If you google hospital bag for giving birth you will be presented with a million different lists, each containing a million different things you should pack.
I was massively overwhelmed with the never ending list of items I apparently required for my giving birth experience. The first list I wrote had almost 40 items that I absolutely had to have. And that didn’t even include items for the baby!! I showed my husband my first list and in fairness he was rather diplomatic about it, That’s a lot of stuff but if you’re sure you’ll need it then we’ll get it
That was the hubby’s polite way of saying - are you crazy this is no end of stuff but as you’re pregnant I’ll keep the peace and have what you want. My mother however, was less diplomatic and told me that it was a ridiculous amount of things and that I should pack realistically. Annoyed and a little sulky I redrafted my list - several times.
Eventually, with my list reduced I settled about getting everything together. My hospital bag actually consisted of two bags. The baby bag I bought as a nappy bag actually came with two bags, the larger i used for myself and the smaller was the baby’s bag.
I packed based on the assumption I would be staying in the hospital for one night. I did however lay out extra clothing and essentials in case I needed to stay longer - this pile of extras was pointed out to the hubby in the event he’d have to come back for more, but luckily it wasn’t needed.
So this is what I packed for my hospital bag:
Towel - just a normal bath towel. I actually bought a new dark coloured one from Primark. My hospital actually provided towels for my shower straight after giving birth but my own was used for the next day.
Dressing Gown - again another dark coloured one. It was a long dressing gown and light weight. Hospitals can get hot so I didn’t fancy something heavy.
PJs - I took two pairs of light weight pjs one set with shorts and the other long trousers. Each with easy boob access
Nightie - I packed this nightie with the intention of wearing it during birth. However, everything for me happened so quickly I didn’t have chance to change and only managed to get off my dress before things kicked off!
Slippers / Slipper socks - I took both. The slippers were those you get from a hotel so I threw them out once out of the hospital but I loved my slipper socks.
Toiletries - I treated myself here, I got the usual, toothbrush, toothpaste, roll on deodrant, shampoo & conditioner, face cream and moisturiser. All my favourite brands and flavours. All travel size too. I did take a small selection of basic make up but I never used it. Face wipes (an absolute god send for me, so handy as they were great for a quick refresh throughout the day). Hair ties, and a few of them, as well as bobby pins too, keep the hair off your face. Hair brush too!
Maternity pads - Buy many of these, you’ll need them. I under estimated so had to send the hubby out when we got home for more.
Nipple pads - stock up on these too.
Adult nappies or disposable maternity pants - I will admit something as a first time mum I never thought of until I read all the lists! And yes they’re needed!
Maternity mats - Now my hospital provided these but you’ll want them for home too. My friend actually said she used the Dry nights for kids as these can be stuck to the bed so don’t move.
Clothes for going home - Again I went for dark, loose fitting clothes. As it was still warm in September (2017) I opted for a black maternity dress. Maternity pants and nursing bra and some trainers that I could slip on without fussing. You won’t want anything tight that will rub you up the wrong way, remember you will be walking like John Wayne for a while! And if you have a C-section remember you won’t want clothing to rub against your wound so high waisted helps here.
Drinks & snacks - I stuffed in a couple of bottles of Lucozade in my bag and a large bottle of water. As well as a handful of cereal bars. Just to keep me going in the hours after giving birth.
Electronics - phone, phone charger, headphones and iPod. Phone for obvious reasons as well as being our camera. Music was good too for the night when my husband went home, baby was asleep and I could block out the other hospital noises.
That was my maternity bag in a nutshell. It isn’t a vast amount of items but it got me through without breaking either the bank or my back. It all fit neatly into my hold all - I didn’t want to be that person pulling in a suitcase that could fit a family of four.
My baby’s bag - a smaller version of my hold all, was filled it all the required elements for my baby girl.
Nappies - Over pack these, you don’t want to be overpaying in the hospital gift shop. I packed 15 in total just in case.
Baby wipes - just a packet of these.
Cotton wool - a small bag of these, we left the larger one at home.
Nappy bags - for when disposing of the used nappy, cotton wool and wipes.
Towel for the baby
Muslin cloths - I packed two of these.
Baby clothes - I went overboard here and took six complete outfits: vests and sleepsuits with the integrated scratch mits , a couple of separate scratch mittens and hats.
Blanket - for when taking the baby home. Hospitals are so warm and they’ll usually provide a blanket.
So that is everything I packed for my hospital stay. Obvious addition was the car seat but this was only bought in when we were leaving. I did also send the hubby down to the hospital shop for some coke and mint areos. I did deserve them after all.