There is never a right time to have a baby. Trust me; I have four of them, and if anyone knows how it’s just never the right time, it’s me. For my husband and I, there were a number of concerns with having a baby. The first was that we were married very young. We were 21 and 22 at the time. We wanted to spend more time together just the two of us before we had any kids. when we were celebrating my 24th birthday in Hawaii, my husband then decided he was ready and asked me if I was also ready. Long story short, I was pregnant a few months later and we welcomed our first daughter a few months after our fourth wedding anniversary. The biggest concern, however, is always financial. Kids are expensive. We all know that.
When it came time to welcome our second daughter, we had a number of concerns. Is it the right time, is it too soon, is there enough age difference between them? There is three years between our girls, and we thought that was perfect. One was out of diapers and much more affordable with the other was born, so the cost factor was good for us. We’d have years between buying cars and paying for college classes, so we felt comfortable. When we decided to try for baby number three we waited the same amount of time as we had with baby number two.
What we did not expect was to find out 18 weeks into my pregnancy that we were having the little boy we’d been hoping for and a little girl. We had no idea I was pregnant with twins. Since I’m naturally so small, we thought that my baby bump was huge because there’s nowhere else for it to go and because it was my third pregnancy. Things changed big time back then. We were stressed. How will we take care of two newborns at once? What will happen to our lives as we know them? How will we pay for them to go to college and drive and do all those things? We were worried.
Fortunately, God’s plan is always bigger than our plan, and he always makes things work out in our favor. We prayed about it, and we were blessed in so many ways. One of our favorite being that our twins are the easiest babies you’ll ever meet. They’ve been on the same sleep schedule since they were less than a month old, which means we’ve never not gotten full nights of sleep, which makes the rest of life seem so much simpler.
The cost of having a baby is astronomical, but it’s not as bad as you might think. The cost of having two babies, however, is so much more than you might ever imagine. When you bring them home and suddenly have four little mouths to feed, and little feet to dress, it becomes so much more expensive. That’s why I recommend that you have your financial plan in order before you get pregnant. There are some hidden expenses in there we did not see the first time around, and I think that they are a great idea for anyone to have before they welcome their first baby.
Save for your OB’s fee
What we did not know is that our OB would charge us a separate fee from the hospital when we got pregnant. We had no idea the first time around that we’d have to pay her $2,500 out of pocket on the first appointment we had for our pregnancy to cover all my appointments, one ultrasound and her fee for delivery. The hospital then charges far more to insurance afterward. Know that your OB will charge you a fee upfront, and ask what it is before you get pregnant so you have time to prepare. It will depend on your insurance, so be prepared to hand over that information.
When we were pregnant with our second baby, we’d already suffered two miscarriages and a number of concerns during my pregnancy. For that reason alone, our doctor wanted to perform an ultrasound most every single time we went into her office. Since my insurance and her fee covered one, we were good there. However, we then had to pay almost $150 every time we had another because they weren’t covered under her fee (that’s after insurance, for the record). We had the same issue when we had the twins since we had two and multiple ultrasounds were necessary to keep an eye on their rate of growth and development.
When we welcomed our twins, we knew we’d spend a lot on formula. I did nurse all my babies, but my body natural dries itself out no matter what we do, what our lactation consultant helps us with, how healthy I eat….nothing helps. After 6-8 weeks, I wake up one morning and there is just nothing there anymore.
I’m disappointed, but fine with that since we do have healthy, smart, intelligent babies. However, we also had to supplement almost right away because I also never had much milk no matter what we did. We were prepared for that with baby number two and the twins after going through it with our first daughter. However, we were not prepared to give birth to a 3-pound baby and a 5-pound baby who would both need hi-calorie formula that can only be ordered by the pharmacist and costs twice as much, even with insurance, as regular formula. That’s not inexpensive in itself, and we had to babies to feed for three months with it.
What I’m saying is that you can plan and prepare financially for a baby all you want, but there are always hidden costs in there somewhere. Perhaps my stories might help you prepare a bit more since you just never know what might be coming when you give birth to your own little ones.
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