Welcome Home Baby: Hospital Stay

I think that the stay in the hospital after giving birth may be one of the most welcomed hospital stays ever.  There is:

  • help just around the corner
  • prepared food delivered to your room
  • lactation consultants up the wa-zoo
  • nurses willing to take your newborn for a few hours at night

How much better does it get?  Granted, there are drawbacks, and it just isn’t the same as being home, but hey I will take it!  Today in my Welcome Home Baby series I am going to share some of my “what to expect” hints at the hospital.  You know, every delivery is SO much different than the next, so my experience is probably totally unrelated to someone else, but it doesn’t hurt to share it!

If you missed my other posts in this series check them out here:

  1. Series Index
  2. Packing for the Hospital
  3. My Epidural Story (#1)
  4. My Epidural Story (#2)
  5. Hospital Stay
  6. First Two Days Home

What to expect in your hospital stay

I decided to break down the stay into before birth and after birth.  I asked my husband what he would say is the #1 thing to expect during those times, and he said “No sleep“.  I can see what he remembers the most!

Before Birth

  • Changing rooms.  If you are coming in with contractions already happening, chances are they will take you to a room, undress you, and put a monitor on your belly (one for babies heart rate and one for contractions).  This will determine if it is false or if it is go time.  If it is real labor then they will transfer you to your room.
  • No food.  Usually even if you are having a natural birth they don’t allow you to eat because there is a chance you may need a c-section and medicine will have to be given.
  • Waiting.  If you are able to: SLEEP.  You need all the rest you can get for pushing, so get it now.  It is exciting and hard to want to sleep, but do it!
  • Lots of nurses.  Depending on how long you are there, you will see your fair share of nurses!  Your doctor will most likely only make an appearance a bit before the baby is born.
  • Needles galore.  Yep, you get stuck quite a bit.  Especially if you are having an epidural.  They normally take blood also just to have your blood type on hand.

giving birth in a hospitalAfter Birth

  • You did it!  That baby is out!
  • Bathroom time.  This is gross, but they will not take you off of the IV (for epidural moms) until you go potty.  Also use the stool softener…it is your friend.
  • Visitors!  Ready or not here they come.  It really is a wonderful time, so accept them with open arms :) But also feel free to let them know you need a nap.
  • More nurses.  There will be a pediatrician that visits the baby, circumcision (if you wish), some shots for baby, and visits to check up on Mom.
  • Pain Meds.  Like it or not, you will be on medicine!  I was taking quite a bit of Motrin for a good 2-3 weeks after delivery…be one with it.
  • Wakeful 2nd night.  The first night after your little one is born is a pretty quiet night, besides waking them up to feed.  The 2nd night though, your baby gets the idea that they don’t like being out in this cold world.  They are a bit fussier the next night.  Do not be ashamed to let the nurses take them for a couple hours so that you can rest.  It was the best sleep I got.  On a side note…I was so nervous to go to sleep I slept with my glasses on so that I could wake up at any sound and check on him.
  • Multiple feedings.  To get your juices flowing (literally), I was nursing every 2-2.5 hours for 10-15 minutes on each side.  That is from the start of one nursing to the start of the next nursing.  The baby isn’t getting much and that is ok, but it’s important to do it often so that your milk does come in.
  • First shower.  It feels so good…but I must say I was a bit dizzy, so be careful.
  • Loneliness.  This is kinda weird but it is a roller coaster of emotions, and they aren’t all happy and giddy.  The day we left the hospital it was just the 3 of us, and it was very quiet in the room.  You so want to get home, but it is so scary.  There were tears on that ride home for sure.  It gets better though, I promise (smile).having a baby

Moms!  What else would you add??

Come back tomorrow when I will have some tips on the first days at home with your little one.

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3 comments to Welcome Home Baby: Hospital Stay

  • What a GREAT idea for a post series, Sarah! LOVE all of your ideas, so incredibly helpful. :) I had a c-section with both of our girls, so my advice would be to set a time and send your husband to HUNT DOWN A NURSE every four hours for those pain meds. Staying on top of it makes ALL the difference in the world {at least it did for me!}.

    • spoonmomma

      Thanks so much! I am sure that advice for a C-section delivery is totally different! You’re recovering from a surgery at the same time..yikes!

  • Be prepared to not be able to nurse easily the first few times. It can take practice. Also, the first meal after delivery will be the best food you’ve ever eaten.

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