Your Natural Birth Bag
So. You're getting ready to head to the birthing center to welcome your new little love, and you need to pack your bag. Maybe this is your first baby and you're not sure what you'll need to bring to the hospital as a natural minded momma. Or maybe this isn't your first, but you want to be more prepared this time around, especially with more natural options.
I've compiled a short list of needed and beneficial items to bring along with you for your birth. If you are choosing a homebirth, these items will be helpful to have on hand.
Although we should have already discussed our birth plans in full with our care providers before we go into labor, we shouldn't leave home without a few printed copies to have on hand as a refresher for our hospital or birthing center staff.
I am so excited to get to tell you this! You DO NOT have to wear that uncomfortable and barely covering hospital gown. The moment you put it on, you become a patient and mentally this can be a bit disempowering. Bring something cozy, stretchable, and easy to get on and off.
- a sports bra (or two, especially if your planning to labor and or birth in water)
- sweats, pajama pants, or jersey knit skirt
- a comfortable top or jersey knit dress
- a cardigan or zip up sweater
- a couple pairs of socks and cotton undies
- Something to wear postpartum on the way home. Do not bring pre-pregnancy clothes (trust me) and instead bring another set of something on the list above plus a nursing bra and nursing pads.
I'm also excited about this one! You CAN and SHOULD eat during labor! No more sneaking in food or following silly hospital rules. The American Society of Anesthesiologists recently released the newest research stating so (1). Eating during labor is especially helpful if you have a labor on the longer side. That said, here are some good labor food options that are easy to digest and will supply needed energy:
- broth with pink salt in a thermos
- honey sticks
- unsweetened fruit bars
- coconut water
- some easy to digest carbs like plain pasta (cooked, of course) or crackers
- seedless dates
Make sure to bring enough for mom AND dad!
TOOLS FOR COMFORT
- birthing ball (if your hospital or birthing center does not supply one)
- heating pad
- your own pillow (if you have a preference)
NATURAL MEDICINAL TOOL KIT
- peppermint and lavender essential oils (see last post on essential oil use in birth and postpartum)
- magnesium or chlorophyll (No woman wants to push anything out of anywhere after giving birth for quite some time. That said, stool softeners are usually given to women who struggle to pass stool postpartum. For the natural minded momma, being proactive in this area includes taking either a serving of chlorophyll (natural stool softer and blood builder) or calcium magnesium (natural stool softener and muscle relaxant) immediately postpartum
- arnica oil and or arnica homeopathic pellets (relieves inflammation and muscles aches and is breastfeeding safe)
BATH AND BODY PRODUCTS
Hopefully your stay is short and you are able to return home the same day you birth your baby. On the chance that you need to stay a few days, remember to pack some essential toiletries such as:
- toothbrush and toothpaste
- non toxic, aluminum free deodorant (2)
- lip balm and unscented lotion (3)
- dr bronners unscented liquid castile soap (for shampoo and body wash). You can find sample size bottles at both Target and most health food stores
- non toxic diapers and wipes (Your hospital or birthing center will not supply non toxic options. Despite common views on the matter, what you put directly against your newborns exposed genitals 24/7 does matter. Here's why.)
- a pre washed organic blanket for coziness and warmth
- one outfit will suffice for traveling home since during your hospital stay baby will be skin to skin with momma or dad
- Wish Garden Cord Care powder for baby's fresh cord stump. This non toxic powder is wonderful for naturally disinfecting, drying and protecting your newborn's umbilical cord.
This list is non exhaustive. Feel free to throw in your own natural items that you find or think you may find helpful for your birth experience. You're going to do awesome, momma! Remember that a bag full of stuff is NOT what is going to get you through your labor. You have all that you need deep inside your maternal being, and you are going to thrive on this journey!
Warm wishes for a happy day!