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Pregnancy And A Budget

March 27, 2022

Our journey to parenthood was not an easy one so when we finally became pregnant, we were overjoyed. But with a baby comes a whole host of other concerns. Do we have the means to care and provide for our little bundle of joy the way we envision? How much time can I afford to take off from work to spend with my little one before our income becomes affected.

Maybe you are facing similar questions. Maybe you want to be a stay-at-home parent but is not sure if you can afford it or you are not sure of the impact it will have on your family financial stability. Maybe you are concern about childcare, should I hire a nanny, pay for day care or can a family member help out? Should we do private or public school? Whatever questions you are facing the important thing is that you sit down as a family and start to plan now regardless of where you are in your pregnancy. If you are a single parent, get an accountability partner to use as a soundboard and work though these questions and concern.

I know it can be disheartening that finances dictate so many of our choices when it comes to our personal life decision, but you are not alone. What is best for our family and what we can afford does not always align. This was our aha moment. As my husband and I were talking about our goals for our family, we realize the limitation that was place on us due to our financial situation and that is when we said enough is enough. We set our goals, got on a budget and started being intentional.

Where to start:

The first thing you should do is identify your goals as a family and get on a budget if you have not done so. A budget is a reflection of your goals. It is your action plan for achieving your objective. If you do not know where to start, review your income, expenses and debt to get a picture of what is taking place financially. Then look for ways to reduce and adjust spending and build up saving. A saving will keep your financially afloat. It is also important that you start paying off your debt. By paying off your debt you eliminate a lot of stress, you do not have to concern about paying creditors if you want to take unpaid leave and you keep more of your income giving you more options.

Working on a budget might take a little time up front but as you continue to budget on a monthly basis you will see that it takes less and less time to do and you will know exactly what is going on with your money. Also start creating sinking funds for things that you will need, daycare, pampers and cloth. That way when the time comes to pay for these things you will have money set aside. If you have not had a baby shower you might consider asking your guess to bring a book instead of a card. This is what we did and we were able to build up our little one library with a variety of books and its something that you will hold onto much longer than a card. It is also nice to see the notes in the books that our love ones wrote every time we read a book.

Take some time and do research and asked question. Before I pick my child pediatrician, I asked friends and family members about the pediatrician they use and what they like about him or her. Based on recommendations and my own research I made a short list of who I wanted to interview and schedule an appointment. After I my interview I made my decisions and I can say I and my kids absolutely love our pediatrician. You are not crazy for wanting to be informed and wanting to make the right choices for you and your family.

In addition, make sure you understand the family medical leave options that are available. The US. Family medical leave Act (FMLA) says you can take up to 12 weeks but it does not have to be paid and is based on the size of the company. The state that I live in requires private-sector employers of 75 or more employees to grant up to 16 weeks of leave. I was able to take FMLA using up time I banked. Maybe you want to consider buying short-term disability to help cover your income for the time you are out on leave. Having this income could help put your mind at ease and allow you the time to focus on your baby which is what all parents want. Look at medical insurance to see what it covers so that there will be no surprises and you can plan accordingly.

I know things can seem complex with the various decision that is roaming around in your head, but remember you do not have to have everything figured out before the baby arrives. Work on what you can and put a plan or an outline for the rest. Beef up saving and enjoy your little one.

However, do not put figuring out your finances on the back burner. It is something you have to do because closing your eyes, crossing your fingers and hoping everything will work out is not going to work. So, whether you are holding a pregnancy test, adopting, fostering, or going through surrogacy, becoming a parent is a joyous yet overwhelming experience and for all the things you see for your little one such as camp, sports and so on understanding your cash flow will put you in the diving seat of your finances.

What are your family goals and how is your financial situation impacting your goals? leave a comment I would love to hear from you.

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