As a doula-tog I get asked fairly often what should go in the hospital or birth center bag. I thought I would go ahead and share this list of things I have found to be handy! I recommend for anyone planning an out of hospital birth (at either a birth center or at home) to also have a hospital bag ready in the event plans have to change.
When to Pack
You should have your bag ready between 35 and 37 weeks in case baby decides to come early.
Have your bag mostly packed and easily accessible by this point. It's not a bad idea to have sample size toiletries packed ahead of time so you don't forget things like your deodorant and/or toothbrush.
You should also have your car seat installed by this time. Most fire stations and some police stations offer free car seat inspections to make sure it's properly installed.
What to Pack In Your Bag
I find it's easiest to pack per person, one at a time.
For Your Partner/Support Person:
If you have a partner or support person attending the birth and staying in the hospital or birthing center with you, remind them to pack some things as well. In addition to comfortable clothes and toiletries, here are some things to bring.
Whew! It may seem daunting to prep all of these things so many weeks ahead, but once you have it all ready, you can tuck it in a closet and forget about it until your baby says it's go time!
I am an artist at heart and have been ever since I can remember. I have been blessed with four beautiful children and an amazing husband. One of my favorite things to do is help others capture beautiful memories that will last a lifetime.