Preparing for Visitors and Roommates
Take Time Alone
Yes, your baby is exquisite, and it's only natural that relatives are lining up to get a peek at their perfect little new family member. Still, after you deliver, you'll probably want to limit visitors to your husband, the grandparents, and a best friend. Don't feel bad about that: You don't need an audience while you're figuring out how to feed, burp, and change the baby. "I've actually seen moms delay feeding because they don't know how to ask visitors for privacy," says Gloria Newman, manager of outpatient women's services at Mercy Hospital, in St. Louis, Missouri. Rather than presiding over a crowd, ask your husband to upload photos of your sugarplum to Facebook or a personal website to satisfy the curiosity of well-wishers. And if you change your mind and want company, just call -- your closest friends will surely come running to your side.
Get Ready For Your Roomies
If you're not in a private room, when the curtain separating the beds is pulled aside, greet the mom next door warmly. Ask about her labor and her baby; she'll probably ask about yours too. Poof: You're pals! If you need something and your family isn't there, she's got your back, and vice versa. As you might recall from college dorms, a little consideration goes a long way toward happy cohabitation. Say things like: "Let me know if you need some quiet. My parents are here, and we can go to the lounge." With any luck, she'll extend you the same courtesy. (Pssst! -- you might also want to pack a pair of silicone earplugs in case she snores. Offer her a fresh pair if you do!)