Before I had Grace I packed my hospital bag with what I thought I would need (you can check out my original post here), and I thought I would give you an update with what I used, what I didn’t and what I wish I had packed.
When looking at what I used/didn’t use, please keep in mind that I ended up having an emergency c-section (after labouring at home – the full birth story is here if you’re interested!) and was in hospital afterwards for four nights, so what you may need might be different based on the type of labour and delivery you have and how long you stay in hospital for.
It’s probably easiest if I re-list all the stuff I did pack, and add some notes to my list to give you an idea of what I used and what I didn’t, and I’ll add a section at the end for things I wish I had packed.
- Dressing gown – didn’t use it! I planned on wearing it during labour at the hospital, but I was whisked into surgery once I got to the hospital and didn’t wear it in the subsequent days. I have, however, worn it loads since coming home from the hospital!
- Slippers – loved having these as I started walking around my room and the ward post c-section.
- Bed socks – didn’t use them. I had to have incredibly attractive (not) compression stockings on (due to the surgery) and the room was a billion degrees so wouldn’t have wanted any extra heat anyway.
- Pyjamas – wore them for one night, but I was so hot in them that I ended up just sleeping in a bra and undies!
- Black yoga pants (specifically these ones) – wore these during the day every day I was in hospital! They were so comfy (and didn’t sit uncomfortably on my wound) and perfect for wearing during the day with people coming and going.
- Blanqi leggings – didn’t wear them. I couldn’t bend down very easily with the c-section would so I wouldn’t have been able to get these on if I tried as they are a bit tight.
- Nursing singlets (these Hot Milk nursing tanks) – wore them along with my yoga pants every day during the day!
- Zip up hoodie – didn’t wear it. I was so hot in my hospital room!
- Nursing dress – didn’t wear it, but it got a lot of use during my first few days at home.
- Belly Bandit – didn’t use it.
- Underwear – so glad I bought gigantic granny undies as they sat halfway up my stomach (very attractive) and didn’t sit awkwardly on my wound.
- Sleep bras (including this one) and a nursing bra (this one) – I slept in my sleep bras with my nursing pads in, and only wore the nursing bra on the way home when I was wearing ‘proper clothes’.
- Maternity pads – I massively over purchased on these! I used them and loved them (I got the TOMs brand) but didn’t bleed anywhere near as bad as I thought I would so only needed like 1 pad per day!
- Nursing pads – used these once my milk came in while I was in hospital because there was leaking everywhere!
- Lanolin cream – I didn’t need it in hospital but used it a little when I got home.
- Hydrogel breast discs – loved these! I had a bit of soreness at first and these helped soothe my nipples and keep them from getting too sore.
- Toiletry bag – definitely used my ready to go travel toiletry bag (that I wrote about in this post)! I highly recommend having shower gel, deodorant, shampoo and conditioner, face wash and moisturiser as a bare minimum. That first post-birth shower is amazing, especially after a c-section and being bed bound for about 24 hours.
- Snacks – Stu dipped into our snack stash once we were settled into the recovery room as the hospital provides food for me but not for him.
- Nappies – definitely used these!
- Clothes for baby – I didn’t dress Grace for the first 2 days in hospital. It was too much effort and she was warm enough wrapped in blankets. When we did dress her it was freaking scary! This teeny tiny baby that feels so breakable is hard to dress! She surprisingly fit into 00000 size clothes for a couple of weeks but we just put her in 0000 size singlets for a couple of days in hospital (because they were nice and big and easy to put on her!) until we worked up the courage to try fitting her into clothes that were actually her size when we got home.
- Cardigan – didn’t use it.
- Beanies, socks/booties and mittens – didn’t use them.
- Muslin blanket – didn’t use it, we just used the hospital blankets the whole time we were there.
- Velcro swaddle – didn’t use it.
- General nappy bag supplies – didn’t really use them, but good to have the bag ready!
- Hand and footprint kit – didn’t manage to use it in hospital, we ended up doing it at home when she was 1 week old.
- I used/needed all of these!
- iPhone and charger
- DSLR camera
- My ante-natal health card
- Car seat – hot tip: if you have a capsule, take it up into the hospital room before you leave and strap the baby into the carseat there. We did it that way and it is so much easier figuring it out for the first time with your tiny little baby in the privacy and comfort of your hospital room rather than standing in the carpark trying to manoeuvre your precious bundle into a carseat for the first time.
Stuff I wish I packed
- Boomerang pillow/extra pillows – those hospital pillows are thin and after a couple of nights of sleeping on my back I was a bit sore and desperate to sleep on my side. I used about 4 hospital pillows to sleep by the end of my stay but I would have loved to have my own pillow to make things easier. I’m sure Stu wishes he had packed his own pillow as well!!
- Food for Stu – Stu ended up staying in the hospital with me for all four nights I was there so he had to go out to get some food. It probably would have been good to have packed a little more food for Stu so he didn’t have to spend as much money on food.
- Lightweight cardigan – this would have been good to chuck on as a light coverup. It was extremely hot in the hospital room but it would have been nice to have something to put on over my nursing singlets.
All in all I’m pretty happy with what I ended up taking (although I’m probably forgetting something that I wish I had taken!!). I’m definitely one for overpacking and not needing things I’ve taken rather than under packing and not being prepared. Next time I’ll probably cut down on what I packed, knowing what I did and didn’t need this time (especially because I know I’ll be going in for another c-section next time).
What did you find most valuable in your hospital bag? What do you wish you had packed?
Today I’m linking up with Essentially Jess for #IBOT (I blog on Tuesdays)