There's no force greater than a mother's nesting instinct.
I mean, I have never been more inclined to remove the dust from the baseboards or remove every stray string from my home as I have since I was "with child".
No one can stop me when a small tidying-up project turns into a whirlwind rid-a-thon. As I've explained in a previous post, those little piles of junk provide great threatening pressure to my life-filled chest. They can also pose a threat to that small person that toddles around them. Not just physically, but emotionally. I mean, I don't want this boy to grow up without seeing the value in the things around him. I want him to take care of his home. I want to prime him to be a responsible respectable young man who values order in his life, especially for the benefit of any future partners. So, I have to set an example for him by taking at least a little bit of care of our things.
Physical dangers do exist as well, I admit. I can't tell you how worried I was after we put fiberglass insulation in the attic. After vacuuming below the door several times, I still worried about the microscopic pieces that still must be embedded in the carpet and what would happen if the baby got a piece stuck in a tiny digit and we wouldn't be able to see it nor would he be able to tell us where it hurt. It would just kill me if our carelessness hurt him.
So, the nesting instinct is also married to that ruthless polygamist Guilt. When I found remnants of larvae (gasp!) in an old can of instant cocoa mix, I instantly pegged myself as a careless mother.
Who else thinks about how, after the dog pees on his foot during a walk, he will clean most of it off in the snow during the 3 mile trek, but will come home with God-only-knows-what-else on his feet and walk all over the house and the baby will pick up a banana from said floor and ingest it? And who gives their dog a bath more than once or twice a month anyway? Mommies have been blessed (cursed?) with such instincts for ages to keep their children safe.
Really, nesting is a force that cannot be reckoned with. Only after exhausting myself once in a while with tile and a bottle of bleach, and scouring away at some of that instinct, can I finally sit back and allow the 10-second-rule to apply. Only after!