Having a baby and moving; two of the most expensive life decisions you can make and two that commonly go hand in hand. Whether you’re renting or buying your new home, the process of moving is just as difficult, never mind being pregnant.
There are plenty of arguments on whether it’s best to move before baby arrives or after but ultimately the decision is often circumstantial and should be based on what is possible and suits you the most.
Here are some top tips to try and make the transition as easy as possible whatever your circumstance;
You can’t control when baby will make an appearance, but you can organize yourself to be effectively prepared for both their arrival and the move. When pregnant you should try your hardest to have everything sorted for the move before baby arrives. This includes getting all your finances in place, organizing any help you need for moving day and starting to pack. Today’s Parent recommends starting packing 8 to 10 weeks before moving day, meaning you can get everything done comfortably at your own pace without raising your stress levels.
“Baby” or “pregnancy brain” affects us all so try to use lists, or apps to jot down everything you need done on the run up or during moving day. Free to-do list apps include Google Keep, Todoist or Evernote. Label all your boxes when packing to make unpacking easier, it helps to write which room they belong in too.
‘Nesting’ during pregnancy is a primal instinct from cavewoman times and is a natural part of preparing for your new baby. It includes re-decorating, gathering all your baby items, cleaning and even baking. Due to moving during your pregnancy, you will have to split nesting between your old and new home. When preparing in your old home, it’s best to declutter before you start to nest.
Decluttering will allow you not only to feel so much more prepared for your move and new-born’s arrival, it will also give you a mental itinerary of what you already have and not spend money on unnecessary items. Just remember to manage your nesting instincts properly, so you don’t end up doing over-exerting, needless tasks when you’re almost about to pop! Make sure you always have enough time set aside for rest.
Get extra help
Whether it be childcare, family or friends, make sure you take all the help you can get. Recognise the limitations that pregnancy places on your body and accept any help when it is offered. If you have other children, think about acquiring a babysitter on the run up to the move to allow you more time to finalize packing.
Depending on how far along you are, only lift boxes that are lighter and smaller. During pregnancy, your body produces extra amounts of the hormone ‘relaxin’, which loosens ligaments to help during labour. This, along with other symptoms of being pregnant, makes it easier for you to hurt yourself. Lift properly but more importantly, take it easy and seek help when it comes to lifting as you don’t want to hurt yourself or induce early labour.
Pack a three day bag
Just as important as your hospital bag, when moving make sure you pack a bag with all your pregnancy essentials to last you at least three days. This will help reduce anxiety and have your necessities easy to hand until you get set up properly.
If you are close to your due date, set up the nursery first when you move in, so you don’t have to worry about it if baby decides to make an early appearance. Always have your hospital bag to hand too, just in case.
Have a back up plan
As everyone knows with babies, they arrive when they want to arrive whether you are prepared or not – so have a back up plan for multiple scenarios. This can include researching movers or speaking to friends or family about taking over should you go into labour around moving day.
Preparing yourself for multiple situations will also help alleviate some stress should the move not go to plan for any other reason. When pregnant, your body releases more stress hormones than normal and constant pressure can put baby at risk, so best to have a few back up plans to help you feel more at ease.