If you have a hospital or birthing center birth eventually you'll be making that first adventurous trek with your baby...
If you have a hospital or birthing center birth eventually you'll be making that first adventurous trek with your baby - getting from hospital to your home. Here's what you'll need to manage the trip... Gear you need:
- Clothing for your baby - make sure you dress him in one more layer than you have on when leaving.
- Clothing for you - DO NOT bring pre-pregnancy clothing unless you want to spend the whole trip home upset. You won't fit into your pre-pregnancy clothes yet, bring something comfortable, but not too small.
- A CAR SEAT! This is the one must have - in fact most hospitals won't let you go home without one. Make sure you know how to use it too. See advice on car seats for preterm babies.
- A pacifier - if your baby cries and cries on the way home, a pacifier can help settle your baby nerves and yours. It's a whole new deal driving with a newborn in the car.
- Feed and change your baby right before you leave. Make sure you do this after filling out your discharge papers. It can take a while for your nurses to get all of it signed.
- Make sure that baby stays in his car seat on the way home. He may cry, it may make you upset, nervous, or frustrated, but it's NEVER ok to hold your baby in a moving car. He could be seriously hurt or killed if you're in an accident. If your baby is truly so upset that you can't drive, pull over into a safe parking lot and cuddle a bit before heading home again.
- Consider having a non-parent drive you home that first trip (preferably someone who is a parent so they're used to driving with kids). It's very exciting to take your new baby home and both parents may be focused on that rather than safely driving. Plus, it's a huge distraction to drive with a baby if you've never done so.
- Take pictures! Once you finally do arrive home, take a picture of one or both parents crossing the threshold with the new baby. Your baby's very first home is a great scrapbook image.