As I am putting my birth bag together for the birth center, I am curious what other people found most comfortable for labor & delivery. I might be spending some time in a tub so does a sports bra work well? I was also thinking of bringing a short nightgown or a strapless dress that would be easy to change positions while wearing and keep me accessible to the MW. All of these are items I don't care if they get soiled with body fluids or wet in water. Who knows I may even just choose to be naked most of the time but I wanted some comfortable options
With our first, I was naked in the tub and then wore DH's white undershirt type tank top. With our second, I had bought a cute, cheapie night gown for the BC, but didn't get to wear it I wore pajama pants and a t-shirt at home.
For this baby, I've packed my sports bra for the tub (I'll probably only wear that if my mom makes it for the birth...). Otherwise, I'll wear the gown provided by the hospital.
In the tub I was naked, I couldn't stand the feel of a wet bra against me. Most of my time outside the tub was in a snap-front sun dress; it was knee length, which seemed a bit too long when my midwife had to move it out of the way to check things, but I think any shorter would have felt immodest. I went outside a few times for a walk or to go up & down the stairs, so I appreciated the coverage for that.
"No more hurting people. Peace."
-- Martin Richard, age 8, Boston, MA
Rest in peace, Martin.
For my hospital births, I wore the hospital gown. I actually find them pretty comfy -loose, easy to put on/remove, and I like that my behind is covered once my bottoms are off.
For my home birth, I wore yoga pants and a long tank... just the long tank for the actual delivery.
This time I think I'll wear a tank-style nightgown.
For my first births I was in the hospital gowns. But didn't dare move much as the back was wide open and I didn't want to moon everyone. This time I am doing a home birth and I have a maternity swim top that I will wear and then a wrap skirt or shorts while out of the water and probably no bottoms while in the water. It will be interesting to see what I end up doing but I know that I wont got topless because I need the feeling of something on the top of me.
DS1-7/18/08, DS2-2/23/10, DS3 1/18/12
I wore a hospital gown for my first hospital birth, but felt strongly that I didn't want that "symbol" affecting me psychologically with my second hospital birth. For that one, I wore a knee length cotton jersey nightgown. I ended up having it pulled up over my belly the whole time for the monitors because once I got on the monitors I never got off them, so it probably would have been better to just wear a bra. For my homebirth, I wore the top to my maternity swim top (tankini style) and depends (since I was leaking fluid) under a t-shirt and pajama pants. I didn't get in the tub until transition--I got out for a few minutes because it was too hot, but I didn't mind being wet because it was a swimsuit. They put some cold water in the tub and I got back in and stayed there the rest of the time.
I was at the birth center far longer than I anticipated. My water broke so I wasn't able to labor at home as long as I'd planned. During the early stages, I wore a cheapo nightgown and robe that I'd purchased especially for the occasion. I wore those as I paced the halls and the grounds of the birth center. I was glad to have the nightgown because it was easy to change pads as I was leaking fluid. It all came off the second the water was turned on to fill the tub. I had yoga pants and a maternity tank for afterwards and for the ride home.
For my home births, I labored in a short cotton nightgown and gave birth in the birth pool with nothing on. I've always wondered about wearing a sports bra in the pool, as I see lots of pics of women doing that, but it seems like it would get in the way of immediate nursing. I like the idea of total skin to skin.
at the beginning of labor when I'm at home I wear yoga type pants and a t-shirt. By the time I get to the hospital I'm pretty far along and my modesty is disappearing fast. Both times I've had "birth clothing" packed and then never use it, just the hospital gown at first and then naked in the tub and afterwards. Then again for my last birth I was only at the hospital for 2 hours before DD was born (arrived 6cm dialated), first hour was Triage and monitoring because they were having trouble because she kept moving so I was WAY into transition by the time I got into my room.
Ethan - June 21, 2009
Olivia - December 5, 2010
5w3d - October/November 2012