Being pregnant can be pricey. But how expensive are we talking? It’s something I wondered often when we first found out we were expecting, so I decided to keep a running tally of what we were spending, both on ourselves (OK, mostly me, but I’m the one
doing the heavy lifting whose pants don’t fit) and Baby.
Doctor Visits – $394.33
Though we are both healthy and fairly young, Half Penny was deemed a high-risk pregnancy until we got the all-clear after 22 weeks. I was expecting to be walloped with medical bills given all the extra testing. We would have happily paid them all and then some to do what’s best for Baby, but fortunately, we haven’t had to do so.
Initially, I estimated my usual $20 copay for each doctor visit. After all, that’s what I pay for any other doctor visit, and there’s a giant sign in the reception area that says COPAY IS DUE AT TIME OF VISIT. So, at our first appointment, I signed myself in and forked over my credit card. The receptionist assured me that I don’t have a copay at any of these baby visits. Huh. That was my cue to call my insurance company and get the full scoop on what exactly is covered and by how much.
It turns out that everything done in office⸺from ultrasonds to blood work⸺is essentially bundled into one charge at the end of the pregnancy. You know, before the whopper of the hospital bill. However, when Half Penny got bigger, we had to have some more imaging done through an outside specialist. The out-of-pocket expense for the ultrasound clocked in at $373.87 and the doctor visit was $20.46. And to use the Mastercard cliche, finding out that HP was no longer considered high risk was priceless.
Maternity Gear – $382.65
I was really fortunate to have a coworker lend me about ten different maternity tops in a variety of solid colors. I’ve been mixing and matching them all throughout pregnancy. She also lent me her Belly Band, which is an excellent idea in theory. You can wear your regular pants for all nine months. Unless you’re like me and you discover that while Belly Bands forgive a growing stomach, there isn’t much they can do for anything else that also expands.
As a result, I’ve had to pick up $382.65 worth of maternity gear. That price includes everything from two pairs of work pants and two pairs of jeans to a few dresses and a new pair of pajamas. I could have spent less, but I could have spent much, much more. To say this has been a lesson in capsule wardrobes would be the ultimate understatement.
Household Items – $361
In an effort to act my age, I’ve sworn off fabric softener like a good millennial. While we did already use more eco-friendly detergents, I still found myself reaching for that blue bottle. Not anymore. $23 at Bed Bath and Beyond later, and I became the proud owner of Woolzies, six wool dryer balls, that will either mimic my favorite fabric softener or swindle me out of money. So far, so soft!
I also popped for a six-inch memory foam mattress topper when every inch of my body started to hurt. No pillow fortress configuration cut it, so I enlisted help from the fine people at Serta for $153.
And while it turns out we were perfectly happy with potentially poisoning ourselves for the past four years, I insisted we have our radon pump retested. It set us back $185, and the levels were so low that the inspector actually laughed. But now I don’t have to worry about growing a fluorescent supervillain baby.
Baby Gear – $106.88
It takes a village to raise a baby and did our village turn out for this kiddo. Our baby gear expenses are incredibly low because we were gifted so much. At first, I tried to eschew the notion of a shower entirely, but after realizing how offended my family got and remembering that I shouldn’t tell people how to spend their money, I obliged.
We registered for something like $1400 worth of items. We received all of it plus the generous offers of hand-me-downs and gently used baby gear. How’s that for a heaping of kindness and privilege?
I’ve also been saving every $10 off $10 or more purchase coupon I come across since I found out I was expecting. A few friends promised that we’d be gifted with a deluge of newborn to 3-month onesies, and they weren’t wrong. With that tip in mind, I’ve been stockpiling 6-12 month onesies, sleepers, and burp cloths. I’ve scored upwards of 30 baby items for $16.57 thanks to strategic shopping.
We also spent another $70.31 on an area rug and used an Amazon gift card that I got as a Christmas gift to bring down the price of nursery decals to $20. This seems like a real bargain, but the decals still aren’t on the wall yet. When I post Part 2, I might have to include the cost of marriage counseling.
Totaling It Up
To date, it’s cost us $1244.86 to be pregnant and to get ready for Half Penny’s debut. It’s true that when I was having a really rough time, I busted our grocery budget more than once. And there are other expenses that I didn’t chronicle because they fit within our regular budget. $10 prenatal vitamins, $1.49 bags of Lemonheads, and 50¢ emergency McDonald’s ice cream cones (in case you were wondering what constitutes an emergency, it’s whenever I see a McDonald’s drive-thru). We’ve gotten off fairly easy thus far. But you know what they say⸺the biggest bills are yet to come.
Note – Part 2 will be posted once Half Penny debuts, but here’s how we saved $10,000 for our Baby Fund.
Second Note – It is not lost on either Mr. P or me how fortunate we are to have a healthy baby on the way and to have dodged the incredible expense and heartache of IVF. If you are in that situation, you’re in our thoughts.
So Tell Me…Did any of our spending surprise you?