So you have decided you are ready to start a family! Congratulations, but now what?
1. -When to fall pregnant
Like anything in Life if we fail to plan, it’s a plan to fail. Therefore once you have decided you are ready to start a family, take a calendar and with your hubby in tow decide as of when you would like to fall pregnant. Even though as per the American Journal of Health*, more then half of US pregnancies are unintended, most individuals and couples try to plan ahead for various social and economic reasons.
Therefore think practical, look at what works for your family and give yourself about 3-6 months if not longer before falling pregnant. Newly-weds typically within the year after their wedding fall pregnant.
Get a complete physical from your family doctor. Then through friends or colleagues find several OBs to interview to see if your values and ideas coincide with theirs and you are comfortable with the office policies and staff. Once you have picked one, have a complete prenatal check-up.
Start taking prenatal vitamins immediately.
Assess your eating habits; keep a food log for one week if necessary. If you haven’t exercised before, it may be a good idea to hire a prenatal fitness coach and seek advice to see what you may and may not do in terms of exercise as you are trying to fall pregnant. (I usually start my clients that are looking to fall pregnant on a prenatal fitness program to get their minds and bodies used to doing the exercises they will be doing during their pregnancies).
- – Getting your Finances in check
An important part of preparing to falling pregnant is to find out if your insurance covers 100 percent of prenatal care/delivery. You may need to change to an in-network doctor or choose one local hospital over another.
If you don’t have insurance, get some right away. Shop around and make sure it includes prenatal care/delivery and complications that could occur.
Discuss savings plans, both for baby’s college and for other big-ticket items like unfunded maternity leave, private preschools with your accountant or financial planner.
Determine whether your household needs two incomes to get by and if so start putting money aside.
If you plan to keep working, find out about your company’s maternity leave and flextime policies.
Start researching life insurance. You will need coverage once you have a child.
- – Making Lifestyle Changes
Say goodbye to alcohol, drugs and nicotine.
Get some sleep. Minimize stress. Post-pone stressful situations like moving or changing jobs.
Address relationship issues. While babies make marriage even happier, they are not the answer for unhappy ones.
Discuss expectations with your hubby and other family members. Expecting your mom to watch the baby while you go back to work, might not be something she may be open to.
Discuss child-care options and household responsibilities after the baby comes.
Stay tuned for Part 2 pretty Mama(to-be)!