by: Pippa

It really is a bit bonkers packing a bag for a trip like going to hospital. It’s not holidays where you can check the Internet for the weather forecast for your stay. When you’re packing for this trip, you don’t even know what kind of holiday you are going to have and how long it’s going to last…!

There are oodles of lists of what to bring to hospital, so do check them out. What I found was that having a C-Section (like we had), do repack the bag, as loads of the things are not just needed anymore! And regardless of what’s in the bag, how you pack your bag is really essential. A great bit of advice I got is to pack  a series of bags within your larger hospital bag – one for labour stuff, one for initial baby stuff (babygro, vest, hat, a couple of nappies) and then all the other stuff for your stay in the hospital more long-term at the bottom.  That way you can grab the stuff at the different stages of your stay without your extra pairs of giant granny pants not being flung across the hospital in the haste of you trying to find something… It’s also useful show the different bags to your partner, so they know what bag they need to grab! We found this properly useful as it was my husband who initially dressed our baby and popped a nappy on her while I was still in recovery….. and my giant granny pants were kept safe in the bottom of the bag.

Anyway, to a list of other useful stuff that you may not see on the classic lists, that I found brilliant for hospital.

A lovely shower gel, I mean a really lovely one

Treat yourself, as showers become your moment alone and a total luxury. Therefore, this is not the time for that scraggy end of soap that you usually use. This is the time for a bit of a treat. I can still remember my showers in hospital!

An even lovelier body cream and possible face cream 

See above for the reason. I was very, very lucky – one of my sisters arrived in with a Clarins body lotion and some cream which was ‘facial flash’ something or other from Clarins and I have used them every day. They are a total utter luxury but damn do I take that quick moment and enjoy them. And I’m not one for that kind of stuff really. But now I really love, love, LOVE these things!

Pajamas that cover both your bra straps & the weird socks you might have to wear

A total school girl error on my part – I got lovely PJs that had really thin straps and stopped mid calf and new slippers and everything. All were either navy or grey – it was like a whole wardrobe as I wanted to feel nice and co-ordinated, even though I’d be hanging out in public in my nightwear. But alas, this was all ruined by some basics I didn’t know….

I didn’t realise that I would be wearing my nursing bras at night so looked so unkempt walking to the public nappy changing area with my bra straps hanging out. Also you might have to wear these anti-thrombosis socks to stop blood clots as you are not moving around a lot (I did anyway but that could have been for C-Section) so basically I didn’t look too great in hospital. Apart from the grin I had showing off my baby! Anyway, it’s good to know that you’ll be wearing these things and factor them into your nightwear, which is what you live in…

For breastfeeders, a few extra things to add to the list:

Multimams compresses (and a little scissors!) 

A bit expensive but they are gold for those early days of breastfeeding, especially at the start as your boobs adjust to this new role! These really are brilliant to give your nipples a bit of cool relief. You don’t need to apply one for each boob – everyone seems to cut them in half and they work a treat (hence the scissors…) I did and it was perfect. Well, well worth it so get them so you have them to hand as soon as you start the feeding.

Boots Ultra Slim Breast Pads

Buy boxes of the things. I go through around 1 box a week. Didn’t think I needed them until I had an accident with a top and have worn them religiously ever since! The Boots ones are the best ones I found around.

Nursing bras x 3 to 4

I’ve ended up wearing these a lot more than I thought I was going to so you need more than you think to get them through the wash and back to you.

 

For a full checklist of items to bring to the hospital with you have a look at this video and advice from Midwife Sinead