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I’ve always had pretty easy pregnancies. Aside from a touch of nausea, or some pretty intense sciatica, I actually enjoy being pregnant. I’m pretty darn good at it, honestly. Plus, who doesn’t want an excuse to gorge themselves on sweet treats? (Look for an upcoming post of my favorite one-minute mug cakes.)
This time around, it’s been tough. Like, really tough. Like, all day sciatic pain so intense I’m barely able to move. Like, Braxton-Hicks contractions that would make anyone wonder if they’re actually in labor (but not).
It’s been both slow as molasses and as fast as a blink. I feel like I just took the test, and bam! Due date is next week! And, as I assume is normal with a fourth child, I haven’t even packed my hospital bag! Gasp! I know.
Heck, I don’t even remember what I need. I feel just like a first timer. Completely lost. So, I reached out to my mom friends on Facebook and Pinterest. I asked my friends for their bare minimum list. Things that I wouldn’t necessarily think of on my own.
I’m compiling my packing list. Just for me. Dad can pack himself. And, baby really only needs a coming home outfit, so just a onesie, socks, and pants. Plus, car seat.
Here’s my bare minimum list:
- Suitcase/weekender bag: I have one that I got from Target a few years ago, and used as a damn diaper bag for my three kids for ages before I realized it was insane to carry legit luggage around on the daily. I like this one from Amazon: plenty of space for the things you bring with, and extra space for goodies from the hospital.
- Comfortable essentials: Since I usually spend the stay in the hospital issued gown, socks, and robe, I don’t pack a nightgown. But, I do like to bring comfy slippers and I just bought these. I also like to bring a nursing bra because once my milk comes in, it’s crazy! This one is super comfy and holds in the big engorgement boobs without too much squishing.
- Nursing supplies: Similar to bringing my own comfy essentials, I like to bring a few of my own nursing supplies. I’m sure the hospital would provide the lanolin, but I like to bring my own just in case. I prefer Lansinoh, but really any brand works well to soothe sore nipples. And, the reusable nursing pads are so much softer and more comfortable than disposable, though I have, use, and pack both.
- Essential toiletries: My hospital also provides toiletries, though I usually pack my own toothbrush. I do, however, love to bring my own face cleansing wipes for those in-between moments, when labor’s lasting forever, and I’m feeling kinda grimy. These are heaven-sent! Also, who doesn’t love Burt’s Bees lip balm? Laboring makes my whole body feel dry, no matter how much water I drink or IV fluids I get. BB’s Mango lip balm is a little bit of luxury during a draining time.
- Electronics: This one is a given. Of course, I need my phone for texting family/playing games/taking ALL THE PICTURES! And my iPad for watching movies, or reading my newest kindle book. And, let’s be honest: none of that stuff matters if the battery dies, so a charger is an absolute must!
- Comfy Going Home outfit: For going home, I have to be comfy (hello, just birthed a baby!), but also look “put together” enough to pick up my kids from school, if necessary. (Totally picked up Judah from preschool THE DAY I was released from the hospital after having Milo.) So, my go-to is high-waisted leggings, a nursing tank, and a tunic. Top that with a nursing infinity scarf, a kimono (in case I get chilly), and a trusty pair of flip flops, and I’m ready to go!
I’ve also heard to bring an extension cord along with the charger, because you never know where the closest outlet will be. Someone also recommended adult diapers for the excessive bleeding, and while I haven’t used them with any other pregnancy, I ordered these to give a go. (Promise to share how they worked!) And an empty bag (like a reusable shopping bag) for the extras the nurses give you, like baby diapers, postpartum care stuff, etc.
Any other recommendations? What do you pack?