Nesting is an amazing thing. My floors have never been shinier. All I have to do – aside from letting my own obsessive foot texture issues walk around barefoot to freak me out about crumbs – is picture a small person crawling across the tiles. I let my foot texture issues project themselves onto the imaginary creature’s fingers and I need to compulsively sweep and mop before the alien becomes real and gets stale bagel stuck to its fingers along with the toxic fiberglass dust drifting out of the attic from the most recent home improvement project.
I am not the only one with hormones that drive me to build, tidy and expand the nest. Mr. Bioguy Partner feels them, too. He’s not alternately sobbing and laughing hysterically into the pickle jar next to the pint of ice cream, but he’s so protective that a slight sigh on my part brings him running to check on me and refill my water glass. And I have heard the same from expectant partners of all stripes – no matter how tough the pregnant parent-to-be, the other half grows fangs against all threats, real and imagined. Partner shoots hairy eyeballs at the overly drunk guys blocking the sidewalk, even though I easily elbowed them out of my way. He will take on gravity and put it in its place the next time it causes me stumble on the bottom stair of a low climb. I’m not in any above average danger, but some chemical cocktail flowing through his veins is ferociously on guard.
When we moved into our new house, we, of course, had very expert inspectors and contractors come snooping around to make sure the entire place was up to snuff. They had some quibbles with the basement water-proofing and the ability of the sewer lines to purge themselves without backing up, but they didn’t do more than mumble at the electrical system. They stuck their heads into the all-but-inaccessible attic, poked around the basement and declared the wiring good enough. Not that upgrades and fancy systems don’t get my home-owner juices revving, but Partner has half a thought about a single set of wires arcing and loses his mind. He is driven to ruin work pants after work pants by covering himself in the fallout from updating the entire electrical system. He is content to sleep in a house where the lights and outlets are all disconnected in the name of reducing the already slight chances that his spawn will live in a house even remotely prone to fires.
I don’t mind house camping as long as I can use a flashlight to stare at all of the little outfits that are tucked away in a small drawer in the corner. Despite the fact that I know that I don’t need ANYthing besides a few blankets or towels to keep the bambino warm, I cannot stop myself from buying clearance items that strike my fancy – even a few full-price items that I had to buy after I drooled on them. Tiny warm things. Layers. Onesies. Fleece pants. Hats. Six thermal blankets. I could live with far less than I already have, but nesting is making me accrue even more. I’m not very successful at resisting.
I have mandated to myself that I will not set up baby furniture (that I KNOW I don’t need; a wash basket would have done instead of a crib) until within four weeks of the actual due date, and it is almost impossible. I have to focus like a Jedi on not washing and folding and refolding and refolding and refolding the thrifted items until we’re closer to squeezing the larvae out into the world. But diapers are on sale right now and so are wipes. Wouldn’t it be handy to ensure that I have them ready for when the little guy arrives? It seems so reasonable to just prepare a little bit – with sweaters for it to wear next winter and to college during its freshman year. And a stroller that will still fit him when he’s that old. I can’t resist tempting the gods with my plans for the future when the future involves booties, baby shampoo and stuffed bunnies that I can fondle. Followed by repeating the process for the grandchildren I plan on applying pressure for.