Hey, I'm Mckayla! Stay-at-home work-from-home mama building a community for supporting mamas in all walks of life!
Just Mom Things
Packing the dreaded hospital bag is one of the million things a nesting mother has on her list before she gives birth.
Don’t let it drag, ensure you have packed your hospital bag by 37 weeks (although we know you’ll start earlier).
In this article, we’ll focus on preparation for the birthing mother. Because let’s face it, your baby needs clothes and diapers – and you. We’ll include a section at the end of the article about packing for your newborn.
Before we delve into the checklist of stuff that you’d expect, we wanted to touch base on one important point. Whatever happens, we live in 2023 and everything we need is often at the click of a button. One thing we can’t get on Amazon Prime is our own physical, mental and emotional preparedness.
Preparation of self is key – and the most important aspect of that is preparing yourself for giving birth. So many of us feel ‘in the dark’ when it comes to giving birth.
Antenatal resources can be a great way of preparing for birth. Courses and books on the topic often start by teaching the science behind childbirth.
Many mothers feel that gaining a deeper understanding of the process of childbirth can help them feel more empowered and secure when giving birth. Hypnobirthing can also be a great way of understanding our bodies and learning techniques to help promote a smooth labor.
Hypnobirthing has a terrible name. Some assume it’s a hippie-birthing trend involving hypnosis and giving birth in a trance-like state. But that could not be further from reality.
Hypnobirthing is about creating a calm and empowering environment for the birthing mother. The goal is to help reduce fear, anxiety, and pain during labor and have a more positive birth experience.
Most people assume hypnobirthing is solely for mothers giving birth vaginally and without intervention or painkillers. This is completely untrue and hypnobirthing techniques can be taken into any birth scenario; from home births, birth centres, labor wards and at the operating table.
We’ve put together a full list of items you can add to your packing list. If you are considering hypnobirthing, we hope you’ll find this helpful!
Less is definitely more when packing your hospital bag. Don’t overpack for giving birth. You’ll thank yourself when it’s 3 am and your birth partner is trying to find maternity pads in the labor ward. About that… pack your hospital bag with your birth partner. Or at least ensure they know where everything is.
The hormones oxytocin (the love hormone) and adrenaline (the stress hormone) play a huge part in birthing your baby. Essentially, oxytocin promotes labor and adrenaline inhibits labor.
Hypnobirthing is all about promoting the release of oxytocin to help ease your labor. It can be helpful to dim the lights and create a calm, warm and comfortable space so that you feel at ease in the lead-up to your birth.
The goal is always to make your birthing experience as stress-free and as relaxing as possible – whatever your birth looks like.
After you give birth, think of nothing but comfort.
Your baby won’t be doing any hypnobirthing – but a birth packing list would not be complete without a list for the baby. For clothing, you may want to bring a few sizes to ensure you have something that fits your little one.
We hope you’ve found this list helpful and we hope it has given you some guidance as to what you need in your hospital bag when you are using hypnobirthing techniques.
It’s a good idea to call ahead and find out what the rules are for setting up and creating a hypnobirthing-friendly space depending on whether you are having a vaginal birth, caesarean section, water birth etc. The rules will be different for each. Ask ahead so you are aware of the facilities they have in the room.
It’s also important to ensure your birth partner(s) have packed your hospital bags with you (or at least been briefed as to the contents!).
It is completely normal in late pregnancy to overpack and stress about ensuring you have every last thing that you could possibly need. Remember, you can always order a few more things or ask someone you know to drop some supplies off.
More importantly, trust your body and trust the birthing process. Whether you have a vaginal birth or a c-section, you have the power within you to bring your baby into the world. So, take a deep breath, and trust that you got this!