Bringing your adopted baby home will definitely be one of the major events in your life. In order to be completely prepared for bringing your baby home from the hospital and taking care of him or her properly, there are a lot of things you need to keep in mind.

Bringing the baby home from the hospital

After an adoption, the journey home from the hospital will be both joyful and stressful. In order to bring your baby home safe and without much stress, here are some tips that might help you!

  • Pack comfortable and seasonally appropriate clothing for your newborn baby in your hospital bag.
  • Make sure you have a proper child safety seat or a car seat. It doesn’t matter if the trip is long or short, it is never safe to hold your baby in your arms when you are in your car. You can purchase an infant-only seat for a safe trip with your newborn baby. Many hospitals will ask you to bring the car seat in so they can both verify you have one and also make sure it is safe for your baby.
  • For longer trips, make sure to pack enough baby food and supplies in your diaper bag. Also, pack protein rich food for yourself and your spouse so you don’t have to stop when the baby falls asleep.
  • The camera is not a baby item, but bring one to record those first moments with your baby. Later on, you can use those photos to create an adoption story album, but even if you don’t, you are going to be thankful for having those photos.
  • Before the trip to the hospital, you need to talk to your pediatrician about the proper formula type for the baby. If you are traveling by plane carry only essential items and pack light since you don’t want to carry heavy suitcases through the airport while your baby is with you. Never pack baby items, like diapers and food, in the suitcase, but rather use a diaper bag or a backpack that one of you is going to carry.

The first few weeks at home after the hospital

Those first days and weeks will bring a complex mix of emotions.

  • At first, when you finally bring home your newborn baby, it is not unusual to worry about bonding with him or her. This is a common reaction since you are still overwhelmed with emotions and nervous about raising the baby. You have been working so hard and long to achieve this goal so it is understandable to feel different and to need some time to settle. The process of bonding does not always happen instantaneously for adoptive or biological parents. The connection develops over time through a variety of experiences.
  • Ask your family and friends to visit when you want them to, and don’t be shy about asking them not to come if you are not up to it. You need to spend time with your baby, and the first few weeks will be the hardest and most demanding as you all adjust to your new routine.
  • Even before you go to pick up your baby, make sure you have scheduled your baby's first check-up. That way, you don’t have to worry about remembering to do it after you arrive home.