Pregnancy is difficulty enough without throwing in the stresses of moving, but sometimes life aligns itself in mysterious ways. A move might be required to accommodate a nursery for your new addition, or the move could be an unexpected or even unfortunate event that caused an immediate need for a change of residence in the middle of your pregnancy.
Regardless of the reason, motivation and energy is already in short order when you are an expectant mother, so juggling the logistics and anxiety of moving while battling bouts of nausea, and a litany of aches and pains, sounds like torture. First, you are allowed to have a meltdown or two along the way when things aren’t going as planned, and don’t ever become frustrated because you feel you aren’t pulling your weight. You most certainly are doing your part just by carrying the pounds of an unborn child. Second, we are here to help you reduce the stress of moving while pregnant with eight tips you should either “not” do or things you “can” do as you countdown to the moving date, and prove once again that mothers, even expectant ones, are capable of nearly anything.
- Do not Lift Heavy Items during a Move if you are Pregnant
There are things that an expecting mother should shield themselves from by doctor’s orders. Heavy lifting is out of the questions, and moving anything up and down staircases is never a good idea when you are carrying a baby. Do not lift any item that is heavier than 18 pounds if you are 20 weeks pregnant or less, and do not lift anything that weighs more than 13 pounds if you are more than 20 weeks pregnant. However, those weights are only a general guideline, so ask your doctor about all of your moving concerns before you begin the process.
While you’re at your doctor’s office, make sure that you discuss your needs for a good doctor on the other end of the move because your physician might be able to help, and don’t forget your medical records on your way out. Also, many doctors are uncomfortable taking on a new patient late in pregnancy, and there is always a lot of paperwork involved even when they do, so start a dialogue with a new doctor in your future location as soon as possible.
- Be Aware of the Dangers of Toxic Fumes from Cleaning Supplies
It is unhealthy to Inhale the fumes of some cleaning supplies while cleaning your old residence or new abode. Many paints are also dangerous, along with some glues, solvents, aerosol sprays, used cat litter, and dust. Toxic fumes from these products can be damaging to an unborn child, and even though ammonia and chlorine might not harm the baby, they could make you nauseous or lightheaded. Take ultimate precautions and hire someone to clean the house and do the painting. If it is not possible to pay someone or find help, purchase pregnant-friendly cleaning supplies, wear gloves and a mask, and ventilate the project area with fans and open windows.
- Make a Moving List and Immediately Reduce Your Stress
Everyone feels better when they make a to-do list. Instead of the jumbled, unmanageable pile of things floating through your mind and creating chaos, a numbered list eases much of the stress. Crossing those items off the list as they are completed feels even better! There is a thing called “pregnancy brain”, and rest assured you are suffering from it as hormonal changes and stress cause a lack of focus, which leads to memory lapses. If you’re not careful, you will forget to transfer the utilities, move your medical prescriptions to a new pharmacy, or hire a cleaning service. Make that list before you forget!
- Start Early on Packing While You Have Some Energy
The first thing on your to-do list, after you have a house and a moving date, should be to get an early start on packing. As your pregnancy progresses, your energy will deflate. Even if you feel that you have no energy “right now”, you will have less in a month, a week down the road, or even tomorrow. Get your boxes and packing tape now, and take things slowly. By spreading the packing of your possessions across weeks instead of a few days, the process will be less stressful on you emotionally and physically. It might even feel cathartic as you prepare each box.
Consider all that you can pack because you are pregnant, probably most of your pre-pregnancy clothes. Look at it this way, if you pack two boxes a day for the days leading up to your moving day, you will surely be done well in advance, and think how good it will feel to check that “huge” item off your list.
5) Label Your Boxes to Stay Organized
Since it is likely you will be receiving the boxes at your new home, since you won’t be moving them, make sure that each box is labeled with its contents for easier unpacking. It also helps to take a picture of the contents of each box with your camera phone before taping it up; then you can label the container to align with the picture you took, so you know the room that your box needs to go, and the order that it needs to be unpacked.
You can pack many items while sitting. There is no need for you to stand and bend in uncomfortable ways, so have a seat. Grab a stack of plates, set them next to a chair, and wrap and pack them.
6) Pack a “Day One” Move-In Box
Make sure you have “Box #1”, which is “the” box you will need right away. First-day necessities from toilet paper to paper plates should be in the box, so that you don’t have to dig through your containers to find a specific item. This box should have everything you need for a single night just in case you have no energy to unpack anything at the end of the first day, and you won’t. You’ll need some snacks, hydration with electrolytes, device chargers, medicine, toiletries, sleeping clothes, and a Redbox DVD if your WiFi and cable isn’t set up.
Think about making your life easier for the entirety of the first week. Have paper plates and plastic ware at the ready, so you don’t have to unpack your dishes and clean them after you use them while you have so many other things to do during the first seven days after a move.
7) Make Money while Reducing Your Moving Time and Costs
Reduce the amount of items you will need to move by practical downsizing. Sell your seldom-used possession, which is easy these days with phone Apps and Websites like Poshmark and Craigslist. These virtual marketplaces provide you with a worldwide base of buyers. It is even possible to make enough money to pay for moving expenses and purchase baby necessities that you have yet to buy.
Donate what you can’t sell. If you have a large item or many small items that you want to donate, you can schedule a pick-up from the charity organization that you choose. They will be happy to remove the items from your home, so you don’t have to move them. Then, throw away those things that don’t sell or aren’t quality charitable items. You can do it!
Also, consider having a baby shower “after” you move, so you don’t have to move any new items around twice or have extra items that might get in the way while you move. Consider, asking for gift cards if your baby shower is before the move, and don’t buy anything until you are in your new “crib”.
8) Use that Baby Bump to Get Help
There is one thing that is certain, “pregnancy” can move mountains. Ask your family and friends to assist you with whatever you need, especially on moving day. No one wants you to overly exert yourself or harm the baby, so use the power of the bump to gather as many people as possible to do the heavy lifting for you. If that isn’t possible or you just aren’t the type to ask, call a professional moving company like Royal Moving. People book the best moving companies in advance, so call early to ensure your possessions are safeguarded by a top-notch crew that gets the job done efficiently.
Your pregnant body is preparing your for labor, so your hormones are changing on a daily basis. One hormonal change is an increase in relaxin, which the placenta secretes to assist in dilating the cervix. However, it also plays tricks on the rest of your body by loosening your body’s ligaments, making you more prone to injury if you are carrying heavy items. Along with the extra weight and changes in posture, it is very clear you have to sit this one out.
In addition, if you have other kids that are currently in the world who are not jabbing your ribs from the inside, you will need someone to watch those rug-rats on the day of the move. They do not need to be under your feet, playing in the street, or begging you for chow when you have work to do and a bunch of other stresses to sort out. Ask a friend or family member to watch them on moving day. The same goes for any pets, which you can board at a kennel if needed.
Take it slow, take every precaution, and take care of yourself.
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