When it’s time to go to the hospital, it is one of the most exciting times ever. I remember the morning we left to go have Emma. It was the most surreal experience leaving and realizing we would be returning WITH our baby. She would no longer be sleeping in my belly, but rather, in the pack n play beside our bed. It was absolute craziness. Along with that, I packed our diaper bag about four months before she arrived. I know, I’m nuts. I am OCD about several things and packing is one of them. Or at least it was. Since having Emma, I’ve had to be a little less compulsive about some things. Along with packing her bag and about all our belongings, there are several things that we needed and other things that we didn’t need. This is for all you moms-to-be and some ideas on what to pack and bring to the hospital during your special time of meeting your sweet little one. Let me note here that some of things would make wonderful gifts for friends you have that are expecting.
*Your boppy- I love my boppy. I loved it the most when I was in the hospital with Emma. I used it before she was born with all the awful back pain I had during my pregnancy. I used it afterwards for all the back pain I had as a side effect of labor and the awful bed I slept in during my time in the hospital. Talk about pain. I spent my first 2 weeks home from the hospital putting heating pads on my back and sleeping on my boppy. Even though I was hurting, this gave me extra support and was very comfortable. It also came in handy when I would nurse Emma. When you’re brand new to the world of baby, your arms get sore quick and the boppy added quite a bit of relief and supported her while she ate. It’s also good for bottle fed babies. I got both of mine for $5/each. I spent $10 on $60 worth of boppies. Long live the boppy!
*Snacks- we had great friends who brought us great snacks. We had some but nothing like this. From the moment my labor began until the moment it ended, it was about 15 hours total. 15 hours of not eating. By the time I finished, I was starved. Jordan and Farris had me chickfila waiting and I chowed down. And then I wanted more. I was thankful for all those snacks that showed up as well as the ones we had packed. I know JR was thankful for them, too. Insurance only covers (1) serving for every meal so JR had to share with me. We weren’t about to pay additional for hospital food. The snacks came in handy to go along with our meals and make them more filling.
*Extra clothes- when we went to the hospital, I was scheduled to begin my induction at 6am and we planned on being home no more than 2 days later. We went in on a Wednesday morning and got home on a Sunday evening. Talk about not being in the plan. We had to call in favors to my family to pick up clothes for JR as he had to wear the same outfit about 20 days in a row. I’m sure he was thankful. I got to wear the same gown for half of my stay so my clothes definitely lasted a lot longer.
*Pump- if you’re going to nurse and plan on pumping any at all, bring your pump along with you. I was expecting to have Emma and nurse non-stop but the reality is, your baby is going to be so sleepy. You think you’ll be tired? Think of all the hard work your little one is doing. This is your little one who spent a lot of time resting and is not use to all the hard work involved in delivery, much less entering a strange new world with twenty thousand special visitors. My momma had to bring my pump for me so I could do this in between her feedings. It definitely helped me out. I remember running down the hall in excitement every time I had something to bring to the nurse’s station. Oh, the little things.
*Electronics- those first few moments of your child’s life are some of the most memorable as well as some of the easiest to capture. When you have twenty people coming in every five minutes, you have someone to hold baby while you snap pictures. You also have someone to take pictures for you of you and your precious family. A lot of hospitals won’t let you record the birth any more, but we were able to record the sound and our faces. We have Emma crying for the first time and then placing her on my chest on our flip video, which was awesome to have. I was so glad that JR brought it as it didn’t take a lot of effort to use. JR was able to video but also focus on me and help me out during delivery. I was a nervous wreck. I was throwing up every few seconds and crying in between. Thanks to the combination of anesthesia, nausea meds, and a last minute c-section. Plus pregnancy hormones. Shewy! Along with this, make sure to bring your chargers for these items and your phones. You definitely want to have these things charged well!
*Beautification items- this will be different based on the person. You need to bring something that makes you feel beautiful. I know one of the best parts of my morning was taking a shower. After laying in the bed all day and night, a good shower felt great. I would shower, pull my hair up, and put on a little make-up. It was enough to make me feel human again after having a baby. It’s crazy how much a catheter takes away your sense of humanity. Yuck. And no one tells you it’s going to hurt taking it out until they’re doing it. What’s up with that? I personally would like a little bit of a warning prior to 5 seconds before they rip out my insides, thank you.
*A journal- one of my favorite things I did for Emma was bring her journal to write in during our time in the hospital. I didn’t write in it every day, but I tried to write in it regularly during our stay at the hospital. I was exhausted after I had her, but I took 10 minutes to write down all my thoughts and emotions after having her. I knew it would be fresh and real, and wanted to share that with her. I want her to read it when she’s twenty and be able to feel and know how much I love her in what I wrote just a few minutes after she was born. It’s amazing how much you forget and are able to look back and remember when you write it down.
These are some of the suggestions JR and I have to give as well as things we will definitely bring next time. Do you have anything to add that you brought or wished you had brought to the hospital?