Nine long months have finally passed and you’re finding it hard to believe that skin can actually stretch that far! As the birth of your baby gets close it’s time to pack for your stay in hospital or at the birthing centre.
You have probably spoken to your doctor or midwife about how you’d ideally like your labour to progress. This can include whether you’d like to be offered pain relief, the use of a bath and who will cut the baby’s umbilical cord.
Having your birth plan written down will help you and your partner relay to the medical staff your wishes during this time. Remember it is just a plan and don’t be disappointed if you need to change it as your labour progresses, after all, the most important thing is that you and your baby are healthy when the birth is over.
A couple of weeks before your due date start packing! Here are some of the things to include in your packing:
- A dressing gown and slippers, socks and a comfortable nightie or oversized t-shirt you can move around in during the early stages of labour.
- Your favourite relaxing CDs, massage oils and lip balm.
- You won’t want to eat anything substantial but sipping on diluted apple juice or a sports drink might help, so slip a suitable drink into your bag.
- Check if the hospital has an ample supply of heat packs or bring your own – just check if your birth partner can get access to a microwave to heat them up.
- Don’t forget your toiletries; and a hair band can be very useful to tie back long hair.
Your baby will also need a few things for their stay and journey home:
- You will need to have an approved car seat which is properly fitted.
- Pack two or three stretch suits and vests, a jumper, beanie, socks and mitts and a warm blanket.
- You will need a supply of nappies and wipes.
Don’t forget to pack a going home outfit for yourself plus maternity pads, breast pads and a couple of nursing bras. Finally pack a couple of changes of loose and comfortable clothes, these will be handy when visitors come to congratulate you and welcome your new born.