‘It’s the final countdowwwnn’– If you’re not singing it in your head, you should be now. Say it with me! I am in the stretch until my due date with baby boy and my nesting and nerves are officially at level 100. Beau and I are chuckling because we are doing our best to remember what it is like to have a newborn. We think we will nail it but we also worry that we forgot things!
We started reminiscing about our preparation for Chloe from early 2017. We attended the ‘Prepared Childbirth‘ class at Sisters Hospital which included a tour of the maternity space and rooms, familiarized us with the hospital layout, and shared what really happens during labor and delivery. It was really nice to see where we would be ‘living’ for a couple days while there- we didn’t feel lost or like strangers.
A Few Things We Learned From Our Childbirth Class at Sisters Hospital:
- The differences between Early Labor and Active Labor: Early labor happens from the beginning of your labor until you are dilated 3 cm. Typically you will be at home (or wherever you start labor) relaxing or slowly getting ready to come to the hospital. Your water may break, your contractions could be 5-30 minutes apart, and we were given the advice to eat and have water because once you’re in there- no food for you! Active labor is when you are 4-7cm and the time you should be at the hospital, breathing through your contractions and getting ready for the big event. Knowing the difference between these two helped me mentally prepare for how I should be handling my body.
- Your bed becomes the delivery bed: I think the most impressive thing we saw was how quickly the nurses and doctors turn your bed in to the actual delivery bed! It was like watching the most synchronized team of individuals remove lower sections of the bed and bring over the necessary equipment for when you are ready to push and deliver.
- The small things they do help you feel comfortable: There is a card you fill out ahead of time that you bring in with your birthing details and requests. It is viewed among all who work with you during your visit so there is no repeating what your (hopeful) plan will be…Your little newborn gets to hang out with you in your room but if you need a break and sleep, they will take the little nugget to the nursery so you can relax for a moment. The babies are watched and snuggled on while they are away from you, so you don’t have to feel guilty or worried…They encourage you to bring in what feels good for YOU. During class, our nurse instructor suggested making an iPod playlist or bringing in an essential oil diffuser. We ended up bringing the diffuser which I really liked because the scent made me feel relaxed.
The class can be taken over 4 weeks or all in one day (which we did on a Saturday) and it was worth it because Beau was able to…*ahem*...see what happens and I felt so much better having toured the hospital and knowing where I was going when I arrived for the main event. Check out the classes and registration here.
Packing the Hospital Bag
I think I over-packed my hospital bag last time. This time, I’m keeping it to what I KNOW I will want and need. Every person is different as to what they will pack but here is what I plan on:
- Phone charger (duh) with my list on my app of who to call/text for baby updates
- Comfortable going home outfit. Last time i tried to pack some cute look that I ended up crying over because I was still swollen and very sore. Not worth the tears! I think i am going with black leggings, black tank, and a colorful kimono.
- Makeup bag- includes my hairbrush, dry shampoo, makeup, face cleanser, face mask (because we know my face mask obsession!), hairbrush, hairdryer, jade eyeroller, deodorant, mini shampoo, conditioner, and lotion. You can take a shower after everything is done and it will feel like the best shower ever lol if you want to, you can wash your hair- if not, dry shampoo that nonsense! Either way, have travel-sized items to be prepared.
- Comfy, stretchy bra. Skip the underwear- you get sexy and super comfortable mesh undies there!
- Electric oil diffuser. I liked it last time so why not again?
- Baby’s going home outfit and picture outfit.
- Baby book- don’t forget it! The nurses will take little foot stamps of the baby for you in the book!
- Paperwork- if you have it done ahead of time, it makes it sooo much easy when being admitted! You can also fill out any work papers needed for your maternity leave at work.
- Stay tuned for more on my hospital bag!
Maybe I’ve Got It Down For #2…
After having done this once, maybe I will feel more at ease heading in to this delivery. Maybe not. Every delivery is different so I have to keep that in mind. A couple of things I think have stuck with Beau and I after having gone through this before.
- You’re a hero no matter what. I tried for 26 hours of natural, medication-free labor with Chloe. It was awful, awesome, exhausting, frustrating, and eye-opening. I ended up getting an epidural in hour 26 and let me tell you…I will be doing that STAT on this round. It does not matter how you have your baby, you are doing something incredible in the end.
- Don’t feel guilty. The nurses at Sisters Hospital are so kind and helpful- use them! I felt so much guilt when Chloe was not in our room during the time I was supposed to ‘rest’. This time, I will set that fear aside and know that my baby is okay and the nurses will take care of him should I need more sleep at any given time.
A New Look at Sisters Hospital
Newly updated Labor & Delivery rooms: I recently re-visited Sisters for a tour of their newly renovated Labor & Delivery rooms and the entire state-of-the-art NICU floor. I was shocked at how nice their rooms are now! The vibe is very calming and clean. New flooring that looks like wood, dimly-lit sconces, a deep eggplant wall color, spacious bathrooms and showers…it felt like you were in a hotel room suite. One of the final phases will be the nurse’s station, which should be completed this month (end of July 2019). The same friendly and loving energy radiated from the nurses I met while visiting this time and I remembered how nice it felt to be there during an intense time.
Give yourself a rest!: The newborns are still kept in-room with the mommies and they still offer you a ‘break’ so you can take a nap in peace in order to recover on your own for a bit. The babies are not far away and are loved while you are taking a solo moment, so this is the part where I stress: do NOT feel guilty. It’s ok! You need to mentally and physically let go of that just for a little.
Private spaces: I was also thrilled to see that the Triage rooms (where you could possibly hang out while being monitored to see if you should stay or go home) are no longer just a space with a curtain- they are actual rooms with doors! More private and welcoming with the new updates. They also have expanded the size of the Family Waiting rooms with new furniture and space so people do not feel cramped. There is one on the main floor and a second for the NICU floor that is private and quiet.
So now we wait. I am in prep-mode and while I have a few days, I am slowly getting things ready (finally) and feeling good about seeing the new space at Sisters. It’s nice to scope out your delivery place again and get reacquainted! It takes off some of the edge- we need that as much as possible!
We’ll be sharing a lot the next couple of weeks and give you a peek in to the new rooms- I know some of you are curious! I kept my tour private and wanted to soak up the info- so keep your eyes peeled for more once we arrive!