real life

"There's one thing I want to ask my friends and family before my baby arrives."

But I know it will upset a few of them.

Like any expectant mother nearing the end of her pregnancy, I’m getting anxious to meet my little one. I’m envisioning the birthing suite and picturing myself holding my new little bundle of joy. The one thing that might differ in my vision of post birth bliss though is visitors, or rather, the absence of visitors.

You see, I’ve decided that I really don’t want people visiting after the birth of my baby. While some women can’t wait for their nearest and dearest to arrive at the hospital port birth, it’s the last thing I want.

It’s not that I don’t want my friends and family to meet the new addition, and of course I understand that they too are excited about his or her arrival but having had a child before, I know what a whirlwind the few days post birth is. I just figure that visiting time is best left until both of us are home, my baby has had time to adjust to the world, I’ve had time to rest and we’ve both had time to bond with each other.

Given that I am already a mother, I feel that the time I have in hospital with my newborn is precious. It's possibly the only one-on-one time we will have together before we are both thrown into the craziness of reality.

My husband is luckily able to stay with us for the duration of my hospital admission so I do consider the time we have as mum, dad and new baby as important for everyone. Once we get home it's back into divided attention, noise and the chaos of everyday.

Not only that, but I have been told that due to my baby's position I will need a C-Section in order to get my baby here safely. That's a massive operation that's often downplayed when you have a child. I had a C-Section with my last baby and I can tell you, it's not all smiles and rainbows.

There are some very unpleasant, sometimes embarrassing side effects which come from such a situation. For example, as a result of the medication I was given last time, I spent the first two days after the birth violently throwing up with all kinds of post operative complications. I felt like rubbish, but none the less, had to host visitors all keen for a cuddle of newborn loveliness.

Each time I tired to have a relaxing shower that I so badly craved, I'd hear voices of loved ones outside the door signalling more drop in's. So I'd go as quick as my post surgical body would let me to get dressed again in order to greet them.

I think regardless of the birth experience you have, your body needs to rest in order to recover and to me that means no visitors.

I have distinct memories of visitors last time who blatantly ignored the visiting hours and would breeze in up to 10pm. All I wanted to do was sleep and I was out of my mind on painkillers but there I sat in bed entertaining yet another round of family.

Do you think it is fair for me to turn away my family and friends? Or am I being selfish?

Want more? Try:

22 incredibly raw photos of what a home birth is really like.

What happens when your birth support can’t be in the delivery room with you?