I have been *totally* nesting today: dishes all washed, kids rooms cleaned, laundry all folded and put away.

It has nothing to do with being pregnant (because I’m not), but it’s helped me understand why I *hated* the term nesting when I was pregnant.

I only remember one specific time it was used on me.  Shortly before Natasha was born I was working on a (for me) particularly complicated quilt

when a couple from my church stopped by.  The wife, a quilter herself, admired the assembled top (this picture is just for illustrative purposes– not my own work) as it lay across my ironing board and said “Oh, isn’t that neat; you’re nesting.”

I was feeling irritable because the angles hadn’t met properly and there was no way the top was going to lay flat without taking in most of the center star, negating the focus of the color choices.

That my ineffectual efforts as an artist were admirable (or worse, “cute”) was not something I wanted to hear right then.  I did my best to be gracious but that word nesting would not go away.

I heard it again as each of my subsequent children neared birth, and hated it each time.

Looking at it from this end, I can deduce that the perceived insult came from the implication I was behaving in an unnatural way that could be explained away (dismissed) as a mere flurry of hormonal activity.  This was nothing I could hope would last and my natural, slatternly, ways would return once I was settled into my new routine.

No wonder I felt insulted.

Naturally, none of the nice people I know would actually mean this.  Consciously.  But It’s made me want to be more careful in commenting on anything that lumps an admirable activity (e.g., tidiness, creativity) into some kind of generality.

Anything that is out of the ordinary for an individual has taken effort, and whether “hormones” or “instinct” have helped push the first-step, those intangibles shouldn’t get the credit or be allowed to dilute the sense of accomplishment that stepping out of “normal” allowed.

2 thoughts on “Nesting

  1. That’s an interesting perspective. I’ve never analyzed the word that way before. I don’t think anyone applied it to me…I was too tired at the end of pregnancy to do much. I mostly slept 12-15 hours a day. : )

  2. Pingback: If We’re not Striving for Perfect | Family Scrapbook

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