I feel like this blog is written in the way my brain works….a little scattered, full of random information, quiet, and yet loud all at the same time. I apologize in advance, but I don’t really know how to change that. I write when I have time, which is rare with two children and a household to take care of.
My daughter was born at the end of October and I had packed my hospital bag months before her arrival. I was the google and Pinterest queen so I had packed, what a felt, was a pretty stellar hospital bag. Little did I know, having never delivered a child before, that I wouldn’t need most of what I packed.
Recognizing that each delivery is different and each hospital is different, my bag may differ from yours by a lot. Also, my hospital was only 15 minutes from my house so if I was missing anything, my husband could go home and grab it, or our family members could swing by and grab it for us (the above things both happened when my husband forgot medication and another day forgot his cell phone at the house).
One thing that also helped me in my packing prep was to go on the hospital tour prior to having my baby. I asked a few questions but mainly wanted to know what they would provide so I didn’t have to bring it. I was nervous and a little scared so I didn’t ask a ton of questions (hence the over packing on my part).
Fast forward to my delivery…I ended up having an emergency c section and I only gained eight pounds during my pregnancy so my wardrobe needs didn’t change too much. Meaning, I didn’t have to think back to what I wore or fit into at six months, like some sites suggested.
Ok, down to the nitty gritty. Here is my list of the top 10 items I should have packed since the hospital really did provide quite a lot.
1) Comfy clothes. This includes a tank top that you can easily breastfeed while wearing and pants (I only wore a pair of sweat pants to go home in and the rest of the time I happily lived in the hospital gown (those babies are comfy)). Remember too that you will be in photos during this time and solid colors may photograph better and make you feel like less of a hot mess.
2) Clothes for hubby. I way overpacked for him and really, especially since we lived close, should have packed a pair of shorts and a shirt. My husband was and is a trooper so he would have suffered through anything just to be in the same room as baby girl and I. He went home to shower each morning (I only stayed in the hospital two nights), and grab a few z’s, oh, and take those morning mess he forgot to pack.
3) Medication. This even includes your prenatals, because the hospital didn’t give me any and it made it hard to keep up with my daily routine.
4) Nursing bra. This wasn’t really necessary until it was time to go home. Baby girl was nursing ever hour so a nursing bra would have totally been a huge hassle.
5) Sample size shampoo, conditioner, and body wash. I never used the shampoo and conditioner (I knew I was going to be induced so Sunday night included hair washing and straightening to last me a week of no fuss hair, but I packed it as a just in case). Body wash was glorious to have, as well as a loofa, because I felt partially normal after showering and getting dressed. It was like a beautiful rite of passage to get the go ahead to shower.
6) Thick, dark colored towel. This is not a necessity at all and my hospital had fairly thick towels which I choose to use instead of creating more laundry for myself but I have heard mini horror stories of hospitals having towels no bigger than a hand towel and about as thick as two ply toilet paper. I wouldn’t want anyone to suffer through that.
7) Slippers or non slip socks. Now the hospital will provide a pair of some hideous non slip socks but just looking down at my still swollen feet in those things made me feel sickly. Putting on my own gripper type socks was a gleeful reminder that I am almost home. If I would have had slippers I most defiantly would have work those.
8) Coming home outfit for baby. Knowing that babies are forever peeing, pooping or puking, you might want to pack two outfits. I packed one in newborn size and the other in zero to three months size. You never can be too sure how big baby will be, so I was glad I had a backup. By the by, baby girl had dropped to 6 lbs 11 ounces by the time we went home. Just now, at a month, her newborn clothes are getting tighter. Until it was time to go home we left baby girl in her hospital shirt all swaddled up.
9) Lip balm and/or coconut oil. I was drinking tons of water and I still had super dry lips. I kept meaning to pack my coconut oil and completely forgot. Thankfully I had lip balm in my purse and that helped a ton.
10) Phone charger. This is key since, even though I was exhausted and excited and trying to sleep, I was up every hour feeding and boredom was real.
My list of what I thought I would need and never touched is below:
Snacks, change for the vending machine for hubby to get snacks, underwear (the hospital gives you these stretchy mesh underpants that are amazingly easy to use and were way better than any pair of unders I could have packed), multiple outfits for me, baby, and hubby, giant maxi pads, baby diapers and wipes.
Happy packing new moms to be!