Baby’s arrival is approaching and you are probably eager to meet your little one. Nesting is probably in full swing as well as middle of the night closet cleaning right?! Or late night cravings and running to the bathroom. Sound familiar? And you probably have a list of a million things to do including packing your hospital bag - GO bag - Labour Bag - Birth Bag or whatever you want to call it. There are those things you know you can’t do without and will want post baby and I’m sure there is a bit of wonder as to what you really need to bring. A friend tells you that she couldn’t have survived without her favourite tea, the doctor tells you not to forget those giant sanitary pads you’ll have to wear (you think she’s joking) and your mother-in-law tells you not to forget bottles and zincofax diaper cream (remember that stuff?!)
It can all be a bit overwhelming, but remember….someone can always pick something up and bring it to you or if you choose to birth at home, you’ll have it all at your fingertips.
Sometimes we get the idea from social media that we need to have our make-up on for post baby photos, fancy pajamas and styled hair. Sadly I think these ideas have created a false reality of what the postpartum phase is like, and the precious space that it is. It’s time for holding your baby skin-to-skin and getting cozy in bed to bond over feeding your baby and nourishing your body with good food. It’s trying to catch a few zzzz’s when baby does instead of scrolling celebrity IG accounts wondering when you’ll have your tummy back to normal. I share this with full understanding of the pressures of society and a heart that is passionate about protecting the postpartum period…it’s a sacred time….soak it all in.
So on that note, here are a few things to add to your GO bag….and remember, these are just suggestions!! Happy packing!
For L A B O U R:
Lip Balm (all that breathing makes for dry lips!)
Hair ties, bandanna/headband
Snacks and drinks to nourish you along the way, ginger or mints to help with nauseau
Comfy clothes to walk around in - sometimes a hospital gown is a must :/
massage tools (oil, massage ball, essential oils)
Partners clothing/swimwear to help in the shower
Music device for your birth playlist (yes, that’s a thing!)
Camera/phone and chargers
If you have a doula, she has most of these goodies in her bag to support you so you have less to worry about!
For P O S T P A R T U M:
Comfy nursing tops (you can pack a nursing bra but chances are you won’t want to take it on and off when you can just do skin to skin and use blankest or a loose top)
Slippers or flip flops
Large sanitary pads
Toiletries (the basics like toothbrush + face/hair wash)
Comfy clothes to wear home
CMVSS approved infant seat
Baby sleepers, swaddle blankets, diapers, diaper cream
Pillow for partner (if they plan to stay overnight with you)
So as you pack up these items, the last item you need to remember is S U P P O R T. It looks different for everyone: your partner, parents, BFF, church group, co-workers, grandparents, neighbours, birth and/or postpartum doula, siblings, children…..it really does take a village and having that support set up well in advance will help with every step along the way. As you welcome your baby, however it unfolds, know that you can always find support here, from mama bird.