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Towards the end of every pregnancy comes that magical time where you have to prepare for the delivery of your little miracle; the time when you see that bright and shiny light at the end of the tunnel because, let’s be honest, the third trimester is hard.
The back pain, the exhaustion, the sleep struggle, not to mention the crazy vivid dreams – all this and a little more really makes it that much more exciting when you think of the end. You will also realise just how close you are to holding that cute, fresh-smelling bundle of joy for whom you’ve been patiently waiting. This is a lifelong reminder of the whole reason you endured all that you did during those last couple of months.
It is, however, also the time to start thinking about packing your hospital bag – the bag you’ll use to carry all the things you will need during labour and after the delivery of your baby. You can also pack a few more items to use while staying in hospital after birth. After all, when it comes to packing the hospital bag, preparation is key.
“It is very important to find out from your chosen hospital what they will provide during this time.”
But where do you even start?
I had the same question and here’s what helped me.
1. Find out what the hospital provides
Majority of the hospitals (not all) provide mom-to-be or labouring moms with hospital and/or essential bags. It is very important to find out from your chosen hospital what they will provide during this time.
2. Decide on whether you want to pack two separate bags for you and baby, or pack everything in one bag.
This one might seem unnecessary, but the truth is you really don’t want to be digging deep into a bag trying to find a hairpin and/or a baby’s onesie during a time where you should rather be focused on something else. Having two bags will definitely make it easier to find things when the need arises, but it also means you’ll have an extra bag to haul with you to and from the hospital. So, you might want to consider the amount of luggage you are willing to take with you before making this decision.
3. Consider getting your birthing partner to pack the bag instead of you
This is an obvious one. As a labouring mom, you will be too occupied with labour contractions and trying to focus on safely birthing your little baby that answering questions about where to find something will be literally the last thing in your mind. Having your birthing partner pack the bag will make it a lot easier on the both of you.
Alternatively, it may be a good idea to pack your bag a month or so before your due date.
4. Find out if there’s anything specific that the hospital requires you to bring
Some hospitals have a set of requirements and/or things for moms to bring with to the hospital when in labour. Make sure you pack accordingly to their checklist to prevent leaving anything out.
5. Wash all baby’s clothes
While this may not be your idea of fun, my daughter was very sensitive and delicate when she was born. Even though we’d washed the majority of her clothes, some we just couldn’t because they were either bought on the day or were late arrival gifts and, as a result, she wasn’t quite happy in those.
Taking the time to wash at least a few of the items you intend to take with to hospital for your little one is a good idea for both you and baby. No one wants a restless baby after going through hours of labour and/or while recovering from a C-section operation.
Lastly, but no less important, remember to embrace every moment before your little one arrives because your life is about to be turned upside down in a good, exhausting and cuddle-filled way.
All the best.
My name is Olerato Moiloa. I am a working mom with a 4-year-old little girl (Kamohelo) whom I call Kbear and another Little one on the way. During the day I work as an IT specialist and in the evenings, I am mostly Mom. In an attempt to find the *ME* in Mommy, I document my journey as I go through life exploring who I am as a Person, and how that affects my abilities as a Mother. All this I share on my blog Mommy and Baby Approved and through lifestyle videos blogs on my YouTube Channel.