That sweet bag ready by the door step. You smile at it every time you walk by with eager anticipation. Your hospital bag represents a transformation. You will carry it out of your home as one being and return with it as another. So with the weight of the world in one small bag what should it contain.
For your sweet baby:
4-6 Sleepers in an assortment of both newborn and 0-3 month sizes (These babes come in all different sizes and often surprise us :) )
4-6 onesies also in an assortment of sizes
Hats! The hats provided at the hospital are very thin. Pack a few additional cotton hats to keep your baby's head toasty warm
A package of diapers also in newborn and size 1 and a package of wipes. Newborns often go through a lot of diapers and wipes in the first 24 hours so come prepared
Coconut or Olive Oil- amazing at helping to remove sticky meconium if applied before diapering and a lovely all natural lotion for your baby's new sensitive skin
All natural baby wash. Its recommended to delay your baby's first bath but if you wanted to bathe them at the hospital toss in your own wash to ensure the gentlest soap is used.
Receiving blankets. The ones provided are a heavy flannel if you wanted a lighter blanket be sure to pack a few of your own. You will also want a few to keep your baby warm on the ride home
Car seat with the base securely installed
Comfortable clothes to labour in. Pack an assortment of clothes including a robe, cotton pants and shirt, a few pairs of underwear and sports bra. As your body temperature shifts in labour pack a few layers being mindful of clothing that is easy to put on, take off and pull down/up for delivery.
Bathing suit - Many women find water to be very comforting to labour in. Although many women are most comfortable nude a bathing suit is good to pack as an option if wanted
Very comfortable clothes for after your baby is born. Your uterus will still be swollen so pack clothes that have room and that breathe well. This can include pyjamas, sweats, nursing tank tops/bras and a few pairs of large cotton high waisted underwear. Also pack a few extra layers to find your comfort as your hormones adjust.
Flip Flops/Slides/Slippers for labour and postpartum
Coconut Oil for massages during labour, chapstick, and hair elastics and bobby pins
Toiletries including your tooth brush, body wash, shampoo and any lotions/potions that make you feel your best
A pillow and blanket. The hospital pillows are wrapped in plastic and flat as a pancake. Bring a pillow (or two) and a blanket from home. This will help you feel comfortable for both labour as well as postpartum.
FOOD!!!! Pack food for both labour (fruit, protein bites, nuts, juice, electrolyte drinks etc) and after (what ever your very deserving heart desires).
Labour tools- heating pad, essential oils, massage tools, Himalayan salt lamp (a personal favourite to provide ideal lightening to labour in), positive affirmation cards, tens machine etc
For your Partner/Birth Support:
Comfortable clothes and shoes to labour in and a change of clothes to sleep in. Pack a few layering options as your temperature may shift as well.
Bathing Suit to be able to get in the shower or the tub with the labouring mama
Camera, Phone and Chargers! As long as the labouring mother approves start taking photos early and take them often when you can
Food! Bring snacks or small meals that you can easily eat. Try and avoid foods with a strong scent or big crunching sound as a labouring women's senses are heightened. Be sure to make time to fuel and hydrate yourself so you can be the best support.
Pillow and Blanket. The hospital typically doesn't provide pillows or blankets to supports so bring your own so you can get some rest as well
Identification, Insurance Card, Credit Card and Change- You will be in charge of registering your partner so have all of her information/identification ready as well.
Pack as little or as much as you feel is necessary to make you all feel comfortable depending on your birth plan and estimated stay if you have a hospital birth.
The bag is packed, the anticipation is high and the waiting game begins.... See you when the time is right little one