Mom to K(7)M(4)and baby J(2)
I loooooooooved those mesh undies! Did you know you can actually buy them online for use after a homebirth? So, ummmm, I'm actually kind of looking forward to grabbing another box of those totally unstylish but oh so comfy mesh pants come June.
With my first I wore a hospital gown for part of my stay since my hospital is uber crunchy and breastfeeding friendly so their gowns are actually comfy, provide full coverage, and were easier for a newbie breastfeeder than that nursing tops I had brought with me. If you're comfortable in the hospital gown/robe then there's no reason not to wear them...but some mamas prefer their own clothes since it helps them feel more normal/comfortable/in control. And some hospitals have really nasty gowns or wash their gowns in harsh detergents that can irritate sensitive skin. So it's sort of up to you and how you feel about the items they offer!
In my bag...well, I basically dumped my doula bag into my "going to the hospital for myself" bag. So it's a bit of a mess ...
Let's see, I've got lip balm and massage/skin cream (a homemade beeswax and olive oil blend), and olive oil for the birth. Some small bottles of scented oil for aromatherapy. Nipple cream for breastfeeding. A wooden back/foot massager. A rice sock for applying heat and a few face clothes. Several pairs of "fun" socks that are comfy and cheerful.
I have a travel sized toothbrush, toothpaste, mouthwash, deoderant, hairbrush, shampoo, conditioner, and a little tube of yummy bath wash. I don't do much in the way of makeup, but I do have a little eye shimmer to perk up my face for after baby pictures. A pillow and pillowcase also come with me...
A tiny french press and a baggie with different herbal teas and "good" coffee (so you can get hot water from the hospital and brew your own beverage if you want). Some peppermint luna bars and other snacks. Change for the vending machines.
A digital camera AND a disposable camera, extra batteries for my mp3 player and the camera, a note book and pen for jotting down whatever comes to mind or any questions I have. A copy of a Terry Pratchett book or magazine (easy to read, easy to put down). Two changes of clothing for me and two for the new babe so I have choices. Breast pads and mama cothes for the trip home. A special birthday gift for my two year old (it's coming "from the baby").
It sounds like a lot but the bag actually isn't all that big. Honest!
+= Peanut (2004), Pumpkin (2007) and Butter Bean!! (2011)
My hospital bag didn't have anything too out of the ordinary. I did have a tennis ball because the nurse that did the birthing class said it might be good for massage or counterpressure on my back.
Well here is some humor: My mom helped me to pack my bag and she encouraged me to buy night clothes in my prepregnancy size and a new robe too... I took the advice ... I dont know if I was the only weirdo that did not lose all of my pregnancy weight as soon as my baby was delivered
Well, on a brighter side, I packed a really great magazine... I did forget to pack going home clothes, so DH had to run home and get me some. I did pack a travel toothbrush, my favorite soap, chap stick, a comb/ brush, socks, a bra, panties, slippers, and a camera.
Personally, I wear the hospital gown and mesh panties. I figure, let them do the laundry. If you're modest about nursing, you might want to bring your own gown or robe though, the hospital gowns I've seen unsnap at the shoulder, so you kinda end up with it all hanging out.
What I do bring: going home clothes, at least 1 nursing bra, nursing pads, shampoo, soap, toothpaste, deoderant, lip balm, hairbrush, scrunchies or hair clips (I have long hair) camera with extra batteries, slippers, a pair of slip on shoes for going home, something to read (usually magazines), and a pillow. I like the idea of just a smidge of makeup for post-baby pictures, I might do that this time.
If you forget stuff, like slippers or basic hygiene stuff, the hospital will give it to you, but IMO, the quality sucks, so I try not to forget mine!
if i had it to do over i wouldn't take much besides what i wore in. although i would take socks or slippers.
i just wore the gown, and i liked the panties too.
if i were doing it again i thin k i would bring my cloth dipes and some mama cloth too.
+= Peanut (2004), Pumpkin (2007) and Butter Bean!! (2011)
I LOVED the hospital undies, too! They were great, but I wore my own jammies. No problems there. I had jammies with large nursing slits so they were easy to use for nursing. I also brought regular maternity capris and a maternity shirt for going home.
If you bring your own pillow, make sure to put a very different case of it. That way no one can confuse your great pillow for the kind of sorry hospital pillows. Slippers and a robe are very important imo. My son had to stay in the nursery so we were making trips there every three hours for pretend feedings. He never really got the hang of nursing while at the hospital, but I would still offer him and fight to get a latch every time.
We just found out that our hospital has free wireless internet so we are bringing a laptop to download all the digital pics. We also used our laptop to watch movies while we were "stuck" at the hospital.
I bring a quilt from home and my pillow because I need to make things as homelike as possible for myself and my family.
I also put my own clothes on my baby right away. I don't like them to be wearing the hospital stuff. I have never lost anything by doing this.
I am going to pack my own gowns because I am probably going to have alot of visitors this time around and want to look presentable, esp. around my coworkers and bosses that will come see me. I am not going to have any visitors the first day, I've decided that first day will be for us DH, me and the baby.
-cheap flip flops
Think college dorm showers...who knows what is lurking on those floors. If you happen to be pg. in summer, you will get all the more use out of them. I even wore them to and from the hospital (for a summer birth, of course) so I didn't have to worry about packing other footwear.
-nursing bras and nursing pads
I don't have much of a problem using the hospital issued stuff for everything else. Once I get home, my first impulse is NOT to do laundry that I used in the hospital. Lazy, I know, but it works for me. I also liked the mesh panties...not the most attractive look, but comfortable. I made sure I packed some of those from the hospital to take home. When I go home, I usually just wear the same outfit I wore in. Again, not terribly glamorous, but so much less to pack.
-going home outfit for the baby
-Personal hygene stuff
I do just the basics, but it sure is nice to take that first shower after delivery. It may just be the last leisurely shower you take for the next month or so. As a result, I spend my time in there. I pack things like shampoo, conditioner, lotion, razor, my own washcloth, toothbrush, floss, hairbrush, and my own pads. I hate the hospital ones.
I make all the announcement calls from the hospital
I pre-fill out and stamp the envelopes and also write in any information that I already know. After the birth and during spare moments, I work on filling in the rest of the information and getting them ready to mail out.
Nothing big, but something to do if you have free time.
That is my minimal list. Other things to consider based on what you are doing...infant seat for the trip home, baby blankets (depending on time of year), birthing aids (depending on what you think you will find helpful), pillow (depending on how picky you are).
*I also make sure there is extra room in my bag for all the stuff they will send home with you. Again, a lot of this is by choice, but you may wind up with extra diapers, pads, mesh underware, and all the paperwork that they send you with. I also try to nab a couple of those disposable bed pads. During the next week or so I use those on furniture or my bed in case I have some leaking issues (perhaps tmi-sorry).
Believe it or not, I have always managed with a backpack for my hospital bag.
What do u pack in your hospital bag? Do you wear the gowns they provide while in hospital until you go home? what about the mesh underwear and pads?
What I wore during labor (other than in the shower, obv.) was the hospital gown - it got so bloody, wet, and nasty, I'm glad I didn't insist on my own clothes.
I also wore the hospital gowns for the first couple of days post-C, because it was really easy to breastfeed & for the doctor to check on my incision, and easy to get in & out of without pain or struggle.
I couldn't wear regular undies due to the incision, so I guess I mostly wore the mesh ones from the hosptial. Again, so much blood, I'm glad I didn't wear my own. I did wear my bathrobe a lot because I could walk the halls with it over the hospital gown & feel not so unsightly.
Around day 4, I switched to big Tshirt, low cut sweatpants, and my favorite bathrobe because I was starting to feel really yucky (hospital stays will do that to you) & wanted to feel normal again.
I'd say.... for a regular non-hospital stay birth...
The gowns & undies are not pretty, but serve their purpose well, and are generally comfy - really big, roomy, and allow for staining w/out feeling bad, and easy breastfeeding. But bring your favorite zip sweatshirt or robe too. And good things to keep your hair out of your face.
Bring your favorite mid-pregnancy clothes for the last day. I looked about 5/6 months pregnant when I left.
Tweet me: @kellynaturally Working Mom to 2 Montessori-schooled kids. We're a vegetarian family! I blog at kellynaturally.com <--link in my profile!
my own socks if needed
my own going home clothes including nursing bra - do not trust dh to pick out comfy panties for you to come home in!
ditto for the baby
toiletries - I do not want pictures of me looking like a hospital zombie!
phone and numbers
ETA food and more food. I hate hospital food!!
I've packed slippers, a few nursing gowns, a nursing bra, and thats about it so far. I am going to bring some clothes for my little one too.
Resigned from teaching to be a doula and freelance writer. Mommy to (06/05) and (05/07) and (09/09) and (02/11)
Here's my labor bag list from #2. It looks like a lot now but these were the things we actually wanted - and used - for about a 24-hour stay. I printed the list and my DH made sure we had everything before heading out.
cell phone charger
folder with paper, name spellings, phone #s
going home outfit for me
going home outfit for baby
receiving blankets (2)
matches and birthday candle
bag for dirty laundry
pillows in colored cases
change of clothing
I wear the hospital gown. The hospital I go to has pretty nice gowns, in the maternity ward anyway. They're 100% cotton and big enough for modesty, on me anyway. And there's a separate robe that goes over the gown so you really don't have to worry about flashing anyone.
I took a lot of stuff I didn't need last time. The only things I used at all were:
Baby going-home outfit
Back scratcher (which I sent my husband out to buy for me on the second day)
I went home in the same outfit I came in wearing because I didn't fit into the one I'd brought to go home in. I used the hospital toiletries and didn't bother with my own (except toothbrush). I wore the gown the whole time. I didn't have the mental energy for cards, books, or other things I'd brought to entertain myself. I just held the baby and watched TV. (Including a L&O about a shaken toddler that has been burned into my brain ever since. )
This time, I'm going to pack lightly.
Awww.. That's a cool idea. Also, thanks for mentioning "DH's bag" I totally forgot he needed stuff too. lol.
Re: the candle/matches: my first son had a picnic with my sister while we were at the hospital. We had an overnight bag for him as well (contents listed on the same sheet). I sent cake mix and icing in his overnight bag so that he and his auntie could bake cupcakes. When DS2 was a couple of hours old, we had moved to a post-partum room and I was cleaned up, my mom and dad, sister and DS1 came for a birthday party for the baby. The candle was one of those numeral ones, it was a number zero.
A tiny french press and a baggie with different herbal teas and "good" coffee (so you can get hot water from the hospital and brew your own beverage if you want).
That french press is coming with me!