Don’t Leave Home Without These 5

  1. Check that you have timed your contractions properly (from the start of one to the start of another)? Here is a resource on what you need to know about timing your contractions. Being sent home from the hospital because you’re not in labor or not far enough along happens much more common than you might think!
  2. Check the time of day – can you wait if it is between 7am-9pm or 7pm-9pm when shift changes usually happen and you can arrive to avoid that transition that would be amazing! Getting to know one nurse and then meeting a new one an hour later can be a bit much when you’re in labor and it’s not always as pleasant to meet someone at the end of their shift – but if it happens, you’ll handle it!
  3. Packed bag
  4. ID cards, insurance cards, etc.
  5. Important contact info i.e. family members, doctors, etc SAVED IN YOUR PHONE. Watch Lobby Baby to learn why 😉

Remember, very rarely is there a mad dash to the hospital or birth center for a first time mom – that’s more a thing we see in the movies (not real life). Work to make a shared decision about your arrival at the hospital or birth center – it should be a discussion among you and your partner, your care provider, doula, etc. Take your time to make sure you have what you need if you can, and make it as smooth and comfortable of a transition as possible. If you are in active labor, it may not be possible for this to be the smoothest ride of your life but do what you can do make it good for you.

PRO TIP: Bring treats for the hospital staff. They appreciate food or tokens of appreciation – whether you order pizza, bring some donuts or prepare something for them – it doesn’t hurt to sweeten up the staff!