I’m overdue. Very overdue, and edging ever closer to an induction. And not only does that mean that my hospital bag has been packed for weeks and weeks by this point, but it also means that I’ve unpacked and repacked it at least twelve million times so far, and I’ll probably redo it a few more times, just to be certain, before baby decides to make her arrival. It’s impossible to know for definite what I will and won’t need, and packing for a child that isn’t even here yet is fairly difficult as well, but I think I’ve just about got all of the basics we need – as well as a few luxe extras to keep the oxytocin following – to make labour and our hospital stay as relaxed as possible..
Obviously, this is my first baby and I have no idea how long we’ll be in for, how big baby is going to be, or what my labour itself will actually be like, so I’ve tried to cover as many bases as possible, taken in as much advice from other people as my little brain could, read countless blog posts – including Alice’s and Beth’s – and packed what I think will work best.
My bag itself is actually a small suitcase. While I’ve read that some people didn’t find these practical, because you have to have space to open them out in order to be able to get into them and see what’s inside, not needing to be carried – so I can wheel the case into hospital myself if needs be or out when we leave, if Kai’s hands are full – I feel will make life a lot more easy. I’ve also picked up some clear cosmetic bags to organise things a little more – the biggest of which I’ve used for any bits I may need during labour, and the second, I’ve used for a toiletries bag – so I’ll talk you through what’s in those specifically as well..
・A thin, dark coloured dressing gown
・A big t-shirt, and loose fitting pyjama bottoms
・A towel for my face, and one for my body
・Two pairs of flipflops – one for the ward, one for the shower
・A pack of big, black pants
・Maternity Nursing Bra’s – I’ve packed one to wear during labour, so that if I get too warm, I can take my top off, and one to wear as normal
・Straighteners – I’m not taking in any makeup, but straightening my hair makes me feel a little more human and also allows me to tie my hair up neatly
・My planner and a pen – to keep track of feeds, scribble down any questions, etc
・Passports – to register baby at the hospital
・A carrier bag (for anything dirty or wet)
・Leggings, t-shirt, cardigan and Birkenstocks
・Snacks – including breakfast biscuits and bars, chocolate bars and sweets, a bottle of squash and bottles of Lucozade Sport
・A big t-shirt
・Speaker – I’ve made an active, upbeat labour playlist and a slower playlist that’ll hopefully help to keep me calm
・Lanolips – for dry lips and nipples afterwards as well
・Bottle, with a straw
・Travel Size This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Spray
・Dermalogica Cleanser and Microfoliant* – I find that doing my skincare routine relaxes me, and this will hopefully help me to unwind
・Contact lense solution, and glasses
・Shampoo and conditioner
・Toothbrush and toothpaste
We’re taking in our Tiba+Marl Elwood Backpack as baby’s hospital bag, because it’s the perfect size to fit almost everything we need, with a few bigger bits slipping into my suitcase, as well as leaving Kai’s hands free for carrying baby..
・Four sleepsuits and baby grows, with sizes that vary
・Water Wipes – some people advocated for these, and some against so I’ve taken a pack to try myself
・Two sets of hats and matching mittens
・A set of two dummies
・12 Cow & Gate Starter Pack Milks
There are a few bits that will go into my hospital bag at the last minute – my phone charger, my purse, for example – and as it’s looking as though I’ll have to have an induction, I’m also thinking about packing a pillow, as staying in will be more likely, and taking in my laptop to entertain myself if the induction doesn’t happen as quickly as I hope it will. Ultimately, it’s impossible to know, or even predict, what sort of labour and birth I’ll have, and what we will and won’t need. While it’s better to be over-prepared than underprepared, I also know that we’re not a million miles away from home if there is anything we desperately want..
You can download a PDF version of my hospital bag checklist here, to help you pack your own bag.