It would be lovely if all of your chores disappeared when you had a positive pregnancy test, but alas, this is not some fairy tale land. The truth of the matter is that pregnancy does not render one incapable of doing household chores or keeping the house clean in general. Though there are a few new rules to housekeeping that should be followed in pregnancy:
- Avoid fumes.
Harsh, abrasive chemicals may need to be nixed if you haven't already. Try your hand at some green cleaning. This will protect you in pregnancy, but also prepare you for a shift in how you care from your home without harsh chemicals once your baby is born. You would be amazed what you could do with vinegar, baking soda and lemons.
- Keep away from the kitty litter.
The one chore that you do need to nix is the kitty litter. The reason being is that cat feces can cause you to contract toxoplasmosis. This can have a negative impact on your pregnancy by causing miscarriage or even prematurity.
- Watch your back.
While not a problem at first, your back will start to ache as you progress in your pregnancy. After the fourth month of pregnancy, your center of gravity changes and some of the lifting and carrying that you've been doing will be hard, if you don't use proper back mechanics. Start now, so that it is second nature by the time that point comes.
The first and third trimesters are marked by intense periods of exhaustion. Unless you can afford to hire a maid, plan for this to alter how you clean. If you were a once a week cleaner, now you may need to find a way to do a chore a day to get through your list of chores. I'd recommend doing chores in 15 minutes segments, maybe one in the morning and one later. Truthfully, this will help you reorganize and rethink your house cleaning methods that will need to change once your baby arrives anyway.
It's true, eventually your belly will get in the way. If you're in the market for new laundry baskets, I love the ones that are rounded on the sides, they really make carrying the baskets easier. You may also have to stay out of small spaces, like the guest room shower stall that you barely fit into before pregnancy. So, despite what your nesting instinct says, don't get stuck!