Would you do a vacation that you couldn't "technically" afford? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 29 Old 06-30-2013, 08:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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You ladies always give such good advice.  Here's the whole, long story made as short as possible.  My dad wants to help fly us to Florida in October.  Great, except: We are currently pregnancy with an unplanned third baby.  We are due in January (the first!) and our fee to the midwife is $4000.  We can't fit three across in our car plus I babysit so we need a new car.  We have a small amount on the credit card, $900, because my husband wanted to surprise me for our anny and didn't want to pull it out of savings.  Lastly, for the trip my dad wants to help get us there but he can't pay for it all so that would probably be around $3000.  Now the thing is we can cover all of these things with our savings but it would leave them totally depleted and we don't really have a way to pay them back quickly.  Would you go on the trip anyway?  And another issue is that this birth will be a VBAC and we currently don't have insurance if we needed to transfer to the hospital.  We are thinking we will just get that the month or two before the baby is born because I didn't have insurance when I got pregnant so I am high risk.  So what would you do?  


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#2 of 29 Old 06-30-2013, 08:54 PM
 
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Under the circumstances you describe, I would not go - $4,000 plus new car (even if it is used) plus no insurance for transfer = you need as large of a cushion as you can save until Jan.

 

What is the reason for the trip? Is there a special occasion or is it just a vacation? Maybe you could something closer to your location if it is a special occasion?
 


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#3 of 29 Old 06-30-2013, 09:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Not exactly a special occasion.  We had been talking about doing it for awhile; my dad had suggested the idea several months ago but he tends to be flaky and we were a little unsure of spending money on a trip and having him be a less than gracious host.  But my husband's father committed suicide at the end of May and my dad wanted to do something to cheer him up.  Plus, my dad hasn't ever been generous with finances so since he made the offer we felt like we should jump on it.  And we were thinking that it will be a long time before we can do something like this again since traveling with three will be quite the undertaking.  Wishful thinking, I know.


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#4 of 29 Old 06-30-2013, 09:13 PM
 
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Under the circumstances you describe, I would not go - $4,000 plus new car (even if it is used) plus no insurance for transfer = you need as large of a cushion as you can save until Jan.

 

What is the reason for the trip? Is there a special occasion or is it just a vacation? Maybe you could something closer to your location if it is a special occasion?
 

I agree.  I think that spending that much would be too taxing.


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#5 of 29 Old 06-30-2013, 09:17 PM
 
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No, I really don't think you are anywhere near where you need to be to prepare for birth let alone an expensive trip. Who do you think will give you coverage two months before your birth? Do you quality for medicaid? 

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#6 of 29 Old 06-30-2013, 09:32 PM
 
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No, going on a vacation that you can not afford--especially when you have several known large expenses in the near future--is not going to be a good idea.

 

Is your father willing to give you the same amount for something closer to home?  If he's willing to pay $1000, you could use the money to have a fun time closer to home plus put a little bit towards the baby fund.  Or, alternatively, could he come visit you rather than you going there?  It will be cheaper to fly one person that it will be to fly four.  He could come visit you and you could explore a new area of your own city/state together.

 

Good luck!

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#7 of 29 Old 06-30-2013, 10:29 PM
 
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I will probably get flamed for this, but... Considering the circumstances, I would try to figure out how to go. Your family has been through so much. I know money is important and I know your financial well being is important. But your emotional well being has taken a serious beating with your DHs dad committing suicide. I cannot imagine the toll this has taken. Is there anyone else that would like to help with the trip maybe? With this being your third, do you already have lots of baby stuff? I'm asking because maybe instead of baby gifts from family you can ask for help with the vaca? This may seem tacky to some but I am a strong believer in just asking for what you actually need. And it seems like you guys need this.

I'm sure some think I am being irresponsible but I tend to look at everything as what value it brings to the table. Money, and especially saved money, has value but so does mental and spiritual health. If there is any way you can do it, I would try. It sounds like this might be more of a need than a want.

I would, however, find out about the insurance thing. You wouldn't want any surprises as far as that is concerned.

Good luck!!

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#8 of 29 Old 06-30-2013, 11:08 PM
 
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I agree with dalia.

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#9 of 29 Old 07-01-2013, 12:46 AM
 
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I also agree with dalia.
 


 

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#10 of 29 Old 07-01-2013, 07:01 AM
 
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I do agree with the idea of doing something nice for your mental and spiritual health, but is there any reason a $3,000 trip to Florida is the only way to accomplish that? Depending on your family's interests, maybe having your dad come out and spending time with him camping close to home will bring you that same benefit. Just thinking of the future baby/family - putting that at risk for a week of vacation doesn't seem to be a good choice. Your mileage may vary!  

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#11 of 29 Old 07-01-2013, 07:22 AM
 
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As things stand now, no I wouldn't do it.  But, I would do whatever I could to make it happen.  Like others mentioned - can you get on Medicaid/state insurance in case you need a transfer?  Is there any way to cut down the cost of the trip?  Is there anything you can sell to raise funds?

 

  $3K seems really high - is this set in stone?  

 

How reliable is your family's income, is it at risk at all?  How long would it take to rebuild your savings?  What would you do if there were a financial emergency after you got home, if there was a job loss or if the new vehicle turned out to be a lemon?

 

I completely agree that spiritual and emotional health is important too, but having a newborn and a being flat broke and in some sort of financial crisis won't offer much in the way of emotional peace, either.

 

I am so sorry about your husband's father.  I really hope you can find a way to make this work!


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#12 of 29 Old 07-01-2013, 11:58 AM
 
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I completely agree that spiritual and emotional health is important too, but having a newborn and a being flat broke and in some sort of financial crisis won't offer much in the way of emotional peace, either.

 

 

I agree.  Not to mention you're a high risk pregnancy with no insurance.  It’s very likely that you are going to need your savings in case something happens with your pregnancy. 

 

Instead of spending all this money to go somewhere, I suggest doing a stayvacation.  Take a few days off from work and enjoy doing something in your hometown.  Or have your dad come to you.

 

I would NOT go on this vacation.   If something happens you are going to be SUPER stressed out and wishing you had never gone on that vacation.


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#13 of 29 Old 07-02-2013, 12:11 AM
 
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My original thoughts still stand - I would tweak things until we could go on holiday somewhere. Your family has been through a death due to suicide - Unexpected death is hard as it is, without mixing a suicide into it. My heart goes out to the both of you! :(

 

Some thoughts:

 

-Can your midwife do a payment plan? Do you have to give her the 4k in one go?

 

-Is your dad able to come down instead and you can all go away on a holiday closer to home?

 

-Four return airfares at 3k sounds really high.. Have you looked into all the different deals available?
 

-The new car you will need.. What are you looking at getting? Any thoughts as to how you will fund this?


 

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#14 of 29 Old 07-02-2013, 08:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks so much for all the replies and advice, I knew you would all come through for me!  The "staycation" is a great idea; my dad is actually already coming here, too.  The only issue with that is that he divides his time between us and family five hours away so we generally don't get to see much of him.  Other questions brought up; the $3000 estimate is from $2000 airfare and $1000 lodging, both of which my dad said he'd help with, so I figured about $1500 for those two things plus $1500 for food and spending money.  This could be significantly lower but thought I'd err on the high side.  Our income is stable, my husband has a good job that he's had for several years and I babysit on the side.  The bulk of our emergency fund (about 5 months worth) came from tax refunds, Christmas money, etc...We add a small amount each month but not anywhere near where we need to be and we are not able to replace it very fast.  The car could be a very low priced car, about $2500, that we pay for with proceeds from the sale of our current car and a dirt bike that my husband fixed up to sell for profit.  We may not be able to find a good car for that price but we were hoping to get into a decent van, paid for with cash, until we are able to save up for a better car.  As far as Medicaid, I think we might qualify.  We had to try in the past to get hospital assistance but we missed by $20!  I looked at the numbers again and we seem close but I hesitate to do that since we could pay for insurance ourselves.  It would be super tight but I think we could do it so I feel like I would be taking advantage of the system, basically qualifying so that we can go on a vacation.  Thanks again for all your help, I really appreciate it!


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#15 of 29 Old 07-02-2013, 10:02 PM
 
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Are you gonna go?

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#16 of 29 Old 07-04-2013, 04:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We haven't decided yet.  We are waiting to hear what dates my dad has available.  Another tricky part is my husband's days off.  He took about a week with his father's death and then about two weeks after that our due date was moved up about 3 weeks.  That means the baby will most likely be born before he gets more vacation days at the beginning of the year.  So, it's looking like a no but we are still working on it.  Redoing our budget, a la Dave Ramsey, looking into Medicaid, looking into a dr. versus the midwife, etc...Thanks again, lots to think about!


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#17 of 29 Old 07-04-2013, 04:40 PM
 
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Wishing you the best!

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#18 of 29 Old 07-05-2013, 02:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Another question I have, and it might be best to start a new thread, is about qualifying for Medicaid.  My girls are actually on it and I, apparently, can just be added on but we have too much in savings?  Anyone else deal with this?


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#19 of 29 Old 07-06-2013, 12:39 PM
 
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No. I would never purchase something that I couldn't afford. I am passionate about my committments to my budgetary priorities. I plan to "live long and prosper" ;)

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#20 of 29 Old 07-07-2013, 03:43 PM
 
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No. The money problems would make take away from my peace and spiritual health. I would invite dad out. Hopefully next year.


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#21 of 29 Old 07-07-2013, 03:44 PM
 
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Pull money out of savings and put it in a safe in your house or pay off another debt. (IE prepay oil for the winter, or apply to your mortage.) I had to do that.


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#22 of 29 Old 07-08-2013, 12:58 AM
 
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As something to consider in your research of birth options, the American Association of Birth Centers has a position statement on VBACs in birth centers. In a word, it's no. Birth centers who want accredidation are not supposed to be doing VBACs anymore. If it's too risky for the folks who really wanted to provide that service outside the hospital, in a birth center, why would it be an ideal choice to have a VBAC at home? You might look into a certified nurse-midwife- you may be able to find a practice that could provide birth services for you at a hospital. You might also ask about what hospitals near you offer the pre-priced deal, so you know exactly what price you'll be charged--some offer this these days. A doctor can certainly be a good choice too--and though achieving a vbac would be great, if you end up with a cesarean, wouldn't that be ok also? I would certainly be very wary, just on financial grounds, of handing over $4000 to a midwife when a transfer is a distinct possibility. That would add a whole new layer of cost, as I'm sure you're thinking twice about. Regarding feeling bad about just barely qualifying for Medicaid--don't feel bad! If you qualify, go ahead and apply! Whether you went on a vacation or not does not matter. The country does have an interest in making sure little babies and birthing moms get proper care. Regarding your possible vacation, do you still get the feeling your dad may be a shabby host and ruin the vacation for you? If so, maybe it would be a good option to ask him about saving those thousands and coming to see you and the kids a couple extra times in the next year or so. In this way, they would actually have more time with their grandfather, and you wouldn't feel you wasted thousands of dollars. All these choices are really yours to make, and it may be stressful having to make these kinds of decisions. I hope you will end up feeling at peace with all your choices, and best wishes for a continued happy healthy pregnancy and birth.
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#23 of 29 Old 07-08-2013, 06:33 AM
 
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As something to consider in your research of birth options, the American Association of Birth Centers has a position statement on VBACs in birth centers. In a word, it's no. Birth centers who want accredidation are not supposed to be doing VBACs anymore. If it's too risky for the folks who really wanted to provide that service outside the hospital, in a birth center, why would it be an ideal choice to have a VBAC at home? You might look into a certified nurse-midwife- you may be able to find a practice that could provide birth services for you at a hospital. You might also ask about what hospitals near you offer the pre-priced deal, so you know exactly what price you'll be charged--some offer this these days. A doctor can certainly be a good choice too--and though achieving a vbac would be great, if you end up with a cesarean, wouldn't that be ok also? I would certainly be very wary, just on financial grounds, of handing over $4000 to a midwife when a transfer is a distinct possibility. That would add a whole new layer of cost, as I'm sure you're thinking twice about. Regarding feeling bad about just barely qualifying for Medicaid--don't feel bad! If you qualify, go ahead and apply! Whether you went on a vacation or not does not matter. The country does have an interest in making sure little babies and birthing moms get proper care. Regarding your possible vacation, do you still get the feeling your dad may be a shabby host and ruin the vacation for you? If so, maybe it would be a good option to ask him about saving those thousands and coming to see you and the kids a couple extra times in the next year or so. In this way, they would actually have more time with their grandfather, and you wouldn't feel you wasted thousands of dollars. All these choices are really yours to make, and it may be stressful having to make these kinds of decisions. I hope you will end up feeling at peace with all your choices, and best wishes for a continued happy healthy pregnancy and birth.

I would argue that this has a lot more to do with liability than riskiness. For many women, birthing at home is the safest route. Birthing at a hospital raises the chances of her having another c-section, which is not what this mama wants and carries significant risks in itself. Also, I'm not sure transfer is any more likely than if she were a first time mom or having another natural birth. OP, are you on the VBAC boards at all? That's where we go for facts and support regarding VBAC. :-)

Good luck in whatever you decide, OP!

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#24 of 29 Old 07-08-2013, 11:08 AM
 
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Hmmmm my midwife does provide vbacs to moms at home.


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#25 of 29 Old 07-08-2013, 12:26 PM
 
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Hmmmm my midwife does provide vbacs to moms at home.

Lots of midwives offer this. And I'm glad they do! In my town there is a midwife that does it but the birth center will not.

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#26 of 29 Old 07-13-2013, 03:25 PM
 
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"the American Association of Birth Centers has a position statement on VBACs in birth centers. In a word, it's no. Birth centers who want accredidation are not supposed to be doing VBACs anymore. "

 

Can you reference this? I was at an AABC accredited birth center until this February, we offered VBACs and they didn't have anything negative to say about it.


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#27 of 29 Old 07-14-2013, 05:23 AM
 
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Here I googled it previously, bit I didn't want to derail the OP's thread.

http://www.birthcenters.org/about-aabc/history
2004- Publication of the National Study of Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC) in Birth Centers is published in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, This AABC study of 1,913 women attempting VBACs in birth centers demonstrates that VBACs carry risks that suggest hospital care is best.

But then there is this saying they need more info.
http://www.birthcenters.org/about-aabc/position-statements/vbac-study

To the OP, no, I wouldn't do it. I was in a similar situation and am glad I waited to do the vacation. Not only did I have to pay my homebirth MW the entire fee, but also, I had to pay the costs to have a surgical delivery when things went wrong. Next year when we get our tax refund, we can do something a little more fun than that!

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#28 of 29 Old 07-14-2013, 08:04 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Please do derail the thread!  I need all the VBAC info. I can get.  We are now debating the midwife situation.  We qualify for Medicaid so that opens our options a bit.  We decided to look into a midwife at a hospital, a dr. at a hospital, and another midwife who does homebirths.  The midwives we are with have been great but they don't do any sort of sliding fee and they don't bill Medicaid.  This isn't the bottom line; we'd happily pay out of pocket but we are feeling a little wary, to be honest.  At my last appointment, which was my first one even though I was like 13 weeks because of some off dates of mine, the midwife ran out of time and said she'd do the exam next time.  So she wasn't going to do heart tones or look at my stomach or anything.  We had an ultrasound two weeks earlier and saw a healthy baby but my husband wasn't there so I asked her to really quickly do the heart beat.  I left feeling a little uncomfortable even needing to ask her to do that.  I had an 8 week loss several years and days earlier had a friend who had an 8 week loss that she didn't find out about until the 12 week appointment.  I thought, oh my gosh if something like that were to happen we wouldn't know for another month, at my next appointment.  My husband thought it wasn't that big of a deal but I guess I'm just super picky about our provider now. And it's like the more research I do, the less I know. 


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#29 of 29 Old 07-14-2013, 08:25 AM
 
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If you had a bad feeling about her I would definitely be seeking other options. I am trying for a VBAC this time as well. I am working with an OB at the hospital because I have early onset gestational diabetes. Sounds like you have lots of options. Good luck!

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