The Bag

Parent’s Magazine was kind enough to send me an email today, reminding me to pack my hospital bag. First of all, whaaat? No. That makes things seem really close. I know I only have 6 weeks until the due date, but a bag? No. No, no, no. It can’t be that close, already?!

Truth be told, before Gracie I was reading all kinds of things about what to pack and how to make a birth plan (ha! what a joke. Plan: have a baby.) I wondered if we should take a yoga ball. What about books? Food? I don’t know; I thought of some crazy things. But this time is a whole new story. Now that I’ve been there, done that, my packing is really simple…. Actually, I went with simple the first time too, because that’s just what I do.

So, here is how I pack a hospital bag. Are you ready? This is complicated stuff. Imagine you are a 5 year old boy and Grandpa has just walked in the house and said “hey, go pack a bag and I’ll take you camping. Hurry!” What is going in the bag? Some clothes (I recommend you make yours match better than the 5 year old boy, but whatever.) A tooth brush because mom just yelled to stick it in there. And a flash light.

Yep, that’s really how simple this can be. Except, skip the flashlight. Hospitals have too many lights anyway. The point is, you really don’t need much that isn’t provided for you. In fact, many hospitals publish a list of things they recommend you bring, and it isn’t a very long list.

Seriously, though, this is how I will pack:

  •  Clothes for me and hubby. Our hospital is an hour and a half away. And since that is true for many people who deliver there, they have a wonderful set up for dad to stay with mom as long as she is there. I take some comfy PJ pants and t-shirts to wear after delivery. And some real clothes to come home in, because I’m not being wheeled out to my car in pajamas. Not happening.
  • Light snacks for hubby. Mommy gets to do all the work, but heaven forbid she eat anything but ice chips and popsicles. Dad, on the other hand, will want some food. And since neither of us will want him gone very long, it’s best to have a few things in the bag. With Gracie, Brandon didn’t eat a thing. I even packed him a quick supper because he had already worked a 10 hour day by the time my water broke at 4pm. He never touched it. But he did have some crackers and all waiting for Skeet.
  • Something to do. This may be used, and it may not. I took Uno to play with Gracie. I think we played for 10 minutes. We’d been up since like 5:30am, got to the hospital about 6pm, checked in by 7…no baby until 4am. We were too tired to play cards. With Skeet, I didn’t take anything to do. But a day time baby is a whole different thing. I was induced at 7:15am……… all stinking day we did nothing but wait for a baby who didn’t come until after 7 pm. Boooring!
  • Other than that, you need cell chargers, camera and batteries (yea, mine died with Skeet), tooth brush and tooth paste, make-up, if you care.

That’s it. Really. Unless, your husband just likes to pretend he is a pack mule and wants to tote 5 bags, a yoga ball, a boppy pillow, and a tray of bakery cookies… Pack light. If you go into labor at home, you’ll be virtually useless for hauling all that crud into the hospital, anyway. And even if you do carry it in, there is no bell boy to carry it all back out.

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