Monday, August 4, 2008

Hospital Bag

We had a nice time in Maine including a trip to Two Lights Shack on our way back to Massachusetts that totally ruined my GD sugar count. Oh, well. I highly recommend eating there. I may try to get up to Maine one more time before the tykes are born - I slept much better up there than I have in my own bed. Maybe we'll go the weekend Husband was supposed to go on his bachelor party. Yes, despite his "blog guilt trip" of me in the comments section of my earlier post he is staying home.

I think it is finally time to start considering what to bring to the hospital. I realized that I'm at 34 weeks tomorrow so I should probably prepare a bag. Honestly there is starting to be less and less for me to do around the house - now we are down to mostly "nice to finish" projects like organizing closets and my "lift and carry" capacity is set to close to zero at this point. I wouldn't ask me to pick something off the floor at this point which is kind of funny because I have to make Husband follow me around the house where I point out items (like little scraps of paper) that I just couldn't get to. Husband thinks I should get a stick with nail on it. But I would probably just use it to prod him. Hee!

Okay, back to the hospital bag - I'm looking for advice as to what was useful and what was not. I will be there 4 days assuming a "surgical" birth (my new favorite term - so people remember you are recovering from major surgery). We check out A and B's positions tomorrow but Husband and I think we can feel A's head so think he's still heads up. Here is what I have thought of so far:
  • Breast Pump - I have Medela Lactina (got the pump for free and just had to buy new attachments for like $40 - good deal) and no idea how to use it. I hope they can show me how.
  • Pajamas - easy open/buttons for breastfeeding, not nice (like I have any of those anyway) so if they are ruined from bleeding it is okay.
  • Underwear and a couple of comfy maternity outfits - I have some black yoga pants that should do the trick. Socks - the kind with sticky stuff on the bottom (I need to get those).
  • 2 cameras (since we have 2)
  • Laptop - to keep you all in the loop. The hospital has wireless internet. Maybe a DVD or two. Husband just got Mad Men Season 1 on DVD. It comes in a case like a zippo lighter. Granted, it is probably not a model for raising kids but we also got Happiest Baby on the Block. The big thing is I hate commercials so not sure I can do regular TV. Maybe I should bring my old standby - Pride and Prejudice (the version with Colin Firth - yummy).
  • US Weekly/magazines. My 2 breastfeeding books - I'm halfway through both (that will be a post on itself) and they do have tips.
  • Fauxpod (Husband doesn't like Apple) - I'm not a huge music fan but I guess it might be nice to have to shut out noise.
  • Cell phone and blackberry to spread the word.
  • Toiletries (see photos above)
  • Baby Stuff: 2 baby blankets (that my grandmother Mimi made). Maybe a couple of onsies/hats/socks for them. This is where I really need help. Do you bring diapers/wipees? Doesn't the hospital give you most stuff?
  • My stomach pillow (I have that FoM type from Brookstone) that is filled with little balls (like sand by softer).
  • Husband will be in charge of getting me some good food and bringing to the hospital once I can eat again. I also fully intend to be one of those women who stays up until midnight the night before her surgery to eat a lot of protein and drink a gallon of water since you aren't allowed to eat or drink anything.
  • 2 infant car seats. I need to get those installed by Husband and checked out this week if possible. Since we might get a new car (minivan) this weekend I might as well have them installed in Husband's car just in case.


Bessa said...

Re: the breast pump. They have the best pumps at the hospital and generally give you free attachments (so you'll have an extra set). Once you use theirs, you'll be able to use yours at home. I wouldn't bring yours.
With your clothes & pj's, bring some nipple cream and breast pads (for leaking milk). They also have nipple cream at the hospital, but sometimes you need it right away. And use a breast shield with your maternity bra (or without) because the nipple cream will ruin your shirts. I couldn't fit into any non-maternity clothes at the hosptial and only wanted by biggest most comfy maternity clothes because of my C-scar and my sore nipples. So be aware of that.
I wanted some food sooner than they wanted me to have it, so my husband went home and snuck some applesauce in for me. It was nice! Just a thought.
I wish we had brought our swaddling "Miracle Blanket" to the hospital with us.
The hospital gives you diapers and wipes. And you can keep whatever you don't use there and take them home with you, too. They also give you hats, onesies, and blankets. But bring some mittens or the type of onesies with pull-over hand covers so the babies don't scratch their faces. I thought our hosptial would provide mittens, but they didn't. I highly recommend the long-sleeved kimono onesies with the pull-over hands. They're easy on/off and you don't have to take them off to change diapers.
Good luck!

Jen said...

just a thought - flip flops (wide ones in case you are still swollen.) I wore socks most of the time, but then got hot since I was still retaining extra water/weight and wanted bare feet, but needed flip flops for the (short) walks around during recovery.

If you know you're having a C, you won't need a movie. Once the twins are born, it's busy and you're tired! But if you go through labor w an epidural, definitely take movies.

i didn't wear my own stuff until I was leaving. They provide these weird but super comfy mesh underwear and the hospital gowns were easier than clothes. maybe a journal to write out the birth story and who visits and the gifts they bring :)

A. said...

Lansinoh is great, if you're looking for nipple cream suggestions.

Make sure your going home outfit won't rub up against your incision, including whatever underwear you plan to wear home.

Not sure if this will apply to a surgical birth, but I brought hemorrhoid pads. Not for hemorrhoids per se. Call me if you want an explanation, I don't want to gross anyone out. Again, not sure if it will apply to you.

Stool softener. No need for explanation there, I hope.

An aside not related to packing your bag to go to the hospital, but packing it again to go home. You will read that you should take all diapers, onesies, gauze, vaseline, etc from each baby's cart home with you. You should also take home the supplies that relate to you, like any extra breast pump tubing/horns they let you use, pads, your peri bottle, etc. Especially that peri bottle - you will need it.

Liz Jimenez said...

Lots of good advice so far.

- definitely just use the hospital pump if you need/want to pump at all, they'll get you all set up. No need to bring the extra stuff.

- the mesh undies really aren't bad at all. I wore the hospital gown for the first couple of days, just bring a robe. I switched into maternity yoga/goucho pants when I was tired of the hospital gown. They were stretchy and I could pull up the panel so it didn't bother my incision. Also, my hospital provided me with the sticky-bottom socks.

- I definitely did not have the time, inclincation, or attention span to watch a DVD. I think I flipped channels on the hospital TV once or twice, but that was it.

- Hospital will provide everything the babies need until you leave, so all you need is stuff so they can go home. I brought mine home in a onesie and a hat, covered with a blanket (it was freakishly cool on August 10 last year). The newborn socks were still too small! :-)

Glad you had fun in Maine! I think you're batshit insane for considering going back at 36 weeks, but then again, that's when I went into labor and my kids were born! And I know that wasn't an unusual gestation for twins. I didn't go farther than downtown Boston for the final two months...

Anonymous said...

-- Push the lactation consultant to have the doctor write a prescription for APNO cream for your nipples. It's a miracle cream.

-- Your own pillows to sleep with (the pillow you mentioned might be sufficient, but we each brought our pillows from home and they were nice to have).

I wore nursing tops and spandex after the first day.

There is no time to do anything but rest, eat, drink tons of fluids, ask the nurse to bring you your dose of motrin and percocet, visit with your visitors and try to figure out your son and daughter with your husband...I think we had the red sox on the TV in the background a few days, but definitely no time to watch a show or a movie. The laptop is key though. I was on e-mail to send out pictures and Ian was frequenting

I agree with goddess in progress -- don't bother lugging your breast pump into the hospital, just use the one they have (it's got a better suction, so you don't have to pump as long and it's free standing so it's just easier to use).

What A Card said...

If you're planning to breastfeed, you might want to bring your breastfeeding pillow. That's one of the things I had to send my husband home to get (I was far less prepared than you :)

You probably won't eat a big meal the night before, only because I'm surprised you haven't reached it yet, but soon you won't be able to eat big meals since your tummy will be too squashed. And you might luck out and get a hospital with good food. The food where I delivered was great. Especially the chocolate cake. The best part of having to go back and have my gall bladder removed 2 months after my twins were born was that while I was there recovering, I got to eat their chocolate cake again. Yes, it was good enough to almost make a second surgery worth it :)

Bessa said...

Good call re: the breastfeeding pillow. I sent my husband home for that, too. Although my post-pg tummy was still too big for it to work for me...the pillow would be "way out there," and my baby would need to be much closer to me! My husband actually bought 6 cheap Target pillows for me one night after we got home for breastfeeding. After about a month, I used a Boppy.
Also, I second the vote for Lansinoh nipple cream. And I think the best breast pads are Medela. They didn't show under my shirts.
Finally, I totally agree re: stool softeners. Esp. after my C-section, I needed those (the hospital provided them for me). My great nurse also brought me "prune juice cocktail" (7Up and Prune Juice - warm) which helped a lot. They pump air into your stomach when they put you back together and it is very uncomfortable!

Nancy said...

Anything you'd NEED the hospital will give to you. Same goes for the babies. (My hospital actually sent us home with a trash bag FULL of sample diapers and a case of the formula the kids were getting as supplement in the NICU when I couldn't produce enough.)

And I agree with a lot of what's already been mentioned. No one told me to use the hospital pump instead of the one I got at my shower, and I partially blame that for not getting my supply up there.

I used the hospital gowns unless I knew someone was coming to visit...meant less laundry for me *grin* My sister brought her own slippers to the hospital and pretty much had to throw them away when she got home because they were so gross...I just used the supplied slipper socks (again with that laundry thing...)

I wouldn't worry too much about "entertainment" as you'll (hopefully) be sleeping a lot and not feeling like watching/listening to stuff. Although, I put the hospital's baby channel on for two provided just enough light to be a nightlight when I was feeding the kids or changing diapers, and sometimes a good tip flashed by.

And I agree with food isn't that bad! (I guess it depends on the hospital), but I highly recommend the chicken pot pie if they have it...this is what I looked forward to 2nd most when my 3rd was born *grin*

H said...

Yikes- I am so going to China for my girls! You've all sufficiently scared me:)