Saturday, September 26, 2009

The Pregnancy Hospital Bag

Advice to pregnant ladies: First of all, relax. Your labor isn't going to be ruined because you forgot a robe. It also isn't a huge deal if you over pack--I know I did.

I was lucky enough to have a hospital bag packed up and ready to go when I went into labor. If something happens and you go into labor without a bag, the only thing you'll truly miss is your digital camera. I used a small duffel for myself and the diaper bag for Mo-mo.

That being said, here's my list of the good, the bad, and the unnecessary.

The Good
  • digital camera and charger
  • chapstick
  • going home outfit for me. I packed something comfortable enough that I could sleep in, if I wanted to nap. The nursing tank and sweatpants were not the most glamorous, but nice and comfortable.
  • gum for dry mouth
  • cellphone and charger
  • list of phone numbers of family to call, including work numbers
  • laptop and charger
  • basic toiletries- shampoo, body wash, toothbrush and toothpaste, deodorant
  • Snacks for husband
  • Going home outfit and receiving blanket for baby
  • baby nail clippers. Baby nails are sharp and for some reason, they won't clip them for you at the hospital.

The "I used it because it was there"
  • my ipod. I didn't make a special playlist or anything. I played Counting Crows in the time after my epidural/before pushing.
  • my robe. I only used it when I walked into the hospital hallways, trying to get reception on my cell.
  • champagne
  • Make-up. I used under-eye concealer the day after giving birth. The rest was just a joke.
  • My pillow. But then, I'm not overly attached to my pillow like some people are.

The Unnecessary
  • Stopwatch for the contractions. I used when I was at home. Then at the hospital I was hooked up to a machine that counted them for me.
  • Nightgown, slippers. I really thought I was going to use my own nightgown the evening after giving birth. I promise that you will be so disgusting that it's just better to wear the damn hospital robe.
  • Written birthplan. No one looks at it--just make sure that your husband or coach knows what you want so that they can be your advocate.
  • Massage stuff. But I had an odd labor with my water breaking--if my contractions had slowly built up, I would have wanted them.
  • My baby book. I actually forgot this, but they put Mo-mo's footprints on cards so I can just glue them in. Much easier than hauling around the actual book.
  • The boppy. I didn't even bring mine and didn't miss it.
The Hospital Provided (And don't be shy about asking for more!)
Hospitals are all different, be sure to ask on your hospital tour what yours provides.
  • perineum bottle
  • nipple shield
  • pacifier
  • mesh underwear (believe me you DON'T want to wear your own)
  • pads
  • diapers
  • disposable towelettes for "blotting" after using the bathroom
  • Either a small hand pump or new tubing for an electric pump

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