I’m a PPO girl — and as of Jan 1, I’ve dived headfirst into the wonderful(?) world of HMOs. Kaiser HMO to be exact. Why? Because, although with health insurance one cannot be 100% clear what anything will cost, it appears had I stayed on Anthem PPO my pregnancy would cost somewhere between $6000 and $1M (exaggeration at the high end, slightly), whereas Kaiser, outside of premiums, would be free – or almost free?
It really is ridiculous how much childbirth costs in the US vs the rest of the world. Kaiser offers refuge to those of us who would prefer not to spend what’s equal to one year of daycare to help our child escape our uterus and enter the world.
My biggest problem in the workplace is that I’m incapable of estimating how long projects will take — especially when they involve delegating work to others and/or finding outside vendors for that project. My new job requires lots of this, and it’s becoming more and more apparent but the day that this has the potential to put a significant wrench in my plan to stay in this role for at least four years.
I have the opportunity to be successful in this role. I have a supportive boss who believes in my general ability. But he has big goals and my role in achieving those goals is not a small one – which is great – I have an important position that can really move the needle. I have a chance to make a difference for the whole team, and to maybe, finally, contribute consistent quality work. Continue reading
DH (Dear Husband) and I have invested so much into the whole infertility process and trying to get pregnant, that we hadn’t approached getting pregnant in the way I’d prefer: having the major financial matters solved or at least tentatively agreed on prior to having a child. Continue reading
Being pregnant is like living in two parallel universes, especially in your first trimester when no one knows you are expecting. One is your regular life, where you go about your day at work and around friends living like you had before, with the exception of pretending to drink alcohol and hoping no one notices you haven’t drank in weeks. And, only you know this giant secret, one that many women have at some point in their life, that they have a new life, a new person, being created inside of them – as they give that presentation to their team or share a laugh with friends, holding a glass of wine without taking one sip.
I really try to take life one day at a time, because thinking too far into the future puts me in a constant state of unproductive panic. Right now, I need to focus on the next four years of our lives:
- 2018: baby #1 born (0 – 6 mo), I turn 35, 1 yr at job
- 2019: baby #1 turns 1, I turn 36(!), 2 yr at job
- 2020: baby #1 turns 2, preg w/ baby #2(!?!), I turn 37, 3 yr at job
- 2021: baby #1 turns 3, baby #2 turns 1, I turn 38, 4 yr at job
Then we… GTFO of the Bay Area. >Insert frown face and sad heart.< Continue reading
Baby stuff is inherently awwwwww-inducing cute because it’s small and therefore it’s adorable. Old me would be spending my entire paycheck already buying random baby things I see along the journey of pregnancy that capture my heart. Slightly less bad-with-money me knows that not only do I not need to buy a bunch of crap for my embryo/soon-to-be-fetus today, I don’t need that crap – ever. Continue reading
7 months, 3 weeks in counting until the arrival of baby “E” (we have two names picked out for girl or boy child, both start with E, so calling it baby E .) 7 months, 3 weeks is not that much time before our lives change forever.
Outside of finally figuring out how to keep my apartment clean, focusing on obtaining stability at my job, and trying to eat healthy and exercise and such, I’m perturbed by our housing situation and whether or not we should move or stay put. The general consensus until my anxiety attack of this last week was stay put until kid is 1, then figure it out / move to a two bedroom / etc. Continue reading
I have no idea what I’m in for this summer, but I do know it’s going to be the hardest year of my life. With the reality of maternity leave (and lack there of) settling in, I’m starting to play for 4-6 weeks off from work (4 weeks are fully paid, 2 would be at ~25% of my salary.)
Today I ran the numbers of taking 4 weeks off prior to my due date and 3 months off after (12 weeks.) Even with some paid leave, I’ll be losing $20,000 worth of salary…. enough to put the baby IN DAYCARE for the entire year. As much as I’d love to stay home with baby, it just doesn’t make sense. Continue reading
The silent drumroll of my 5w4d ultrasound this morning might have revealed more than one yolk sack, but the grande reveal was one sack and one beautiful progesterone-producing cyst. In other news, so far I have a very healthy pregnancy with one darling little blob starting to develop into a human being.
I know pregnancy is a normal thing… but it’s still crazy to think there’s a person growing INSIDE of me. I’m sure it will be equally crazy yet more conceivable when it gets really big and starts to kick. I’m absolutely terrified of childbirth but, I guess I’m on the rollercoaster and there’s no turning back now! Baby is going to grow and come out of me, whether I like it or not. Continue reading
High deductible health plans are great when you hit your deductible – except when they’re not. Specifically, they’re not great when over the course of the year you have to start over paying your deductible due to company health plan changes and/or changing companies. Thus, this leads me to move away from my former infatuation with the HSA-enabled HDHP.
In November, my $2600 deductible restarted. I figured I could survive until the end of the year without seeing a doctor. Then, I got pregnant. And then, I got sick. Sick with a cold / sore throat / lost voice that’s likely a virus that has no cure anyway… not worth a doctor’s visit and certainly not worth spending $300 on. I already made that mistake a few times this year when I didn’t realize my deductible had not only reset, but doubled (thanks to my former company who didn’t notify me that as of Aug 1 they switched plans and the $1500 deductible was now $2600 and reset *cough*bullshit*cough.*) Yes, that cost me $1000 in medical fees that I expected to be covered due to a series of “fuck I lost my job and I’m incredibly depressed” psychologist appointments (nothing like a surprise $1000 bill you fix your mental health!)
But now, I’m going back and forth on whether to go to the doctor. Being pregnant changes things. I’m five weeks, two days pregnant… and, 3 weeks, 6 days away from a brand new year of health insurance and deductibles. Since I’m switching to Kaiser, my medical costs are going to go way down next year (it’s a $1500 out of pocket max, no deductible, no more surprise charges PPO BS. I hope I do not regret this decision.) Can’t I just stop talking for a few weeks (who needs a voice anyway) and hold out?
I do get to see my reproductive endocrinologist tomorrow – or at least the nurse – and perhaps they’ll be able to advise if I should do anything about this stupid cold. Luckily, my follow up appointments for my pregnancy at my RE are “free” (well, covered by my monthly $800 cycle fee) until I’m handed off to an ObGyn… so I’m hoping they can help at least provide some medical advice of what to do if I’m super sick and cannot talk.
The good news is I haven’t had a fever yet. I know fevers can be dangerous to baby and the second I get a high fever I’m paying that $300 and going to the doctor. For now, I think I just need to figure out how to get some rest and eat a lot of chicken soup.