Look what we made!

Welcome to the world, little man.

Welcome to the world, little man.

On August 4, 2009 at 4am in the morning, I had waddled down to the couch to sleep for a while because I wasn’t sleeping well up in bed. I figured it was due to overeating at Figlio and ice cream cake that Gabe treated me to on my birthday the night before– just didn’t feel right. By 4am I felt like perhaps I didn’t quite make it to the bathroom. Then…I half asleep thought to myself, “Maybe my water broke?” because I really wasn’t sure if it was that or if it was pregnancy- related incontinence. I went back to bed and just hoped I would “know” if I started having contractions or something.

By the morning I really wasn’t feeling good. I started to get ready for work and just knew I couldn’t make it. I told Gabe I thought maybe my water broke and he’s like, “Don’t you think you would KNOW?” and I said, “How would I know? I have no idea?” I called the doctor and texted into work that I had an appointment. The appointment was at 12:20 and I planned on going into work after- because I had a sneaking suspicion that they would just send me home saying, “Your water didn’t break, you pissed yourself again you idiot.” So I didn’t tell anyone that I was even worried about it.

By 10am I started to feel REALLY lousy….about every 10-15 minutes. I thought to myself- “Um….if these aren’t contractions, I don’t know if I can handle labor.” I made Gabe come on his lunch hour and drive me to the doctor because I didn’t think I could drive. At the doctor they said, “Yup- you’re in labor- go to the hospital, do not pass go. You are 3 centimeters dilated and your water broke.”

I went into the waiting room and told Gabe, “It’s baby time we have to go to the hospital.” The look on his face was priceless. We drove to the hospital. Got checked in. Was having WICKED contractions and was thinking to myself- there’s NO WAY I could do this without pain medication. Maybe that makes me a pussy- or maybe that makes me sane. I don’t know, either way, this is NO JOKE. I had an epidural at 3 centimeters around 1:30. By 5pm I was pushing. The nurses were shocked by how quickly I dilated to 10 cm.

The Pushing Part:UM— SUCKED. The first hour I was ok. By the second hour I was waning. The third hour I just didn’t believe that the baby was ever going to come out of me.

He was sunny-side-up, making it very difficult to push out. So the nurses and doctor were trying all the could to turn him…while he was still inside of me. This meant laying on my belly, trying to turn him by his head…and each time he would roll back over. The doctor finally looked at me and asked if I wanted to try the vacuum and that it would leave a mark or bruise on his head but it would probably help a lot to get him out- since he was stuck in there. I said yes…sure, let’s just GET THE BABY HERE ALREADY!

The vacuum thingy didn’t work. Instead it ripped off a bunch of skin and made Gabe almost pass out when it popped off Simon’s poor little dome. The doctor said, “I’m sorry I’m going to have to cut you…” which at the time I was like, “I don’t care if you have to cut me in HALF…” because I was feeling contractions and the pushing and all of it was just too tiring.

And I haven’t even MENTIONED the insane maniac nurse that was there trying to get me to push. That’s for another day.

At any rate, after more pushes and a big ol’ taint incision, Simon Gabriel Geig came into this world at 8:25pm. Seven pounds, even ounces and 21 inches long. Brownish/reddish hair and white eyelashes. He had the biggest conehead I’ve ever seen and he looked at me and I said, “He’s perfect.” Immediately people started saying “the conehead will go away” and I just kept saying, “He’s perfect.” I was so happy to be unpregnant and to have him here. And like I said, I gave birth to the perfect baby.

where I complain about money

So I’m going to write a post about money, prefacing it by saying that I tend to be Chicken Little when it comes to money issues and scream THE SKY IS FALLING while Gabe says, “Money is not real.” So we have vastly different opinions when it comes to these things. It’s not that I can’t afford to pay things off, I do- and it’s not that Gabe doesn’t pay things off or believe in the value of a dollar, but he doesn’t think it’s worth stressing out about.

All of that being said, when we initially learned we were pregnant- we were both completely freaked at the prospect of how much having and raising a baby/child costs. Different websites give you different averages, and then there’s college- which they say will cost upwards of $300K when Thumbkin decides to go– although these days I may discourage education since it doesn’t really seem to benefit people in anyway other than to saddle them with unyielding student loan debt and set them behind uneducated people who’ve already been in the workforce for 4 more years gaining seniority and hogging up all the good vacation days around Christmas.

So when we talked about pregnancy/raising kid costs, we said- “Well we’re both employed, with salaries and insurance, certainly we’re much better off than MANY people right now- we can do this.”

And we can.

However,  when I started budgeting for paying back student loans, I took a look at the credit cards I’d stopped using but had attempted to start just paying off. I have paid off cards before, so I realize it’s no small feat and takes a long time. I just decided I’m DONE paying interest and I’m DONE using fake money I really don’t have. This means, that (gasp) if I don’t have the money in my pocket for something, I have to save up. I can’t put it on a payment plan, etc. It’s not like it’s that strange really- but when a person already lives pretty much paycheck-to-paycheck it can be really scary in case things “come up”.  So we started saving and started paying off the big-bill of maternity/prenatal bill costs. Excuse me if this number sounds very small to you, but to me and my very detailed budget, an extra $600 is a lot of money. We JUST paid it off last pay period and I felt so good about it. I was under the impression that (until we checked out of the hospital) we were done with paying doctor bills for a while…like at least 4 weeks.

Then I got a call from the fancy schmancy hospital I chose (perhaps my first mistake) asking for $300 deposit upfront “as a courtesy”…. And I said, “Exsqueeze me what?!” and immediately- not $hitting you, I feel my blood pressure spike and start seeing bright lights in my field of vision. Do they mean this is a courtesy for ME or for THEM? My insurance covers all but 20% of the costs so they create an “average” ahead of time and ask if I’d like to pay it now.

No. No, I would not like to pay it now. I would like to cry.  I asked the lady, well what is the approximate cost? Give me a ballpark figure? She said I’d have to call their customer (poor people) hotline for that information. Then she said that having a baby is seen as an outpatient procedure. I said, “Everything I’ve read and was told said 2 days for a vaginal delivery…do I not stay 2 days?” The lady on the phone started fumbling…didn’t know what to say and opted for, “Well we wouldn’t send you home if you still needed to be there honey.”

I’m thinking, hand me my baby, cut the cord. Yank out the damned placenta, sew me up, write me a script for percosets and send me home then- $HIT. Send me the bill. And as a courtesy you can….*#%K  right off.

I asked, “Well what do you ask from people who don’t have insurance?”

She said, “You don’t want to know.”

I think they ask for the uninsured’s baby. Like Rumplestiltskin.

Gabe and I have good jobs, I mean- we HAVE jobs which (right now) is in and of itself good. The fact that we are both employed with insurance, maternity leave and whatnot covered- we get it, we’re lucky- we say it all the time.

I just can’t stand this feeling of impending doom all the time like- I’m never going to get ahead. And the thing is, is I AM going to get ahead- faster than most of America in fact because I DON’T have credit cards anymore, we don’t use Gabe’s. We cut out a lot of expenses that aren’t necessary like cable and gym memberships (sigh).  My car is paid off. In 9 years my student loan payments will be forgiven completely- POOF gone. We’re in much much better shape than most of the people yet I still can’t shake this feeling of….WHEN WILL IT END?!

So we’re going to end up paying 20% of whatever-it-costs-to-have-a-baby in a hospital. Which, according to the research I did on the computerwebs, will be somewhere between $4500-$8000 depending.  I just paid $600 in prenatal care- what did that cover?

AND what do people WITHOUT insurance do? I mean- do they just hope they don’t get pregnant? *cross your fingers!*

It just reminds me of the last time I thought I had face cancer because I was getting headaches in my FACE due to a botched root canal. I couldn’t afford the root canal so the doctor forced me to get a credit card because they wouldn’t allow me to just pay them each month (this is one of the credit cards that I consolidated so now I’m paying off a root canal WITH INTEREST like a freaking sleeper-sofa) Anyways, my doctor wanted to make sure I didn’t have some sort of tumor in my face because of all of the swelling and strange pain. I had a CAT scan. Insurance covered a teensy bit. Then a few months later I got a bill- that I didn’t think was real. Then they called me. And I told the lady, “Look I can’t pay all of this right now so I don’ t know what you expect me to do.” She said, “Well maybe next time you think you need a procedure done you’ll think about whether or not you can afford it first.

So that’s what I’m getting at people: I’m already completely freaked out about the whole- splitting in half to shoot a child from between my legs. Now I will also be glancing around the room wondering how much I’m paying to sit in their chairs, to get the drugs, to sleep on the crappy bed and use the pillows. I’ll be tallying all of that up WHILE ripping in half. Because that’s just who I am.

That’s a load of shit. And I have insurance. I’m one of the “lucky” ones.

*EDIT* I just read this post on another person’s blog. About halfway through she talks about how she’s being asked to pay ahead of time for her delivery, too. Messed up. She jokes about considering a home-birth next time. The more I read about that the more I think that might be the way to go in the future….as if I were as strong as the women I’ve seen on youtube or something…or ricki lake.