Pregnancy can be pretty brutal, but it does have its perks! People are generally nice and accommodating to you. In some parking lots, you get a good spot close to the store entrance. No one bats an eye when you cancel plans or forget to do something. Sure, 80% of it is done out of pity, but whatever, we’ll take it! One of the best pregnancy perks is being able to bow out of some household chores. Cleaning pretty much always sucks, and anytime you can claim “PREGNANCY” to get out of some of the worst chores, you absolutely should. Now, I’m not suggesting you use your pregnancy as a way to get out of ALL chores (although I fully support you if you strive for this level of petty). But there are some chores to avoid during pregnancy because they are potentially harmful.
Make a list and stick it on the fridge: these are some of the chores to avoid during pregnancy!
The one chore that is 100% off-limits during your entire pregnancy is dealing with the cat box. SUCH A BUMMER, RIGHT?? Your cat is fine and safe, but changing the cat box can expose you to toxoplasmosis, which can lead to pregnancy complications and even miscarriage. Cats contract the parasite from eating raw meat, rodents, birds, etc., and it can pass from kitties to humans via their poop. You can also contract the parasite from gardening or eating under-cooked meat. Make sure cat box duty is handled by someone else during your pregnancy. If you absolutely have to deal with it, wear rubber gloves and wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water afterward.
Avoid chores that require harsh chemicals, or go green with the cleaning supplies!
Oh man, I can’t clean the bathroom? THAT IS TERRIBLE. OK, theoretically you CAN clean the bathroom or kitchen, but you want to avoid using cleaners with harsh chemicals, and make sure you’re in a well-ventilated room. Some cleaning supplies emit fumes that could be harmful to the baby if inhaled (I’m assuming that you won’t be eating or drinking the cleaners, but in case it needs to be said, don’t eat or drink cleaning supplies!).
Here’s the rub: you will become consumed with deep-cleaning your home before the baby arrives. And the truth is, some of the green cleaners just don’t cut it. The smell of bleach tells me it’s clean! Use peroxide, baking soda, and vinegar to make your own cleaning solutions. And if you can swing it, hire a service to do a massive and thorough deep-clean before you deliver. Go get a pedicure and come home to clean house.
Outsource painting the nursery. Or sit in a chair outside the room and yell at your partner that they’re doing it wrong.
Again, fumes aren’t something you want to be inhaling during pregnancy. Not to mention, the physical act of painting a room will be hell on your pregnant back. If you can get to any painting early on in your pregnancy, and the room has plenty of windows for ventilation, go ahead and grab a brush. But don’t hurt yourself or endanger the baby for that perfect shade of yellow.
Avoid chores that require you to stand on a chair, ladder, or step stool.
As you get more and more pregnant, your center of gravity gets pretty much fucked. Chores to avoid during pregnancy include anything that requires you to stand more than a foot off the ground. Clean curtains or dust-free ceiling fans aren’t worth the fall risk! Leave that to the tall, non-pregnant people in your home. Or again, make that part of the deep-clean service. Seriously, that should be on every baby registry.
There may be other chores to avoid during pregnancy if you have any pregnancy complications or instructions from your doctor. Some women are told not to lift anything over 10 pounds (so long, laundry!) or stand on their feet for an extended amount of time (see you in 10 months, vacuum!). And if your partner knows what’s good, they’ll be doing the dishes anyway.