Women supporting women Mum to be What to expect
What should I pack for labour? What should I pack for after labour? What should I pack for my baby? Will my birth partner need a bag? When should I have my bags ready?
These are some of the most common questions that expecting Mothers will ask, particularly if it is your first pregnancy or perhaps it has been awhile since your last birthing experience.
As a Mother of two boys and working as a Childcare professional for the past 14 years it’s fair to say I’ve seen and heard many tales of pre and post labour experiences.
I am sure you will have heard many people tell you ‘every birth is different’ I entirely agree with this. My own experiences were both different yet had many similarities. From home births, to natural births, water births, emergency c-sections, planned sections, breast feeding or bottle feeding, pain relief or green babies. My point to cut it short is that no matter what way your baby arrives into the world, we all need certain items and comforts to assist and help us on the journey to motherhood.
I have compiled a no nonsense, get the job done, hospital bag checklist that you can be sure has all that you need to get you from labour right back to your home with your new baby. It is recommended that you pack your bag from the third trimester. Most commonly, Mothers I know pack around the 35 week mark but earlier the better. I would advise your birth partner to pack a light bag with a change of clothes, freshen up and a couple light snacks in the event of a prolonged labour. This can be kept in the car. There’s no need to bring it into the hospital as it may not be needed at all.
I highly recommend sticking to the quantities outlined on the list, as everything can be stocked up on if required by anyone coming to visit you in hospital. The access to shops and chemists is so convenient nowadays so don’t over load yourself with a months supply of nappies outfits and toiletries for a 2 night stay in hospital. If you are having a section you will stay longer so pack a few extras as required. If you are expecting more than one baby then double or triple up on the baby bag!
In the unlikely event you do run out of supplies in the first 24 hours your hospital should have all the essentials to see you through to your next visitor, from maternity pads to disposable underwear. You will survive! If in any doubt ask on your next visit.
Don’t expect frills nor out dated advice on my checklist. This list is essentials only. Everything you need, minus the kitchen sink! Women supporting women Mum to be. My link is not behaving on phone devices so please click through to download and print via desktop or laptop hospital bag checklist by pandalovesbaba.com
Below are some useful tips that have been passed to me by other Mammies. Perhaps there’s something here that might help you!
- Bring a snack bag to the labour ward. Aptaclub have some great suggestions. This helps when your craving something for energy during labour and also ensures your birth partner doesn’t miss out on the grand finale while wandering the halls for a vending machine!
- Drive the route. If your planning a hospital birth, drive the route. Only baby knows when they will arrive, so know the route and parking options in the event it’s a rush hour dash!
- Fuel and service your chariot! Speaking from personal experience, on a routine appointment at the end of my second pregnancy, the car wouldn’t start…..boy oh boy if that happened on the labour run….
- Have some change in your purse in case your kept in over night. Very handy when visiting hours are over and you decide a new magazine and a mars bar are the only cure to pass a sleepless night on the ward.
- Ultimate tip I ever received from my Big Sister (worked for us, use at your own will) . I make sure I pass on to any expecting mum I know. Take two packets of maternity towels ,(Medicare- are the best, reduced to €2.99 from www.pregnancyandbaby.ie or about €4.00 in some pharmacies)generously apply each one with Witch Hazel. Individually wrap in cling film and leave in freezer. When you get back from the hospital you will race to the freezer over the first few days. One word RELIEF!
- Ask a family member to cook up some food for your freezer. Head over to this fab page dedicated to recipes for new Mammies! http://www.mamanatural.comThe last thing you want to do when you come home is stand at a cooker so be sure to ask someone to do it for you!
- Pre buy a card or a box of treats to give to your nurses on your last day. They will look after you when you are most vulnerable. A small token of thanks is always appreciated. Leave it in the car so whoever comes to collect you and baby will have it to hand.
- Have a mini self-care hamper in your bedroom for when you come home from hospital. A face mask, foot mask, hand cream, fresh pjs (boohoo.com have a lovely range that won’t break the bank), fresh bed sheets, a little sweet or savoury treat and a hot shower. I did this for myself on my second pregnancy and I promise it will give you the warm fuzzies on your first night back at home with your new baba. I was gifted these Garnier facemasks from Boots by my GodMother, I personally love them.
I hope you have found this post helpful. I have linked any items I felt worth linking however if there are any item brands you want to know about that have used, other than what is mentioned above please get in touch by clicking here!
Sometimes it’s nice to get a little inside info. If you have any questions or would like to know more please feel free to get in touch. I would be happy to help! With all the excitement, love and care that a newborn brings, don’t forget to look after yourself too.😘
Best Wishes to all you expecting Mammies out there on your journey to the fabulous blessing that is Motherhood! Women supporting women Mum to be