Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Hospital Packing Advice

So, obsessive organizer that I am, I'm making up our hospital packing list. Here's what I have, put together from childbirth class and my pregnancy planner. Any advice? Items you found invaluable?? Please read desperate annotations.

--hot/cold pack
--snacks (what kind??)
--flexi-straws, cup with straw
--lip balm, preggie pops
--my phone book
--money for vending machine
--reading material for Co (I'm assuming this suggestion is for afterwards??)
--comfy going home outfit for Co
--several nightgowns
--robe and slippers
--nursing bras
--3-4 pairs of underwear
--toiletries for both of us
--my bathing suit
--change of clothes for me
--phone & charger
--diapers (they don't give you diapers??)
--nail clippers
--blankets (for Flipper)
--clothing for Flipper (how much??)

Thanks, people. Holy crap, we are having a baby.


Anonymous said...

They do give you diapers, and little tshirts / receiving blankets. So, you only need a going-home outfit for the baby and a warm blanket for outside, unless you want him wearing more than a tshirt and diaper in the hospital (he won't NEED it). We took goldfish crackers, gator.ade, nuts, dried fruit -- things that were easy to pack and to eat. if you are like me, having a little chocolate around could only help.

So exciting! Good luck! (with the packing and the big event.)

Jennifer said...

the list from my midwives recommends 2 full outfits for baby, plus a going home outfit, especially for cold weather babies.

food recs from the midwives were high carb snacky stuff plus some good protein like nuts or bars. Also if you dont' want hospital food and nutritious meal for you after the birth.

francesca said...

Music/iPod in case one of you wants to drown out hospital noise while resting. Dark pj's for her -- they get kind of icky looking. Do you have an extra camera battery? Or bring the charger. Change of socks for you both. Snacks: protein bars that you like, nuts, cereal, raisins, chocolate, pretzels, and maybe some little carrots from the fridge... how exciting to be planning this part!!

FosterMommy said...

Not having any experience with this, here's my assvice.
Snacks - don't forget snacks for YOU. Protein bars, or whatever is quick and easy and will keep you from a sugar crash during important moments.

The baby we picked up at the hospital was only wearing a diaper and a swaddle and was fine. So going-home clothes, of various warmths, etc., would be all I'd recommend.

Oh, and get some Arnica (the internal kind) 100C, I think. In case of a C-section (*knock on wood*). Our friend who has had 2 of them had a MUCH easier recovery the second time and she credits taking Arnica afterwards. Even if you "don't believe" in homeopathy, it can't hurt. You take it as often as possible, like every 15 minutes for an hour and then ever hour. If it were me, I'd take it regardless.

Adriana Velez said...

That sounds like a good list. It's all about making yourself feel comfortable.

I know many midwives advocate snacking during labor to build up your strength, but my experience was my body purged everything just before labor and reacted violently when I tried to snack during labor. My body did not want to digest; it needed all its energy to focus on getting that baby out. That was my experience, for what it's worth.

Having good snacks around was helpful AFTER labor, though. Hospital food is terrible but hey, you're in New York City and there's all kinds of food out there! We were at St. Vincents, so Lane's first fatherly task was to step out and get me a Mr. Pink's slice.

Our hospital had those kimono-style onsies, blankets, and diapers, too. We just supplied the going-home outfit. But remember the carseat!


Good luck -- I'm so excited for you two!

Melody said...

Bathing suit? Holy crap! Are you guys planning an underwater birth? I have always wanted to do that. That is so cool!

fostermama said...

Yep, having a baby! Yay!

The baby we picked up from the hospital for foster care was swaddled naked with a diaper. Easier changes, and cozy. So one outfit for going home in. However, I'd bring one teensy-tiny outfit and one less-teensy outfit, since you don't know how big he'll be. There's a pretty wide variety of sizes within "0-3 months", so just pick something cozy from the smaller end and the larger end of that range. Undershirt and footed onesie is my recommendation.

If you're planning to drive home, bring your car seat with the car seat blanket inside, so you don't have to put Flipper in a snowsuit to go out to the car and get him buckled in in the awkward back seat. (Some people recommending practicing the car seat with a baby doll.)

Just read Fostermommy's comment. The Arnica you want in case of a C-section is 200c.

Can't wait to meet the little guy!
You're gonna be moms!

Carey said...

our hospital had plenty of baby blankets, diapers and the baby just wore a long sleeved shirt and a little hat. We only brought one going home outfit for him (plus our own blanket & hat.) Snacks were a must for me - just whatever will keep and sounds good to you. Bring some water too. We also brought our MP3 player and speakers... it was nice to have it playing in the room afterwards, instead of just having the TV on. But then, if you have a roommate, I don't know how that works??

Good luck!!!

ms.bri said...

Diapers and t-shirt provided. Our hospital wouldn't let us put any outfits on the baby while in the hospital. Some sort of security protocol or something. He didn't need any clothes except to go home in. I did find that the Newborn size thing I brought was too small (!) but we were only going 10 blocks. : )

I only wore my pajamas briefly to go to the lactation group. Too bloody in general. Stayed in hospital gowns. Never wore my underwear for the same rason - stuck with the mesh.

Lip balm and lotion were good.

I never read any of my magazines. I did, however, consult breastfeeding books and that was helpful.

I never took most of what I brought out of the bag. Learning to feed him was the sole focus.

czencka said...

maybe tmi, but...
i would also suggest some dried prunes/dried fruit to help get "things" moving after the birth. you will most likely get a stool softener (mixed in with some iron) in the hospital, but the dried prunes also help you get that first (sometimes intimidating) bowel movement out of the way.

megan said...

your list looks good, but you'll be amazed at how much STUFF that really is. we took much of the same, and i think everyone has given good ideas.

the things i appreciated most as the non birthing mom were my own pillow, the cell phone charger, nuts/cranberry snacks, powdered gatorade so i could make it when i wanted it...

i don't know if you're planning on getting the little hospital pics done, but you may want to take an outfit for that, if it would be different than what you want to bring Flipper home in. i hated the background that they provided, so i also took a blanket to be used for the pic background.

i think someone mentioned lotion, and YES, YES, take that. i remember that my skin felt so dry while at the hospital (and this was april, not winter). taking my favorite lotion helped room 507 feel more like "home." silly, but there you go.

p.s. this is meglett on LJ--you guys are on our blogroll, though i'm not sure i've commented before. but just because i suck at commenting.

Emory Student Midwife said...

Make sure to bring lots of pillows and put them in a colorful pillowcases so you know which ones are yours :)

Anna said...

from a doula:

tennis balls! they are great for counter pressure and massage on the low back (hey will save the massager's hands a lot of pain!)

honey sticks-- they are a great way to get a quick sugar boost. you can get em on the cheap at trader joe's.

big warm socks that you don't mind throwing away after.

Jude said...

You don't need diapers or clothes for Flip, except for the going-home outfit. They will keep you well stocked in diapers, wipes, onesies/tshirts, and blankets. Ditto for Co unless she is opposed to hospital gowns. (I loved wearing mine, in case it got messy it was Not My Problem.)

They also can give you cups and straws and all of that, but if Co has a special water bottle that she likes, you should bring that.

I don't even remember what we brought, but we didn't use half of it. ;) We brought a lot of fruit, because we had just stocked up the night I went into labor and I didn't want it to go bad.

EggDropBlogger said...

It looks like a good list to me, but what do I know. How exciting!

Co said...


We're not planning a water birth, but one of the nice things about the hospital we're using is the big tubs they have. The pain relief you can get from being in a bath or shower is apparently equivalent to the relief you can get from many analgesics, so says my childbirth educator anyway. I may want Lo to sit with me in the tub, in which case, I'm allowed to be naked cuz ya know, I'm in labor, but she'll need a suit cuz she's not.

Water births are indeed cool, but I'm not having one. Unless Flipper decides to swim out while I'm in the tub, I guess. :-)

j said...

Comfortable shoes for the birth partner! My wife ended up on her feet all day while I was laboring in her slippers, and ached for days afterwards. She really wishes she'd brought and stayed in her Danskos.

ms.bri said...

pillows- yes! i brought two we were getting rid of anyway and just ditched them there. they were invaluable.

oneofhismoms said...

Bendy straws! E didn't tell you to bring bendy straws?

Socks and sweaters.

Flip only needs one outfit. Though Cake's was waaaaay too big because we didn't know he'd be less than 6 lbs.

This time I'm bringing my own vitamin waters. Pack everything you already have and put your suitcase into the car right now, would ya?

Ms. Alexander said...

Cold cans of soda work well for counterpressure too.

Clare said...

I am not where you are so can't advise at all on what you need to bring or what they provide at hospital... but I would suggest:

nice tea to drink after birth for her and during and after for you

lots of pairs of undies

lots of nice comfortable thick pads for the bleeding - the hospital ones are rough and cheap and yucky. And if you give birth your bits hurt!!!

a nice comfy dressing gown to wear over the hospital garmets if you have a c-section she won't feel like PJs for a day or so but will need to get up and about

some light mags that you can chat to each other about - there is a lot of waiting around in labor/birth/post birth

a lovely fruit cake made by hand as Flippers birthday cake. A slice is given/shared to each visitor/loved one when they visit. The more slices you share the better luck Flipper will have. (Plus it is full of good things for mother and child and a bit of a pick up is helpful with one of those endless cups of tea)