When I started planning what I was going to take in my hospital
bag, I also started planning what essentials I needed to have ready when the
baby arrived home. I made sure I assessed everything I had packed up from my
previous babies and then jotted down what I needed to purchase again for our
third baby girl. I realized that I had misplaced a few items, while others had
just been overused and needed replacing.
1. Clean Clothes:
Even though I wash my clothes before packing them in boxes after every baby
outgrows them, I still wash them again when I have another baby, because
clothes just need to be freshly washed. I also wash new clothes received as
gifts so they are ready to be worn. There is nothing like having fresh clean
bodysuits for your baby when the time comes.
Babies require more than bodysuits the first week. Their skin is so thin, which
means they get colder a lot more easily, so I make sure my babies have warm
sleepwear in addition to their swaddle. A couple of outfits are necessary in
case there are diaper blowouts.
3. Pacifier: From
my experience, learning the basics of breastfeeding a newborn takes time in the
first week. A baby is very anxious and hungry, and sometimes a pacifier calms a
baby down while a mom’s milk is getting ready in her body. A crying baby can be
very overwhelming the first week, and a pacifier is usually a saving grace for
both baby and mother.
4. Swaddle: A baby
has been in a mother’s womb all cozy, so there is nothing more they want than
to be warm and wrapped up when they are outside the womb. I have learned that a
baby will sleep really well when their little bodies are wrapped in a swaddle,
keeping their arms secure in order to prevent sudden hand movements that tend
to wake them up.
5. Diapers: While
this item should not be hard to remember, it is the most essential. Even though
I have had newborn size diapers available, my babies tend to be bigger, so I have
to have the next size available for that week too. It’s important to keep two
sizes of diapers available in case the baby’s weight is different. My baby
girls have all been in the heavier side, so size 1 diapers have been a
While there might be other baby essentials to this list, my
five items continue to help even after having my third baby girl. I am glad
that they were ready and available to help me survive my first week.