38 weeks pregnant in two days, and I can not believe it. We really could meet our baby boy any day now! …but I’m hoping it’s like a day or two after we get to move into our home (Ha! Hoping & praying!). I have had more braxton-hicks, leg cramping at night, and overall just feeling tight in this last leg of pregnancy! I’ve also been noticeably more hungry the last week or so, so I’m thinking this little guy is on his last growth spurt in the womb before he makes his big debut! I just feel so excited and anxious to meet this sweet little guy. 🙂
I received a lot of questions about what I have planned to pack this time around for our second pregnancy. I have to say, having a C-section the first time with C wasn’t at all how I had hoped for or intended to welcome her into the world, but looking back I see God’s hand all over those precious moments, completely out of my own control, to humble me before Him and trust in His perfect will and protection over Collins and I in that final hour of her entering the world. His grace and mercy and loving kindness over us overshadowed my fear and doubt as labor quickly changed from no progress to needing to have a C-section. Everything happened so quickly, but she arrived and is here today.
So. . .
the first thing I’m “packing” with me is humility. I’m sure you weren’t expecting that. But truly, more than any “thing”, I am entering our “labor day” with my hands lifted wide open to God’s sovereign plan over however it is that He has already laid out for when and how this little guy will enter the world. I, of course, have been praying throughout this pregnancy that I would be able to give birth to this little man naturally, or even experience what it feels like to go into labor on my own (I was induced with C at 41 & 5 days pregnant).
Even if I go into labor on my own, try to give birth on my own without intervention, and still end up needing to have a C-section, I will praise the Lord. Truly. I will not regret knowing that I at least tried and gave it my best effort, and I will thank God for allowing me to experience more of labor than I did before. Sometimes God’s perfect gifts that He so abundantly gives us looks much different than ours, and I am entering this precious time with that in mind, no matter how it unfolds.
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. Of his own will he brought us forth by the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.
Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger;for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.
Along with this new mindset heading into our second labor day, there are several items that are packed in my hospital bag that we took with us the first time around, but I have added some items that I wish I would’ve had packed with me! Here’s a list of some of my hospital bag essentials:
For Baby . . .
- **NEW ITEM** Dockatot
I didn’t hear about these until after C was born, but have been anxious to get one and try it out for baby #2, since I have heard such great things about them for newborns when they’re constantly sleeping and you want them close to you. We did not do a basinet or anything like that in our room with C right away and don’t plan to with him either, but I think having the Dockatot while we’re working at the RV parks or even just to carry around the house with me, so that he can have a comfortable place to sleep that has some sort of barrier between big sister or dog or whatever it may be. I also got the Dockatot Grand Dock for C at the same time that I purchased his, and she absolutely loves it! She has actually slept in it inside her crib since we got it, and only randomly asked for it to be out once. I think these will also be perfect for traveling to the cities to see my parents, since we frequently go down there in our off season from working at the RV park, or just for our short family staycation trips we like to do every once in a while. I’m hoping that her getting used to staying in one spot inside her dockatot will help with her transitioning to her big girl bed when we move into our house!
- A few onesies, burp cloths, and two different types of nooks!
I will most definitely have some of our favorite new onesies we got for the little man. We received these Paige Lauren onesies, and they are seriously SO soft! I can’t wait to dress him in them and snuggle him up! It’s a good idea to pack multiple onesies- some cute ones if you want to take some sweet photos of him or her at the hospital or to bring them home in, but just some basic white onesies are also a great idea to pack along- because, poop! Newborn poop is frequent and somehow powerful enough to come out of the diaper. Still not sure how that can happen from such a tiny being, but it does! So- pack a few. 😉 I’ll have some burp cloths packed, as well as, two different types of nooks. I say this, because Collins did NOT care for the kind that we had asked for on our registry (and we got so many of them, ha!), so I will have the regular wide-nook kind (this is the kind she liked!) and the kind that has the little hole for your finger to be in that has a thinner-nook.
- Halo Sleep Sack
I can not say enough how wonderful these are. The Halo Sleep Sacks are SO much easier to use than trying to swaddle your baby in a swaddling blanket. The hospital will provide you with a swaddling blanket for him, and some even have sleep sacks they provide with their hospital name somewhere on it, but I will definitely be bringing my own this time around. These save a lot of time swaddling your little one, and did I say how easy they are to use? We used them for C until she no longer needed to be swaddled any more. They have different types also, like these wearable blankets that just zip for when they no longer need to be swaddled. We always used these muslin cotton ones for C that are a little more light weight! Even when she didn’t need to be swaddled anymore, we still used this kind that zips and velcros, so that she was still warm and snug when she slept until she didn’t fit into them anymore and went to PJ onesies!
- Shampoo for his first bath
This is, of course optional! The hospital will provide all the things you need for your newborn baby until you leave… and will even give you items to bring home like diapers, wipes, baby shampoo, swaddling blanket, and maybe even a onesie along with the little pink or blue hat. If you have a preference on a certain type of shampoo you want him or her to be washed in though, bring that along. They will gladly use what you have. We did this with C too! I will be bringing along the DoTerra baby line shampoo for him!
- A special keepsake for footprints/handprints
This is optional, too! We received a really sweet little square canvas that we thought would be the perfect place for a keepsake of C’s footprints. I wish I would’ve gotten a few more of the same thing for future babies, but of course didn’t think of it then! I haven’t gotten anything from him yet, but I will probably try to find something similar for him at a craft store! The nurses will gladly do it for you and ours even gave us the one on the little hospital card they do it on too. I’m glad we had our own personal keepsake though that looked so sweet as a decor item in her nursery!
Looking back, you really don’t need a ton for baby. Most of the items I listed above are not necessary for them right away, besides a few extra onesies, maybe! The biggest thing they will need when they come into the world is YOU! Whether you’re nursing or not, the bonding of figuring out feedings, talking to them, skin to skin time… those are the greatest things they need! You really already have all you truly need for them!
For Mom . . .
- Comfortable/loose clothing that is nursing friendly (if you plan on doing that!)
Now that I have already experienced having a C-section, I can not recommend preparing for one just in case to new moms. I didn’t have any sort of clothing (mostly underwear) that were C-section friendly. You’ll want something to wear that is loose and doesn’t hit at your waistline, because that’s exactly where your c-section will be. I ended up having Dakota let me borrow some of his boxers he had packed, and those were PERFECT! We went to target right after and bought me my own set. I just got hanes boxers, and they worked great. If you end up not having a c-section, I’m sure these would still be comfortable since you will want to be wearing things that are loose and comfortable and when you might be leaking or bleeding a bit still after as your body is flushing out the remainder of your placenta and other fluid, not having your best underwear on is probably a good idea! I did recently find these UpSpring C-Panty High Waist C-section Support Underwear though on Amazon and may purchase a pair if I end up needing to have one again!
Other items I have packed:
Nursing Wireless Sports Bras -WIRELESS. Key word there!
Nursing Friendly Dresses/Nightgowns –love these two! Come in several other striped and solid colors and super affordable also!
I am all about comfort most of the time in my day to day attire as it is, but especially while staying at the hospital for those couple days and for when we leave, I pack all the comfortable clothing. If your hospital isn’t super close, wearing comfortable clothing for the car ride is important, especially if you’ve just had a c-section! I will most likely have my maternity leggings packed with me, in the case I need something high-waisted for a c-section, but high-waisted clothing is ideal for postpartum mommies (since our tummies don’t magically shrink back to normal 😉 right away, anyway).
- **NEW ITEM** Maternity Robe
I’m also packing with me a maternity robe. I came across a local company right here in Minnesota, and can’t wait to share more about it with you! The two gals, Jeannae and Liz, behind May and Joy are so sweet and their robes are beautiful! They also have other items in their Etsy shop like nursing covers, baby swaddles, and baby bibs!
- Medela Nipple Shields
If my dad or brother/brother-in-laws were reading this they aren’t now, ha! Anyways, these Medela Nipple Shields were something I used the entire 15-16 months I nursed Collins. Yes- entire 15 months! It was advised to me by my pediatrician to try to ween off of them, but physiologically in that specific area of my body I am FLAT! And the pediatrician who was advising me to stop using them didn’t even mention to me the fact that I have flatter nipples until I brought it up to her after a good friend of mine pointed this out to me while we were both nursing our babies at the same tine while hanging out shortly after our babies were born (they were born the same day!). I never had that area pop out more like most women do when their bodies prepare to nurse a child, so this was not only helpful for C to latch well & correctly, but it was helpful for me with all the chaffing and cracking and ALL that good stuff with nursing at first… I didn’t have any of that! If you are able to not use one, it is easier of course when you’re out and about to nurse and not have to fiddle with putting on the shield, but it worked for us, and I realized that no matter how much, even a doctor, may try to steer you towards or away from something, you ultimately are the parent and know yourself and your child best. If it works for you, don’t feel obligated to switch that up, just because your doctor thinks you should. They all have an opinion, just like you! 🙂
- Other miscellaneous/self-care items
Some other items I have ready to pack include: my bible+fighter verses on notecards (received these from a sweet friend before C was born, and they were so, so helpful!), my spotify labor playlist (on my phone!), DoTerra essential oils+cotton balls to rub on (packing lavender and frankincense!), my wallet with insurance card inside (haha, not really self care, but may need this at some point!), letter board + letters for some sweet pictures once he arrives with his name on it, showering essentials (yes, you’ll get to take a shower at some point!), my breast pump to help get my milk supply to come in (still have to find this in the box it’s packed in… oh boy!), nursing pillow (yep, gotta find this packed away somewhere, too!).
That’s about all I have thought of so far! I’m sure there will be a few more last minute items I think of, but this basically covers the majority of what I plan to bring!
Hoping this helps you as you pack, too!