Things I learned during the delivery of our first baby 07 February 2009 Matt-Gieselman Here is a list of things I learned in no particular order: 75% of women go with the intention of not having an epidural, of those women 80% end up having one and the other 20% wish they hadn’t waited too long to ask for one. You don’t need to bring baby wipes, diapers, lotion or the like, the hospital will provide everything the baby needs until discharge. At discharge you will need 1 outfit, 1 hat and 2 swaddling blankets. Clothes that fit the baby are 10 times better than clothes that are cute. You may hear words come out of your wife that would cause a sailor to blush. Sleep as much as you can. The nurses are there to help so let them and learn as much as you can. Bring light snacks for both of you, the hospital will provide all the beverages you can handle. If you are going to take pictures or video get a wide angle lens or adapter for your camera, a 35mm equivalent focal length of 22mm will work great. Nobody but you really needs to be in the delivery room with your wife. Cutting the umbilical cord is like cutting gristle with a pair of dull scissors. Circumcision isn’t nearly as horrible a procedure for the baby as you would think, he gets an anesthetic and is mostly healed after a few days. Express your desires to the hospital staff about how you want the delivery to go early and often. If they use a vacuum on your babies head it’s okay, even though it looks like the doctor broke your baby. The cone head only lasts about a day. It may take 20 seconds or so for the baby to cry, they have to suction out the amniotic fluid the baby has been in for the last 10 months. Breastfeeding is hard so don’t give up. If you are the dad bring something to entertain yourself, mom and baby will often be asleep. The typical stay for a first time delivery is around 48 hours. The 2 secrets to a happy and content baby are feed him well then wrap him tightly. Babies love Willie Nelson, especially “Seven Spanish Angles” and “Somewhere Over the Rainbow”. If you have a boy he will pee on you if you take his diaper off.