What do you need in the hospital bag? What not?
The hospital bag is the bag that should always be at hand around the due date in case the birth really starts. I have packed three hospital bags so far and each time I found something different to be particularly important.
The essential things that, in my opinion, definitely belong in it:
1. Maternity pass - although you should have it in your handbag anyway, like your wallet or mobile phone.
2. Warm socks : Warm feet facilitate the birth process, cold ones hinder it
3. Lip balm: The classic, but it's true: If you breathe a lot and pant for nine or ten hours, it's just what you need
4. A nursing-friendly, breathable shirt. It is best to take an old cotton t-shirt or long-sleeved shirt and cut open with scissors, eg the neckline or the sides. A kangaroo shirt for bonding is also a good idea. Most of the time, however, it is enough to simply lay the baby skin to skin under your shirt on your chest while lying in bed.
5. Slippers/flip flops/slippers: Once I only had street shoes with me and thick woolen socks, and both of them were stupid on the maternity ward
6. A mild organic shower gel: Little perfume, preferably none at all, because your baby should smell YOU and not bond with a Gucci scent. You also want to use it to wash anything that might still be an open wound because a human just came out. I always found refreshing organic shower gels with a little mint the best, which cools and refreshes well.
7. Toothbrush, toothpaste
8. Snacks for you and your birth companion: Many hospitals wish that the partner didn't run in and out again during the birth to get a currywurst with fries. If such a birth lasts hours, both of you bring something to eat/drink that gives you energy: bananas, energy bars, chocolate, nuts...
9. Drinking bottles with a mouthpiece: So your obstetrician can quickly give you water, like a boxer between rounds. Because that's what you end up being, between contractions.
10. Towel: Some hospitals ask for a separate towel for the maternity ward. It is best to use an old or a brown one. I'm just saying. weekly flow.
11: Indeed, if it's your thing: some makeup. For all cases. For unannounced but unavoidable visitors who should not see you like this. But above all: If you are doing a baby shoot on the ward, then a little concealer, powder and mascara will do wonders.
12. A hairbrush: And everything else you'd take with you in a small wash bag for two days. For example, a mild deodorant, preferably a mild organic deodorant stick or deodorant to spread out of a can. It is best not to use wet, heavily perfumed sprays. After all, your child has his head close by when breastfeeding and wants to smell mom and nothing else.
13. A refreshing but preferably fragrance-free organic face cream .
14. Hair Ties : You may sweat during childbirth, or your hair may get in the way of your face. Later on in the maternity ward you may need a shower braid. It certainly doesn't hurt to have hair ties with you.
15. A comfortable outfit. Your maternity clothes - especially the maternity pants you will wear for a long time! - Training pants, baggy shirts, shorts, sneaker socks. If you are doing a baby photoshoot in the hospital: an outfit that is comfortable but that you would like to see yourself in later on the birth announcements and canvases. I definitely recommend doing the photoshoot, it's really worth capturing this incredible time! I myself did a photo shoot completely in my pajamas because I didn't have the right clothes. Also turned out well, but the next time I was prepared and at least had a breastfeeding-friendly overall on. Think about a baby outfit for the trip home!
16. A long (!) mobile phone cable AND the right connector . You will receive a lot of congratulatory messages in the first 48 hours, you will most likely send a lot of photos. In short: your battery will run out quickly. Even if you don't use your cell phone, it's still a good idea to make arrangements: What should your partner quickly bring to the hospital?
17. Documents for registering the birth: Where was the marriage certificate, for example? Or any other evidence you need?
18. Music: It is best to put together a Spotify playlist that you would like to listen to during the birth: e.g. mediation exercises, hypnobirthing music, individual episodes from the podcast "The Peaceful Birth", but also good music that you generally like hear. Old hits from your youth. By the way, the music in the room influences everyone in the room: the best is probably soothing music that allows you to breathe easily. But there have also been heavy metal births. The stupidest thing is to leave the radio on at the same time: Imagine your child is finally born, it's a magical moment - and in the background there's annoying radio commercials or the 12 o'clock news.
19. Cocoa / coffee: I had an incredible awakening experience for my second birth: Immediately after the birth, when it was complete, the midwife brought me a cup of warm cocoa: For me, the very best thing I could have drunk. I loved it so much I asked for another cup right away. For the third birth, I had ready-made drinking chocolate in my hospital bag, in case they didn't have any cocoa on site. Also there: The very best for me after such an exhausting birth. Instant coffee is also recommended if the coffee from the thermos flask is so-so on the maternity ward or if you have your own taste.
20. A present for you. Yes, you read that right. I put that in my first hospital bag right away, even wrapped it in gift paper and a bow: just a little reward for yourself for being such a bombshell and for bringing a new person into the world. The anticipation alone is worth it!