Hospital Bags Revisited

Hospital Bags Revisited

When I blogged about the contents of the three hospital bags that I was going to take into hospital {see here and here} I promised that I would come back and review what I had taken. So here you have it, as promised, Hospital Bags Revisited.

Now the dust has settled on Bump’s birth, I thought that it would be a good time to review the contents of each bag and let you know what I really did use and what I wish I had taken!

Mummy’s Bag

First things first, my bag was crammed to over flowing. And guess what, I didn’t use half of it!  That’s not because it wasn’t useful (I am sure it would have been had I had a natural birth) but because I ended up having an emergency caesarean, most of the items I packed were redundant.

Lets start by talking about knickers. Rather than go down the disposable route, I packed loads of old pairs. They weren’t needed. I ended up having to get an ‘emergency’ pack of size 18 granny knickers so that my scar wasn’t aggravated. The bikini top that I purchased for my water birth…well that still hasn’t been used!

You know in One Born, where you see the mum to be sat around reading magazines and watching stuff on her iPad? Well I thought that would be me! I had half of the W H Smith magazine section in one of my bags…nope I am not joking! Guess what, I didn’t read a thing pre-birth or post birth. So next time round I won’t bother with the magazines.

 

Luxury

My luxuries!

I am glad that I had included my own towels in the bag, they were much nicer to use than the hospital ones. As I was in for 2 nights it was lovely to have a shower to feel more human again.  My toiletries also made me feel more human, it is amazing how a spritz of my favourite Jo Malone fragrance {see here} made me instantly forget about the bag of wee I was holding in the other hand thanks to my catheter. I was so glad I packed some travel shampoo and conditioner that we acquired (they just fell into my bag honest) from our stay at Foxhill Manor, that really gave me a boost.

My going home outfit had been well planned and I had picked some maternity leggings, a vest top and a maxi skirt. Well I am glad that I had the leggings because the maxi skirt went straight back in the bag! Due to the swelling and pain from the caesarean I couldn’t face wearing it at all!! I could have been going home in just my knickers had it not been for the leggings!!! So a BOAM top tip ladies, make sure you pack some leggings!

Thankfully the cheap dressing gown and nursing PJs from George at Asda were perfect {see here}. One of the midwives commented on how nice it was to see a lady in some sensible PJs!  Much to W’s annoyance, as he hates dressing gowns (I know, it is an odd thing to hate!), I am still using the dressing gown.

top

Not needed! Bikini top and fizz

So, magazines and iPads are not needed. Nor is a bottle of fizz (though we did make up for it when we got home!). Own towels, granny knickers, leggings, home smells and some nice toiletries are a must!

Bump’s Bag

Bump's Bag

How did I think this was suitable for Bump’s bag?!?

This one we really didn’t do so well on….though that is mainly because we were in hospital so much longer than anticipated and because the weather just wasn’t summery. We were completely underprepared.

We thought that because Bump was due in July it would be hot! Oh no! It couldn’t have been further from the truth. Remember about three weeks ago, when it just rained like it does in November for about four days. Yep that was when Bump arrived.

We had packed lots of short sleeve vests and a couple of sleep suits. When we had visited the labour ward you see, it was in the middle of that heatwave. So, naturally, we thought it would be even hotter when Bump arrived! Epic fail on our part.

It became apparent very quickly (especially when Bump’s first poo ended up all the way up his back) that we didn’t have enough of anything! That included nappies, wipes or clothes. So we had to call in a favour and get Bump some more sleep suits, wipes and nappies.

Part of the lovely Waitrose Mini range

Interestingly as we didn’t know what size Bump was going to be, we packed lots of different sizes of outfits. What we hadn’t quite appreciated (and how I am not sure, given the number of blogs on the matter) is that newborn sizing varies across stores hugely. Even at stores that are essentially the same company, for example Waitrose and John Lewis, there is a difference in sizing! The John Lewis newborn items swamped Bump but that is a good thing as we love their clothes!

So, more of everything was needed for Bump’s bag. More sleep suits, more nappies, more wipes, more nappy sacks, more vests.

Daddy’s Bag

Dad bag

Daddy’s redundant bag!

In the end we didn’t really need anything in Daddy’s bag!! My labour lasted through the night and W ended up in scrubs because of the caesarean.

We didn’t really eat any of the food, though it was nice to have it whilst I stayed in hospital as the hospital food was not great.

As it happened W didn’t stay in hospital at all as he was able to go and stay with others who lived close by. W has said though, he wish he had packed more clothes for him and left them in the car.

Hospital Bags Revisited: BOAM’s Top Tip

The biggest tip we have, actually comes from W and it is….make sure your partner packs the hospital bag! I know that sounds odd but he is right. When I was in the middle of labour, and also bed bound in the days following birth, and needed something it was a right pain in the arse to have to explain where the item was!

I can remember the midwife telling W he would need a nappy for Bump to take into the theatre. Que, midwife and W rooting around in the bags looking for nappies. Had he packed the bags that wouldn’t have happened.

All in all, you can be as prepared as you want but you can’t plan for every eventuality. You need to think that everything is going to be straight forward, I mean why would you think otherwise! You can’t go through life expecting the worst all the time. No we didn’t have what we needed, and yes we had things that never got touched but we had the basics to get by with to start.

To those of you that have given birth, is there anything you didn’t have in your hospital bag that you really needed! What would you recommend.

Penny x

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