When you have a child who has a neurological disorder hospital becomes second nature, you spend a great deal of time there. Sometimes it’s numerous hospitals. You meet an overwhelming amount of professionals involved in your child’s life. We’ve been to a hospital more times than I can count this includes long stays. Over time you become an expert at packing essentials sometimes within a matter of minutes I’ve got good at what’s a necessity and what’s not. Here’s my list of what we need.
- Depending on the nature of your stay a change of clothes is an absolute must! (I remember once arriving through A&E with Olivia and she vomited all over me I didn’t have anything to change into and for hours I sat covered in puke) Now I make sure I pack a change of clothes, make sure it’s Something comfortable depending on why you’re there it can take hours before your admitted.
- Comfy clothes for your child, fluffy pj’s and socks. If your child is due for an operation I wouldn’t bother with vests or baby-grows clothes need to be easily accessible and removable.
- Snacks & Plenty of change Hospitals usually have little shops and canteens (depending on the type of hospital these may have regular shop opening & closing times 8am-6pm) there will be vending machines but it’s junk food so if you’re there for longer than a day you will need snacks. Most children wards have family rooms that include a small kitchenette we usually grab some food label everything and pop into there.
- Toiletries this may seem vain to some but honestly, you won’t regret packing these, again you could end up staying for hours or overnight unexpectedly it’s best to be prepared.
- Again this may seem vain but hand cream is always packed for me. You will wash & sanitise your hands more times than you will realise. Lip balm & face spritz it’s warm & muggy on the wards your skin really suffers, my lips crack and my skin breaks out.
- Phone cables / portable chargers. Hospital wards have plenty of plug sockets you’re allowed to use (obviously never unplug anything) I like to bring a portable charger as well so when Olivia is asleep I can pop outside or go for a walk making necessary calls.
- Something for your entertainment, there will be hours where you will be sat around. I usually take a book & magazines to read.
Don’t forget any medication there have been times when we’ve been at a hospital all day and unexpectedly been admitted at night time. Drs can fill prescriptions for you but it can take a while & they will only give you one or two lots to see you through. It’s also best to pack pain medication for yourself remember they can’t give you anything, for example, paracetamol (I always get headaches during hospital visits, the environment and stress can affect you)
Hopefully, this will help anybody’s stay a little smoother.