Packing Your Bags for the Hospital With Twins: A Labor Bag Checklist + When to Pack Up.
Packing Your Bags for the Hospital With Twins: A Labor Bag Checklist + When to Pack Up.
When you are pregnant with twins there are a million things you must prepare, just like any pregnancy really. You prepare yourself, your family, your home, a room, but what about your hospital bag? Of course.
If you have had other children, you are going to want to NOT wait as long to get your bags ready this go round, as premature labor in twins is far more common, so you never know when your babies may surprise you.
So even if the bag or bags are left in the backseat of your car for 2 and 1/2 months, you are better off, because last minute trust me, not only will you forget things you would have remembered while you weren’t feeling any pain, fear, excitement, and other emotions and physical labor signs.
Also you’ll be feeling much more comfortable to do these seemingly simple tasks when you are smaller, and have more energy on your side. That is why I encourage women to get the nursery done sooner then later with twins, if you wish to participate in the task. Certain things we waited till last minute on and trust me…I wasn’t much help in the end, and wish I had done everything by like 30 weeks.
Fight to do important tasks by the late second trimester, so you have less to think about in the 3rd. Trust me you’ll be tired, that it’s so much nicer having nothing to worry about at this point. Have your bags ready to go in the car by 28 weeks. Don’t wait much, if any longer then that. I grew very fast, very quickly after this time, so you’ll want to be comfortable.
Chances are your bags will remain in the car for quite awhile, but you are thinking clearly, you won’t have to fuss when the time comes, and anything that brings you just a tad of peace of mind during the last stretch with twins, is very welcomed, believe me.
Now what do you pack? Well, if you are pregnant right now, get out a little notebook and jot this down, or copy and paste it into a notepad or text file, and print this. Put a check mark next to each item as you go along to make sure you have everything you need. Here we go:
Must Have Labor Bag List!
#1) 2 or 3 season appropriate nightgowns.
A robe to if the weather is particularly chilly. You never know with the hospital, so always pack something to suit any indoor climate condition. If you are nursing be sure to buy a couple of special nursing gowns or at least buy night gowns that button down the front for easy access.
#2) Maxi pads.
Unless you like using large bulky hospital pads, that are seemingly made for horses, stop by your local drug store and pick up some super absorbent maxi pads. (Though the hospitals have gotten better. They used to be bigger and had us wearing an elastic belt to hold the pad in place. Old times..:lol: )
#3) Multiple pairs of new underwear
Buy a package of Fruit Of The Loom or Hanes undies. Don’t worry at all about sexy bikini briefs. Roomy granny drawers will do you just fine during the postpartum period. These will likely get quite messy, so don’t pay a lot for them.
Once your postpartum bleeding stops in 3-6 weeks, (for some lucky ones 2, but that was certainly never me), and then you can go sexy with your Victoria’s Secret undies again. Right now, go with comfort. **I bought dark colors. Just a note**
#4) Nursing pads
Regardless of whether you choose to breastfeed or not, your milk will come in, and you will leak. Definitely have some pads on hand for such an occasion, as you may leak before the actual milk comes in.
#5) 2 coming home outfits
Though there is a possibility of one or both twins not coming home with you, especially if born prematurely. The majority do do well, and will come home with mom, and that is what you should prepare for. A weather appropriate take home outfit for both babies is an absolute must.
#6) Two car seats.
The hospital won’t let you go anywhere without them! *Don’t forget those newborn head rests if not included in your seats.* Never before, but this time the girls seats were checked with them inside of it for I think it was an hour long test to check their safety. I didn’t get to see what went down, but they came back and were deemed safe.
If you are in doubt of whether the bases or fixed seats are properly installed in your vehicle, do ask the hospital staff to help check for you. Usually they are happy to oblige, and know someone qualified who can assist you with that. Just make sure you bring two of them with you. (Though I guess that is pretty obvious.)
#7) Slippers and/or slipper socks
I like the slipper socks, but slippers are equally as effective. They help prevent you from getting hospital floor germs on your feet, keep feet toasty and warm, and prevent slipping on the floors while walking back and forth to the nursery and bathroom. A definite must have.
#8) A Camera/ video recorder.
Nothing is more special then having a baby, but having two is a momentous occasion you will likely never re-live, so make sure to buy and pack up a really good digital camera with a high speed memory card. Lots of memory to.
2GB likely won’t be enough for your whole stay, if you are anything like me. (Picture AND video). 4GB and up will do the job. Have the battery charged up and ready. Even pack the charger along in the camera case, just in case.
Bring the card empty and ready for action. And if your camera can also have a video function, and you have everything in one..That’s the best! You’ll need a great camera for your new childrens’ lives anyway, so go hunting for the perfect one for your family while you are still pregnant. These are moments that can never be brought back to life.
#9) Hair brush and scrunchies.
Just because you have been through the war, it doesn’t have to look like it. There is something to be said about feeling how you look. Keep your hair brushed and tidy. You may not be curling it and spraying it like you are ready for a date night, but you’ll want to look nice and tide for pictures, visitors, and for your mood in general.
Bring along some scrunchies to do an easy, fast, pony tail. Always a maternity ward classic.
#10) Make up.
I don’t know about you, but I just feel better overall with a bit of makeup on. Even if it’s just a bit of eye liner and some lip gloss. It helps lift the spirits I think.
Take whatever makeup you wish to the hospital in a little cosmetic bag, in case the mood strikes you, as it always did for me. I just don’t feel like myself without it.
If you take any medications at home, you want to make sure to take a few of each pill you take, and put them aside n a separate medicine bottle, packed away in your hospital bag, because those are easy to forget.
Even just your daily vitamins. You can buy one of those Monday-Sunday medicine holders at the local dollar store to keep things organized.
#12) Cell phone and phone charger.
In this day and age the cell phone is an important part of every day life. Be sure to have it with you and ready to go when you are headed to the hospital.
You’ll want it to make those ever important phone calls to family and friends, keep them updated, and also..you got to tweet and connect with Facebook and message board friends, right? Keep everybody in the loop. :-D Hopefully, your phone has Internet access.
#13) A Walkman/ Ipod
I have never done this, but many women enjoy soothing music during their labors. I’m too busy gabbing away, so for me, it’s not worth bringing. Some women find it relaxing, and helpful for working through painful contractions.
Be sure to have fresh batteries and a good tape or disc if it’s a Walkman, and if it’s an Ipod make sure it’s charged, and your favorite songs are right at your finger tips.
#14) Some magazines or a good book.
If you are breastfeeding or rooming with your twins, you will likely be kept quite busy, but if you are taking a break alone, it’s nice to have something to read to help you feel more ‘at home’ if you will. Some women, though I reckon not many, might also like to read during the labor.
In whichever case, bringing along a Vogue or a copy of What To Expect Your Baby’s First Year, is always nice to have. If you don’t get to it, it doesn’t take up too much space in your bag. No big loss.
#15) Socks, hats, booties, headbands, mittens, etc. for babies.
Socks and hats for keeping baby warm during cooler months, and booties and headbands to doll your babies up a bit for family visits, and maternity ward photographs. Mittens will help keep your baby from scratching him or herself.
Don’t bother bringing your own diapers. Let the hospital pay for those while you are there. Your insurance is getting charged for them, among other things, whether you use them or not, so enjoy a few days of freebies!
#16) Diaper Bag.
You don’t really HAVE to bring your babies’ diaper bag to the hospital. I just decided to keep all the twins’ clothing and accessories separate from mine, and so I did pack them all up in their Ju Ju Be diaper bag, which I highly recommend this brand, wholeheartedly.
On the side I had my own separate bag. I was able to put some extra diapers and small bottles of formula that the hospital gave me for the girls in this bag, so if you want to keep things organized and have a diaper bag big enough, bring it along.
Toothbrush in travel case, mini toothpaste, facial cleaner, shampoo & conditioner, deodorant, dry skin lotions, nipple cream, maybe your own bar soap, though they will provide some there. I’d say a shaving cream a razor, but HA HA! If you are able shave after twins in the hospital, you are one up on me.
DO go to your local Walmart, even a dollar store perhaps, and get small travel bottles that are empty, so you can fill them up, instead of taking all of these full size items along with you. Doing that would take up far less space.
#18) Nursing bras if breastfeeding. If not a couple of good sturdy support bras.
Whether breastfeeding or not, heavy postpartum breasts need to be supported. If you are nursing you will want to have a few special bras with an opening in the front to be able to grant your babies easy access to your nipples. I always bring underwire bras with me.
Supporting the breasts before, during, and after the milk comes in, is so important. It helps with pain and postpartum sagging. I have to say I am living proof of that working, and I have had 3 breastfed babies.
#19) A postpartum binder.
If you have had a large baby or twins, you will likely be left with a mummy tummy in front of you. A small one may go away on it’s own, as most women are left looking pregnant for a short while post delivery, and things return to normal thereafter.
But if you have been stretched out a lot, especially with a diastasis, such is common in the case of multiples, you may wish to start the belly binding process right away.
Make sure your binder is c-section friendly, if you have had one. Also, make sure to buy it, and have it ready in your bag. No dismay if it doesn’t come in time. You can always bind up in the days and weeks to follow. It still works.
Save 10% NOW on the Squeem belly binder for Mother’s Day. It’s what I used and recommend due to the results.
#20) A folder and notebook.
They likely will provide you with a large folder full of information, but it’s quite cheesy and overfilled. You will receive a lot of important paper work, so bring your own quality folder to help keep these things neat and organized. The notebook is great for jotting down certain things the pediatrician that comes in to check out the babies might tell you.
Great for also writing about certain experiences there and happenings, like a journal. Including your own personal feelings. Birth weights, shots given, weight at discharge, special things you need to buy or are recommended to you, etc., are also important to note.
Also, if you and hubby are tossing around some baby names still, you’ll need paper to write them on. Bring a pad or journal book with you. I definitely did use mine.
#21) Extra baby clothes
Babies spit up, accidents happen, and also babies come out smaller or larger then expected. Be sure to have a few changes of clothing, along with that one special coming home outfit. Some onesies, sleepers, slip on pants for on top of the onesies, newborn baby gowns with elastic bottoms are great to.
You don’t have to go too far for only 2-5 days, but you won’t be doing laundry, so just pack up what you feel is best. With twins, even at term size, they will very likely fit into a preemie size at birth. I’m not one to condone buying too many preemie sized clothes.
They tend to be more expensive, and since babies grow fast, won’t work out for too long. But do NOT go past a newborn size for twins in the hospital. They will likely be big in those, even the preemie size possibly, but to have them in 0-3 months…FORGET ABOUT IT!!
Buy more of these then the others, as they will last the longest, but not for the hospital. Mine fit in newborn sizes for 2 months. You just never know. You can always buy more later. For the hospital.. go small.
#22) ***BIG ONE FOR MOMS OF MULTIPLES***
2 Boppy pillows.
You only have one set of arms, and they will need a rest. Having the boppy pillows there at the hospital for them to lay on, on my hospital bed was an absolute life saver.
It was daunting enough holding two in my arms after the birth, but to have to feed two, burp two, clothe two, change two…these were lifesavers. Put them in the back of the car with your bags, or have your husband go back home for them after the birth. You’ll thank me later. :-D
That concludes our lengthy list of things to bring to the hospital when in labor with your twins. Again, pack early…pack right…and have a great labor and birth experience!