All my bags are packed (but am I missing something?)

With our first pregnancy, my hospital bag was packed weeks in advance. It was full to the zipper with things I thought I’d need based on books and online articles I’d read. I overpacked and stressed myself out about it. With my next pregnancy, I threw things in a bag in between contractions. Packing, along with many other aspects of birth and baby raising, can be easier the second go-around. So, while by no means a complete list, here are items a lot of people find useful:

  • Nursing tanks/bras: Good for easy access to skin-to-skin time.
  • Slippers: For walking around the hospital in labor and use around the room postpartum.
  • Flip flops: Sure they clean the shower before use, but still…
  • Going home outfit for you and baby: Think comfortable maternity wear and seasonally appropriate onesie/jammies.
  • Your own pillow: Preferably with a pillow case that will set it apart from hospital's.
  • Snacks: For most women, eating and drinking during labor is safe and so helpful.
  • Toiletries, and glasses if you wear contacts

For birth partner:

  • Sweatshirt: Hospitals can be really cold. My husband had to have a friend bring one (and still hasn’t returned it four years later- sorry, Jarrod).
  • Snacks: Hospitals feed mama after the birth, but dads need nourishment, too.
  • Breath mints: Mama does not want to smell said digesting snacks while she’s birthing.
  • Phone chargers:  Most phones get quite the workout during labor, delivery and postpartum.
  • Car seat: The hospital won't let you leave without one installed and will watch you load up baby.

When you hire me, I will provide a more comprehensive list, but in all honesty, you’ll need less than you think. The hospital provides a lot of birthing and postpartum essentials and you’ll spend most of your recovery time in the bed because rest is best.