I’ve done it 3 times now so I feel like a bit of a pro at this giving birth thing, even though with my third I tried to pack as minimal as possible, I found myself adding random bits to my hospital bags the closer I got to my due date. Silly things like a pack of playing cards and a knife and fork. What would I even need a knife and fork for?!
I thought about all the things they advise you to pack, and what things you most definitely will need, but there’s a lot of it that is, quite frankly, useless because you’ll never use them during your hospital stay. It’s easy to find information on what to pack, there’s a fab checklist on BabyCentre, but there isn’t much to find about what you really don’t need. So I went through my hospital bag list, and baby’s hospital bag list, to find out what things you really won’t need to pack to take with you.
A big, thick dressing gown
Have you ever been on a labor and delivery ward? It’s ridiculously hot! I was practically naked when giving birth to Joshua, all I had on was a vest top that was rolled up so the midwives didn’t have to see my boobs (I mean, they had to see everything else and that was more than enough). So even though I was almost naked, I was still sweating like I was sitting in a sauna. Honestly, I must have lost a tonne of water weight just through sweating! Although feel free to take a cute, silky kimono to cover up with.
A book, crossword puzzles or a device to watch movies/TV shows
Unless you’re having a caesarean or being induced, these items will be completely pointless. Contractions hurt, big time, and there is no way I could concentrate on reading a book through them. I could just about manage turning on my tens machine. Given the fact that most women go to hospital once they are in established labour doesn’t save much time for these things. Even once you’ve delivered your precious bundle, you’ll be either sleeping (because that’s super needed after you’ve just pushed out a tiny human) or you’ll be caught up in the moment and taking in every precious second of the tiny baby you created. That being said, these items could of be use if you need to stay in the hospital for a while after the birth. Let’s face it, hospital entertainment isn’t the greatest.
Nursing Pads/Nipple Cream
As handy as these items are once your milk has come in, it can take 3 days (or more) for your milk to actually come in. So actually these things aren’t needed for your labour or delivery, they just take up space in your bag. Although, I would recommend “preparing” your nipples with the nipple cream before you start breastfeeding, if that’s how you’re choosing to feed your baby, I found it helped me.
Every Baby Outfit You Own
It’s a known fact that babies go through clothes like there is no tomorrow, sick and poo erupt when we least expect it, but you don’t really need to pack as many as you think. When I packed my hospital bag for Zara, I only packed 2 tiny baby vests and 2 tiny baby sleepsuits as well as 2 newborn size vests and 2 newborn size sleepsuits. We were in the hospital, post-birth, for a grand total of 8 hours and we only changed her clothes once. There was no mess from her at all and we only changed her so that I could get the use out of the clothes I had packed given she was much bigger than we were expecting her to be.
Your Pre-Pregnancy Clothes
I know that some women gain their pre-baby body back pretty quickly following the birth of a baby, but even the snappiest of bodies don’t recover that quickly post-birth. You still have some resembelance of a baby bump that doesn’t go away until your womb has shrunk back. So it’s best to pack your comfiest maternity clothes possible.
Is there anything you found that you really didn’t need during your labour and delivery? Something you really wouldn’t pack if there was a next time?