Firstly, the hospital bag. With Liam I had mine packed weeks in advance. Second time, I was packing it while I was dilated to a 5 (guessing here), and I forgot/neglected things both times. I suggest you pack:
- Comfortable clothes. Comfy slippers (and/or good walking shoes), PJs, stretchy pants and shirts. Some comfy undies. A robe if you want. Some people make their own "cute" hospital gowns, but a hospital gown is a hospital gown - and I didn't wear one either time. I prefer to wear regular clothes.
- Good walking shoes for the husband. Slice complained about his feet for days after Liam was born.
- Towels that are larger than a hand towel, for showering. Take a couple. Maybe red ones.
- Toiletries. The basics, don't forget lotion and chapstick.
- Pillows, if you are particular about yours.
- Food. You will not be allowed to eat while you're in labor. And if you're in labor at the hospital for eighteen hours after not eating dinner the night before, you will be weak and shaky and STARVING - and doing the hardest work of your life. So, take some snacks that are easy on the stomach. You might see them again. (Sorry, but I did.)
- Nursing stuff. Nursing bra/tank, lanolin cream, a couple nursing pads just in case.
- Baby stuff. An outfit or two, one with legs for the carseat on the way home. Ask me if I learned that the hard way.
- Cameras and journals. If you're a better person than I am, that is. I have hardly any pictures from the hospital (especially with me in them), and I'm terrible at journaling and baby book stuff. Just started on MG's last week.
- Mobile devices. I've had playlists and audio books and semi-constructive things to do, but I never did any of it. I watched TV and checked Facebook and played Tetris on my phone. And slept. You should have options.
- Cords for said mobile devices. Again, ask me if I learned this the hard way.
- More food. I eat constantly for days after giving birth. Mostly junk (chocolate). I don't feel guilty about it either.
I hope the hospital provides (and if they don't, you'll need to get):
- Plenty of blankets, pillows for you and your husband
- Pads - LOTS and LOTS of them, stool softeners, Tucks pads, and maybe antibacterial spray
- Swaddling blankets, diapers & wipes, pacifiers, hand mitts
Next up: The Birthing