I thought having a baby the second time around would make me and Brian better prepared for packing our hospital bag. Although we did do a lot better this time around than our first time around, we still ended up overpacking.
Brian took this photo right before we left for the hospital. We packed two games and the iPad and some magazines. Ha! We didn’t play any games, read, or use the iPad but for a few minutes to Skype with family.
If I was going to do it all over again, this would be my list. This would be for a regular birth, I’m not sure what you would need for a c-section other than a longer hospital stay:
- Change of clothes/comfortable pjs: The hospital provides you with a gown, which is what I opted to wear until the second day because of mess potential. After birth, I was sweaty and hot and it was much easier to wear the gown than work through layers of clothes.
- Comfortable underwear to dispose of later: Same as above. The hospital will provide you with these mesh undies, but I think it would be easier to have your own underwear that you won’t mind getting messy and can toss.
- Going home outfit
- Nursing or comfortable bra
- Basic toiletries: Toothbrush, toothpaste, contacts/solution/glasses, deodorant (make sure it’s antiperspirant). I would skip everything else!
- Slippers (non-skid): The socks the hospital provided was not very comfortable. Actually, both times I delivered in two different hospitals, the socks were awful.
- Sanitary pads (optional): This is totally up to you, but hospitals provide you with maternity pads. I found them really really bulky and wish I had packed my own stash of thinner pads. FYI.
- Lanolin, or nursing pads (optional)
- Camera/video/phone chargers: We brought a camera. True story: At one point when I was pushing Nagini, Brian snapped a photo and the nurse told him to put the camera down to help me push! Too funny.
- Cardstock/paper (optional): After giving birth, they will take the baby’s footprints. Of course as a scrapbooker I need to have my baby’s footprints too! I made sure Brian knew to get it out as soon as they started the footprints.
- Change of clothes or two: Depends on where you stay and the hospital’s space. Brian actually left to go home and shower before coming back, so it will depend on how far away you are from home.
- Basic toiletries: See above. Brian packed a razor. As of this writing he still has not shaved. There you go. 🙂
- Mom’s photo id, insurance card, hospital paperwork
- Checkbook: Totally random, but we needed it and didn’t have it
- iPad (optional): If you Skype with long-distance family, otherwise your phone will do.
- Swadding blanket: Forget all about how to swaddle your baby. Buy this in cotton, and your life will be much easier.
- Noise machine: I wish we had this for the first time around! We were much better prepared with Nagini! We used this.
- Nursing pillow (optional): If you plan to breastfeed, I recommend a My Breast Friend pillow. Order it a bit early and air it out at least a week beforehand. Much more comfortable than a Boppy.
- Going home outfit
- Car seat installed/receiving blanket
- Drinks/snacks This will depend on where you give birth. The hospital where I gave birth to Nagini provided us with plenty of food and drink, while the hospital where I had Bunny did not. Find out what the hospital provides.
- Towel: In case your water breaks in the car.
What would you recommend for your hospital bag?
I’m also working on a list of what you should have stocked when you come home from the hospital too. Stay tuned!