So, this is a post about all of the things we borrowed/stole from the hospital during our delivery stay. Why steal baby goods instead of just planning ahead and stocking up his nursery? Well, it never occurred to me to have the following items at home waiting for us. Judge if you must but be wise and heed my advice if you’re headed to your local L&D floor in the near future.
Newborn Formula: so yeah, it never occurred to me that I literally might not be physically able to breast feed. I mean, of course I knew it could be difficult but I never knew it would be next to impossible. My body never produced milk. Not in the hospital (which is common), not at home, not with pumping, not with a latching baby. On top of my apparent lack of mammary glands, our kid popped into the world with scary low blood sugars and spent some extra time in the nursery getting emergency bottles to regulate his sugars. He was actually encouraged to house two bottle feedings before I ever saw him in recovery. His blood sugars remained a problem throughout his first 24 hours and bottle feeding was the most consistent way to help him regulate. Once that chunker got the hint that he could have a bottle and instant deliciousness, he had no tolerance for me and my Sahara situation. Needless to say, I realized that we were taking home a baby that would at least need to be supplemented with formula and we had absolutely nothing to feed him with. We started skimming those bottles right out of his little bassinet hospital cart and then asked the nurses for more before we left.
Nipples: if you ever find yourself skimming those teeny bottles from your babies metal bassinet, keep in mind that you must also steal the nipples. Those baby bottles of pre-made formula come sans nipple. You will find yourself crying in the aisles of Target in your post hospital mesh undies if you don’t take the nipples. Target is not kind enough to sell the nipples. You have to Amazon them or find them at a Babies R Us. This was our fave brand after we ran out of our hospital stash.
Teeny Tiny Gauze Pads: um, I knew from 14 weeks gestation or so that I was having a boy. I also knew that he would have to have a little procedure on a pretty significant part of his anatomy. I agonized over the barbaric nature of hospital circumcisions and grilled the doctor who was assigned our boy but it never occurred to me to get any sort of supplies to help him heal at home. Duh. If you have a son you’ll need teeny tiny gauze pads to hold the petroleum jelly in place in his diaper. Take handfuls. Trust me.
Petroleum Jelly: see above. We stole a ton and still ran out. Luckily he was probably 10 or 12 days old and we had our lives together enough to head to Target. Full Disclosure: we didn’t have it together enough to actually locate the tube that looked exactly like what we stole from the hospital. We had to ask the pharmacist. For reference, it’s in the baby aisle (sleep depravation is clearly no joke).
Alcohol Wipes: my friends all had different experiences when it came to their babe’s belly buttons. Our hospital and pediatrician wanted us to wipe the baby’s umbilical cord with an alcohol pad to dry it out (gag). Again, I knew my kid would come home with a disgusting umbilical stump but I did nothing to prepare to care for it at home. We had one million newborn layettes but no alcohol pads. Awesome planning.
Mesh Undies: ok, so I had a C Section and very, very little bleeding but I took the undies anyway. Why? Because that meant I could go like another two weeks from delivery without having to do laundry. I lived in pj pants and t shirts for the first two weeks of the baby’s life and not once did I wear anything but the mesh undies underneath. Our nurse literally gave us 20 pairs as we hustled out of our hospital room. They are comfy, stretchy and can be tossed in the trash at the end of the day. I’d wear them forever if I had an endless supply.
Cans of Pepsi: this is the most random one of all, but Nutrition Services would not leave me alone until I ordered something. And then there were the Candy Stripers. And the Nurse Techs. Everyone wanted to bring me something. I finally got wise and asked them to bring me a can of Pepsi and a water (I only asked for a water because the nurses made me). I’d stash the unopened cans of Pepsi in a gift bag full of baby gifts and sip the water. Once we got home, I was so happy to have those little cans of sugary caffeine at the ready.
This post may make me look and sound like a total nut job, but if it helps one of you then writing it was worth it.
(said in my best Miss America voice).
*side note: the nurses will happily give you any and all of the supplies that you need or request. mine even packed them all up for me in a tote bag. stealing did not really occur. except for the formula. and the nipples. don’t forget the nipples. *