I am full-term and ready to pop any moment. The last few days I’ve felt like labour was imminent so I responsibly packed my hospital bag this morning. I neglected to do this the first time-round with L’il E and sorely regretted it as I threw random items into a bag between intense contractions. Needless to say the Hubs had to go home the next day to pick up additional items.
So, just for fun I thought I would peruse the internet to see what the experts recommend packing in your hospital bag and to my surprise I found the lists to be a laugh. Some are standard, but others are just way off-base, especially the one list I found that recommended cosmetics for sprucing up after delivery – you just might want to apply a little makeup to greet guests and well-wishers (um is this 1950?!). I didn’t have a shower for a couple of days let alone apply deodorant, so I certainly wasn’t applying makeup!
Anyway, here is a list of what you really need to pack in that hospital bag (make-up is optional):
- Flip flops for walking around while you’re labouring and for walking around after delivery, especially in the shower.
- Comfortable pyjamas or a loose fitting shirt that you can easily undo to breastfeed.
- A pillow or two with your own pillow slip. The extra pillow acts as a great nursing pillow as you’re getting the hang of it.
- Nursing pads and a nursing bra. I didn’t think I needed these things and they are essential items, trust me! If not, you’ll be leaking all over the place when your milk comes in.
- Chap-stick!!!! I can’t stress this item enough. You get so dehydrated giving birth and then the hospitals are as dry as hell. My lips were practically peeling off.
- Toiletries kit that includes, shampoo, face wash, toothpaste, toothbrush, moisturizer and DEODORANT (your hormones go insane after that baby comes out).
- A couple pair of your most comfortable underwear and the most absorbent pads you can find at Shoppers. The pads the hospital provides are ridiculous.
- Your health card and your insurance information, so you can score a single room. Can’t stress the single room enough.
- Camera or mobile phone.
- Your own snacks. The hospital food is so gross!
- A onesie or a sleeper.
- An outfit for going home.
- Pack of newborn diapers.
- Pack of wipes.
- Receiving blanket (although I took one from the hospital as a keepsake).
If you have any additional items to add feel free, but these got me through a 4-day stay in the hospital post 8 hours of labour and an emergency c-section.