Sunday, August 24, 2014

The Finances of Parenting: Why Fundraise Part I

Thousands of families come together without thought to finances. Parents get married, have children, and the idea of cost never really ever comes into it.  Other parents plan their whole lives for the day they will have a child.  Many times all of that planning does not change anything, but it gave them peace of mind to save and prepare.  As Mark and I embarked on our marriage journey almost 20 years ago we wanted to have a family.  We were not sure how large.  I wanted a large family and he wanted a family with maybe two, three, or maybe four kids.  We knew that once we got married, I would graduate from college and get a job and we would start our family.  Well, we did the first two but we found out that for us the starting the family part was not that easy. 
We went through years of fertility treatments.  In the summer of 2000, I found out I was pregnant.  We were so excited, but in less than six weeks, I had a miscarriage. In September, we decided to go to an adoption information meeting.  We knew that if this next round of treatments did not work we had other options.  In November, we got pregnant once again and in December we found out we were having twins.  Financially, we had been spending almost a paycheck on doctor bills, medicines, lab work and travel to and from Atlanta.  We were thrilled to be pregnant and we never looked at the bills we just paid them with a smile on our faces.  We went through the pregnancy still spending an enormous amount of money on specialists and extra doctor visits because we found out that our William had a heart condition.  We did not even consider the financial expense of this we just paid it.  It never occurred to us not to pay it.  We just wanted our kids healthy and listened to everything the doctors told us and recommended so that our son would live to term.  We knew that the finances for raising him would just increase after he was born and we just did not care.  We never thought, "Ohh, it is going to be so expensive raising a heart baby."  This never, ever went through our minds.
In July, we gave birth to AG and our stillborn son William.  At that point did we again look at the cost of all that we had spent and all that we had gone through and all that we had done for this child that we now had to bury?  Did we look at the financial expense of a burial?  NOOOOO.  None of this ever occurred to us.  Not once did we consider any of that.  We just did what we had to do and prayed that God would get us through his death.  It was overwhelmingly painful and money was not anything we thought about at the time.