something when I need it – it’s such a waste of time and it often causes unnecessary annoyance and frustration.
The thing is, this compulsive behaviour of mine has been getting worst since I’m pregnant. I’m finding myself re-organising my storage system, obsessing about sanitation and cleanliness around the house all the time, replacing old stuff (like curtains and bedding sets) with new ones and throwing away the old ones, and getting all stressed up at the slightest mess. Is it a behaviour that is more prominent in pregnant women, I wondered, or am I getting the full blown OCD? A little research on dear old Google revealed that this irrational need to clean and organise is actually not an irrational behaviour at all – it’s all to do with a woman’s ‘nesting’ instinct, i.e. “an inbuilt need in a mum to ‘protect and prepare’ for her unborn baby.”; “Females of the animal kingdom are all equipped with this same need. Just as you see birds making their nests, mothers to be do exactly the same.”
Read more about it in these articles (or if you prefer to do your own research, google up ‘nesting instinct’, ‘nesting pregnancy’ or something along those lines):
So, turns out, I’m not weird and I’m not irrational. Far from it, I’m nesting, so leave me alone!