I still remember being totally unprepared with a hospital bag for my first birth. In my defense, I was working with a midwife and planned a home birth. Still one of the things on my “homework” list around 38 weeks was to pack a hospital bag. I simply ignored the advice. Which meant that when we DID have to go to the hospital, I ended up with literally nothing. Now that I’ve given birth five times in the hospital, I know what I want with me. So I wanted to share my six hospital bag must haves— some of which might be a little surprising.
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My Six Hospital Bag Must Haves
Phone Charger – This is pretty standard these days and is probably in every bag. Still, it’s easy to forget something so small! And since I’m forever losing my cords, I don’t really pack this until the last minute because I’m using it to (wait for it) charge my phone. I constantly lose my cords, so if you’re like me, snag an extra one! Or one of these fancy things that you can keep in your purse even when you’re not heading to the hospital.
Extension cord – I think my sister-in-law gave me this idea and it’s genius. A phone charger does no good if you can’t reach your phone when it’s plugged in. Bring an extension cord so that no matter how things are configured in the room, you’re able to reach your phone or even charge your computer (if you’re like me, blogging from a hospital bed).
Comfy PJs – I always meant to buy one of those fancy hospital gowns. (Like these designer “gownies.”) I always hated those icky hospital gowns that feel scratchy and you kind of have to keep on for a day or so while they have you hooked up to the random things. Ugh. Anyway, as soon as I’m unhooked from the things and ready to move enough to change, I’m OUT of the gown. So if you aren’t going to snag a fancy gown, check out some super soft pajamas. My favorites are Gilligan and O’Malley from Target, but I also love this cute set (though I’m partial to pants). A V-neck is a must for breastfeeding.
Back Scratcher – This is a weird one. But I’ve found that I am INCREDIBLY itchy after having babies. Sometimes I react to the anesthesia (I actually scratched scabs onto my face after Cooper) and sometimes I get the sweats as my hormones are adjusting and then I get sweaty and then I get itchy. Overall: the back scratcher is a must for me. The good old fashioned wooden kind is what I have, but I’m so itchy that these lovely bear claw ones (not real bear claws!) look great. You may not be me, but the last three times I had babies, it was a MUST.
Soothies – Of all the things I could POSSIBLY recommend for breastfeeding, it would be THESE. They are basically gel inserts that you can put inside your bra to soothe your ouchy skin those first few weeks. You can even put them in the freezer and then back in your bra. In short: THE BEST.
Lansinoh Lanolin – I still remember being a first-time mom in the hospital and being overwhelmed with all the things. It was a struggle to breastfeed and I was SO sore when I got home. The hospital had given me some kind of cream to use, but when I read the back of it, there was this clear warning: DO NOT INGEST. In other words, they gave me some kind of cream for my nipples that had to be WIPED OFF before my baby nursed again. Are you kidding?!!? I switched to Lansinoh Lanolin, which is totally safe, and soothing.
So, if you want to know what’s in my hospital bag, this is it! Well, I mean, I usually have a book (this time I read The Girl on the Train) and a few other things, but these are my MUST HAVES.