Friday, 2 January 2015

Early Delivery!

Well, it's just as well we packed the hospital bags as our little boy has arrived! At just under one month early, he caught us both by surprise!
As I'm sitting writing this, he is now 11 days old and it already feels like he's always been with us. We're both smitten and exhausted, in equal measures!
It's been an eventful Christmas, during which time we've spent a total of 8 of the last 11 days in hospital (three hospitals, to be precise), but as we are now settling in at home, I thought it would be a good time to look back at my last post and consider which, of the items I packed (and didn't) for hospital, really made a difference and those that simply padded out our hospital bags. So, here's my top 10.

My top 10 to pack for hospital

1. Lip balm - your lips get pretty dry during labour and left me frequently reaching for my trusty Piz Buin or, at the more intense times, my husband kindly doing the honours.
2. Long vest top, button front pjs and slippers - hospitals are generally quite warm places, especially maternity wards, so being able to layer up or down during and after labour is key. I'd recommend avoiding lighter colours as they will show every mark and stain.
3. Bendy straws - I guess it goes without saying that you will be very thirsty during labour and will need to keep your fluids up, but you won't necessarily be in the position to hold your own glass.
4. Hair ties/clips - keep your hair off your face and neck.
5. Phone, charger, head phones and camera (with charger) - you'll probably be using your phone to keep track of feeds after your baby is born (more on that in my next post), so will need to keep it charged.
6. Bag with bits for baby - vests, baby grows, scratch mittens, hats, muslins, blankets, sleeping bag (we were bought some gorgeous ones from The White Company which have proved invaluable already, wash well and are very cute), nappies, cotton wool balls and, if you're planning to bottle feed, bottles and formula.
7. Bag for you post birth - maternity pads, nipple pads, crop top, big knickers, spare pjs, book/tablet/whatever would normally help you pass the time, wash kit and it's not a bad idea for your partner to keep a hair dryer etc in the car in case you're in for a longer stint than expected.

8. Clothes to go home in - I went for a dress and tights and I was grateful as jeans would have been uncomfortable.
9. Snacks and drinks with labelled sandwich bags for the hospital fridge - I was put on iron tablets and found that having fruit juice helped with the inevitable bowel problems. I have been a fan of Naked Smoothies for some time and they're the perfect size for guzzling when your energy levels dip, but don't forget your bags with labels as not all hospitals will have their own to hand when you need them and they're the last thing you want to waste time looking for!
10. Car seat - if you can, try taking it in and out of the car before your due date as fiddling with it when you are trying to leave the hospital and have your precious little bundle strapped in, will cause unnecessary stress for all of you. We have a Maxi Cosi Milo Fix which is a compromise between the traditional seat which needs strapping in and the iso fix. It's brilliant as it simply clicks into place and can go into any car.

It might feel like you are leaving home, but I found that packing a few bags to leave in the car meant we covered every base and made it easier for my husband when I asked for extra items, such as the inevitable hair dryer after a few days in hospital. Oh, and don't forget your maternity notes!

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