Tuesday, August 10, 2010

What's in your (labour) bag?

Just for fun, let's peek into one another's bags! ... our labour bag, that is.

If you are pregnant, or have been pregnant, chances are you've read a billion books on pregnancy and labour (way less books, indeed, than you have read about actual motherhood -- but plenty of time for that... right?). The labour chapters are always lots of fun, but one of my favy bits is the packing checklist for when you go into labour.

Apparently, you need a lot of stuff to get you through labour. Here's a sample checklist, pilfered from bubhub.com.au. Desperate for a gold star the first time around, I took similar lists v seriously. For your benefit, I've marked those items I took to the hospital when I was in labour with Fern (in aqua) and those that I actually used (in orange).

- Hospital paperwork - registration card/ health record or similar yep
- Medicare card and/ or private health insurance card yep
- Birth plan yep. It never left my bag. To this day, no one but me has ever read it!
- Cardboard/ plastic folder to keep all your paperwork in
- Comfortable, old t-shirt yep. But ceased caring about modesty early in piece and ended up naked!
- Nightgown
- Warm socks yep
- Flat, slip on shoes or slippers yep
- Lollies to suck on yep - Chiccos. I did scoff a few of these!
- Snacks for you/ your birthing partner yep
- Drinks for you/ your birthing partner yep. A sports water bottle which I used throughout
- Books/ magazines
- Ipod or stereo yep
- Massage oil
- Face cloth/ face spray yep.
- Hairband to keep your hair out of your face um, yep.
- Lip balm yep
- Camera and/ or video camera yep, though it was the hospital staff who took the photos during and after my caesar. I didn't even know they had the camera til much later... when I discovered some v alarming pics of myself and my newborn!
- Extra clothes for your partner yep
- Phone card for public phones
- List of important phone numbers
- Change for parking, snacks etc
- Plastic bag for dirty clothes.

hmmm. Thats a whole lot of superfluous items! And I'm kinda wondering at what point anyone in active labour would read the latest Women's Day! Anyway.

This time around, I'm packing a little lighter:

The contents of my labour bag thus far, in case you are interested?

- One face flannel
- One water bottle
- My birthplan
- An old nighty
Minimalist, much? Of course, my in-stay hospital bag might be somewhat more hefty. Like, this time I have a mental note not to underestimate the amount of breast pads and (ahem) other type of pads I will need. But, 2 weeks out from my due date, these items and next month's unopened edition of Real Living are about the only things I've gotten around to putting inside my suitcase! Priorities, people!

Can I peek inside YOUR bag? What other trinkets have you included or will you include above and beyond 'the list'? What fun items never left your bag the first time around?

ps. Cross your fingers as I cross my legs these next 5 days... hubby is off to New Zealand for a work conference and I'm at home with Ferny, praying this baby stays put for at least another week! Have a lovely weekend!


  1. This made me laugh so much. I went from a full bag packed and waiting at the door (massage oil, tea candles, scented oils, blah blah blah) with number 1 to my handbag with my toothbrush thrown in at the last minute with number 3. We pull out my old birth plan whenever we feel like a laugh. Gets us rolling on the floor every time. x

  2. Oh So exciting! This sounds much like what my hospital bag will be like (the latter!)

    I will be a hoping and a praying that bubba doesnt come this week for you..

    Oh by the way, did you end up chosing a cubby for Fern?


  3. I too packed 101 things in my labour bag that never ending up being used at all - including my birth plan which pretty much went out the window from the moment I was induced and had to have a baby monitor strapped to me. I did find the the lip balm good though. I think the hospital bag ends up being more important.

  4. Oooo I'd so love a squizz at a list from over 40 years ago when I was having babies. We had to take everything including a heap of stuff for baby, like nappys, plastic pants, nighties, jackets ... endless and heaven helkp you if you turned up and everything wasn't marked with your name!
    I'm such a cluck over gorgeous expectant Mums and bubs so am thrilled you've found my blog! Your blog is gorgeous too ... now take it easy please ;-)

  5. shit....labour bag! I forgot about that!!!!!! ha ha ha. I too packed WAAAAY too much stuff for #1, #2...not so much...and number 3....well, I forgot up until your post!!!


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