On Getting Ready For The Hospital

 I've posted my hospital packing list in the past, but I realized the other day that I never really expanded on that list!  Since it was over three years ago, and since I've been asked about this topic more recently,  I thought I'd go ahead and post a few tips on getting ready for the hospital for first time moms as a supplement to my original list. There are a few things that I was particularly glad I did when preparing for our hospital stays, so I'm going to focus on those here!

Switch to waterproof mascara in the last month or so of your pregnancy.  I think I've mentioned before that you should pack waterproof mascara, so if you cry at the hospital you won't have mascara running everywhere.  But really you should switch to waterproof before that, so you don't have to worry about black rivers under your eyes should you cry when you see your baby for the first time.  And maybe you should cry in the mascara before the hospital too so you can confirm the waterproof claim, because my "waterproof" mascara with Clyde was a big, fat fail.  If you can't muster up any tears, just watch this video.  Or read this book. There you go.

Bring a sleep shirt.  Just get out of the hospital gown as fast as you can.  When Emily had her daughter she wrote about bringing a button-down sleep shirt to wear at the hospital after the birth, and I loved the idea.  It's short enough for the nurses to check you postpartum, and the buttons are great for breastfeeding, but you'll actually feel cute.  I loved having my sleep shirt with Gwen, and I got another one to use after Clyde was born.

Bring movies.  You may not actually use them, but trust me, they are good to have.  If you are admitted for some other complication before your baby comes (like our hospital stay a week before Wyatt was born), it will be nice to have something to watch besides the soaps that are on during the day.

Think about your clothes for photos.  A lot of hospitals these days have professional photographers that will come by and take pictures of you and your new baby. Our hospital worked with Bella Baby, and I love having the shots of us together!  If you are planning on getting any special pictures taken during your hospital stay, you don't want to be wearing the ugly gown they give you.  It doesn't have to be anything fancy - with Wyatt I wore pajamas, and with Gwen and Clyde I wore yoga pants and a white t-shirt.  But bring something casual that will look alright for pictures (if your sleep shirt is pretty enough, that might just work by itself too).

(One of our Bella Baby photos with Clyde - I also brought that blue wrap thing for the photos.)

Have an extra bag you can grab quickly.  I pack most of my hospital items in one bag, but there are certain things I need on a day to day basis - like my flat iron, or my glasses.  I have an extra little bag that I keep those kinds of items in - that is just their permanent storage place for the last month of my pregnancy.  Then when I go out and about, or when I go into labor, I can just grab that one bag with a few items and I'm good to go (instead of running around trying to pack last minute things into my main hospital bag).

If you ask twenty different mothers about their best tips for getting ready for the hospital, you'll probably get twenty different answers, but these were the things that I was glad I remembered!  Moms, what were some things you did to prepare for the hospital?  Comment below!
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Hannah said...

I LOVE the night shirt idea! Those hospital gowns are just awful and have a way of making you feel so unbecoming. I wish I had been able to change out if mine a lot sooner than I was able to. Next time I'll make sure to have a cute night shirt to change into :) Love these ideas!

Inspired said...

We totally forgot to make arrangements for our dog! I was so focused on the human members of the family that I forgot about her. Luckily family lives close and my Mom loves our pup so she asked about her at the hospital. I think it's wise to have a couple of "on call" people for your kids and/or pets. People who prefer to watch through the night, during the day, or anytime at all. And also think about the days after. For our family one person (a friend) came in the middle of the night for our toddler and then family watched him the day(s) after. That way family could come right to the hospital but no one family/person was too taxed by taking care of (and being up late - rough combo) our little man.

Kate Craig said...

Movies is a good suggestion! The TV in my room was broken and the internet was too slow to watch Amazon Prime on our computer. Especially if you're being induced, it's nice to have a distraction instead of thinking too much!

Melanie said...

I still kick myself to this day for not taking my boppy pillow to the hospital!!!!

Lauren said...

love the sleep shirt idea! such a great idea for nursing and feeling just tiny bit cuter!

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