We know leaving the hospital can be a daunting prospect, so we've put together our top 5 things to expect after giving birth in a hospital so you're fully prepared to take your little one home.
You won’t be allowed to leave without your newborn baby being safely snuggled in a car seat, so get one (yes, even if you’re going home by cab).
And just as importantly, get your partner to practise fitting it – there’s nothing dignified about wrestling with a car seat in the hospital car park with a howling newborn.
We recommend purchasing this super comfy, super safe Cabriofix car seat from Maxi Cosi, €149.99, ready for labour day!
A handy Parent's Manual
Until now you’ve been surrounded by a support network of doctors, nurses and midwives – but you’re about to lose it (although you will have a health visitor come and see you at home).
Anticipating the questions and concerns of all new mothers–Why does my baby cry so much? Will I ever lose all this weight? Am I a bad parent because…?–the book provides practical advice and level-headed reassurance. It addresses the needs of the baby and, very importantly, those of the parent during the first year of their baby’s life.
Get organised with this fabulour book First-Time Parent: The honest guide that's on your side, €16.99
Remember to bring comfy clothing
Your midwife won't be on-hand to deliver you a going-home outfit, so you'll need to ask your partner to bring one. You’ll want something comfy and roomy as it takes a good six weeks for your uterus to shrink down – make sure he’s aware of this and doesn’t pack your pre-pregnancy jeans – and don’t forget a clean nursing bra.
You'll need a baby kit
Baby will need an outfit too – think weather-appropriate. Plus a whole load of other things such as nappies, wipes, muslins – yes, even on a short car ride. Get your partner to pack a changing bag (unless you were super-organised pre-birth and already did this).
This baby changing bag from Kalencom, €69.99, is a must have!
Rest is best
As you can see, this list is largely made up of things for you to get your partner to do – hey, you’ve just done the hard bit, having a baby; now it’s time for your other half to step up.
While you're in recovery get them to take all the gifts, balloons and other things away the day before you go home.
When you leave, you want to focus on baby, not baggage. And most importantly, enjoy this very special time in your lives and remember, don't sweat the small stuff!