• Pregnancy on the cheap: what it’s cost so far

    People often ask me if I’ve been having any cravings – and the answer is always no!

    Aversions, on the other hand…

    I miss enjoying food; nothing ever sounds appealing 99% of the time but one has to eat nonetheless. These days I’m eating to live vs living to eat, and that’s so not me.

    Cravings aren’t costing me anything, but lemonade’s now a staple on the shopping list every week. It might be a placebo but quite frankly when the delightful pre-bed upset.indigestion sets in (usually peaks between 8-10pm) I don’t care.

    Fortunately, healthcare is mostly free here and my antenatal costs have been minimal. A few bucks here and there for prescriptions, and $50 a pop for scans (beyond the first free dating scan).

    I have health insurance through work, however the (small) obstetrics allowance only kicks in after a year – so would only cover costs in about the last month of pregnancy and beyond. As far as I can tell there should be no charges associated with labour/birth, apart from perhaps the fee they charge for partners to stay overnight with you at Birthcare.

    So far, I’m still fitting into my current bras (this was perfect timing actually, as this lot were all about to hit the end of their life, having stretched out over the past couple of years) and still squeezing into my pants with the help of a handy $20 extender though possibly not for much longer. So far I’ve spent about $25 on new (thrifted) clothing – two pairs of stretchy pants that I live in when I’m at home (surely now down to about 0.01 cents cost per wear) and a flowy skirt with stretchy waistband.

    In terms of baby stuff, we’re yet to actually begin shopping. I’m pretty set on avoiding mindless browsing and only buying the essentials, especially to start off with.

    We definitely seem to be in line for some hand me downs, and I’d like to buy secondhand stuff where possible and safe. From what I can tell, lots of baby stuff just doesn’t get used for long and winds up getting sold online for much less, lightly used. Savings aside, think of all the wastefulness! I’d so much prefer to reuse than to contribute to unnecessary waste.  And yes, I’m thinking about doing some cloth diapering too, but we’ll see how we go…

  • You don’t have to optimise EVERY minute of your life

    you dont have to optimise every minute

     

    First trimester exhaustion is no joke.

    Probably not helping was what I’m pretty sure was a light spell of flu or a terrible cold around the second month thrown in there.

    However much was due to my growing a human vs legit illness, I spent literally weeks out of action beyond making it to work and home again (and not even that, some days). Evenings and weekends, the only place you’d find me was flat on my back in bed. And even now, my (never great) energy levels aren’t what they used to be, so I need even more rest and sleep than normal. On top of that, the occasional dizzy spell likes to come out of  nowhere, relegating me to the nearest seat (or better, bed) to recover.

    I had to get over my guilt about doing nothing pretty quick smart, and embrace marathoning Jane the Virgin.

    A happiness hack

    Separately, I’d already been working for a while on reframing how I think about the nonproductive hours in my week.

    I guess you could even spin it as optimising my time, though maybe not in the traditional way.

    The things is, I hate waiting. Seriously hate it.

    But instead of resenting the commute, I’m starting to enjoy it (maybe even look forward to it sometimes) as it’s often the only time I can carve out to decompress and meditate.

    And now that the days are getting shorter and it’s dark earlier, I’m switching it up. Normally I bus to the train station in the morning, and walk home from the train in the evening; these days I’m walking in the morning (bonus: it warms me up for the day, gets the blood flowing on wintry mornings!) and bus back from the station home.

    The same with walking the dogs. It’s gotta be done. Sometimes it can be doubled up as a run for me, but not every walk can be a run – and these days I’m just not up for running at all, to be honest. Some walks need to be training walks, and some need to be relaxing sniffy walks where they can just be dogs – walks when I can let my mind roam free and work on visualisations and mantras.

    Rather than impatiently waiting for these ‘unproductive’ times to end, I’m trying to use them in better ways. Repurposing them from hours to be endured with the help of Spotify and podcasts, to precious flow and meditation time.