Five Tips for Packing for the Perfect Childbirth Bag
Packing your hospital bag can be overwhelming. But, it can also be fun! We have these five tips for packing your bag PLUS the ultimate printable packing list that will hopefully help you think outside of the box (or bag?) and be able to enjoy the process. And trust us when we say ultimate, it has everything you could ever want and need.
1. Separate bags
If you are planning to have your baby in the hospital, having separate bags for your labor and delivery room and your postpartum room can be beneficial for not only saving space in a sometimes already crowded hospital room, but it can help you feel more organized. You may be staying in the hospital for multiple days, and having your favorite comfort measures in your postpartum room will not be necessary. Just as having all your baby clothes in your labor and delivery room will just take up valuable space.
If you are planning to birth at one of the birth centers, your postpartum stay will be significantly shorter, so a second bag may not be necessary. But, if you like organization and planning, the two bag system might be very beneficial for you!
You can keep the extra bags in your car, and your partner or your doula can make trips out there as needed.
2. Personalize your comfort measures
With all of our doula clients, we are going to show some basic comfort measures that we love, but we also encourage our clients to think about what will comfort them specifically. We love trying to incorporate the five senses into comfort so maybe there is a smell you just can’t get enough of, well bring it! What makes you the most comfortable is what is going to help you have the best labor, delivery, and postpartum stay possible.
3. An extra bag
In many of the hospitals, you are allowed to take home any parts for the breast pump you used, as well as any bottles that helped feed your baby. You may also be given diapers, wipes, peri bottles, etc., and having the space to transport these items will make the discharge process much easier and much less stressful.
In the birth centers, you will likely not be given as much gear at discharge, but it never hurts to throw an extra bag in the car in case you need somewhere to put dirty laundry or just need a little extra room
4. A folder, pen and notepad
You will be getting so much information about everything, and being able to stay organized and write notes to yourself, will be invaluable. When you speak to lactation specialists, you or your partner can write notes about different breastfeeding positions. When your nurses teach you about how much and how often to give your baby formula, you can makes notes to help when you get home. Plus you will be getting information about your baby’s birth certificate, information for your pediatrician, and any discharge instructions for you and/or baby, and a folder will make it easy to keep all of the information together and organized.
5. A treat for yourself
It is so easy to forget to take care of yourself when you have a little person you are lucky enough to be caring for, but we love to remind our clients they are still allowed for some self care! Maybe there is a particular candy bar that you love, or a body soap or lotion you just love. Each of these things will help you feel like yourself sooner, and help in the recovery. These treats can also include a magazine, book, or show on Netflix. Believe it or not, there will be some down time and having something you enjoy doing will make the hospital feel more like home.
And now for the Ultimate Packing List Printable!
As a bonus, we have included a free printable of our Ultimate Packing List for Birth. We think it has just about everything you could think of on there! But, personalize it! Add things, cross things off, make it yours. And then share with us what you thought after you get home and you realized you were completely prepared!