Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Hospital Bags are All Set to Go!

Last night was very, very productive!

Finally, I finished packing our bags for the hospital.  I organized everything by the order in which those items will be needed, and I'd like to share them with you, dear reader!!  Perhaps this list can be useful to you when/if you're in the same situation!  :)

Bag #1: Things for the Car

All set to go in this bag are the things we'll need in the car.  Two plastic trash bags and two fluffy towels are packed for me to sit on.  Also packed in this bag is a basin for me to throw up in.  Yay!

Since this bag will remain in the car, it also includes instructions for the car seat instillation.  Due to the limited space in our car, Michael has decided to wait to do this instillation in order to do it with the guidance of the hospital staff that is supposed to help us.

I've also packed into this bag additional head supports and seat belt protectors for our little cherub, as well as a shade that can be affixed to the back window with suction cups.

Bag #2: Things to Have At Our Finger Tips

On the day of delivery, I'll throw into this bag my purse (which will already have my wallet, all insurance information, my iPhone, and camera in it).

Then, from our freezer, I'll toss several ice packs into the bag.

Already tucked inside this bag is Michael's "Cheat Sheet for Labor and Delivery," which contains simple lists and basic reminders on what he should do as my coach.

Also included is a pamphlet about reflexology for labor progression and pain management.

In this bag is also a copy of our birth plan to give upon our arrival to the hospital.

Also in the bag is a composition book in which to jot down notes from the doctor, a black pen, two bottles of water, granola bars, crackers, orange juice in a can (so it needn't be refrigerated), my iPhone charger, and the library book I'm reading (in case we have any down time).

Bag #3: Things to Set Up in Our Room Upon Arrival

Once we're placed in our hospital room, Michael will start to unpack this bag.  He'll take out three additional copies of our birth plan to leave on the counter for the doctors, midwives, and nurses to look at or take as needed.

He'll plug in my camera charger, cover the clock on the wall using masking tape and the special sign I created, hang the celebratory birthday poster we created to welcome our child, erect a small crucifix on the desk, place out the framed photo of Mary that I love, and place near my finger tips my favorite wooden Rosary.

Also on display for my encouragement will be photos of St. Philomena, Blessed Pauline Marie Jaricot, and St. John Vianney.  A relic of St. Philomena as well as Holy Water from Lourdes will sit out as well.

Then Michael will have the joy (ha!) of placing around the room a handful of electric candles that I've packed in order to make the scene calm and serene.  Dimming the lights will create the perfect effect!

Next, he'll set out on the counter a copy of my Summer reading book, Bloom, which is full of wonderful pictures and inspirational stories of how my favorite mommy-blogger Kelle Hampton celebrated the births of her two precious baby girls.

Finally, he'll set up his iPad into its speaker docking station and begin the wonderful birthing soundtrack that he created for us!

Bag #4: Things to Have Handy During Labor

The fourth bag contains things that Michael will probably want to grab during labor.

For reference, I've packed both our textbook and workbook from our training in the Bradley Method of Natural Childbirth.

I've also packed in this bag his bathing suit so that he can accompany me into the shower and/or jacuzzi in case I find it comfortable to labor there.

A dry wash cloth in a baggie is all set to go, so that Michael can wet it with cold water and keep it on my forehead.

Tied into one of his socks are two of Macy's tennis balls, and hopefully he can use this homemade device to massage my lower back.  (We certainly thought it was great when we tried the sample in our Bradley class!)

A warm pair of socks is packed for me, as well as a pair of comfy slippers (for walking the hallway), a lightweight bathrobe, and box of lotion tissues (since I'm sure I'll be doing a lot of joyful crying and I'm not a huge fan of hospital tissues).

Bag #5: Things to Have Handy After Delivery

The largest and last bag contains things that we'll want to access after Baby has arrived.

Contained in this large duffel bag is the baby book (for feet stamping!) and a copy of La Leche League's The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding Book.

Into this bag I've packed several bottles of water, plus four different microwavable meals (that don't need to be refrigerated) as well as a handful of paper cups, paper plates, napkins, and plasticware.

I've packed two complete outfits for me and one for Michael, as well as our pajamas.

I remembered to pack two nursing bras and a nursing cover.

Also included in this duffel is my toiletry bag which contains bar soap, a small bottle of shampoo, a razor, washcloth, baggie to bring it home in, my toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, a brush, hair ties, and pads (since I'll be doing a lot of bleeding).  Somehow Michael's toiletry bag contains much less, but it's packed in here, too!

Also included is a binder of all my medical records (in case they're needed), baby's going-home outfit, several onesies, two receiving blankets, a swaddle wrap, and diapers.


So that's it!  Can you think of anything else I may have forgotten?  :)