chronic illness

Surgery Survival Kit


Surgery Survival Kit

A couple months I wrote an article for the Fight Like A Girl Club regarding preparing for surgery.  Little did I know that I would be preparing for it again myself so soon. So while I was perusing Pinterest the other day, I came across this adorable printable to create hospital survival kits and they got me thinking!

Of course, these are meant for new moms but I thought, “How fun would it be to create a cute survival kit for fellow spoonies heading to the hospital?” So if you have a friend or loved one heading to the hospital soon, you might want to check out these free printables and help put a smile on her face even in the midst of surgery!

Here are some ideas of things to include:

  • Lotion. The air in hospitals can be extremely dry so my skin always gets really itchy. Lotion is a great way to soothe some of that itchiness as well as feel a little fresher after surgery (when a shower might not be an option right away). I would advise staying away from heavily scented lotions. My personal post-op favorite is Eucerin Calming Creme.
  • Lip Balm.  Much for the same reasons as listed above. My lips are always super dry right after surgery from the tube being down my throat.
  • Cute socks.  Hospital gowns are definitely not the most flattering and definitely don’t make you feel cute or pretty by any means and sometimes they are a must for a least the first couple days post-op so I always rely on cute socks to add some fun and for a quick pick-me-up.
  • Magazines. For the first week or so after surgery, my attention span is next to nothing so I have a hard time focusing on reading a book so a magazine is a great option! Even if you cannot focus on the articles themselves, it gives you something to flip through if boredom strikes or you are waiting on your next round of meds to kick in.
  • Dry Shampoo. This seriously is one of the world’s greatest inventions. If you’ve ever wondered if it works, let me tell you it does and is amazing. When I’m in the hospital, I really don’t care what  I look like. Sure I pray that I don’t look like death warmed over when 1,000 people decide to visit but that’s not why I would put this in my surgery bad. I hate the way I feel after surgery. On top of the post-surgical pain, you can just feel yucky but no where near good enough to attempt a shower yet. Dry shampoo helps take some of the “yuck” out easily from bed.
  • Face Wipes/Baby Wipes – see above.
  • Snacks. I am so an advocate for chocolate except in this instance. Depending on medications, chocolate may not sit well on the stomach so other snacks I suggest for when the jello gets old is fruit snacks, granola bars, and hard candy.

Hospital Essentials When You Need Surgery

These are definitely things that will be packed in my bag this week as I head off to surgery on Friday!

What could I be forgetting?

What would you include in your surgery survival kit?


P.S. Be a spoonie girl scout & check out the Bowel Prep Survival Kit & Flare Survival Kit to be prepared for what else life with chronic illness may have in store!




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11 comments on “Surgery Survival Kit

  1. C.C. Almon - my journey as a Christ follower, wife, mamma, and fibromyalgia fighter says:

    A note pad and pen/pencil. I like to keep track of who comes by & brings something to me so I can write a thank you email or send an e-card to them later when I’m feeling better. It’s also handy if you want to (or have someone else) make notes about what the doctor is telling.

  2. Sarah says:

    Love this. Super cute. Thank you 🙂

  3. C.C. Almon - my journey as a Christ follower, wife, mamma, and fibromyalgia fighter says:

    Also, if you have a particular tea you like or that might be soothing for you, bring some tea bags. I also like to have soothing music on my ipod. Just make sure you have the cord to recharge it if it’s a longer stay. I’m trying to think what else. My brain isn’t working so good today though. 🙁

  4. elisabeth says:

    I have an enormous list depending on how many days I may be in. A few goodies- my MP3 player for toons and audio books, and earplugs and an eyemask for sleeping. I also bring cough drops, tea bags, and those flavoured water packets (if I’m queasy, plain water tends to make it worse, especially if I’m laying flat). I also bring a stuffed toy that makes a handy neck pillow if needed! Best of luck while in hospital!

    • Jamee says:

      Definitely will be taking my new tablet since the hospital has Wi-Fi to help keep me occupied! I just need to remember headphones! My Bert the Hippo will definitely be joining me!

  5. Diana says:

    Colgate Wisps for freshening up when it’s not possible to brush your teeth.

  6. Missy says:

    This post could not have come at a better time! I need to get my bag ready for the hospital. I won’t be having a major surgery, I’ll just be having a baby but still!
    I would have NEVER thought of cute socks, though I am going to get some. I will be so delighted to have my feet back to their normal size! Also, dry shampoo and face wipes are clever. I don’t want to put for the effort of looking that great, but being a youth pastor’s wife I’m sure that there will be a lot of visitors and pictures taken.

    Good stuff! 🙂

    • Jamee says:

      Being a YPW myself, I know I’ll have visitors too but thankfully no cameras! I am going to take some pictures to document the journey for a post but I’m going to avoid any headshots! LOL 🙂

    • KELLY says:



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