I highly recommend preparing your hospital bag early. Can you imagine your partner, or family member trying to pack your bag whilst you are in hospital? At 33 weeks of pregnancy, this happened to me which is all described on my previous post A taste of what is due to happen. Martin did well, I must add! But that’s with the help of knowing what to pack. Then at 36 weeks I ended up in hospital again and gave birth to my little Joshua. Download the free printable at the bottom of the page. So here’s a helping hand:
Bag I found it helpful if the bag has wheels and pockets. I’ve been moved to different rooms throughout the stay, etc – so it just made it easy to drag the bag rather than carry it. When you have a big bump, and wobbling, you just need things to be easy peasy.
Pregnancy notes/birth plan Please please please carry your pregnancy notes everywhere you go. You just never know when you need it. Trust me! It takes longer for doctors to check you if you don’t have them. (Like me, you may just feel stupid not having them). I actually had a great memory and remembered everything so when Martin went all the way back home from a different hospital (poor bloke) I was impressed with what I recalled. However the doctors did need to read everything, so it did delay being examined. As for the birth plan, it’s not imperative. (Ours went completely out the window) but it is handy. Your partner and doctors can try to do everything as close to your wishes for the birth.
Clothes I cannot stress how comfortable clothing is needed- it’s a requirement. Don’t bother with pretty tight little things! You are stuck on a hospital bed before and after labour. Obviously it’s great to walk around (if you can) but how you look is really not a priority. As long as you’re healthy and your baby is the cute munchkin, then no –one gives a crap about your looks. Your vagina or your stomach may be in agony too. Comfy clothing ladies! Breastfeeding? Then accessible to boob clothes are key – ie vests, and nursing bras. .
Straws I was incapable of holding a drink during labour so Martin gave me water through a straw. Then afterwards, when you are holding your little bubba or feeding him and your lips are quenching for a drop of water – your partner can help with the straw!
Maternity pads The docs actually provide this for you but if you are longer than a day or 2, you are kind of expected to have your own. Plus you don’t want to be in that awkward situation where you need to change but have to wait for them to give you some.
Throw/Pillow Of course the hospital has these but having the throw helped because I got cold easily, so an extra layer was brilliant. Also it’s a great way to act as a shawl when nursing and still keep you warm. The additional pillow just made the bed more comfortable along with aiding in nursing.
Large knickers It is not about getting thongs, or pretty frillies on, Downstairs has been through alot! Enough said!
Phone/camera/charger Papparazi on JJ like crazy. You will just want to be snappy happy! And of course, more than likely you would want to tell your nearest and dearest the good news!
Baby onesie/hat I’ve added this because when your little cute bubba enters this world, you will want to clothe your baby. This will be the first clothing, of which I would suggest a onesie/all in one sleepsuit. Temperature of babies is regularly monitored, so include a vest just in case. You don’t need to bring their wardrobe just yet, that’s in another bag.
Clothes Sleepsuits/onesies, mittens, booties, hats, cardigan/jumper, and tshirts/vests. We didn’t bother with bottoms. Joshua didn’t get a chance to wear too much clothes as he had to be under the ultra violet light most of the time.
Cotton wool Again, the hospital will have these but it’s always handy. Cleaning your baby’s poo and urine with these are great. You don’t need wipes just yet as water and cotton wool will be sufficient.
Muslins Make sure you have several of these. You can wipe anything that comes out from your baby’s mouth.
Baby blankets Babies like to be swaddled when they sleep. They like the warmth and it makes them feel secure.
Loose change Bring a lot of loose change. It’s needed for parking if you have a car and for all those vending machines.
Blanket/pillow It’s not comfy for the partners, so try to make yourself comfy. Some hospitals allow partners to stay the night and some don’t. During the day, when you both need a nap, it can come in handy.
Snacks Not just for your partner but for you too!
Hospitals provides the basics for the first few days. If for any circumstances you are in hospital longer, you need to ensure you can get refillable’s from a family member, or friend, such a nappies, formula, cotton wool, maternity pads, and nursing pads.
Click the below image to download the free printable below.
What did you pack in your bag? I would love to hear from you.
Drawing by Martin Southam, my other half 🙂