Packing a Hospital Bag — What’s Different the Second Time Around

Photo: Veer / The Bump
Photo: Veer / The Bump

One of the big things I did in preparation for my son’s birth was to pack our hospital bag. I’m not sure how much time I put into packing my things into a suitcase, but I know I spent a significant amount of time on it.  With his pregnancy — my first — I’m almost positive I had our bags packed between 25 and 30 weeks pregnant.

This time around?  Not even close.

I’m 32 weeks pregnant tomorrow, and — while the thought has crossed my mind — I’ve done nothing other than set aside the outfit new baby girl will wear home from the hospital.

When I do finally get around to packing for the hospital for my second labor and delivery, however, things will be a little different as well. With my first pregnancy, I’m pretty sure I brought with me everything I owned and the kitchen sink. I didn’t want to forget anything.  I didn’t want my husband to have to leave my side in that case.

In thinking about what I even need to pack to write this post, my mind landed on pajamas, toiletries, going home outfits for myself and my baby, the car seat, and my phone/charger. That’s pretty much it. I may bring my sleeping pillow and a breastfeeding pillow, but I will probably leave those in the car for later on.

Packing your hospital bag as a first time mother is really your way of preparing for delivery. You don’t know what it’s going to be like, so you follow checklists, other people’s advice, and hopefully throw a bit of common sense in there. Packing your hospital bag as a second time mother? Been there, done that. Those material things aren’t quite as important any more. I forgot my toothbrush or toothpaste? Someone can get it for me. I didn’t bring enough clothes? Hospital gown works fine and equals less laundry!

So far, I’ve been pretty good at putting off packing the hospital bag. Maybe — just maybe — I’ll actually get it done before I go into labor for the second time.

Have you packed your hospital bag? What did you include? Did you find it different if you are a second (or more) time mom?