Listen, you know all those baby prep books you’ve read that give you super long lists of stuff you need to pack to take with you for labor and delivery when it’s time to welcome your new baby? Okay, you’re not gonna need most of that stuff. Now, you may feel some comfort and security knowing that you have your 90s soft rock 3-disc CD to take your mind off of labor pains, but most likely, it won’t make it out of your suitcase.
Besides all the useless and unnecessary things you’ll chorale to the hospital, you’ll have additional things, flowers, gifts, balloons and baby stuff to add to the pile and schlep back home. To save you the trouble and hassle, here is our old tried and true list of 12 things you can leave home and spare your poor partner the back pain.
- Newborn diapers– Hospitals provide all the diapers the baby needs during the stay and even send you home with extra starter packs
- Nursing cover -There is no need for modesty in your hospital room in your hospital bed. The nurses have seen plenty of boobs in their career. If guests visit while you’re nursing, you can ask them to wait outside until you’re done feeding the baby. Most people won’t get offended.
- Wipes– Most hospitals use a very thick napkin that they wet with water and wipes contain elements that aren’t good for a newborn’s skin.
- Diaper Cream -Most likely the baby won’t be born with a diaper rash and won’t develop one within the first2-3 days of his life while in the hospital. If he does, the hospital has sample cream to use. Those tubes and jars can add weight to an already stuffed take home bag
- Any childbirth class notes or guidelines and labor hints: Really now? Do you think in the midst of breathing through labor pains you’re gonna want to review your notes?
- Underwear– Many hospitals provide the most comfortable mesh disposable ones that you will love to use instead of messing up your own. The joke among my friends is that they are the special order Victoria Secret mesh panties for new moms.
- iPod or music player – with music selections to help with relaxation Besides being outdated and taking up too much space, piping Gregorian Chants or Enya in the room may be a distraction for the hospital staff, interrupt with monitoring equipment and/or disturb a neighboring laboring moms. If you have a smartphone that has the capability of accommodating music, download music on there and bring your headphones. It takes up less space than bringing your phone AND ipod.
- Receiving blankets- The hospital provides plenty that you can take home even afterwards. Save all the cute baby shower gifts for home.
- Two regular-sized bed pillows (in bright, distinctive, hard-to-lose pillowcases)- The Hospital or maternity center provide enough. If you are a germaphobe, think the hospital’s pillow cases may be too rough or want something familiar from home, just bring the pillowcases and replace the hospital’s cases. They take up less space.
- Baby’s “memory” book – for footprints or staff names and guest signatures Nice idea if you have someone who will remind guests to sign because you’ll be consumed with baby, nursing, caring for yourself, and will likely forget.
- Entertainment items (books, crayons, games) for children are to visit in hospital – A lot of hospitals don’t permit young children in the maternity wards, but for those who do and if children come to visit they may not be staying THAT long to get bored and need entertainment. As for other people’s children, it’s not your job to tote extra crap to entertain your friends’ kids.
- Clothes for hospital baby photo AND clothes for baby to wear home You only need one of these. Either or. The kid shouldn’t be a fashionista YET that she can’t be seen in the same outfit twice. You can simply put on the outfit before the photo and take it off afterward. If you can, schedule your photo the same day and around your discharge time.
The Extra Crap you don’t NEED but you CAN bring (eh hem, especially if you are a diva or fashionista):
- Make up– because you don’t want to end up on Facebook looking like you just went through a train wreck. If your goal is to look like Khloe Kardashian after she delivered Mason or at least attempt to, then you’re gonna want some make up.
- Towels- Because the hospital ones are usually washed a lot and can be itchy.
- Your own toilet paper – Hospital toilet paper can be thin. Your delicate bum may want something soft then
- Your Own Plush Robe – For accepting visitors, walks to the nursery to visit baby and /or walking off the gas for those who have c-sections.
- A spare bag – You can use it to store the extra stuff you’ll have to carry home.