What’s in my (hospital) bag?

hospital bag

As a new mom, I had no idea what I’d need in the hospital. I knew Jason could always go home and get something we forgot but I scoured Pinterest and found lists on lists of what to bring, only to find that I really didn’t need as much as I thought. Here’s my entire list, and what I actually used!

What I used…

Robe – I found it comforting to have my own robe there. It felt a little more like home.

Disposable underwear – This was a tip from a friend of mine, I didn’t actually see this on any list I looked at online. They give you weird looking nylon “biker shorts” to use with pads. They’re incredibly uncomfortable and hard to get on and off, especially after a c-section. I purchased Always Discreet underwear and found them easy to use and surprisingly comfortable. They are super absorbent so I didn’t worry about them leaking at all. One of the nurses said it was really smart to have them too so that made me feel less self-conscious about them.

Nipple balm – If you’re breastfeeding, you will need this. I used The Honest Company Organic Nipple Balm. I found it important to get one that was food-grade so it didn’t have to be wiped off before nursing. One less thing to worry about.

Yoga pants (maternity) – I brought some non-maternity yoga pants and was totally not ready to be in them yet. These pants from Target have been my go-to.

Lounge clothes – Camisoles were key aside from the yoga pants. The idea was easy accessibility since nursing is now your full-time job (or so it seems!). PJs are nice too.

Slippers – I didn’t usually wear anything on my feet but it was nice to have the slippers when we walked down to the nursery to see him during his check ups.

Electronics – iPad, phone, chargers for everything, and camera were my necessities.

The Nursing Mother’s Companion (book) – So helpful! If you plan to breastfeed, you must pick this book up.

Snacks for daddy – Jason just went down to the cafeteria whenever he wanted something but I am glad I packed snacks just so I had some piece of mind knowing there was something there if either of us needed it in case the cafeteria wasn’t open.

Aspirin – Again, we didn’t need it but was glad we had it. They will charge you for everything!

Toiletries – I only packed shower stuff, face lotion, deodorant, contact solution / case, and a comb. No makeup, no blow dryer.

Glasses – SUPER important, especially if you have a c-section. You can’t wear your contacts for a c-section so if you want to see your baby when he/she comes out, don’t forget your glasses!

My own pillow – Jason actually used this instead of me.

A towel – We brought one for each of us but Jason went home to shower. The hospital towels were really small plus it was another added comfort of home.

Nursing bras – I only used one of these when I got dressed to go home. I did not have any problems with leakage though, and some people do, so I’d definitely pack these regardless.

Disposable breast pads – Again, only when I went home but pack them!

For baby…

Pacifiers – We had a few on hand just in case. Depending on the hospital and nurses, they may not be willing to give you any if you ask. We actually kept one in his bassinet and we noticed it was gone when the nurse brought him back from a check up. Sneaky.

Outfits with built-in mittens – The only thing they give baby in the hospital is a long-sleeve onesie that’s size 6 month. No joke. We swaddled him in the hospital blankets but it made me feel better to see him in some real clothes his first few days. And the built-in mitten help a ton. We have regular mittens too and they don’t stay on very well. Make sure to bring a couple sizes.

Hats – Jason got to pick out a knitted hat for him right after he was born that some volunteers make for the babies. They have standard cotton hats they use too but the knitted one was much warmer and cuter. We brought our own too and used them as well.

What I didn’t use…

Nursing pillow – It was really difficult to try to use the nursing pillow since most of the time I nursed in bed. The lactation consultant and nurses teach you using the 75 pillows you have so it’s much easier to stick to that while in the hospital. Plus, your belly gets in the way still so the baby doesn’t actually sit close enough.

Nursing cover – There was no shame at the hospital, especially since the nurses try to help you if you need it. And my guests were quick to give us privacy during feeding times so that made it easier. If you think you’ll feel uncomfortable though, bring your cover.

Going home outfit for mom – I wore what I went to the hospital in.

Our own swaddle blankets – There’s no need to use anything but what the hospital has. They’re pretty nice.

Lotion for him – Since you’re not giving baby a bath in the hospital, there’s no need for lotion just yet.

Diapers and wipes – I packed them just in case but the hospital provides all of this.

Baby book for his footprints – I had something I wanted his footprints to go on but the hospital is so quick with it. They have a special print out for footprints so I’ll just incorporate that into my book.

Anything you had to have that wasn’t on my list? Please share! — Annie

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