What's in my hospital bag for a scheduled C Section?
Packing my hospital bag was something I was determined to do differently. Of course, there are the ESSENTIALS that ever mummy-to-be needs (bring on those maternity pads! Eurgh!) but I was also determined that my stay in hospital should be as relaxed and luxurious as possible (After all, happy mother, happy baby right?)
So, alongside the big granny pants, nipple cream and nipple pads, I added some 'little luxuries' that I fully encourage every mother-to-be to pack straight away. After all , just because we are having a baby, it doesn't mean we can't feel pampered right?
Here's what's in my hospital bag*
*Please remember that to some, this may seen bit excessive, especially if you are planning a natural birth and are likely to just be in hospital for a night or two! As you know, I've opted for a scheduled C section so am going to be in hospital for 3 nights so whilst 3 pairs of PJ's might not seem essential to some, I have to pack a bag big enough to keep me going....(and it gives me a great excuse to shop!)
1. The ACTUAL hospital bag
This actual bag is form Pink Linings and was recommended to me by various friends who had used it as their hospital bag. The size is perfect for fitting all those essentials (and non essentials) in and the bright pink lining is an instant colour boost to set off those happy hormones! Now you may ask, do you REALLY need to buy a new bag as your hospital bag? My answer YES. Of course you do. After all, you'll need that extra storage for all those baby gifts you are going to receive!
As I'm going to be in hospital for three nights, I've actually packed a selection of different nightdresses and pyjamas. With a scheduled C-Section, I was advised to buy nightwear that wouldn't sit on my scar and aggravate it (so out went any low waisted Pyjamas bottoms!) I was also adamant that I wanted look stylish through my hospital stay, after all, with a new baby to show off there's a huge likelihood that people will want to take lots of lovely photos of you and the baby!
I had been warned that a dark nightdress or set of PJ's might also be preferable to something white (yes, you still bleed after a C section) so I bought a set of Mammoosh Camisole Pyjamas (where the bottoms are drawstring and high waisted - perfect for a C section mother) and then added a bit of glamour by getting a night dress and kimono dressing gown from Ted Baker (I couldn't resist the floral design! Elegant and gorgeous!)
I was determined that my wash-bag was not just going to be full of the 'essentials.' Sure, toothbrush and toothpaste are necessities, but I also want to make sure I feel spoilt and pampered whilst in hospital. So, a few weeks ago I headed to Space NK on the Kings Road and splashed out on some gorgeous goodies in the hope they might make me feel (at least a little bit) gorgeous too! Here's what I'm packing:
1. This Works Deep Sleep Pillow spray
An essential for all new mothers (and you'll be pleased to know they do a baby version too!) I actually used this during the first half of my pregnancy to help me sleep (before my doctor told me that lavender - one of the main ingredients - can actually bring on labour!) so I'm looking forward to being able to spray this on my hospital pillow to bring little bit of comfort (and hopefully a little bit of sleep too!)
2. Mama Mío Liquid Yoga stress-free face spray
"Yoga", "stress-free" and "face spray" all in one product? SOLD. When I came across this gorgeous spray from Mama Mio I instantly snapped it up due to the fact it describes itself as a "rapid mood changer to help calm, quieten, de-stress and rebalance." Well, pregnancy hormones can be a bugger, so any help is a bonus in my eyes!
3. This Works Energy Bank Sun Flash
A portable dose of sunshine is exactly what you need after giving birth to a baby so this gorgeous tinted moisturised is a must have for any mum to be. Not only will it make you look as though you've just got back from two weeks in the South of France, but it will make you feel pretty damn fabulous too (who wants to look in the mirror after giving birth and see a pale and white face staring back at you? Not me!) Did I mention, it's full vitamins which claim to give you an instant wake-up for tired complexions (perfect after all those night feeds!)
4. Dry Shampoo
If you want to still look glam in your hospital bed, but can't face the thought of washing and drying your hair, then dry shampoo will be your saviour. Trust me.
5. The White Company travel shampoo, conditioner, moisturiser and soap
Depending on your hospital experiences, you may find that you are supplied with shampoo etc. At the Kensington Wing at Chelsea and Westminster (where I'm headed!) they have a gorgeous supply of Asprey toiletries but this hasn't stopped me from getting some mini travel shampoos and conditioners from The White Company. Afterall, variety is the spice of life!
6. Wild Rose Revitalising Eye Pads
Everyone constantly tells me how exhausted you will be after having a baby, so in the hope of disguising the dark rings and swollen eyes, I've popped in some wild rose revitalising eye pads. Well, we can hope can't we?
7. Hand mirror
This hand mirror is actually quite sentimental to me as it is my late Grandmothers. Again, with visitors popping in to see the new addition, you might want to smear on a bit of makeup or check that you mascara hasn't run after all those 'happy tears.' A small hand mirror makes it much easier to whip out of your handbag, than having to crawl out of bed (C section stitches can make getting out of bed and clambering to the bathroom mirror uncomfortable!)
6. Mama Mio Lucky Leg Lotion
Agh, achy legs. No doubt already experienced during your pregnancy, when you are holed up in a hospital for a few days on end, anything that can make you feel like you are in a spa is essential. Therefore I will be handing this to my husband and asking for a luxury leg rub.
3. The boring bits
Having a baby means there's just some stuff that you NEED (and don't necessarily WANT!) Take the following items as an example that are currently making an appearance n my hospital bag.
A friend of mine (who gave birth a month ago) assured me that The Zita West Vital Essence 3 and Fenugreek were MUST HAVE's if you are having a baby or are wanting to breastfeed. The Zita West vitamins help prepare your body for labour and Fenugreek can increase a nursing mother's milk supply within 24 to 72 hours after first taking the herb!
2. Peppermint tablets
Essential if you are having C section! I know from having had previous surgery on my stomach (my gallbladder removed and some 'investigative' surgery whilst we were having problems conceiving) that when you have surgery on your tummy, chances are that you will suffer from trapped wind pain afterwards. Bizarrely enough, this 'traded wind pain' actually hurts in your shoulder blade (not your tummy as you would expect) and I found peppermint tablets and peppermint tea were the only things that helped relieve it!
3. Nipple Cream
I have no idea if I am going to breastfeed or not, but I want the reassurance that if I do, I will have something on hand to soothe those aching nipples!
4. Granny pants
Ah good old M and S. Just when you thought your husband couldn't find you any less attractive (I am not one of those women who have 'blossomed' throughout pregnancy!) along come the need for Big Old Granny Pants. As I'm having a c section I've been told that its really important to have big pants for two reasons - firstly, although you might not expect it with a C section, you can still bleed afterwards (just like a normal birth) so you will be forced to wear HUGE maternity pads. Hence the need for equally huge pants. The colour black is essential (I'll let you use your imagination as to why!)
Secondly, with a C section you don't want to wear trendy little hipster knickers that will sit on your scar and stitches (one word - ouch!) so the bigger the better to stop your pants rubbing on your new wound!
5. Nipple pads and Sanitary Towels
Not explanation needed.