my must haves: hospital edition

Being induced gave me an actual “go to hospital and have a baby” date, and for someone who likes to manage expectations this gave me a small feeling of control (which now I know is impossible when having a baby.) Either way, I felt like I was given the gift of time and I used the week leading up to induction day to prep. I cleaned my house, set all my Bravo shows to record, bought more snacks (I kept eating the snacks as soon as we bought them) and re-packed my hospital bag. Here are the things I actually used and would recommend:

1- A labor and delivery gown: I really something that I could LABOR in and feel sort of covered up. I also knew inductions could take a while so I wanted to be comfy. I bought two and wore them both. One before baby arrived and one for after. It has all the snaps and panels that make breast feeding possible as well as easy access for exams and even delivery. I ended up wearing one during 30 of the 36 hours I was in labor and than put the fresh one on after Bowie was born. It was perfect because I was easily able to be examined and I was so sore after labor that this was the only thing that felt comfy on. Also great if you have a c-section.

2. Nursing sleep bras: I LOVE these because they are actually comfortable enough to sleep in. And yes, I sleep in a bra now. Gone are the days that I take my bra off the minute I walk in the door. These run large so size down to ensure enough support.

3. A cute robe: Perfect for walking the baby around the hospital halls, when visitors come, and of course for cute picture of you and your new fam for the ‘gram. Side note: I never got a picture and i’m still mad about it!

4. An extra long phone charger: because, duh.

5. SNACKS! Being induced they really don’t allow you to eat but after delivery you will be so happy you have snacks on hand. During labor I sucked on an insane amount of wintergreen life savers, and my midwife let me eat Lara bars but I had to wait until after baby was born to dig into my assorted selection of wegmans bulk candy and snack mixes. These came in handy during middle of the night feedings.

6. Something PRACTICAL to wear home: I was so swollen after I gave birth that the joggers I packed didn’t fit around my ankles! Thank god I had a pair of pajama pants that were big enough to not only fit my ankles but they were able to slide over the hospital mesh undies (ask for extras to bring home with you) and they fit my very swollen belly. You leave the hospital looking seven months pregnant (unless you’re princess kate) so make sure you have some maternity wear packed.

7. A birth plan: I did not think I wanted a birth plan. I thought I would go with the flow and not set any unrealistic expectations for myself. But the closer I got, the more nervous I got and I decided there were a few things I wanted. I used this template to guide me. I only answered about 1/4 of the questions but it helped ease my anxiety knowing I was advocating for myself.