Packing Your Hospital Bag — The Bump
February 2020 Moms

Packing Your Hospital Bag

Some of us are getting close to the point of thinking about what to pack to bring to where you are giving birth. 

FTMs: What are you planning on bringing? Any questions?

S+TMs: What did you bring in the past? What did you use or not use? What are you bringing this time?

Re: Packing Your Hospital Bag

  • My husband and I each took a small rolling suitcase and will do the same this time since it's easy for him to push them both upon arrival and departure. I was wheeled out of the hospital carrying the baby (in a carseat) in my lap so he could easily handle the suitcases on his own.  

    Last Time (June 2017) 
    - Pillow for me
    - Boppy
    - Going home outfit for baby (x2)
    - Phone
    - Tablet
    - Chargers
    - Comfy clothes to wear home
    - Comfy clothes to wear around the hospital (robes, pajamas, nightgowns, nursing tops, sweats, leggings, etc.)
    - Toiletries (toothbrush/toothpaste, soap, shampoo, etc.)
    - Portable bluetooth speaker for playing music during labor
    - Slippers and socks
    - Snacks (mostly for DH) 

    I didn't end up using the boppy in the hospital last time and it took up a lot of space, so that probably won't make the cut (or it will be left in the car). I probably will simplify my hospital attire. Nursing tops/gowns and a warm robe is probably all I will bring. My hospital provided toiletries and socks so I can reduce the amount of stuff I bring this go around. I'll probably still bring everything else. Also, since it's a winter baby, I'll probably add warm things like a baby blanket to the bag. 

    I'm also planning to bring some Motrin/Ibuprofen with me. I learned the hard way last time that you get charged for all the medicine they give you (even the over-the-counter stuff) so this time I'm going to be more prepared!
    Also, be sure to take advantage of all the things the hospital gives provides!! 
  • ibabyloveb87ibabyloveb87 member
    edited December 2019
    Last time I ended up with way too much stuff. But I also had a longer than expected stay so I feel like we kept adding to it every time DH went home to shower (we lived 2 minutes from the hospital). 

    Things I’ll be packing again:
    -Baby’s going home outfit
    -ONE pair of jammies for baby (not 3)
    -ONE cute blanket for photos 
    -Camera (I have a DSLR)
    -IPad for entertainment late night when DH is asleep 
    -All the chargers
    -2 changes of clothes for me (soft stuff because CS)
    -An extra small bag to take home ALL the mesh undies, pads, and hospital belly band.
    -Hair dryer (I wasn’t looking fancy but I was glad to have clean, dry hair) 
    -My own pillow

    Question for any STMs who bottle fed off the bat: do you take your own bottles to the hospital or just use the pre made ones they give you? Or is this a preference thing? 
    ***Answered by my other BMB: use the hospital stuff***
    DH: 34
    Married: May 2011
    TTC #1: May 2015
    DS: 10/20/2016
    TTC #2: June 2019
    #2 EDD: 2/20/2020
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  • Definitely call your birthing center to see what they all supply before you pack a huge suitcase. I find so many parents overpack, not realizing we provide just about everything. All they really need to bring is clothes for themselves (if you don’t want to wear hospital gowns), their preferred toiletries (though we do supply toiletries if you forget anything), and a take-home outfit for baby. And nothing is tracked and charged.
  • I wore the hospital gown the entire time with ds1 it made skin to skin and breastfeeding easier. With ds2 I wore a nursing bra and robe from home. I also didn’t put either kid in cloths until we went home. A Diaper and blanket swaddle made skin to skin easier. 

    You definitely don’t need as much as you think. My hospital had a ton of stuff already I really liked the no slip socks lol 

    Going home outfit for baby 
    Going home comfy outfit for me- I wore maternity leggings and a shirt
    Blow dryer, brush and a little makeup To feel human
    phone charger
    Nursing bra 
    robe, nursing friendly tank and comfy pants for in the hospital
    extra space to steal all the hospital things I could

  • Packed a duffle bag for DS, brought him NB and 0-3m clothes, 2 cloth diapers, change of clothes and swim suit for DH, change of clothes for me, and that was it. The birth center sends you home 3-5 hours after delivering.

    Wish I had brought MUSIC, a pretty swaddle, and a pretty robe for me. Also planning to bring crystals, visual affirmations, and EOs this time. Last time they warned us against scents and I actually loved having lavender and mint on me and in the tub while I labored so this time I’m brining my own so I can have as much as I want.
  • I’m bringing my pillow, chapstick and hair ties, comfortable clothing for me and hubs (haven’t decided what exactly), an outfit for each baby, a blanket for each baby for the ride home and phone/chargers. 
  • During our hospital tour the nurse recommended bringing pillows from home because hospital pillows are horrible. 
    Me:37 MH:37
    TTGP since 07/2017
    **TW** in spoiler
    DX: PCOS, anovulatory, AMA
    Femara X3: no response
    Clomid X3: BFN (cyst and thin lining)
    IUI (Dec '18) MMC
    IVF (April '19) 9 retrieved, 7 fertilized, 2 normal PGT-A
    FET 06/12/19 - BFP! EDD 02/27/20

  • Copying list from above

    Last Time 
    - Pillow for me - a MUST
    - Going home outfit for baby. I brought a 0-3 outfit for DD but she was in preemie size when born, this time I will bring some newborn and preemie clothes (since I already have them) just in case.
    - Phone, chargers
    - We brought an appleTV for watching movies, but then learned it would not work with the TV they had on site. Lesson learned about that, this time will bring a tablet.
    - Comfy clothes to wear home, coat, etc.
    - Nightgowns x2 for hospital plus robe. I had a cesarean so a comfy nightgown that allows for nursing was KEY.
    - Toiletries (toothbrush/toothpaste)
    - Those amazing fluffy socks with traction on the bottom for walking around hospital
    - Snacks, including honey tubes, it's counted as a clear liquid so it keeps your energy up
    - Small bottle of prosecco to celebrate and chocolate. We did not get to drink it because I had a cesarean and I could not handle alcohol for a LONG time. 

    This Time
    I am on track for a VBAC this time and my doula is bringing electric candles, aromatherapy stuff, and I will bring a bluetooth speaker but also headphones in case I need some time to myself. I wanted lemon eucalyptus but my doula says that eucalyptus is bad for babies so going with lavender and rose oil. I have a masque with rose oil I use at night that keeps me very calm. I am going to bring the prosecco again in case we want it. I am also bringing some PB&J sandwiches and other snacks to keep energy up.
    Me: 38, DH: 36 
    Married Jan 2008 
    DD Baby Bells born Dec 2016 5 lbs, 12 oz, 18" <3 so in love <3
    Due with #2 Baby Arya EDD February 2020

  • @leksiL so funny - I had packed a split bottle of Prosecco for last time! But I felt so crappy after 3 days of labor and a CS, it didn’t get touched. I think I’ll just wait this time til I feel like having something. I can always send DH home to get some 😆
    DH: 34
    Married: May 2011
    TTC #1: May 2015
    DS: 10/20/2016
    TTC #2: June 2019
    #2 EDD: 2/20/2020
  • What did I bring last time:

    So many comfy clothes- wrap around sweaters (I find hospitals cold but needed BF access), loose sweat pants, big fat comfy robe
    Honey sticks for labor- I didn't end up using them since it went so fast, but if I had a traditional longer labor I know I would have snacked on those
    Phone and charger with extra long cable
    Toiletries and make up- yes. I did make up before going to the hospital and post labor- not crazy amounts but I had eyeliner and mascara and some under eye cover up. It made me feel more human.
    Bluetooth speaker
    SO MUCH MOISTURIZER and chap stick. I felt so dry after giving birth.
    Nursing bras
    Nipple cream (started that ASAP)
    Gift for the L&D nurses (we brought cookies)
    A cute set of NB and 0-3 clothes
    Board games for DH and I to play (we elected not to have guests in the hospital so we needed something to do when baby was sleeping...which is a LOT of the time those first 2 days)

    Will I bring anything different this time?
    Clothes to wear in the hospital for baby girl. Last time I had a baby in Sept when it was still really warm, so he was mostly naked skin to skin with me or swaddled in a shirt. I never put him in clothes until the day we left. This time in winter I will bring some warm clothes for this girl. 

  • jvk2012jvk2012 member
    edited December 2019
    I packed wayyyy too much as a first time mom.

    I will bring again:
    • brush
    • toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant
    • phone charger
    • chapstick
    • glasses, contact solution, case
    • hair ties
    • water bottle with straw
    • birth plan and copies of hospital paperwork
    • Pepcid
    • Insurance Card
    • Pads & Underwear for going home (I didn't love the mesh panties)
    • Shampoo, conditioner, face wash, body wash, face lotion, body lotion
    • mouth guard (I grind my teeth in my sleep)
    • makeup (mascara & concealer)
    • going home outfit for me and probably something to wear while in the hospital because the gown made me feel blah
    • going home outfit for baby
    • hat & blanket for baby since it will be winter
    • snacks (I went from 0 to hungry and ordering hospital food took forever and it wasn't easy to send H to find snacks downstairs whenever I wanted something)

    What I brought the first time that I am NOT bringing:
    • flip flops 
    • bikini top for being in the tub for pain management
    • gatorade
    • heating pad (they don't allow microwavable ones in my hospital)
    • nursing supplies (bra, tanks, pads, cream, etc)
    • pacifier (hospital supplies)
    • clothes for baby while in hospital (stayed swaddled in a diaper the whole time)
    • scratch mitts (never ever used)
    • diapers & wipes (hospital provides)
    • baby wash (hospital provides)
  • @jvk2012 I’m glad to know I’m not the only one who never used the mitts. I don’t think we even own any. Socks work if you really need something! 
    DH: 34
    Married: May 2011
    TTC #1: May 2015
    DS: 10/20/2016
    TTC #2: June 2019
    #2 EDD: 2/20/2020
  • Double-check with your hospital if they provide water mugs. All the hospitals around me (different health systems) give you a giant mug with a flexible straw.
    10/2018: MFI (2 SA under 9 million/ml)
    11/2018: HSG shows right Fallopian tube slightly damaged 
    1/2019: Husband diagnosed with grade 3 varicocele
    4/05/2019: varicocele repair surgery
    6/13/2019: BFP!!! EDD: 2/22/2020 <3  Baby girl born 2/27/2020
    7/18/2019: Total Motile Count at 3 months post surgery = 51 millions!! (number must be >20 millions to conceive naturally).

    TTC #2
    9/07/2021: BFP - CP: 9/10/2021
    10/07/2021: BFP - CP: 10/23/2021
    12/23/2021: BFP! EDD: 08/31/2022

  • @rikiteacup Yes! and be sure to take that bad boy home if you can! I'm STILL drinking out of my hospital-issued water mug every night. It holds sooo much water. I'm looking forward to stealing another one with baby #2. I went through so much ice water when I was in labor with my daughter that the volume those things hold was necessary. 
  • I also think I had to provide my own fiber/Colace/Metamucil but I can’t totally remember so you should check. Everyone talks about postpartum poop but mine was fine, I think because I started taking this right away. 
  • @jvk2012 they gave me colace in the hospital and I took it faithfully at home bc I was so nervous and it wasn’t bad. 

    @rikiteacup @lanie1000 I wish my hospital had those, here’s hoping things changed in a year and a half 
  • @jvk2012 yeah. I remember being terrified of that first post-partum poop after the comments on my first BMB. But I didn't have any issues either. I did take the softeners provided in the hospital, but didn't continue at home. 

    And for anyone whose hospital doesn't provide a mug, you can get one on Amazon. Just search for hospital water mug and plenty of options pop up. I found it more convenient than using my trusty glass water bottle because my husband could hold it for me while I used the long, flexible straw and focused on getting through contractions. It was also great for hands-free sips while holding a sleeping or feeding newborn. 
  • So did you all have a bag already packed and ready to grab? Or is it just the movies where there’s a mad scramble to get to the hospital and no time to put anything together?😂
  • @swiftlet with my first he came at 36+6 I had just put a bag out with a coming home outfit in it. When my water broke I threw a few toiletry things in it and my h just brought what I needed when he came home to shower and get himself a change of clothes later that night. In reality I had enough time to pack but I was leaking fluid and just excited to get to the hospital. 

    With my second I made sure my bag was out around 36 weeks and had things I knew I’d want except for toiletries that I threw in while I waited For my in laws to come watch ds1. It was much more of a mad dash that time so I was happy to be more prepared. 

    I’ll probably start getting a bag together around 36 weeks again this time. I did just find the coming home outfit in the bin of baby clothes. 
  • @Swiftlet, I was induced so I had time to pack. Before I knew I was being induced though I had a bag out with things in it that I didn’t need on a daily basis so in theory I could have thrown in the few remaining items and go. 
  • @Swiftlet By 41 weeks when DS was born I’d packed, repacked, and stolen clean clothes from my bag multiple times... DH just grabbed it from next to the door on the way out.
  • Am I the only one that HATES the hospital water mug? Maybe its because I had a cesarean but I had a hard time lugging it around. I'm bringing my contigo bottle with the flip straw so I can snuggle in bed with it and bring it to my lips without sitting up haha. 

    @swiftlet I met with my doula yesterday and she recommended that we use early labor to do some packing to keep busy. We are trying to labor at home for as long as possible and only live 15 mins from the hospital though. She also said to bake cookies, etc. in early labor to bring as snacks for labor and thought my PB&J idea was great. She is going to be fun to hang out with.

    For my scheduled cesarean we packed the night before. 
    Me: 38, DH: 36 
    Married Jan 2008 
    DD Baby Bells born Dec 2016 5 lbs, 12 oz, 18" <3 so in love <3
    Due with #2 Baby Arya EDD February 2020

  • I recommend packing a bag and keeping it in your car. With my first, I went to a regularly scheduled OB appointment and she told me that I was leaking fluid and baby was in distress and I had to go to the hospital immediately. I had a bag packed at home and DH had to leave the hospital after DD1 was born to get it. 
  • @swiftlet I packed at 35 weeks and kept a list on top of the bag of what to pack last minute (so I didnt forget)- my robe that I use every day, toiletries, make up etc... During early labor I finished packing my back, painted my toes and then tried to make cookies for the nurses but the contractions got too bad at that point and I had to stop with half made batter
  • @jvk2012 I have always been super flexible so thats the only reason why. But really, I just have this weird obsession with having nicely painted toes, and the idea of strange nurse women holding my feet with chipped polish makes me cringe, so it was honestly priority #1 for me.....TBH I also shaved errrrthing during labor when I was in the shower too. Because I am crazy.
  • @kiwi2628  I attempted to shave everything  and boy was I surprised when I showered after delivery and I saw the hack job I did 😬 seriously considering going to get waxed. It’s already difficult to shave my lady parts. A pedicure is also something I’ll make sure to do as I get closer to my due date 
  • @kiwi2628, I also like a nice pedicure and got one shortly before DD was born and hope to do that this time around. I also try to maintain my shaving while pregnant although it’s getting hard now around the bump. I may have to bust out a mirror to help lol
  • @clee5711 - not sure if you've been waxed while pregnant but fair warning it can be more painful than usual. We had a case once where the woman went to get a bikini wax before having the baby and let's just say it did not go well. Lots of people do it but I am a worry wart so wanted to pass along. 
    Me: 38, DH: 36 
    Married Jan 2008 
    DD Baby Bells born Dec 2016 5 lbs, 12 oz, 18" <3 so in love <3
    Due with #2 Baby Arya EDD February 2020

  • @leksiL won’t be doing that then lol
  • @misstree5 yep. The one thing I’m thankful for is that my MIL has like everything DS would need. It may not be my style but at least he won’t be naked or not be able to brush his teeth if he’s gotta go there quickly.

    But how far ahead are you going to pack that bag?  
    DH: 34
    Married: May 2011
    TTC #1: May 2015
    DS: 10/20/2016
    TTC #2: June 2019
    #2 EDD: 2/20/2020
  • @ibabyloveb87 my MIL has diapers, but I will probably pack a bag with clothes and a few extra things...maybe have that ready to go for the new year I guess lol ...but to be honest, I'm not 100% sure if my MIL will be able to care for her...MIL takes a lot of meds at night, so we will have to have someone else on call to come watch DD if I need to go to the hospital at night...or we might just bring her with? We really don't know yet lol just going to wing it 😂 either way, I need a bag packed for her 
  • @misstree5 I do have an extra friend on call in case my in laws are not available and something happens before my RCS. 
    DH: 34
    Married: May 2011
    TTC #1: May 2015
    DS: 10/20/2016
    TTC #2: June 2019
    #2 EDD: 2/20/2020
  • Yeah DS is getting a separate bag because while we plan for him to be with us and have my sister as his support, the idea that he may need to go with my friend as a backup or end up staying home if it's MOTN and he's sleeping, or if he's at school and we end up rushing off and asking my sister to pick him up instead of join us... Too many moving parts! Separate bags for sure.
  • My parents are 2.5 hours away and will be the ones taking care of DD so they will also have a “to go” bag packed so they can get up here quickly!
  • So S+TMs...I've been reading a few pinterest articles on what to bring. I know I'm going to be bleeding after giving birth, I know I'm going to wear the mesh underwear and/or Depends and I'm not planning to wear my finest ivory silk PJs or whatever. But one of the articles I read basically says I'd better not wear anything that isn't black at least on the bottom because blood is going to be everywhere. Any thoughts on this?
  • Also curious. 
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