Preparing to welcome another baby into your family is an amazing experience. But how sure can you be that your hospital bag contains everything you’ll need? Or, if you’re planning a homebirth, that you have all the accessories you’ll require? No worries – here is a quick and comprehensive list. If youare having a homebirth, talk to your midwife as she will be able to inform you further.
The first thing you’ll want to be sure of is that you have all the telephone numbers required. You’ll want to be able to ring the hospital and the midwife, and if your partner and/or doula are not present when you go into labour you’ll need their number, too. Perhaps most importantly, if you have children already, you’ll need to be able to reach whoever will be taking care of them while you go into hospital on short notice. Don’t forget to inform the school beforehand if someone else might be bringing them to school and picking them up! Make a list of these phone numbers and keep it in multiple places; your handbag, your hospital bag, and stuck to the fridge, for example.
Childbirth can take a long time and be an exhausting business. Pack magazines, books, and some snacks and drinks for yourself and your partner. You’ll want to go for snacks that are high in protein and will give you a boost of energy and keep hunger at bay. Opt for drinks that will keep you hydrated as well as possible, too.
For when your baby has arrived, you’ll want some clothes, of course. Some fresh, comfy pyjamas for yourself would be a wonderful idea, and try not to skimp on the luxury. It really does make a difference in how you feel. Also invest in some nice slippers to walk around the ward in, and some tracksuit bottoms with a comfortable top for the journey home. For the baby, you’ll want some clothes and nappies; for the journey home you could ensure you have plenty of layers so you can adjust according to the weather, and double-check the car seat is somewhere you can easily find it as hospitals will not allow you to leave without one. A swaddling blanket or two will definitely come in handy, too.
Bring your own shampoo and conditioner, shower gel and toothbrushing supplies as well as a hair brush. Essentially, you’ll feel much more like yourself as a result of using these instead of the hospital’s cut-rate versions, and you will be able to feel much happier in yourself.
Good luck with your baby’s birth. With the right paraphernalia or without, it is sure to be one of the most amazing experiences of your life!